I’ve got my spray booth set up, my paint mixed, and the compressor has been powered up and its ready to go. The paint cup is attached to the airbrush with anticipation of an enjoyable painting session. I pull the trigger…………and nothing. After fiddling with the pressure and air adjustments on the airbrush and compressor, I realize that my airbrush is jammed up with dried paint. There’s not anything to do but shut down the painting session and get the airbrush cleaned up.
That is where Tamiya’s #87089 Airbrush Cleaner steps in. You’ll need a cleaner that can loosen and dissolve dried paint, and this product is very good at doing just that. You know the drill. Disassemble your airbrush and clean each part carefully and completely. I use a small wire brush dipped in some Airbrush Cleaner that has been poured into a very small cup. Wearing gloves, I carefully scrub the airbrush parts with the wire brush, dry them with a lint-free cloth and I’m ready to go!
Tamiya provides some warnings when using this product. Start with the fact that it is flammable, so douse your scented candle before starting the cleaning process. Don't ingest this product, and avoid getting it in your eyes or breathing its vapors. By the way, because of the “splatter effect” when using that small wire brush I mentioned I do, indeed, take the time to put on some safety glasses similar to those I wear when using a table saw.
Do not apply this Airbrush Cleaner directly to plastic. In other words, don’t apply this product to your model in order to remove paint. This stuff will melt the plastic.
Lastly, through experience I’ve learned not to soak my airbrush in any kind of cleaning fluid regardless of what type of paint I’m using. Depending on your airbrush, it may contain small gaskets through which the needle moves, and these gaskets can be negatively impacted by over-exposure to cleaners. Be sure to run air through the airbrush after cleaning it in order to eject any fluid trapped in the gun, and to allow the flowing air to dry out any traces of that fluid before shutting down and storing your airbrush.
Look for that distinctive Pink cap! I highly recommend this product, and repeat the admonition that a mask should be worn when airbrushing paints thinned with it.
Thanks to Tamiya for making this product available to IPMS for review.