Tamiya thinner

I have built a few models in the past using a brush with Tamiya paints and thinning them with isopropyl alcohol. I am currently building a StuG IV and it will be my first attempt at airbrushing a model.

I need to run to the store to grab some paint for my latest project and got to thinking that I had seen Tamiya acrylic thinner advertised before. My question is, when airbrushing is it best to use the Tamiya thinner, or will isopropyl alcohol work too? I also have access to RO water if that will work as well. I don’t mind buying the thinner but don’t want to spend money on something that isn’t necessary

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I’m no expert on air brushing but I mostly use tamiya paints and when air brushing I also use their thinners. I haven’t had a problem with it so far. Hope that helps. I’m sure others will advise as well who know better … John

If your local hobby shop has mr levelling thinner, use that. If not then use Tamiya lacquer thinner.
Other solutions may work but won’t work as well.

While others may differ, I am a proponent of using the proprietary thinner for whatever brand of paint you may be using. As I AB almost exclusively with Tamiya I would suggest that you use their lacquer thinner which comes in the larger plastic bottle with a yellow cap. You will get good results with their acrylic thinner but when I switched I immediately noticed that the paint flowed much better and laid down much better also. Practice and experiment till you find the paint/thinner/air pressure that you are comfortable with and that gives you the desired results. Painting with an AB is not an exact science. What works for one does not necessarily work for another. That is true of individuals as well as different paint brands. Even within the same brand different colors will require different ratios. Best advice is to just practice and experiment till you find a combination that works for you. Good luck.

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You can spray Tamiya acrylic paints with isopropyl, it will dry very quickly and can result in a grainy finish. Tamiya x20a is basically isopropyl with retarder so lays down better. However, Tamiya acrylic paints can be thinned with lacquer thinner which gives the best results. I use their own lacquer thinner but others are compatible. The only issue is the lacquer thinner needs extremely good ventilation, extraction unit at a minimum as far as I’m concerned, that’s the price you pay for a lovely smooth finish.

You could use the x20a to start. I thin 50/50 paint to thinner, and spray at 15-20 psi, but you will find your own sweet spot, with similar settings for lacquer thinner.

I see there have been a couple of replies while I have been typing but much the same idea.

All the best, J.

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^^^ this ^^^

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I agree - forget X20A. The Tamiya Lacquer thinner is the way to go with their paints. X20A can flash too quick leaving a grainy finish as said, plus it hates humidity (a real problem where I live), but the lacquer thinner is a bit more forgiving. I actually mix Tamiya X22 Clear (Gloss) in my paints to get a totally smooth finish out of the airbrush. Shock! Horror! Think about it… if it is already gloss you do not need to put a gloss coat down for decals and most are going to put a flat coat over the top anyway…

If I might also suggest - if you have not used the airbrush before, experiment on an old model or some scrap styrene before going for it on your Stug. You will need to work out the best ratio of thinner (I usually do 50:50) and pressure (12-15 PSI works for me) and practice spraying thin coats in even strokes and pressing slowly to release the least amount of paint you can so you can get into the nooks and crannies without flooding the model with paint.

Good luck.

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Thanks for all the replies!! Maybe I’ll start with the other thinner from Tamiya. (Non-laquer thinner) as I don’t have a proper extraction unit right now and it is far too cold where I live to crack a window right now. Or perhaps I’ll try the lacquer thinner as it seems quite popular.

I had another question and didn’t want to start a new thread. I seem to have pinched the o-ring on my Paasche braided hose, where is connects to the compressor. It still works but it leaks air and the tank empties faster. My hobby store has a large selection of paasche o-rings but I can’t seem to figure out which kart number this particular o-ring is. Does anyone know? It kinda looks like the part number 3A-4

I defintely plan to practice on an old panzer III I did a horrible job assembling eons ago.

@Mead93 the 3A-4 o ring is for the connection between airbrush and hose, not hose and compressor:

Thanks! Any idea which one is between the hose and compressor? I can’t for the life of me find it

I cannot see any spare part listing for this o-ring. I would expect any o ring for a 1/4 NPT fitting would work. They have to be a universal fitting for all compressors, unless Paasche are being selfish and make a thicker/thinner o-ring that only fits inside their component.

I suggest you call or take the hose to a place that sells air tools and accessories and see what they have. Some good auto spare parts dealers may also have stock for 1/4 NPT. The cost should be low from them and worth giving it a try anyway.

Cheers! Wasn’t sure if a standard o-ring would do the trick. Can’t hurt to try one they are very cheap

I’m the same tamiya thinners for tamiya paint…oh and you can use tamiya thinners as a decal solution too.

place the decal in the desired location and then with a clean brush dip it into the pure thinner and brush over the decal and when it is dry it will fit snuggly to the surface.

Warning: the decal may break up if you have to move it around to much but it does save you money as you won’t need to buy micro sol or micro set decal solutions.

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Do you use the acrylic or lacquer thinner? I am a little worried about using the lacquer thinner without proper ventilation

@Mead93 I use the acrylic thinners and paints made by tamiya

Fantastic. I too had Tamiya paints almost exclusively except for some Vallejo for figures and detail hand painting. I’ll give the acrylic thinner a try

You could also take the hose and washer to the store and do an in store comparison.

You can use Tamiya thinner to glue the kit together too.

It works, I have built one or two kits just using it.

@Tank_1812 that’s thin glue I’m talking about using the tamiya acrylic paint thinners as a decal solution. :grinning:

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I’ve tried various thinners, from distilled water to windshield washer fluid. The best combination so far is Tamiya Lacquer Thinner (yellow top). Mix ratio and pressure depends on how fine you want your coverage, so you’ll have to experiment for different situations.
:smiley: