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Aztek airbrush nozzles
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Colorado, United States
Member Since: February 01, 2003
entire network: 5,221 Posts
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Posted: Monday, September 26, 2005 - 05:57 AM UTC
I'm about to give up on my Aztek airbrush. I try to keep the nozzels and such as clean as possible, thin the paint to the right consistency, and everything else I can think of, and still no luck. I think it's possilbe the nozzles have been clogged beyond the ability to clean them just by soaking. I know you're not supposed to do it, but I've seen things here showing how to dissassemble Aztek nozzels for cleaning. Does anybody know how to do this?

For the record I have both the grey and tourquoise colored nozzels. I use Tamiya accryilcs thinned using Windex window cleaner. I clean the nozzels by soaking them in Testors air brush cleaner, and I spray that cleaner through them before and after each use. The grey nozzel barely sprays at all, and the turquoise not at all. I spray between 15 and 20psi. I've had fair results from this brush in the past, but lately no good at all.

Any suggestions will be more than welcome.

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Buskerud, Norway
Member Since: July 31, 2005
entire network: 1,871 Posts
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Posted: Monday, September 26, 2005 - 06:08 AM UTC
My last airbrush was an Aztec 470 and I had the same problems as you. How did I solve it? I threw the damned thing away and bought a German airbrush. Its very much like German cars - expencive and exellent.

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Vermont, United States
Member Since: September 14, 2004
entire network: 2,220 Posts
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Posted: Monday, September 26, 2005 - 06:22 AM UTC
The tips are relatively cheap - toss em, and buy new ones.
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Quebec, Canada
Member Since: March 23, 2004
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Posted: Monday, September 26, 2005 - 08:37 AM UTC
Nevermind aztek and testors, i went with a badger and have had nearly no problems ever since. And when i did Dave(grumpyoldman) had hte answer to my questions.

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Pennsylvania, United States
Member Since: October 05, 2002
entire network: 2,659 Posts
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Posted: Monday, September 26, 2005 - 10:56 AM UTC
I remember those Aztek's.. when I started modeling and trying to teach myself airbrushing I used Azteks.. and to tell the truth I almost gave up the idea of airbrushing...

I had 5 different Aztek single and double action airbrushs at the time.. then I bought a Badger 175 and shortly after a Badger 360.....

Now I'm a airbrushing machine.. theres nothing like the feeling of laying down a perfect basecoat on a scale model.....

what happened to the azteks and all their nozzles and fittings you ask... thats easy.... a long toss into the Dumpster...... and thats my suggestion...

You want an airbrush that is easy to clean and fairly inexpensive.. go with the badger 155 antheim.. or 360 universal.. (both are basicly the same except the 360 can also handle gravity feed)

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Ontario, Canada
Member Since: January 11, 2003
entire network: 1,339 Posts
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Posted: Monday, September 26, 2005 - 11:40 AM UTC
Is the nozzle tight enough? I know, may sound like a dumb question.. Sounds like the needle isnt being opened to allow paint to flow... Tried it without paint. Maybe just blast some air through it see if anything at all is coming out of the nozzle.. Try shooting some water thorugh a nozzle... Maybe a blockage in the hose... Just tossing ideas out here...

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Putrajaya, Malaysia
Member Since: March 04, 2004
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Posted: Monday, September 26, 2005 - 01:25 PM UTC
Hi all

i believed this thread is not about throwing away aztek airbrush.. and i'm sure our friend Rodger seek advice and suggestion about his problem regarding the use of Aztek airbursh,,

well,i used aztek for more than 6 years and still proud of it. Yes, it still give me problem and headache sometimes but it still served me good.

Rodger, although they didnt recommend us to dismantle the nozzle, but i think many of the owners did that just like me. I often dismantle the nozzle after long use... just like our friend derek mentioned above, that can be done in less than a minute. Take the needle out with carefully trying to avoid bending it. Also u can take out the plastic needle holder... soak them in thinner...if neccessary u can brush the neddle and the sprind that build in with the needle.
i faced this problem before (no color is coming out while trigger is pressed or pull)...
what i did were (beside cleaning the nozzle) i also soak the airbrush body in lacquer thinner and leave them overnight...
the next day, carefully assemble the needle/nozzle
in some cases, the needle may be damaged beyond repair...so just get a new nozzle... during these 6 years, i only used the fine (tan) nozzle and multipurpose (grey) nozzle and only replace one nozzle.
I one of many case that i faced, sometimes i contacted Testor and tehy did suggest a few method. Once they replaced the airbrush body (lifetime warranty)...
hope this help rodger and they're article about cleaning aztek brush on the net that i coundnt find right now...i will let u know if i manage to get the article
just my 2 cents

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Minnesota, United States
Member Since: January 27, 2004
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Posted: Monday, September 26, 2005 - 02:35 PM UTC
I have used lacquer thinner to clean heavily clogged Aztek nozzles.
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Member Since: January 19, 2004
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Posted: Monday, September 26, 2005 - 05:36 PM UTC
Hello Rodger,

I had this problem a few days ago with my Aztek, and after some tries it happened to be that the body of the airbrush was heavily clogged (around the pin who pushes the needle of the nozzle)
Solved most of the problems. One defintely clogged nozzle will be taken apart tonight. Thanks for the tips

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Scotland, United Kingdom
Member Since: May 25, 2005
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Posted: Monday, September 26, 2005 - 11:59 PM UTC
My Tan nozzle (Aztec 470 Airbrush) clogs up occasionally but they really are so ridiculously easy to strip and clean using Revell Airbrush cleaner / thinner.

I have done it many times and the airbrush just keeps going and going despite the shameful abuse I put it through. Sometime I plan to buy new nozzles but so far they clean up just fine.

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New Brunswick, Canada
Member Since: October 18, 2002
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Posted: Tuesday, September 27, 2005 - 12:23 AM UTC
I have the Aztec 4700, one with the wooden box. I bought it used, so some of the tips were worn out, especially the tan ones.

Once I replaced the tan tip, and learned how to thin the paint properly.

My advice....screw the warnings on your aibrush...I take my tips apart to clean them, just pull on the needle and it will pop out with no problem....then soak them in thinner. Get yourself some pipe cleaners to get down inside the intrerior parts.

Something I did find with using windex, or windshield washer fluid....is that the paint ends up drying to fast, and will dry in the tip, this goes for both Aztecs, and Badgers as I have both and use them both. My advice...go to your local hobby shop, and pony up to the thinner that is made by your favorite paint maker. If you use Tamiya paint, grab their thinner....yeah I know its more expensive than the other stuff.....I myself have a gallon of windsheild washer fluid by my paint booth....it is relegated to cleaning the airbrush parts now.....Not only will the Tamiya thinner thin the paint better, but it will keep the paint from drying in the tips.

You are using the grey and tourquoise colored nozzels, which have an opening larger than the tan color one which I use almost exclusivly...and with the Tamiya Paint, and thinner combo....I don't have any problems with the tips clogging.

Take apart your tips and clean them.....as they are most likely clogged....the paint gets built up around the spring alot....get your self some Tamiya thinner and try it....and I think you will start to like your Aztec airbrush once again!!
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United States
Member Since: May 19, 2003
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Posted: Tuesday, September 27, 2005 - 04:50 AM UTC
I also strip the tips and clean then. I also keep the paint cups soaking in Windex when I am not using them. I do use a pipe cleaner occasionaly to clear out the cups. My thinner mix starts at about 50% thinner and increases from there. I have been satisfied with my Aztec. I use acylic paints only when spraying.
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Colorado, United States
Member Since: February 01, 2003
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Posted: Tuesday, September 27, 2005 - 05:22 AM UTC
Thanks to all you folks for your suggestions. I'll try them tonight or tomorrow. I'm not ready to give up on the Aztek yet, so I won't be replacing it, until I can't live with it any longer. I will first try various cleanings on the body and nozzles. If that doesn't work I'll try a new nozzle and maybe Tamiya cleaner.

Thanks again.

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Wisconsin, United States
Member Since: April 17, 2002
entire network: 2,314 Posts
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Posted: Tuesday, September 27, 2005 - 06:32 AM UTC
Hi Roger, sorry for coming in pretty late on this thread.

I have the Aztec 470 and love it.

One suggestion is to consider staying away from the window washing fluid and stick with a/b thinner/cleaner for thinning purposes and clean up.

I used wash fluid at one time and had fouling issues also. I primarily use Badger Model Flex paints straight from the bottle. It is good stuff.

Also, (and this is up to the user), but I set my compressor psi around 25. With the 470 you can control your air flow and paint levels, but perhaps a little more "oomph" with your a/b setting might help with the clogging problems also.

Also, as you switch paint colors during paint sessions, are you running some cleaner through your a/b between color changes? This can help if it takes a minute or two to get your paints changed and perhaps reposition your work. These paints can set up quickly, therefore by running a bit of cleaner through between paint changes, it seems to remove the possibility of some of the older paint setting up a bit in the nozzle.

Just my thoughts. Hopefully you have success in what ever you try.

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Oklahoma, United States
Member Since: January 10, 2003
entire network: 426 Posts
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Posted: Tuesday, September 27, 2005 - 06:53 AM UTC
I have 2 Azteks and both provide very good results.. I keep a few open baby food jars filled with alchohol and thinner to soak the tips in when I am done.. (I leave the tips in the jars until I am ready to use them again)..I also clean the end of the airbrush on a regular basis with a q-tip dipped in thinner..
One other note, I try to avoid Modelmaster Acryls like the plague because they seem to clog the airbrush worse than any other paint.. I typically use Tamiya and Aeromaster acrylics when possible..
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Antwerpen, Belgium
Member Since: September 16, 2005
entire network: 11 Posts
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Posted: Tuesday, September 27, 2005 - 07:26 AM UTC
I have been using an aztak A470 for about 2 years and I love it. I normally just use water to clean it and than spray airbrushcleaner I bought in my local modelshop through it.
And I sometimes open the nozzles the way described before.

You said you use tamiya paints, but I found that some paints always clogge up. Like flat white XF-1 I believe.
You also have the XF paints for airbrushing and the the X serie for regular use. Or is this not true?

Nevertheless, I think aztek is the way to go.

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Putrajaya, Malaysia
Member Since: March 04, 2004
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Posted: Tuesday, September 27, 2005 - 12:29 PM UTC
hi again fellas

i check my old email archive and found this email reply from testor customer service.... the email date in 2003

here it goes:

PLease try the trouble shooting & cleaning methods in the following form. Please keep in mind: You Should Never Submerge The Airbrush Body In Any Cleaners.

Aztek Airbrushes are among the most innovative and "user friendly" airbrushes on the market. You'll spend less time cleaning your airbrush and more time creating with it. Most Airbrushes require complete breakdown of the brush for periodical cleaning and maintenance.

The "Reverse Flow" or "Back Flow" method is common for most other brands of airbrushes, however it should not be used with any of the Aztek Airbrushes. Please do not use this method, the paint should never be forced to flow through the entire airbrush body. You are damaging the components of your airbrush every time you back flow. The only parts that need to be cleaned are the nozzles and the nozzle housing.
Repeated damage by this method of cleaning will result in an un-useable airbrush and is not covered under warranty.

When you are finished with a project, you must clean your Airbrush thoroughly before you put it away. Fill the Paint Cup with thinner or a recommended cleaning agent for the type of product that you are using and spray through the Airbrush continuously until the solution runs clear. It is also very important to use the Cleaning Tool, provided with your airbrush, to remove any excess build up of paint that has been missed.


All Aztek nozzles, paint cups and the front and sides of most airbrush bodies are resistant to all common solvents including: ACETONE, MEK, MEBK, TOLUENE LAQUER THINNER, ECT. These solvents can be used to clean dried and wet paint without damaging the airbrush.

Shaking the closed container a couple of times during the 30-minute soak will help loosen the dried paint. If the nozzle swells, let it sit for awhile and it will go back to its original size once the acetone has evaporated. Do not soak the A270 airbrush nozzles, it will damage the "O" ring inside, rendering the nozzles un-useable.
TIP: You can soak the Nozzles and Paint Cups in Acetone in a closed container for no more than 30 minutes.


1. Remove color cup from side of airbrush body and spray out remaining media onto a scrap of paper.
(We suggest the Airbrush Cleaning Station or an old coffee can). 2. Use solvent made for the particular media that you are using. Pour solvent into Aztek cleaner bottle, hold bottle to color cup opening and push fully down on trigger and spray onto paper or into Airbrush Cleaning Station, until spray is clear. If using watercolors, flush with water or Rubbing Alcohol.
Do not force solvent into airbrush.

3. After spraying solvent, follow with water. Airbrush and nozzle are now clean and ready for storage
or for another color. If further cleaning is needed, soak the nozzle only, in solvent. DO NOT SOAK
4. To clean color cups, disassemble into 3 parts * cap, inner & base. Soak in cleaner. Rinse in water
and re-assemble.

Our Cleaning Tool will remove media deposits left in the airbrush body, which may restrict the flow of media and/or air. These deposits normally cannot be removed with regular blow-through cleaning. The cleaning tool is designed specifically for the airbrush body nozzle housing and cup ports. It is not for use with the
color cups or nozzles.

1. Insert reamer end into nozzle housing. Push in gently and rotate 360 degrees and remove.
With your air source, blow out any clumps of paint, that may have come free.

2. PAINT CUP PORTS CLEANING: Remove blanking plug from port. If tight, use the long bar of
the cleaning tool to push it out. Insert short bar, rotate and remove. Clean reamer and repeat.
Always remember to replace your blanking plug after cleaning.

Possible paint build up on the needle can cause air to blow back into the nozzle. Clean the nozzles or replace.
One of the characteristics of acrylic paint is that it dries very fast. In some applications this is a desirable

When using an airbrush, keep in mind that the paint is likely to dry even faster because of the added
Air-flow through the unit. What this means to you is, even if you stop for a few seconds, you may need to
clean out the unit. If you don't run your cleaning agent or thinning agent through the unit, the paint will
dry on the tip of your nozzle and inside your nozzle, which results in the nozzle or body becoming clogged.

You should consider purchasing nozzles that are designed to decrease the amount of paint accumulation on
tip of the nozzle. This, of course, will not prevent the acrylic from drying inside the nozzle if allowed to sit without cleaning. A suggestion would be that you purchase some #50498 Acrylic Cleaner. This is a necessary solvent
should the acrylic be allowed to dry before cleaning. Soap and water will not remove dried acrylic film. Use this solvent when soaking your nozzles. If using an oil-based enamel paint, use Enamel Thinner or Airbrush Cleaner.

1. The nozzle is not in tight enough and air is leaking into the paint line.
Use the cleaning wrench; tighten the hand tight and another turn with the nozzle wrench.
2. The needle inside the nozzle is bent, must replace with a new nozzle. 3. Is the paint thin enough? Try cleaning out all passageways of the airbrush and paint cup and thin your paint to the consistency of whole milk. 3. Check the compressor power. Are you getting enough compressed air? If it's less than 18-20 psi,
the airbrush will not spray even acrylics properly. If you don't know the pressure, you can add a regulator to regulate your psi.
5. Check the hose for kinks or holes.
6. Check to see if the propellant can has been turned on.
7. Is air coming out of the nozzle when the trigger is depressed? Check for airline for kinks, check air source or try another nozzle. 8. Check to see if paint is thin enough for the nozzle, being used. (Consistency of milk)

In regards to the "bubbling" in the paint bottle you can try a few things. 1. Possible paint build up causes the needle to push air back into the nozzle. Clean nozzle tips or replace.
2. The nozzle is not in tight enough and air is leaking into the paint line; re-tighten nozzle.
(See above instructions).
3. Is the paint thin enough? Try cleaning out all passageways of the airbrush and paint cup and thin your paint (see thinning instructions).

1. Repeat Basic Operation Section
2. Make sure the Nozzle is in tight
3. Make sure a blanking plug is installed, opposite of the paint cup or jar. 4. Check for paint in Paint Cup 5. Check for proper air pressure. 6. Remove Paint Cup and Blanking Plug and clean between ports.
7. Install new nozzle and thoroughly clean old one. (Can soak nozzles in clear Windex or Rubbing Alcohol to loosen paint).

1. The nozzle is not in tight enough; air is leaking into the paint line. Use the cleaning wrench to re-tighten the nozzle. 2. Paint buildup on the needle causes air to blow back into nozzle, clean the nozzle tip or replace (see cleaning instruction). 3. The needle is bent, cannot be fixed. Replace nozzle. 4. Pressure in your canister of propellant may have dropped, try placing your can in a bowl with room temperature water to maintain a constant pressure and keep the can from freezing up. 5. Hose is trapped or twisted.

1. Nozzle may not be tight enough, air is getting into the paint line and air is being sprayed. Re-tighten nozzle. 2. Build up on the needle is interrupting the spray (common with Acrylic paints). Thin the paint, reduce the air pressure and re-clean the nozzles. 3. Nozzle may be damaged. Closely inspect it for bent needles and cracks (do not disassemble), try a new nozzle.

1. Poor nozzle cleaning, re-clean nozzle and castings.
2. Make sure that the kind of paint and nozzle match. Check consistency of media, re-mix if necessary. Poorly mixed or lumpy paint goes through the Airbrush at irregular speed. 3. Moisture may be coming from compressor; you may need a moisture trap or hose with a built-in moisture trap. 4. Nozzles maybe damaged, replace if necessary.

1. Roller is too far open, adjust roller setting to loosen trigger. 1. Nozzle needs cleaning, or it could be damaged. Removing the spring can stretch it this will damage the nozzle. 2. May have internal airbrush issues, will need to be returned to us for testing.

1. Air pressure is too great for media and nozzle, lower psi. 2. Media is too thin for selected pressure and nozzle. 3. Wrong Nozzle for media and pressure setting, try another Nozzle. 4. Airbrush is to close to the surface being sprayed.


MODEL MASTER GLOSS ENAMEL PAINT: Mixture ratio: Gloss; 3 parts paint to 2 parts thinner. Flat; 3 parts paint to 1 part thinner, be sure not to over thin the Flat Enamels, as they can turn to a gloss if over thinned. The general rule of thumb for any paints to be run through our airbrush, is thinning to the consistency of whole milk. Your compressor setting for Enamels should be around 20-25 PSI. Enamels also require 48 hours for a full cure.

ACRYLIC: Most Model Master and Testor "Acrylic" paints pre-thinned for airbrushing. However, there may come an occasion when a color will have stronger pigments than others may and will require additional thinning. Again, the general rule of thumb is the consistency of whole milk. You may achieve this by adding thinner or rubbing Alcohol, drop by drop until this consistency has been achieved. Your compressor setting should be around 18-20 psi. Acrylics will dry to the touch, however they still require 24 hours for a full cure.

Fine detail airbrushing requires practice and varies greatly with the equipment and air pressure being used. Experiment on scrap material, before you begin painting an actual project.


LACQUERS: Mix 9 Parts paint to 1 part RC65, RC75 or RC95 Lacquer Thinner. You may adjust this ratio to your own preference. Please keep in mind, dry time is 5-10 minutes between coats.

ACRYLIC LACQUERS: Pactra RC Acrylic Lacquer paints are pre-thinned and airbrush ready. If desired, thin no more than 10% with Acryl #RC5800 Thinner.

You may use RC Thinner to clean dried paint from the airbrush. If you achieve a "Cloudy" appearance on the clear Lexan; you may be using too much or too strong of a thinner for these paints.

ACRYLICS: For Floquil PollyScale Acrylics, thin with Polly S Airbrush Thinner #F546008 (8oz.) or #F556008 (16oz.) or distilled water. These Acrylics are also pre-thinned for airbrushing and may only require a drop or two of Acrylic thinner or water. Psi should be 16-18.

ENAMELS: For all Floquil Enamel paints, thin with Floquil Airbrush Thinner #F151611 only. For Flat colors mix 3 parts paint to 1 part thinner; be careful not to over thin your flats, as they can turn to gloss when too much thinner has been added. For Gloss colors mix 3 parts paint to 2 parts thinner. PSI should be 21-25 psi.

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Illinois, United States
Member Since: August 30, 2005
entire network: 3,289 Posts
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Posted: Tuesday, September 27, 2005 - 03:31 PM UTC
Here's a dumb question...I have the "A-470" A/B...what's the difference between models and which ones are the prefered{if any are better}?
I just put a badger regulator on my Aztek 500 compressor so I can start practicing fine lines and the like. I was used to blowing out paint for the parkflyers @ full pressure{30psi}.
Here's an interesting note...{aside that it was made in 98'} , the non worded instructions specify to run the airbrush @ 20-28psi...pic #10 for those of you who still have the origonal box and destructions.
Hey, while I'm here and your looking, what would be a good paint/thinner ratio and psi setting for doing fine lines{tan tip} with MM acylic paint{yes I read all the posts-yes I'm trying it anyway } Thanks-

...I have to agree whith what was said earlier about bashing these{or any a/b}, so I'll add this and say goodnight....suggesting one toss a given a/b for another is{to me} like telling someone what to model now instead of what they were doing...my two cents for what it's worth in your neck of the woods...
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New Brunswick, Canada
Member Since: October 18, 2002
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Posted: Wednesday, September 28, 2005 - 12:35 AM UTC
Hey there Bob,

Although I don't really care for the MM Acryl line, as I do find that they dry too fast....but then again I haven't really given them much of a chance either.

However with the tan nozzel, and Tamiya paints and thinner, I have had my Aztec spraying down to about 5-8lbs of airpressure.....so it can do it....and is really the only way to get really fine lines out of the airbrush.

No not as fine as say a Micron B or C, but then again I didn't pay $250+ for the airbrush either......however with proper paint thinning and playing around with the airpressures, you can get down to lines like 1/16" easy enough.

I am by no means professional....lol...just look at my models....but I have gotten some fine lines out of the Aztec with the tan nozzel.
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Colorado, United States
Member Since: February 01, 2003
entire network: 5,221 Posts
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Posted: Wednesday, September 28, 2005 - 05:30 AM UTC
Well after reading Zaidi's excellent post I may know at least one problem. I'm not sure if what I do is "reverse flow, or back flow", like that article says or not. I heard it was good to block the nozzel and spray air back through the airbrush. NOT. I've also been soaking my airbrush body since last night in Aztek cleaner, which they also said not to do. Oh well. Finally I did clean both nozzels, after dissassembling them last night, but when I put the turqoise one back together I managed to push the needle clean through the housing for it. I think that one is toast.

I think I'll pick up a tan nozzle tonight and try that out, along with some Tamiya thinner.

Thanks very much for that information Zaidi.

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Minnesota, United States
Member Since: March 04, 2003
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Posted: Wednesday, September 28, 2005 - 06:24 AM UTC
CAREFULL there Conan! Pushed the needle through the housing? Yeesh.

I have a 470 also (for the last 2 years, had a 270 before that for 6 years) and have had no problems with it. Yes, you must experiement with paint thinning ratio's and yes, certain paints/colors are a definate pain. Couple of hints I have that have allowed me to keep on going without problem:

1. I clean the inside of the chamber with a q-tip to get any liquid residue that may accumulate at the "plunger" base. I do this VERY CAREFULLY so as not to damage the parts. Takes a little work, but it can be done. This is the major problem with the Aztek system...paint residue builds up just behind the plunger "seal" and over time siezes the plunger. How do I know? I took a old, broken Aztek apart and found the problem. Now I clean out the bottom of the airbrush after each session.

2. I use Testors Airbrush cleaner for all my thinning and cleaning...no problems. Here is a Great Models Webstoer link.

3. I also filter the paint from the bottle when I put it into the cup...through old pantyhose. This will get a fair amount of the globs of paint out so it does not go through the needle.

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England - East Midlands, United Kingdom
Member Since: March 23, 2003
entire network: 2,124 Posts
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Posted: Wednesday, September 28, 2005 - 06:41 AM UTC
i had a problem with my 470 a whiles ago, i just dug up the thread cos i was directed to a site that has step by step photos showing you how to clean your azzer, plus an inside veiw of the bodys inner workings
https://armorama.kitmaker.net/forums/38902&page=1 that sorted me out.
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Illinois, United States
Member Since: August 30, 2005
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Posted: Wednesday, September 28, 2005 - 02:56 PM UTC
Viper29_ca, thanks for the input about the pressure, but do I need to thin anymore than usual to do it{thin lines that is}.
FWIW...I use the MM acrylics because the LHS doesn't carry tamiya acrylics.
Just found my old badger 175 d/a a/b...had to email badger to figure out which needle was which...talk about a fast reply coupled with an offer to send out instructions for free! I'm impressed! I'm still trying the fine lines thing with the aztek 1st though...till I nail it.
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Illinois, United States
Member Since: August 30, 2005
entire network: 3,289 Posts
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Posted: Wednesday, September 28, 2005 - 03:04 PM UTC
Know what, I just thought of another Aztek a/b question to put to you folks..."new" tips don't come with the "tip to body seal"...what's the usable life span of the seal here and can one order more{to put with each tip for example}.

...any thoughts on this? Is everyone using the origonal seals for all they're tips{new and old}, or are you buying new seals after a while?

...last thought to share...what, prey tell, would be the list of MMa "trouble colors" I hear mention of?