How to clean Aztek airbrushes?

Hosted by Dave Parker from AFV Modeller magazine and Adam Wilder, this discussion group is geared towards modelling technique questions ranging from construction to final weathering. This forum was created so that "newbies" can post without being intimidated by the sometimes highly technical nature of the other discussion groups.

How to clean Aztek airbrushes?

Joined: April 18th, 2005, 5:30 pm

July 4th, 2006, 9:35 am #1

Hi guys,
Is there a magic elixir or spell to clean up the plastic-body Aztek airbrushes and their nozzles? I start cleaning them as soon as I am done airbrushing and never leave them dry but whatever I do, the plastic nozzles get paint dried around the needle and I spend an hour after each color. It doesn't also matter whether I use enamel or acrylic paints.
I know I shouldn't have gotten an Aztek then but I just can't throw it away now.
Thx in advance
Deniz
Quote
Like
Share

Joined: January 31st, 2003, 12:37 pm

July 4th, 2006, 9:38 pm #2

Deniz,

I use cellulose thinners sprayed into the Aztek cleaning jar initially. Then I remove the nozzle and drop it into the thinners after carefully stripping the needle out. Use a cotton bud with thinners to clean inside the front of the airbrush whilst the nozzle is removed. The only downside is the smell, I generally clean it outside.

Regards,
Paul
Last edited by Paul Alderton on July 4th, 2006, 9:38 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Quote
Like
Share

Joined: April 18th, 2005, 5:30 pm

July 5th, 2006, 1:23 am #3

Wouldn't cellulose thinners damage the plastic as well?
Thx
Deniz
Quote
Like
Share

Joined: January 31st, 2003, 12:37 pm

July 5th, 2006, 7:53 am #4

Deniz,

I have just recently started spraying with Vallejo paints which I thin with water. For Tamiya acrylics I thin with cellulose or their own thinner and I rarely use enamels through the airbrush. I have had no problems with the thinners attacking the plastic either on the kit or the airbrush.

As for the cleaning of the nozzles I put the parts into a small glass coffee lid and use a pair of tweezers and an old paintbrush to clean them - it only takes seconds and once removed from the liquid it evaporates almost instantly.

Cheers,
Paul
Quote
Like
Share

Joined: April 11th, 2006, 10:43 pm

July 5th, 2006, 1:18 pm #5

Hi guys,
Is there a magic elixir or spell to clean up the plastic-body Aztek airbrushes and their nozzles? I start cleaning them as soon as I am done airbrushing and never leave them dry but whatever I do, the plastic nozzles get paint dried around the needle and I spend an hour after each color. It doesn't also matter whether I use enamel or acrylic paints.
I know I shouldn't have gotten an Aztek then but I just can't throw it away now.
Thx in advance
Deniz
I do 100% of my painting and cleaning near the kitchen sink. Once I'm done with a color (I always use acrylics) i dump the unused remainder down the sink and, using hot water, flush out the cup. then fill the cup with hot water and just blow the airbrush out until only clean water is coming out the tip. After detaching the tip, i put it in a jar of warm water until needed later. If the tip of the tip gets gunky i use the tool provided by testors or and old toothbrush, to clean the tip, the airbrush body and the feed from the cup. I also rinse the needle parts in hot water before using them again.

Testors also makes a potent cleaner for dried paint in tips. Be careful, this stuff is not meant to be used in the airbrush body because it eats the gasket that seats the nozzles and you can't get an airtight lock after the chemical treatment. Usually it's sufficient to just use the tool to clean the body.
Quote
Like
Share

Joined: August 12th, 2004, 3:14 pm

July 5th, 2006, 7:36 pm #6

Wouldn't cellulose thinners damage the plastic as well?
Thx
Deniz
For enamels, and also Tamiya and Gunze acrylics. It doesnt hurt the Testors nozzles, although I don't soak them overnight either. For most cleanings, the thinner will remove any kind of paint in a matter of minutes anyway. Spraying laquer thinner through the airbrush is a good way to clean it, irregardless of the kind of paint and thinner you use for modelling. Cuts through ALL types of paints.
DAVID NICKELS
Quote
Like
Share

Joined: April 18th, 2005, 5:30 pm

July 5th, 2006, 11:10 pm #7

Hi guys,
Is there a magic elixir or spell to clean up the plastic-body Aztek airbrushes and their nozzles? I start cleaning them as soon as I am done airbrushing and never leave them dry but whatever I do, the plastic nozzles get paint dried around the needle and I spend an hour after each color. It doesn't also matter whether I use enamel or acrylic paints.
I know I shouldn't have gotten an Aztek then but I just can't throw it away now.
Thx in advance
Deniz
The cellulose thinner is working out great. I was only using hot water and soap/detergent before with a lot of toothbrush work... I'd suggest everyone to get a real good mask with the cellulose thinner though...
Deniz
Quote
Like
Share

Joined: March 3rd, 2005, 9:36 am

July 6th, 2006, 12:47 pm #8

Hi guys,
Is there a magic elixir or spell to clean up the plastic-body Aztek airbrushes and their nozzles? I start cleaning them as soon as I am done airbrushing and never leave them dry but whatever I do, the plastic nozzles get paint dried around the needle and I spend an hour after each color. It doesn't also matter whether I use enamel or acrylic paints.
I know I shouldn't have gotten an Aztek then but I just can't throw it away now.
Thx in advance
Deniz
What ever you do ,do not soak the Aztek airbrush body in enamel ,or acrylic thinner or any other strong solvent .
The outer body is mostly impervious to any attack by solvents , but the internal gaskets or what ever is in there is not.

I soaked mine in thinner and after a few times it developed an internal air leak.
I sent it back to Testors for repair, saying nothing of the soaking in thinner.

Testors sent me a new airbrush body with two new acrylic nozzles , along with a note about soaking the body in strong solvents.


Kevin (Bluey)
"I'm not young enough to know every thing"
Quote
Like
Share