Parts of a Oil Paint Brush

Regardless of the brush manufacturer, all brushes consist of three main parts namely the hair or bristles, the handle and the ferrule.

The Hair

This is the most important and first part that any painter needs to understand in a brush. This part is the one that retains paint and applies to the canvas or painting medium.

The amount of hair and the specific make and shape of the brush form the main characteristics of the brush, which makes the major difference in a detailing brush and a large area application brush.

Every painting brush as determined by their hair helps determine the area of application and the quality of application expected. You should also know that there are brushes made out of natural hair while others are made of synthetic fibers.

You may have noticed that some brushes have their points glued together to protect the hair and keep the shape intact during shipping. For this reason, you should always clean the brushes before you begin using them. This is an important tip for beginner oil painters.

Some brushes have different layers of air with good color transferring properties, and within this core, there is a layer of hair, which defines the outline of the brush. If you are using a brush made out of natural hair, it is imperative that you know how the brush structure works.

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The hair consists of a fine core enclosed within tiny scales, and if you soak the brush in water for a long time, this will cause the brush to open up the same way a pine core does. This makes the brush lose flexibility and the capacity to hold enough paint. After washing the brush, always ensure the brush dries and regains its original shape.

The Ferrule

This is the second part of a painting brush that every painter needs to understand. This part is commonly made of brass tubing and is nickel-plated, and used to keep the hair or bristles and the handle together. In this case, if you are allergic to nickel, you may want to get brushes that are nickel free, however these are hard to find and the best solution would be to use gloves when handling the brush.

It is notable that the glue within the ferule is resistant to most solvents and is heat sensitive. This means that you should avoid using hot water for washing, as this will weaken the glue therein. On the other hand, avoid drying the brush using heat dryers as these are destructive as well.

The Handle

The handle is the last part of the brush and is the part that you use to hold when painting. Some brushes have long handles while others have short handles. Handles vary in shapes where some are triangular and others are rectangular. The handles are also made of different material and some are made of plastic while others are made of wood. The choice of material would be determined by whichever material you are comfortable with.

Some brush manufacturers have made handles that are very easy to use when painting. Again, the handle that one chooses is largely dependent on their preferences and whether you can use them comfortably.

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