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Question on Airbrush Depot TC-20T

April 16 2012 at 8:27 PM
Drew Gleason  (Login drew.gleason)
Missing-Lynx members
from IP address

Hello, folks. I'm trying to get back into building 1/72 armor, and I thought a nice present to myself to start would be a new compressor to replace my 20+ year-old Badger 80-2.

I picked up an Airbrush Depot TC-20T based on some great comments on Amazon, and on these and other forums, but I'm finding it totally unsatisfactory. The compressor starts reasonably quiet, but gets louder than my worn-out Badger as the pressure builds. It's too loud to comfortably talk over, or to use in my apartment without worrying about the neighbors, even in daytime.
Worse still, the compressor runs more than half the time while I am airbrushing at ~20psi; I thought the tank would let give it substantial downtime. It gets very hot, and its thermal protection shuts the unit down completely after 60-90 minutes of intermittent use. I may be running my brush a bit more than I normally would, because I am practicing technique rather than painting a real model, but I'm a bit shocked that I can overheat the unit so easily.

I'm having trouble reconciling my experience with the glowing reviews I have seen. When I spoke with TCP Global about it, they responded that the unit was for "light use" only, and they quoted the manual chapter-and-verse that the compressor should only run 10 minutes at a time and cool down for 15. I can't believe that many uses are lighter than running a single brush at 20 psi, or that anyone really uses an airbrush in just 10-minute cycles like that.

So, my question is: is this normal, or did I get a bad unit? Thanks for any feedback!

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  1. Airbrush Depot TC-20 troubles - Jim on Sep 26, 2012, 9:30 PM

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