The Best Tattoo Machine for Lining: Your Single Most Important Machine.
Your choice of a tattoo machine is a personal choice. We realize that we’re treading on sensitive grounds when talking about the best tattoo machine for lining. Our goal is to help you understand the options and the specifics of different machines. To cover all the bases, we included several options.
Quick Top 5 Tattoo Machines for Lining
Generic Rotary Tattoo Machine Gun
Which To Go For, A Rotary or Coil Tattoo Machine?
This question is one that can stir up some emotions on either side of the fence. It never fails to surprise us that some tattoo artists are so fiercely loyal to their choice. Each type has its pros and cons. We’ll brave these troubled waters, duck, and step into this controversial debate.
Rotary Tattoo Machines
The rotary tattoo machine is the grandfather of modern devices, going back to the 19th century. We’ve done a lot since the single needle days of early history. You can thank Thomas Edison and his invention of the Stencil Pen in 1876 for that. You’ve come a long way, baby!
If you’re a traditionalist, it’s probably your go-to machine anyway. Hey, it’s history. We like that connection. On the plus side, these tattoo machines are lighter, making them easy to hold. There’s less maintenance with them which we definitely like. A bit of oil keeps it running fine.
The rotary is a consistent tattoo machine which can be a huge benefit to the tattoo artist. You know what to expect so that you can concentrate on your work. If you do a lot of fine lines, they offer a better choice. They also tend to be less traumatic to the skin, making for quicker healing.
Coil Tattoo Machines
For those loyal to the coil, these machines offer versatility which is one of its greatest draws. However, that means there is a learning curve for each tattoo machine you use. You’ll need to hone in on the optimal voltage to get the work done. That certainly isn’t a bad thing.
And it makes it easier to understand the loyalty of artists to these machines. It’s almost a bonding experience to learn to use the device and to know its quirks and potential. But it’s also about your entire tattoo station setup including your power supply and pedal.
Each type of machine reacts differently to voltage changes. A rotary tattoo machine will go faster and stay consistent with increasing voltage. A coil device, on the other hand, will hit harder as the voltage goes up. Each machine has its finer points for correct and safe operation.
This video by the Tattoo University goes into greater detail about the differences between rotary and coil tattoo machines. It discusses the importance of understanding how to use your device safely as it relates to skin penetration.
Consider the Important Qualities and Features
You should keep several things in mind when choosing a tattoo machine. Once, you’ve picked a type, move on to consider the construction of the machine. Your stand-by machine will have to take the rigors of a lot of use. You should stick with products made of solid, durable materials.
Stick with Quality
You should rely on manufacturers with a reputation for high-quality products. These will be the ones that have stood the test of time. You’ll also be able to locate plenty of user accounts about performance. A tattoo machine may look nice, but it should stay the course through use.
Price Isn’t the Whole Story
Budget, of course, will undoubtedly influence your choice. They don’t call them starving artists without a reason. But that doesn’t mean you should sacrifice quality for an affordable price. Many manufacturers offer good products without breaking the bank.
Don’t let price be your only guide. It’s an important consideration, but it’s not the deciding factor. Remember that well-known manufacturers can offer an affordable option simply because of their sales volume. If you’re trying something new, it makes sense to make a reasonable investment.
Also, opt for a product that comes with a warranty or guarantee. You likely know how good of a fit it is pretty quickly after you start using it. A company that backs up their products with guarantees makes a powerful statement. If they believe in their products, it’s likely that you can too.
Think about Your Whole Setup
Your tattoo machine is your set of brushes. But it’s just one part of your whole kit. Your work is a sum of all parts. You’ll find that your choice of a pedal, for example, can affect voltage. That can, in turn, influence how the tattoo machine performs when lining.
That said, you need to realize the effects of these other influences to access the performance of a new tattoo machine. If it’s not a great fit out of the box, it could mean that all the components of your kit aren’t playing nice together.
We recommend keeping your setup consistent. If you’re going to change out a tattoo machine, keep everything else status quo. That way you can give a true assessment of how your device is working out for you. Do yourself a favor and make it easy to eliminate other factors.
Be Open to a New Experience
As an artist, you are probably always looking for ways to fine-tune your craft. That’s the nature of the business. It’s constantly in flux with new trends emerging. You can apply the same open attitude to your choice of a tattoo machine.
If you’re a die-hard coil machine user, consider a rotary device for a change of pace. Likewise, branch out and see what the buzz is about regarding coil tattoo machines. All of our options are affordable. Even a small shop can pop for any of them to see what it’s like on the other side.
Reviews of the Best Tattoo Machines for Lining
The Best Rotary Tattoo Machine for Lining
Finding a good lining machine is one of the more trickier tasks when choosing the right equipment, that's why we've taken the time to put all this information together. We've rounded up the top 5 models on the market so you can separate the junk from quality. Choose one of the 5 liners on our list and we guarantee your tattooing will be off to a flying start!