The Badger Patriot 105 is one of the most popular airbrush in miniature painting. Learn what makes it one of the best purchases you can make.
Whether you are just starting with the airbrush, or are looking to upgrade the one from your starter set, chances are that the Badger Patriot 105 is the one for you.
Obviously, this is not the perfect end-all be-all tool, it has its limits, and we’ll cover those as well.
Badger Patriot 105 Airbrush Review
What makes the Patriot 105 so popular is that it is the textbook definition of a workhorse.
You can use it for practically any task, and it will work to an extent.
It’s pretty much the jack of all trades of airbrushing. It’s not as bold as a spray gun and not as fine as the Sotar. But it allows you do do base coats and finer highlights without switching airbrush.
Why we like it
There are many reasons why the Badger Patriot 105 should be on your buy list when it comes to airbrushes.
As stated before, it will quickly become your go-to tool when it comes to airbrushing. Unless you need something very specific, the Patriot can handle it. Be it primer, base coats, highlights, details, or weathering, you have a tool for the job.
Badger airbrushes in general are great for their availability and customer care. The Patriot 105 is no exception. All badger products come with a practically endless quality guarantee.
But because you can easily get their products on Amazon, you also get their customer service. Say what you will about Amazon, but when it comes down to client satisfaction, they are hard to beat.
The pricing is also quite user friendly. When it comes to airbrushes, nothing is really cheap. But getting a good bang for your buck is the name of the game. The Badger Patriot 105 delivers here, coming in at around a hundred dollars.
Not only is the airbrush itself reasonably priced, so are the parts. Affordable needles and nozzles really help make the Badger Patriot 105 a great workhorse, as these are the pieces ou are more likely to damage and replace.
This is what sets the Patriot over the Iwata HP-CS, which is a very similar airbrush, but comes at a higher price point, and with more expensive replacement parts.
What we like a little bit less
I will be the first one to admit that I’m not a fan of paying for the Patriot 105 at full price. It is quite often on sale. For the regular price, I often feel like you can get two or three cheap airbrushes that overall will be a better purchase.
One trick I used before is buying two cheap ones to use while waiting on the Patriot to be on sale.
The other big drawback of the Badger Patriot 105 is that with all the versatility, you are somewhat limited in what you can do.
If you are mostly doing large pieces and terrain, you will miss the high volume of a spray gun. if you use your airbrush to push extreme highlights, you will be missing the precision of a Sotar.
Versatility comes at a price.
Here are a couple of specs, broken down and explained in layman’s terms. This is something I feel most airbrush reviews lack usually.
- Dual Action, Gravity Feed.
- 1/3 ounce, permanently mounted, cup. This is, for miniature use, a medium size. Less than a Spray Gun’s, much larger than the Sotar’s
- .5 Needle. This you have to check when buying, as older versions had different sizes. But Badger has since changed this to make the Patriot a .5 exclusive.
- Ergonomically balanced. This is one of the biggest difference between the cheaper ‘starter’ airbrushes. The Patriot has an even weight distribution, where the cheaper options have a lot of weight to the front. This means you have to grip it harder.
Overall, the Badger Patriot 105 is a great tool, perfect as your first real upgrade after getting a starter set.
Playing rough while learning with the cheap airbrush from a starter set will set you up for success using the Patriot. You will a spray very similar, but with a trigger action much smoother, allowing you a lot more control.
There’s the weird stigma that you absolutely need to upgrade airbrushes all the time. I’ve seen more than a few painter destroy fancy airbrushes because they only wanted the higher end, but used them for simple tasks they were not meant for.
In the end, having a workhorse airbrush like the Patriot 105 is optimal. It makes your other airbrushes, if any, last longer as you only use them when you need them.
That is, if you want to invest in more airbrushes. If you are to only get one, to speed up priming or base coating, the Patriot is one of your best options.
For experienced airbrushers, I still think having the Patriot around is great. I’ve found that unless I embark on very specific projects, or specific parts of projects, I can use the Patriot for most things, without having to compromise much.
As per usual, I recommend getting your airbrushes on Amazon. You will save a lot of money on a product that’s exactly the same as what you’d get in store.