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How to care for your brushes

Paintbrushes are almost looked on as a consumable by modellers, that can put some off buying really good brushes.

So why do some modellers buy the more expensive brushes, and others go for the cheaper ranges like Humbrol and not the better ones like Army Painter and Citadel ?

Perhaps it all boils down to how you look after them ?

Every decent detail brush these days comes with a plastic protective cover for the bristles. Many of you I suspect dispose of this, when in fact it is probably the most useful thing to help you look after your brushes, keep them, and use them.

The biggest reason for a brush ending up in the bin, is tip splitting and all too often the modeller blames the brush, when he [or she] is the problem.

So what causes tip splitting ?

We all know paint contiains pigments, tips splitting is caused by pigment particles getting into the ferrule forcing the bristles apart at the base, forcing the tip to split or fork, it's virtually impossible to rescue a brush when the tip splits

How do you stop it ?

The answer to that is don't let paint get into the ferrule, as you paint make sure the brush is never loaded as far as the ferrule.

Always rinse before re-loading the brush with paint, and don't overload it.

Remember to use the two jar rinse method, this helps keeps the bristles clean.

When you've finished a painting session it's wise to give your brushes a deep clean, I use a soap/conditioner called "His Masters Brush Cleaner" this will leave your brushes as clean as they can be, a final rinse and shaping as you dry on kitchen towel, refit the bristle protector and store bristles down or flat.

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