Sep 6, 2022 4 min read

Airbrush for miniature painting – what you need to know before you start?

Airbrush for miniature painting – what you need to know before you start?
Table of Contents

When it comes to choosing the airbrush there're things that you have to know before buying it and good practices while using and maintaining it.

What do you need to know before you buy an airbrush?

First of all there're several types and producents of an airbrushes. We're going to descrbe two most popular and describe pros and cons each of them.

Airbrush with included compressor kit

In our opinion this compressor won't work when it comes to the miniature painting. The pressure that this included compressor has is way too low and additionally while painting the paint'll come out of it in small waves which in beetween you have to wait.

Airbrush with included compressor kit

Another big disadvantage is weight of this kit. While detaling some parts it might be even impossible to paint with it.

Except that I think refueling this compressor kit might be inconvinient. Buying new container when you empty the container doesn't make financial sense.

Airbrush with separete compressor

The only proper way while painting miniatures's with airbrush is to choose airbrush with separated compressor. This way at beggining is of course more expensive but the advantages prevail unanimously.

With separeted compressor you can adjust the pressure that it generates to your needs and the worktime is limited to the compressor. It's recommended to shut down the compressor after 40-50 minute session because it needs to cool down a little bit.

Airbrush with separete compressor
Did you know?
- you can connect multiple airbrushes to a compressor and use multiple simultaneously.

Depending on the power of the compressor it might generate a lot of noise. Don't worry, it's possible to put the compressor in other room or even outside the building. However, do not overdo it with the distance from it beacuse the preasure of the air lower with the distance.

If your surrondings don't let you move it far from you should get noise-cancelling headphones.

Airbrush paint container

In our opinion you should choose the container with the smallest size or the build-in one. We write more about it more in later in the article.


There're different sizes of nozzles, in our company we use two major types, one with a diameter of 0.2mm and second with 0.4mm (there are of course other diameters as well). Does the size of it really matter?

different sizes of airbrush nozzles

Yes it does a lot! For beginners, we recommend an airbrush with a 0.2mm nozzle because this one's easier to control and the most important thing you can't damage the model with preassure of the air.

Yes you see well, the preassure of the air while using an airbrush with 0.4mm nozzle could potentially damage your miniature. It of course depends of the distance between the miniature and the airbrush and miniture itself.

Choosing the proper size for you depends mostly of the surface and miniature sizes that you're working on. It's also worth highlighting that you could choose the airbrush with changable nozzle so depending on the current need you could choose one.

How to avoid clogging the airbrush nozzle?

First of all, you should use fresh paint to avoid clogging the nozzle, this should eliminate the clogging problem. It is also worth mentioning that consistency of the paint could cause clogging of the nozzle.

Good habit while painting with airbrush is to not put too much paint into the paint container. This way you're minimising the risk of clogging it.

Cleaning after airbrush changing specific paint

It's recommennded to clean airbrush after chaniging each paint and after completing the painting. To do this you should put water into the paint cointainer and let it flow through it. You could clean it with special cleaner or with acetone as well.


There're special paints adapted to airbrushes with special consistency but they're limited when it comes to their paint variations. If you want to use the typical paints with airbrush you should thin the paint beacuse all the special airbrush paints are more liquid.

In our company we're using paint thinner and thanks to it we're not decreasing the paint quality and it fits more into the airbrush. To water down the paint you can also use water but we recommend using any kind of the medium.

paint thinner
paint thinner
If you use paint straight from the bottle it'll work with the airbrush but there's high possibility that the paint will dry inside the mechanism and it'll stop working.

Final thoughts

We hope you enjoyed our post about airbrushes! Check our other social media profiles and good luck!

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