by John Bradley of
Captain Jack's Tattoo
Tattoo Machine Coils
Have you ever seen a tattoo artist zip through a tattoo with such ease and with lightning speed, and wonder how he does it? Well being familiar with the tattoo design sure helps but, the main reason is that he is using the right tattoo machine for the right job.You wouldn't drive a V.W in a Grand Prix and expect to win would you.
In this 1st tech tip I will be discussing the tattoo machine, and at the heart of the machine is the coils. The coils are the backbone of the tattoo machine. I will try not to get too technical so that it can easily be understood by everyone.
There are three different size coils being used in tattoo machines. 1. The 8 wrap coil. (wrap meaning how many layers of wire are wrapped around the center core of the coil) 2. A 10 wrap coil. 3. A 12 wrap coil.
The 8 wrap coil is used mostly when doing an outline with a 1,3,4, and a 5 needle outliner. I would not recommend using an 8 wrap coil outliner machine when doing larger outline work such as when a 8 or 14 needle outline is called for. You would have to increase the voltage (by turning the power supply up) which would in effect increase amperage. When you increase amperage more power is being used and a 8 wrap coil is to small to dissipate (give off) the heat. This condition would make the tattoo machine run hotter and even possibly cause the machine timing to break up and cause an uneven outline.When you are going to use a 8 or 14 needle outliner, I would recommend using a 10 wrap coil tattoo machine.
When you think about it...the more needles on the needle bar...the more skin you have to puncture...the more skin you have to puncture the greater resistance...and the greater resistance the stronger the tattoo machine you need.
When you increase the power on your power supply the needles don't go up and down any faster, the magnetic field is increased, which draws down the needle down harder and allows the skin to be punctured more easily. This is what appears to make the ink go in faster.
The same principal applies 's with a 10 wrap coil shader tattoo machine. If you are going to use a 4 , 5 , or six needle shader then a 10 wrap coil tattoo machine is just fine, but if you are going to use a 11 through 17 needle magnum tattoo needle then I would suggest using a 12 wrap coil tattoo machine.
I've always believed that whatever works for you is just fine, but if you want to get the job done quicker and easier, it helps to use the right machine for the right job. If you work in a high volume tattoo shop like ours, and you do a lot of tattoos, this tech tip could make life a lot easier.
Until the next tattoo tip..keep the ink flowing.........
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by John Bradley of Captain Jack's Tattoo
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