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View Full Version : Fine paint brush maintenance/life



Wrathchild
03-02-2009, 11:53 PM
Hopefully this is the right place to put this thread, sorry if not!

I was wondering how the rest of astro maintains their fine detail brushes. I purchased the fine detail brush from my local GW and it hardly lasted halfway through a single box of 20 cadians. My only guess for its short shelf life would be dipping it to aggressively against the sides of my water bowl to clean it off, but even so.. pretty weak. Do you guys have similar difficulties with the GW brand brushes?

Silver
04-02-2009, 12:38 AM
Never did. My brushes have given me months of good service, although I must admit I haven't gotten to much painting lately. Anyways, my trick is to get the paint off the brush, you dunk it into the water bowl/cup, then drag it (with the tip NOT dragging across the bottom) to the side wall and then keep turning it around gently to make the paint underwater cling to the wall of the cup. Then rub the brush over the wall with the paint to help it completely dissolve underwater. Then pull out your brush, roll it around gently on a paper napkin and grab your next paint!

-Silver

scribe
04-02-2009, 02:11 AM
Ye, same here, silver.

I would advise that you do that.

Arkaedin
04-02-2009, 02:55 AM
Wow. I almost threw up reading what you guys do to your poor brushes :(

1) Don't use GW brushes. They suck the big one.

2) Never, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever do what you guys do: that is run it across the bottom/sides of a glass/bowl of water. That ruins their life tremendously! Splash it around in a glass (or whatever) of water and GENTLY dry it off on a paper towel. When drying pull the brush towards you so as not to mess up the bristles.

3) If you are having trouble with a brush, or it just won't clean properly, gently massage some soap into it and let it sit for a bit, then clean it off using what I said in step two and your brush will be like-new!


I hope I save many a good brush teaching you guys these simple tricks ;)

Tallarn
04-02-2009, 03:07 AM
holy cow guys, I have almost a year of painting on some of my brushes, maybe im just cheap - but I clean mine like Ark does and they last forever

Consadine
04-02-2009, 03:10 AM
I lose brushes before they wear out :p I treat 'em like Ark does, but the bristles will not let go of all the paint (I have a hard time getting the sucker completely clean). Soap water, you say?

Arkaedin
04-02-2009, 03:13 AM
Soap water, you say?

Yeah, I actually just learned that trick about a month ago reading an article on it on From the Warp (http://fromthewarp.blogspot.com)- it works wonders and is really simple!

Consadine
04-02-2009, 03:18 AM
Rep for you, Ark. Time to eradicate this annoyance...

Captain Castus
04-02-2009, 09:25 AM
I do as Ark says...

Swish the brush around within the water (not against the edges) to rinse and then wipe with soft paper towel...

What I would add is that as well as making sure you draw the brush towards you turn it slightly to twist the bristles as this helps the brush keep it's point... This is especially important when you stop using the brush after a session... I hope I don't have to mention about storing brushes tips up in a jar (or similar) with their 'protectors' on if you don't lose them...

Other tips for brush preservation:
- Never dip the full length of the bristles into the paint... If the paint gets under the metal bit at the base of the bristles and dries there it ruins the brush...
- Always use a pallette. Not only does this avoid the above, but it also allows a great deal more control over the ammout of paint you are putting on the brush...

Oh... And use Kolinsky sable brushes... GW brusjhes are OK... But these knock the socks of them! And aren't more expensive... ;)

CC

darknight
04-02-2009, 10:34 AM
yep spot on with ark really, never ever use gw brushes, with the possible exception of the bigger one as its cheap to cover large areas, spend the cash and buy red sable, i use kolinsky sable, yep they're expensive but will pay you back tenfold with a smoother paint job.
never let the paint go up to the ferule, as this helps splay the brush out, turn frequently when painting to avoid bending in one direction,
use a clear detergent in your water, to wash, i keep a small bottle of it pre mixed to add to paint as this also acts as a flow aid and releases surface tension on the mini/paint allow the paint to flow..
always clean with pulling the brush with the point over a clean kitchen towel,
sounds a lot but well worth the effort, and is all second nature now

Silver
04-02-2009, 01:15 PM
Oh... And use Kolinsky sable brushes...

Yeah but they use weasels to make them, don't they? :eek:

darknight
04-02-2009, 01:20 PM
ha ha, lol, whats a weasel between friends.......oh yea squashed.
no really they dont come from sable, but a type of mink,from Siberia/north east china the tails from the male to be precise, they grow long in the winter and retain their "snap"

Scoppio
04-02-2009, 01:48 PM
GW brushes are that bad? Wow! I only have one GW "standard size" brush and it is the best ive used in my life! O.o

I don't find easely brushes around here, only Tigre and Condor, both national labels and national industry... both are cheap and also worthless...

The package where it comes the 3 GW brushes cost around 45 US DOLLARS in my country... you know... it only cost 9... its just like if it cost 30 here!!!

Captain Castus
04-02-2009, 01:48 PM
I was imagining a factory full of weasels making brushes with their little paws! :D

darknight
04-02-2009, 01:51 PM
yea, like dulux uses dogs,lol

Silver
04-02-2009, 02:51 PM
The package where it comes the 3 GW brushes cost around 45 US DOLLARS in my country... you know... it only cost 9£... its just like if it cost 30£ here!!!

Either way - you seem to be a very rich kid :D I'm taking that other visitors to your local Games Workshop are rich kids, as well?

Wrathchild
04-02-2009, 04:46 PM
Good tips! I often would just drag the brush around the rim of the container and dry it off with a paper towel before going on to the next paint. The fine one has hardly got any bristles left.

Gideon_Not_Ravenor
04-02-2009, 04:52 PM
What about Humbrol brushes; what are they like? They are in steady supply at my local hobby store (not GW) and are cheap (75p to around £2!)

If they suck I can go to a craft shop in town but those are like three squid a brush (dependant on size) although they have lasted nearly 2 years (with a bit of fine trimming sometimes...) :)

darknight
04-02-2009, 04:57 PM
ahem..humbrol... well they are 75p for a reason, but they do a sable one which if you check the hairs arent bad, mine are £15 for 5, well worth it and last quite a while, i mean they last me about 1-2 months but i do a huge amount of painting

Arkaedin
04-02-2009, 05:01 PM
Honestly, brushes are one of those things I actually say "if they're cheap in price, they're cheap in quality". Luckily large art stores like Michaels and such will have Kolinsky Sable for relatively cheap- I bought two of them for about $5 each which was nice.

Scoppio
04-02-2009, 06:33 PM
Either way - you seem to be a very rich kid :D I'm taking that other visitors to your local Games Workshop are rich kids, as well?

im not rich, Im an intern technician... my salary is 1000R$, (dolar like - 1US$ = 2,36R$) it means that I earn less then 430US$ month... but I received a heir of 10K R$ (around US$ 4230,00).... now I've only R$4200 in my bank account... I'll take something for the future and im spending what I can by now, fortunatelly I still live with my parents and dont have to pay bills, but I'll move to a house to live with my girlfriend and things will change, so this means - take all I can now to not miss'em in the future, when I'll have to buy food instead of buying paint!

LAZtheinfamous
05-02-2009, 03:23 AM
You know, I've never heavily invested in brushes, except for my ultra-ultra-ultra fine ones. Typically, I'll go to the craft store, and pick up this ridicously cheap art pack for about $5, which comes with a couple wonking huge brushes, a size 2, 1, 0, and a 10/0. Then I'll spend about $10 on a 20/0 or 30/0 brush. I unlike like the rest of you lot buy plastic bristle brushes. Doesn't seem to be a huge difference to me (However, I also can't tell the difference between standard definition and HD). I also let children use my brushes, so they would go to crap quickily regardless of how much I spent. So I go cheap, and just replace often. It works out to be cheaper for me.

ThePixelGuru
13-02-2009, 11:49 PM
ha ha, lol, whats a weasel between friends.......oh yea squashed.
no really they dont come from sable, but a type of mink,from Siberia/north east china the tails from the male to be precise, they grow long in the winter and retain their "snap"
Yeah, they name them pretty weird things so people don't throw a fit over the cute little animals that went in to the products - very much like how "asian mink" means ferret or civet and "asian wild dog" means domesticated dog (and how sable usually means ferret or civet, too). Apparently when dog or cat fur is banned in some places a lot of those products get "mislabeled" as either sable or asian mink. My girlfriend is really into the whole animal industry thing, so I end up finding out a lot of this stuff by proxy. ;)

Anyway, this is where your Kolinsky Sable brush comes from:

http://i39.tinypic.com/168an86.jpg

I'm just posting that to satisfy the curiosity of some members, let's not turn it into an ethical animal use debate, hmm? :p


I unlike like the rest of you lot buy plastic bristle brushes.
I actually use a plastic bristle brush from time. The stoke is a bit different from my "better" brushes, but it certainly has its uses. I think it actually creates a better look for certain applications. It's also pretty hard to damage, so I end up using it if I'm doing a rough base drybrush on a bunch of models and don't want to bother cleaning my brush every few minutes.