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Eric

When is it too cold for paint to airbrush

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I mainly use Tamiya paints with some enamels and trying to figure out when it's too cold to airbrush them.  Just moved to Wisconsin from California.  During the winters in CA could still get warm (around 60) enough days that I could keep going on projects.  So far in Oct. had a few days 60 or above but it's starting to stay below 60.  I know I'm not going to try to airbrush below 40 but would above 50 still work?

Thanks,

Eric

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Since I have to airbrush either in the garage or patio, I tend to wait until it's above 60 degrees.  You might try shooting at 60 and see how it works.  You may find that it's too cold for the paint to spray properly.

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Strangely enough,  I've never paid any attention to the temperature.  Over the decades, I airbrushed paint when it was 105 in the shade and I had to be careful that my sweat didn't drip into the paint cup.  On the flip side, I've sprayed paint when it was so cold in  the room that ice crystals were floating in the decal water.  Of course I was spraying Model Master Enamels, Pactra, Floquil and two-part commercial urethane as well as lacquer at various times.  Never had a problem.  Why?  I don't have a clue.  About all I've ever done is toss in a little more thinner if it needed it, or retarder if the lacquer was drying on the nozzle.   None of what I've described is recommended, but the point is that the ambient temperature...high, low or in between...has never seemed to be a factor on my projects.  And keep in mind that I do this as a business.

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35 minutes ago, ipmsusa2 said:

Strangely enough,  I've never paid any attention to the temperature.  Over the decades, I airbrushed paint when it was 105 in the shade and I had to be careful that my sweat didn't drip into the paint cup.  On the flip side, I've sprayed paint when it was so cold in  the room that ice crystals were floating in the decal water.  Of course I was spraying Model Master Enamels, Pactra, Floquil and two-part commercial urethane as well as lacquer at various times.  Never had a problem.  Why?  I don't have a clue.  About all I've ever done is toss in a little more thinner if it needed it, or retarder if the lacquer was drying on the nozzle.   None of what I've described is recommended, but the point is that the ambient temperature...high, low or in between...has never seemed to be a factor on my projects.  And keep in mind that I do this as a business.

I have to agree with you.  Unless the paint is actually freezing it is all about the relative viscosity of the paint.  Will it arrive at the surface and have sufficiently low viscosity to flow out and allow the solvent to evaporate.  As it gets hot, you need a slower thinner and more of it.  As it gets colder you need a faster thinner and more of it.   In the case of hot- you add more thinner to keep it dissolved as it passed through the hot air.  In cold you need more thinner to offset the fact that paint gets thicker(more viscous) at it cools.  

Either way, as long as you are not getting ice crystals in the paint itself, you are good to go. 

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