pushing or pulling a line

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pushing or pulling a line

Post by Mr.Martian on Fri May 06, 2016 11:33 am

I've read a few times that you should always try to push a line away from you, or be going sideways, but never pull it down towards you.. I guess because of keeping the needle in the back of the tip? But often it feels unnatural or awkward to line like that, I guess because of being stuck in a certain way of drawing, but I can't see much difference with the quality of the line if I do pull it.. SO, my newbie question is..does it really matter which way you push,pull a line , or am i going to get into bad habits if i do 'whatever works'? cheers
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Re: pushing or pulling a line

Post by acestome on Fri May 06, 2016 12:39 pm

i try and push the line , if i feel uncomfortable and need to pull a line i spin the machine round , if you pull a against the needle too fast it will eventualy wobble , maybe ok if your going slow but i prefer to keep the needle at the back . One more point , it will be worse on machines without a needle runner , ie . using bands to secure needle bar. hope this helps.
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Re: pushing or pulling a line

Post by Mr.Martian on Fri May 06, 2016 2:21 pm

thanks for that, I'd never heard of a needle runner. I'm using a microdial, primarily 9rl at the moment, couple of bands, at about 10.8 volts. Does the voltage sound high to you? I'm trying to get my ear in so I know the sound of a steady buzz. I've had many tattoos where the guys machine is clacking away like some spoons in a washing machine. But the tattoos came out fine
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Re: pushing or pulling a line

Post by acestome on Fri May 06, 2016 2:25 pm

im certainly no expert , but 10 volts on a coil machine with a large throw and heavy springs could be ok , the clacking is usualy lack of o rings which is also ok , iv found but some people prefer the o orings , for a liner with orings 10 volts is ok but will probably heat up over time , especialy pushing a 9rl thru a disposable grip. if your starting out id recommend a decent lining rotary only because they work with no fuss , not because they are better , and then after a while you will know whats you and whats the machine. but upto you , i use both currently.
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Re: pushing or pulling a line

Post by marked 4 life on Fri May 06, 2016 6:59 pm

A decent lining rotary? that is a minefield on its own lol!
Direct drive, linear drive, give, no give, triple conrod ... the list goes on.

I used a direct drive Wayne Taylor rotary for 12 months but found it too slow for my hand speed for lining, great for packing colour so I switched to Micky Sharpz micro dial, lined so much easier and mine runs about 11.5 / 12 volts but I prefer the weight, feel and sound of my direct drive so I spoke to Wayne Taylor about motor specs etc on my machines and I now know that I can run them at a max of 13 volts, running at 10 volts instead of 7 - 8 volts will line much easier than previously and push a fat 7 loose needle no problem.

Regarding pushing, pulling and keeping the needle in the back of the tube, I use diamond tubes which have a natural V formation which keeps the needle in the back of the tube, I push and pull depending on how I am sitting and the angle of the line to me, pulling feels more natural to me but pushing seems easier for long lines without stopping starting mid line.

Bit long winded I know but seemed relevant and gave my opinion of what works for me to a few questions Wink

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Re: pushing or pulling a line

Post by Loulou on Fri May 06, 2016 11:07 pm

to be honest , its all down to work work for you , i personally find it easier to pull a line , if its a straight line ,,,,if its curved its doesnt matter i can work either way
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Re: pushing or pulling a line

Post by skulltattoo80 on Sat May 07, 2016 3:29 pm

I just always assumed pulling would give you an advantage by helping the stretch
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Re: pushing or pulling a line

Post by rustysnow on Sat May 07, 2016 3:56 pm

I was showed by a friend who's also an accomplished tattoo artist that you can push or pull, just turn the machine... when you pull a line, place your little finger and the finger next to it of your machine hand against your thumb of the stretch hand, it helps to keep the stretch tight while you line...

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Re: pushing or pulling a line

Post by head on Sat May 07, 2016 11:44 pm

pull...just find it easier
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Re: pushing or pulling a line

Post by Mr.Martian on Tue May 10, 2016 7:30 pm

Cheers, all very useful.
Something that has helped in straightening my lines a bit more (still as shaky as a granny voice in places), is using 7rl tips on 9rl needles. Unless it's just these cnc ones, they fit much snugger which helps
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Re: pushing or pulling a line

Post by FadedInk on Sat May 28, 2016 9:56 am

I was taught to keep the needles in the back of the tube, as much as possible. If you turn the grip of the machine in your fingers to follow the line, you can actually line in any direction that way. That's something you practice. You can tape a square eraser onto a pencil or pen so you can be aware of the "machine" and how to spin the grip to keep it following the line instead fo leading it, or even find a pencil or pen that will fit in one of your machines' tube clamp to get a more realistic weight. Then for extra points when you're used to that, add your cord. Then you can go yet another step and plug in the cord and footswitch to add getting used to the vibration of the machine and having to "step on the gas" to make the lines. The more elements from "the real thing" you bring into your practice, the more natural it feels when you go to actually tattoo.

Another reason why people say to push rather than pull, is that with most tattoos, the person/part you're working on will often be vertical or some angle other than perfectly horizontal. Ink and etc "run downhill", and you end up having to plot that before it makes a mess and so you can see what you're doing. That's why you want to start at the physically lowest part of the design. Every time you blot, you're going to be wiping off some of your stencil, and it allows you to mostly be only wiping off parts you've already inked and where that part of the stencil has already done it's job.

If you imagine working on somebody's arm or the back of a seated person, the most obvious move for starting from the lowest physical point of the design is to draw the lines in an upwards motion, which will be a "push". It would definitely be possible to turn the machine so the motor or coils are above the tube and draw the lines downwards, starting with the lowest lines and working your way up, and if that feels better for you then by all means use it. But to me that would feel more awkward.


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