What Are the Best Types of Paint for an Airsoft Gun?
I’m sure you have a rough idea of the look and color scheme you want. If not, coyote brown and olive drab are popular choices.
You also need to choose a paint that will stick to your weapon, but not so well that you can’t achieve the battle-worn look of a veteran Airsofter!
One of my personal favorites is the 8-0850-2 Olive Drab camouflage paint from Majic Paints. It’s ideal for use with metal and provides a durable, rust-proof layer that can withstand the elements. A matte, non-reflective finish means there’s no chance rays from the sun will betray your position.
Another fantastic option is the camo brown Performix Multi-purpose Plasti Dip coating. As a rubberized coating, you have the added advantage of an anti-slip finish. And as with most Plasti Dip paints, it’s peelable, so if you customize your Airsoft gun paint jobs regularly, it’s quick to remove and update your device.
More importantly, both are compatible with a paint sprayer.
What Paint Sprayer is Best For an Airsoft Gun?
Now you’ve determined which coating and color will look like the business on your Airsoft gun, you need to determine the best type of paint sprayer for the task. As Airsoft guns are not mammoth machines, you don’t need to break out a behemoth paint sprayer to get the job done.
This said, you do need a spray gun with a nozzle and pressure output that can handle oil-based coatings or Plasti Dip, depending on the paint you’ve chosen. Additionally, a compact handheld device will allow you to maneuver effortlessly around the project and pay attention to those all-important finishing touches.
When it comes to spray gun technology, high-volume, low-pressure (HVLP) is ideal as it minimizes overspray and therefore clean-up time. These types of sprayers are also perfect for small projects. A unit that is turbine-driven is fantastic as it eliminates the need for an external compressor, which you’re probably not au fait with unless you own other air-powered tools.
Keeping these ideas in mind, I have selected a couple of different sprayers to get you started.
- The Wagner FLEXiO 3000 operates well with oil-based paints. It comes with two different fluid nozzles, including the Detail Finish for detailed intricate work, such as camo designs on Airsoft guns. It’s fully adjustable in terms of power and material adjustment. Then, when you’re done for the day, store it neatly in a sturdy carry case, ready for next time.
- Now I’m going to contradict myself with the airless and cordless Graco Ultra. But as with most things in life, rules are sometimes made to be broken. This unusual sprayer is more compact than other airless sprayers and offers the ultimate in portability as there’s no power cable to get twisted up. It’s powered instead via rechargeable lithium-ion batteries. The FFLP spray nozzles are perfect at handling Plasti Dip on small projects; a low spraying pressure means it’s suited to such tasks without sacrificing the finish, much like the benefits you get with HVLP sprayers.
The Best Pattern for an Airsoft Gun
Now the super fun stuff, choosing your pattern. You want your Airsoft gun paint to camouflage into the surrounding area, so an operational camouflage pattern (OCP) is an obvious choice. However, if you want your machine to be on the list of cool Airsoft paint jobs, consider using a non-conventional design so you don’t become a point of aim (POA) — leaves and grass work extremely well when skirmishing in a woodland area.
Do I Need a Barrel Plug When Custom Painting Airsoft Guns?
Since you don’t want the coating to accidentally end up in the barrel of your Airsoft gun, a barrel plug is a great idea.
These relatively inexpensive gadgets (like the Evike Airsoft Orange/Red plug which covers most AEG barrels) are not only useful when Airsoft guns are painted but also comply with most Airsoft field regulations due to the bright orange color.
The Best Way to Paint an Airsoft Gun
Now we’ve discussed all the preliminaries, let’s move to our how to paint your Airsoft gun tutorial. I’ve decided to be unique with the design and go with a blade of grass pattern.
What You Need to Follow This TutorialFor the best results, ensure you have everything to hand before you start.
- Airsoft gun.
- Chosen coatings (you’ll want two different colors).
- Paint sprayer.
- Suitably sized nozzle.
- Barrel plug.
- Groundsheet or old cardboard.
- Masking tape.
- Kitchen towel.
- Blades of grass and small leaves.
- Coveralls, goggles, and face mask.
Step 1: Preparing Your Workspace and Airsoft Gun
- Start off by deciding which parts of the Airsoft gun you want to paint — be it the whole gun or perhaps just the “furniture” or plastic parts.
- If not satisfied with the leafy look, select your pattern and make sure that you have the correct color and type of coating.
- Set about cleaning and preparing your Airsoft gun. Make sure you remove all the dirt and grease as it could seriously impair your finish.
- Insert the barrel plug to protect your weapon’s internals. Also make sure that the BBs, battery, and magazine are removed, in addition to the scope and sling. Cover the mag opening with a kitchen towel and tape in place. Use this method to cover any other openings too (like the ejection port on the M4). Try to keep the taping as neat as possible to enhance the end result.
- Find a well-ventilated area close to a power source and lay down your groundsheet or cardboard. Position your gun centrally on the area.
- Don your protective gear.
Step 2: Start Spraying
- Set up your paint sprayer following the manufacturer’s directions and double-check that the correct fluid nozzle is installed. Select the correct pressure and volume control settings for your initial coating.
- Add your base color (usually the palest of the two paints) to the spray gun container.
- Keep the fluid nozzle approximately nine inches from the surface of your Airsoft gun and start spraying. Apply a thin, even base layer. Keep your sprayer moving and don’t stop in the middle of the body as this could cause unsightly paint pools and runs or drips. If you haven’t achieved complete coverage, you can always go back and add another coat. Conversely, if you make it too thick, it will take an age to dry.
- Once the coating is dry (check the paint manufacturer’s instructions for drying time), apply another base layer if needed and allow it to dry.
- When the first side is dry, you will need to flip the Airsoft gun over to repeat the above process on the other side.
- While you are waiting for both sides to dry, use this time to clean your paint sprayer as the next few steps involve a change of color.
- When the base layer is dry, tape your leaves and grass to the areas that you want to have a funky camouflage design.
- Add the darker color to your paint spray gun and adjust the settings of the unit if needed.
- Repeat point three and allow the subsequent coats to dry thoroughly. Once again, when dry, you will need to repeat the process on the flip side.
Step 3: Cleaning Up
- Clean your sprayer thoroughly according to the manufacturer’s user manual. Make sure that it’s fully dry before storing it.
- When the paint is fully dry, remove all the leaves and grass taped to your machine and dispose of them responsibly.
- Next, remove all the masking tape and kitchen towels you used to protect the openings. And voila, you are now the proud owner of a cool-looking Airsoft gun!
- Before you head off to show your teammates, don’t forget to tidy up the groundsheet or any cardboard — and remove your personal protective gear too!
As painted Airsoft guns are becoming more popular, you don’t need to worry about being left for dead as if you were hit. After reading this handy guide, you can make an educated choice concerning pattern choice, coating, and which paint sprayer will give you a professional-looking result. Now you’re armed with the best way to paint an Airsoft gun, you’re ready to revamp your shooter, get to the action, and hit the field running.
Best Way to Paint an Airsoft Gun FAQs
Q: Is It Illegal to Spray Paint an Airsoft Gun?In most states of the USA, it is not illegal to paint your Airsoft gun. However, some states declare that painting your Airsoft to look like an actual firearm is against regulations. For up-to-date advice, check your state’s local laws and regulations.
Q: Can I Use a Paint Sprayer to Update My Airsoft Gun?Yes, and you should. It will leave a far more professional-looking finish than you can achieve with a spray can or brush. Paint sprays have technology on their side, along with adjustable spray patterns and output.
Q: What Is the Best Paint To Use On My Airsoft Gun?Ideally, the best coating is Plasti Dip or an oil-based medium from Majic Paints. These are designed for metal surfaces and offer a level of protection against the elements.
Q: Can You Paint the Orange Tip on an Airsoft Gun?
This depends on the state that you live in. Many states allow it if you own the gun and don’t intend to transport it. However, no one wants to commit an offense based on incorrect knowledge, so check the most up-to-date laws on FindLaw – Airsoft Guns.