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iwata HP-C Plus Airbrush Review Moved by mod

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Hi All,


I decided I needed an airbrush a few months ago when I got Photo etch parts for my Bismarck as I doubted I could brush paint the tiny parts to a satisfactory level.  I had a look around and found that the iwata range of brushes were well regarded and used a lot in auto custom work and vaguely remembered an iwata air brush review in MSW 1.0.  There is also a link to a UK company selling iwata’s on the home page of this site.


I did start a thread earlier in this section asking about any experiences of buying from http://www.airbrushmegastore.com/ here in Australia but decided to give them a try as searching through airbrush forums found them mentioned a few times with good comments.  Their price was approx A$100 cheaper than another mail order company and a local place I found.


I decided to get the HP-C Plus which was a balance between performance and price and appears to be a popular model.  I think it falls somewhere in the middle of the iwata range between the hobbyist models and the ridiculously expensive professional range.


I placed my order on the Sunday night and it arrived first thing on Thursday morning so first impressions are good.  In the box I received the airbrush, an instructional DVD, which gives a lecture on painting the wolf on the cover and an airbrushmegastore sticker.  I started watching the video and is really good. The artist does custom  auto work and explains his actions in detail as well as using the same AB I bought.



Slipping the airbrush box out of its cardboard sleeve reveals a nice hard plastic box which shuts firmly and securely. The instructions are also included in the sleeve and to be honest are pretty useless.  Mostly in Japanese with English translation.  The exploded view of the parts list is useful but the line diagrams and few text is pretty average.  I have watched several YOUTUBE videos about using, stripping and cleaning this model so no issues about the instructions



Now the exciting part, opening the box!  There is of course the airbrush, the paint cup lid and a little spanner for removing the nozzle.  Also included is a test in the lid which I will show further down.



A close up showing the quality of the chrome and the make and model engraving on the body.  The look, feel and weightyness of the body adds to the impression of quality.  The airbrush is dual action so pressing down on the trigger starts the air flow and pulling back starts the paint.  Both actions felt very smooth and controllable.  The more you press and pull back the more air and paint respectively comes out.



The knurled knob at the rear is to adjust the paint preset stop.  It works by limiting how far back you can pull the lever for paint.  If you were doing fine work it would prevent you inadvertently pulling the trigger back to much and getting too much paint on the work piece.  With experience and control this probably isn’t needed and some videos I have seen of professions remove the whole assembly as they can control the amount of paint on the trigger alone.



This airbrush comes set up with a 0.3mm needle and nozzle which can spray from pencil line thickness to 25mm straight out the box.  I believe you could change the needle and nozzle for other sizes but 0.3mm seems a good balance.



The HP-C Plus is gravity fed and has a 9ml (1/3 fluid ounce) and again the quality of the chrome is so nice.  When I was looking around for a brush I thought 9ml didn’t sound like much but when you see it physically the cup is larger than I imagined it to be.



Here is the test card that came in the lid of the box.  This is the factory test card for my very airbrush. Apparently someone does a test spray of each airbrush and includes the result along with the airbrush.  So potentially I should be able to able to achieve the same result.  ON first glance it appears to spray nicely. Time will tell.



Not used to using an airbrush so will take some time to be comfortable using it but feels comfortable to hold and has a nice weight and feel to it



Lastly I couldn’t resist getting a genuine iwata bottle opener keychain also :D



I was going to do a run down on using it for the first time etc but unfortunately for some reason I thought it came with a hose.  I double checked the website and nope doesn’t come with a hose.  I don’t know how I missed that. :huh:


I have 3 options. I searched locally and assuming they are in stock I can go to one shop to get a Paashe hose and another shop for an iwata to Paashe hose adapter.  Running about plus the combined price is more than ordering it from the address above.


I actually found an iwata supplier 5mins drive from my house but they list airbrushes (A$100 dealer for my model) but they don’t list hoses and aren’t open until Monday.  Thirdly do what I am going to do and order a genuine iwata hose from the same place I got the AB and wait a few more days. Hopefully next weekend I can get some paint through it.  Will let you know how it goes.







HM Bark Endeavour (First Wood, On Hold)

Borodino (1:200 Card, Current Build)

Admiral Nakhimov (card 1/200)

Mazur D-350 Artillery Tractor (1:25 Card) 

F-8 Crusader (1:48 Aircraft, Plastic)

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Hello Slog,


Thanks for sharing this review.


I'm certainly no expert on airbrushes and you may know it yourself already, but do make sure you buy a hose that will fit onto your compressor. Otherwise you will have to buy a suitable adapter.


Have fun with it an please share your experience with us.


Take care,



Those we loved but lost are no longer where they were, but are always where we are.

In the gallery: Albatros 1840 - Constructo

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My dad has a similar airbrush but his is the one of the professional ones. If you are are using a full size air compressor then it would be a good idea to get a smaller more accurate regulator (attach to the larger regulator with a quickrelease adapter) and  a moisture catcher these can both be purchased at most hardware stores.


Note: the plastic moisture catchers tend to break very easily.



Lextin AKA qwerty2008

"I have no special talent. I am only passionately curious." - Albert Einstein.

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Hi All,


Thanks for dropping by and your comments.  I ordered the hose from Airbrushmegastore last Saturday night and came on the Wednesday so pretty good service.  One end connects straight to the airbrush (as you would expect) and the other has a 1/4inch BSP female end so a compressor connector fits straight on.


Okay, here is my set up and first attempts at airbrushing. I’ve had this cheapo generic compressor for a few years now and mainly used it for blowing down my tools and blowing up my tyres. The air reservoir is 40 litres so plenty of storage and the pressure cut-off is about 100psi. I will leave the compressor regulator set at max and reduce the pressure with a combined regulator/moisture trap at the airbrush.


The compressor is very noisy when running but I have enough airline to leave it in the shed with the door down and run the airline into the house.



I purchased the combined regulator/moisture trap from Supercheap Auto. Unfortunately because I do my modelling at the kitchen table I screwed a piece of MDF on to the regulator bracket . Now when spraying I can just clamp the regulator to the kitchen table with a quick release clamp.



Having the regulator next to the airbrush has a couple of advantages, obviously the first is being able to adjust the pressure without stopping work and going outside. Secondary, since I am using such a long line from the compressor to the house I would expect some pressure drop at the airbrush so setting 20psi at the compressor would be less at the airbrush. Having the regulator close to the airbrush the set pressure should also be the pressure at the airbrush.



When it comes to mixing paint I found plenty of YouTube videos about mixing Citadel, Tamiya, Floquil and other modelling paints for airbrushing but nothing on Caldercraft’s Admiralty paints which I will be using. The recurring theme about mixing paints for airbrushing is to obtain the consistency of milk. This has to be the most ambiguous comment of all time!


I used Tamiya acrylic thinner to reduce the paint, but others have successfully used Windex (window cleaner) to reduce model acrylics. I will probably also try out readily available General Purpose thinners from the local hardware store as dedicated modelling and airbrush thinners are expensive for the volume. A$12-A$15 for 250ml as opposed to A$10 for 1litre.



Okay here is my first attempt at spraying and after a quick test on a piece of posterboard I sprayed the lantern top and bottom.  I cleaned the brush and just messed about with black trying stuff out.




Right first off, paint thickness and pressure is the 2 main things to get right.  I initially started at 20psi which I think was maybe too high and tried different pressures down to 10psi which seemed to low.  I messed with it constantly and settled around the 15psi mark give or take.


Paint mixing was a pain, firstly I think I mixed the yellow to thin and to be honest I don’t think Tamiya thinners was the best for this paint.  With the black it was probably slightly too thick as after a while the build up around the nozzle and needle was enough to stop the paint which didn’t happen with the yellow.


I will say that 9mls of paint goes a long way!  The black in the last picture was probably less than 1/3 of the cup and I poured the last out to clean to clogged nozzle.


Thoughts; Will need to experiment a LOT more to find alternative reducer/medium to thin the Admiralty paints I used and also to try different brands as not convinced Admiralty paints are really that great for spraying…saying that it might just be my n00bishness.








HM Bark Endeavour (First Wood, On Hold)

Borodino (1:200 Card, Current Build)

Admiral Nakhimov (card 1/200)

Mazur D-350 Artillery Tractor (1:25 Card) 

F-8 Crusader (1:48 Aircraft, Plastic)

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