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Custom helmet airbrush at home

I made my first custom helmet airbrush at home because I don't have any other place to do it. Just my flat, the balcony and a table. Ideally you should do it in a well ventilated area or use a (good) air cleaner .

Work in progress, August 2010

helmet airbrush


helmet airbrush step 1
Original helmet, full of stickers. The helmet is an old, broken one so I can practice on it. The first thing to do is to remove the stickers as much as you can.
helmet airbrush step 2
Then I use a normal abrasive soap-powder and an abrasive pad you use in the kitchen to further remove the surface of the helmet.
helmet airbrush step 3
Just put the poweder on the helmet, wet the pad and scratch with a little water. The surface will get from shiny to dull.
helmet airbrush step 4
The prepared surface: dull and not shiny as before.
helmet airbrush step 5
Now we must do a coatingin order to lay the acrylic paint on in the next step. I looked into different things and I finally bought this surface primer from TAMIYA (used for hobby modelling). Quite expensive: 8.50 Euro /13$ for a small can. Other primer for paiting cars were also expensive, 12 Euro/ 18$. So I am not sure I used the most economical stuff. Probably, I could have use some normal zink-white acrylic paint?
helmet airbrush step 6
The primer is sone. I leave it a few hours to dry. perhaps you only need 30 minutes, though.
helmet airbrush step 7
I start painting on the helmet whatever I decide. That's the difficutl, creative part: what to paint! I decided that since this is for an exercise to start with what airbrush is most known for: smooth gradation from colors. I my case a blu going dark blu and black on top. Eveyr layer must be done carefully. First rule: NO WET surface. In other words. When you airbrush you must never put too much of color so that the surface has a wet look. Also mind the springling of tiny dots of color on the surface: regulate the airpressure at about 20 PSI or try according to the airbrush tool that you have and the snozzle diameter.
helmet airbrush step 8
Also wear a safety mask. A good one. The arm to your health with the microscopic color particles going in the air and so in your lungs is in the mid-long term.
helmet airbrush step 9
More or less ok. The gradation is not so easy to get in the end and you need to calmly put different layers of colors: I used 3 Aerocolor colors: light blue, dark blue and dark blue with a drop of a black. Each time I changed the color I cleaned the airbrush thouroughly
helmet airbrush step 10
Now, I wanted to add an eye-catching drawing. An eagle! Why not? I copied the drawing from a picture on frisket to use as a mask.Then I applied some foundation color with the airbrush, notably yellows-ornages for the beak and some grey for the rest of head.

helmet airbrush step 11

Then I carried on painting but not with the airbrush but with a tiny brush and all by hand. A lot of work.

Mmh...I need to speed up things..


(my custom helmet airbrush saga continues...)

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