Model Rail (UK) - - Skill Station -

Paint emerges from an air­brush in a cone-shaped pat­tern, the size and spread of which de­pends on the in­di­vid­ual tool’s de­sign. Air­brushes with fat­ter, stubby noz­zles in­vari­ably pro­duce a broader spray pat­tern, while those with long, slen­der noz­zles emit a more ‘fo­cused’ pat­tern. Round nee­dle caps help to con­cen­trate the emis­sion of paint, re­duc­ing the amount of ‘over­spray’, where loose par­ti­cles of paint land out­side the in­tended area. This is es­pe­cially de­sir­able when build­ing up con­sis­tent lay­ers of paint, such as on a lo­co­mo­tive livery. In con­trast, crown-shaped nee­dle caps per­mit work­ing at closer quar­ters, with­out the risk of the air blow­ing back from the sur­face into the noz­zle, thus cre­at­ing a rougher in­ish, es­pe­cially when paint­ing ine lines or streak­ing e ects. A draw­back of this de­sign is that the air low is not chan­nelled e ec­tively, lead­ing to in­creased lev­els of ‘over­spray’, es­pe­cially when work­ing fur­ther away from the sub­ject (more than a few cen­time­tres). Oval-shaped noz­zles are o ered on cer­tain air­brushes, al­low­ing for a much wider spray pat­tern that is ideal for large-scale mod­els or scenic work. Many air­brushes o er a choice of in­ter­change­able nee­dle caps and they’re of­ten avail­able as sep­a­rate ac­ces­sories.

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