I’d like to share with you my experience with owning the Iwata Eclipse by writing this Iwata Eclipse HP CS Review. I actually bought it, it was not given to me. Furthermore, I don’t work for Iwata either!
If you are into crafting miniatures, creating models, or painting airbrush art, you will need a good painting airbrush. An airbrush like Iwata Eclipse could do the job perfectly for all kinds of painting projects.
The Iwata Eclipse is a popular airbrush that offers incredible precision and painting quality. It is designed by the Japanese firm Iwata which is known for engineering design, high quality of workmanship, and innovation. The Iwata Eclipse HP-CS airbrush will last a lifetime if properly cared for!
I especially like how it feels in my hand. It is very well engineered and manufactured to be sturdy, yet lightweight and balanced.
The product has a sleek design and minimalist components making it very easy to clean and maintain. The airbrush requires some maintenance but keeps going for hours without problems.
Launched in 2018, this airbrush has built a large fan following with professionals and hobbyists alike. It easily withstands anything you can throw at it. The 0.35mm nozzle would be an excellent choice for both beginners and advanced painters who want precision.
In this guide, I’ll provide a detailed review of the Iwata Eclipse HP-CS airbrush and how to use it effectively for all your painting needs.
Jump Ahead To:
The Iwata Brand
Iwata-Medea is a Japanese company with operations in more than 50 countries around the world. Their mission is to “create a great experience for the makers and creators of the world.” They have been world leaders of quality airbrushes for decades.
The company has always focused on developing high-end products based on new technology. They are constantly developing innovative equipment and painting kits for the industry. Their offerings include top-end creative products, including air compressors and airbrushes.
As soon as you hold the airbrush in your hand you will recognize ‘quality’ of materials. The Eclipse feels streamlined and flawless.
Iwata offers a variety of airbrushes. These include extra-wide models for painting large surfaces, like walls, to extremely detailed airbrushes for precise painting on miniatures. They basically divide painting into 5 styles and offer airbrushes for each category. These include the following.
- The Full Finish Line – These include the Wide to Extra wide brushes such as their G-Series and ANEST airbrushes. They have the widest spray pattern to cover a large surface area.
- Effortless Coverage – These brushes include the Revolution and Neo for Iwata Series. The airbrushes in this category are meant for painting medium to wide surfaces.
- All-Star Versatility – These include the Eclipse series of Airbrushes which range from Fine to Wide. The versatility of spray paint allowed makes them a popular choice for design artists. This is the airbrush that I own.
- Total Control – These brushes include the Hi Line & High Performance Plus airbrushes. It offers spray painting in medium to fine range.
- Absolute Precision – Brushes in this category are designed specifically for painting artwork with fine details. These brushes include the Iwata Custom Micro range.
The Iwata Eclipse HP-CS Review
The Iwata Eclipse series of airbrushes are known specifically for their variety in painting different surfaces. It offers good coverage on the wider setting and trims down to very fine lines on the other end of the spectrum This is what makes it Iwata’s most versatile airbrush. The versatility and quality of manufacture are the reasons why I wanted this specific brush. I want to be able to use it for anything AND last a lifetime!
The brush also offers dual action in that pushing down the trigger releases air, and pulling it back controls the paint flow. The dual action is flawless, without a snag or catch. The button feels just right under my finger.
I like that the Iwata Eclipse a multi-purpose, high-detail airbrush with high paint flow. This brush is ideally used for thick paints and it is perfect for projects that require precise control of the spray. You can use the airbrush to apply paint to several surfaces which makes it a great fit for any surface area.
The needle on this brush is 0.35 mm thick and offers a needle/nozzle combination that aids the user for finer, more detailed painting. You can also increase the spray size to 50 mm on the high end.
The cup size is 1/3 oz. and designed like a funnel. This makes it easier for the paint to flow naturally through the nozzle. The shape also makes it easier to clean up later. I especially like that it is balanced so well. My Passche Talon, for example, feels balanced under the cup
In the Box
The airbrush is very simple to put together, once you get it out of the box. The main airbrush comes pre-assembled, but you can detach the cut-away handle with a few basic tools. It has a self-centering nozzle that you will also find easier to clean. The box includes the following.
- Eclipse HP-CS Airbrush
- Quick-start user guide
- Small tube of lube
- Small wrench for cleaning
The wrench can be used to loosen the head cap, but it should not be used to tighten the cap. Always tighten these screws by hand to prevent any damage to the rings.
Once you have the airbrush out of the box, it is quite easy to use and operate. You may struggle a bit if you are quite new to airbrushing. But if you have been doing it for some time, you will find it easy to figure everything out.
Spray Painting Variety
The main selling point for Iwata Eclipse is the variety in spray painting. It is quite capable of painting from very fine detail to thicker spray cones. Here’s a small sample of what I can spray with my Eclipse:
Things to Know About This Airbrush
The Iwata Eclipse HP-CS Dual Action Airbrush Gun is quite popular with users. It has more than 600 reviews with an 88% positive rating on Amazon. This makes it one of the more popular airbrushes endorsed by users in the market.
Some of the feedback from other users suggests that:
- The Iwata Eclipse is easy to use and is a great option for new users who have no prior airbrushing experience.
- This is a high-quality product that even experienced air brushers would be happy to use.
- The device is extremely easy to clean after usage.
- The airbrush can be used for different projects, from small paint jobs on miniatures to painting T-shirts, handbags, and other accessories.
- The device is made with good metal alloys. It is durable and rust-proof. Many users noted that it has lasted them for years, despite regular use.
- This airbrush is more on the pricier side compared to other brands. However, users say that it is worth the expense, and it has consistently rated as one of the best airbrushes in the market.
Pros of Using the Iwata Eclipse Airbrush
- The Eclipse airbrush gun offers plenty of variety. It can be used to complete detailed, fine work or to complete general painting over a large area. It is a great option for professionals with all kinds of spraying needs.
- You get extremely high quality and workmanship like finish with this airbrush.
- The entire airbrush weighs just over 100 grams, making it one of the lightest models on the market.
- This makes it very easy to handle even for everyone.
- Iwata Eclipse is very durable and lasts for a long time, giving users very little trouble while operating.
- The design is very smooth and has a trigger action for easy operations.
- The airbrush is very popular with users and considered one of the top options you can buy, despite being over three years old.
- The Eclipse HP-CS comes with a great mixing cup that will be perfect for all your coloring needs.
- This airbrush is particularly good for beginners to use.
- The airbrush design includes a cutaway handle that can be removed with ease. This design feature makes it easier for users to unclog any paint when they want without the need for removing the needle.
- If you get any problems down the line and need replacement parts for the airbrush, they are readily available online. Replacement parts are much cheaper compared to other airbrushes in the market.
Cons of Using the Iwata Eclipse Brush
In writing my Iwata Eclipse HP CS Review, I wanted to be really honest. The downsides to this airbrush are negligible, in my opinion.
- In an effort to keep it versatile, the Iwata Eclipse brush may not be the best for specific kinds of painting projects. For example, its spray is not wide enough for bigger projects, like spray painting stage scenery.
- This model is relatively expensive. You should consider buying it when you are thinking of frequent use, if you want an excellently engineered product, you are in serious production or commercial painting.
- The needle size is very small at 0.35 mm. While it works fine with thin paint, you may experience clogging problems with a coarser pigmented paint.
- I needed to buy a coupling in order for it to work with my Passche air compressor hose. No big deal, because it was $8 on Amazon, but I did have to wait a week for it to arrive. I’m not very patient.
- For straight-up beginners, you’ll need to find instructions on how to use an airbrush because the instructions that come in the box are so sparse, they are practically non-existent. Fortunately, YouTube is a great resource! So is my beginner article Air Brush Basics-A Complete Guide. You will learn fastest by just experimenting.
Working with Iwata Eclipse
Using the Iwata Eclipse is sort of a walk in the park! Hopefully, the finer details and ProTips in my Iwata Eclipse HP CS Review will save you some time figuring it all out!
Preparing the Paint
To get good results with this airbrush, you need to prepare everything in advance. The needle is very small and your paint must be very thin to flow through properly.
If you are like me, you keep your bottles of paint around for far too long, rather than replace them. Acrylic paints can congeal once opened, and sometimes the little blobs are quite small. This will play havoc with a fine needle airbrush. I recommended that before you start to load your brush, first filter your paint to get any coarse particles out. I like to keep a piece of cheesecloth or muslin to filter out the crud. If it doesn’t flow through the cloth too easily, you can gently squeeze the paint through.
Try using an airbrush thinner for making it less viscous. Some people thin the paint with a bit of water, but this may weaken the bonding quality of the paint to the surface that you are painting. That’s why using acrylic airbrush thinner is a better idea than water. Water weakens the bond, but acrylic airbrush thinner keeps the bond strong. It’s your call!
When you are thinning the paint try to get a consistency similar to skimmed milk. That’s the ideal thinness.
If you are worried about not getting a deep opacity of color, you can spray several times over the area to achieve your desired shade. This will help ensure that you get the results you want without clogging the airbrush with thick paint. Using thinner paint will also mean that you will need to clean the brush less often.
The airbrush comes with lubricating oil. Make sure to apply it to the brush before you start painting. It doesn’t go in the paint cup, however!
Lubrication keeps the metal pieces slick, which makes the gun easier to operate. If you do not lubricate it regularly, it may become slightly stiff and unresponsive.
You do not need to lubricate it every time you clean the nozzle, but do it fairly regularly (perhaps once a month or after 10 – 15 hours of use, for instance, is a good benchmark). It is important to remember that you should only use a small amount of oil for lubrication. Using too much on the needle can cause paint flow issues as the oil may block the needle head.
For finer and more detailed work on the Iwata Eclipse, you can reduce the thickness of your lines by adjusting the air pressure on the gun. The stroke thickness can also be controlled by changing the distance of your airbrush from the surface of your art piece.
The needle is an important part of Iwata Eclipse, so make sure that it does not get damaged or bent during use. If you drop the brush and bend the needle by mistake, you can get a replacement from the market.
You will also need to clean the needle regularly to keep the paint from drying inside and clogging it. To dry it properly, you will need to remove the needle from the airbrush and clean it according to the manual instructions.
The Iwata line of airbrushes are like every airbrush in that they must be cleaned (hopefully after each session of use) for optimal performance. For a detailed tutorial on how to clean your airbrush, please read my article here.
Final Thoughts on the Iwata Eclipse HP CS
Lastly, I hope my Iwata Eclipse HP CS Review has been useful for you. The Iwata Eclipse HP-CS is a versatile airbrush that many artists and crafters will find useful.
I can heartily recommend this airbrush to anyone looking for quality, versatility and lifetime use. It is particularly good if you craft and paint miniatures, models, and small artworks because it sprays in the perfect range of spray thickness for these purposes. The Eclipse fulfills all my needs, as I don’t airbrush every day, or do production painting for commercial reasons. It fits my medium-sized hand really well and is perfectly balanced.
If you are considering other brands, be sure to check out our in-depth reviews of the best airbrushes on the market here.
You will need a good air compressor as well, please read my useful article on those here.
Here is a long video with demos and commentary:
Where to purchase the Iwata Eclipse HP-CS
The Iwata Eclipse is one of the best sellers on the market. It should be available at big chain craft and hobby stores, or you can find it online via Amazon. Here’s the link to check the current price: