Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Paasche Talon TG-3F Unboxing

Hey plamo nerds! You'll have to pardon the erratic posting schedule on the blog as of late - I'm still in the US and have been really busy with work. I've been told retail therapy is good for relieving stress and homesickness, so I've been surfing Amazon and Ebay for parts to upgrade my airbrushes back home. Somewhere along the way I found a great deal on the Paasche Talon TG - an airbrush that I've been curious about for some time - but have been on the fence on purchasing due to the mixed reviews I've seen. In the end I just couldn't let hearsay deprive me of a potentially awesome tool without trying it out myself, so here we are. Established in the early 1900s, Paasche is one of the oldest airbrush manufacturers in the world - and with decades of experience and engineering going into the Talon's design, I have really high expectations from this tool. The package I purchased has quite a few things included, so I thought it best to split the unboxing and performance review into separate posts. Let's take a look!

Click on Read More for the rest of this post...

The Paasche Talon is sold in a number of different packages: from the bare bones, handpiece-only box or blister pack, to this fully-loaded set that I've got right here, labeled as the TG-3F. "TG" indicates that this is  the gravity-feed version, but a siphon-feed "TS" model is also available. The set comes with all three tip sizes available for this model: 0.25, 0.38 and 0.66.

Inside you will find the contents neatly arranged in a compartmentalized plastic tray, with the extra parts sealed in small plastic bags. Packaging appears to be secure for transport for the most part, except for the needles which are kept in an ovesized compartment with just a small piece of foam protecting the tips. I consulted a Paasche representative about this, and I was told that the needles should have had their individual foam protectors, and mine may have just been a packaging error. I suggested that they should at least tape down the needles to the tray to prevent them from rattling around in the box.

You get some booklets showing parts and basic troubleshooting information in several languages, a braided hose, an allen wrench for the air valve, a nozzle wrench, a basic airbrush hanger, and something that really drew me to the Talon - a fan pattern aircap. At it's current market price of around $120-$140 the TG-3F package is one of the most bountiful box sets you can get.

The Talon handpiece is very nicely polished and feels solid in the hand, and feels slightly heavier than my other brushes. Proudly made in the USA, the Paasche name and model are branded onto the main body. An eagle decorates the generously sized 4 oz cup, and together with the orange/gold aluminum handle and cup lid give the Talon a very distinctive look. The finish and build quality is on par with that of the Badger Krome, and is just as appealing.

Like many modern airbrush models, the Talon TG boasts an adjustable spring tension and needle limiter. Trigger action is quite smooth out of the box with just the right amount of friction noticeable from the solvent-resistant PTFE needle packing. The trigger and rocker assembly are thoughtfully designed to simplify reassembly. The needle is protected by a crown type cap, which may be removed if you need to get in closer.

The Talon utilizes the traditional screw-in nozzle design, but as you can see the nozzle itself is significantly larger and feels more solid than on most other airbrushes. This translates to reduced risk of breaking or stripping the threads during disassembly, or having the nozzle roll off your workbench and disappearing into the carpet. The pre-installed nozzle on my Talon came screwed in very tightly, and it did take a bit of effort with the included wrench to get it off for the first time.

The Talon's needles are nicely polished and come to very fine points for all three sizes. The shaft of the needle is thicker but you will notice the girth decrease abruptly towards the front where the taper begins. Since the needle packing seal matches the girth at the wider segment of the shaft, this makes it a little easier to reinsert the needle without jabbing the tip against the seal. You can easily tell which needle is which by the number of notches machined into the rear of the needle. One notch means it is needle #1 or 0.25 , 2 notches are on needle #2 and 3 notches are on needle #3. The same feature is found on the nozzles and the caps to avoid confusion.

The fan aircap is meant for the #3 or 0.66 tip, and is similar to what you would find on paint guns used to work on cars. The protruding prongs have small air channels that "flatten" the spray pattern, and can be set to either a vertical or horizontal orientation, depending on how you move the airbrush over the subject you are painting. This makes it ideal for laying down an even layer of paint across large surfaces, such as Psycho Zaku fuel tanks for example. At least that is what it claims to do on paper, and I will have to find out how effective it actually is in practice.

The one thing I dislike in the Talon's design is the less common air valve fitting it requires. Although the set comes with a properly fitting hose with a 1/4 size compressor attachment, I would have preferred the 1/8 standard air inlet. It would have been nice to see a Paasche-to-1/8th adapter instead of the airbrush holder.  I knew about this beforehand and ordered a quick disconnect attachment so I could use it with my existing setup. That being said, if this was your very first airbrush set then it does have almost everything you need out of the box, and gives really good value for money.

With three tip sizes and a fan cap, will the Talon prove to be a jack of all trades, but master of none? Or will it shine as a triple-threat that could challenge the known best-in-class offerings from other brands? Drop by again soon for part 2 of this review to see how it performed in practice!

If you want to purchase this airbrush, click on the Amazon ad below. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. Thanks!

Until next time, keep building plamo!

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