Rotary VS Coil Tattoo Machine

Rotary VS Coil Tattoo Machine: Which is better for you?

As beginners willing to work in the tattoo business or paint their body, they are often confused about which type of tattoo machine they should use. Shall they use the coil tattoo machines or use the rotary tattoo machines, the coil is perhaps the most common of the two and can be found in most tattoo shops, but for beginners, we always recommend the rotary machine over the coil machine because rotary tattoo machines are relatively easy to use even for the inexperienced masters regardless of the level of ability. Tattoo beginners should understand the differences between a rotary and coil tattoo machine before purchasing one. 

Rotary VS Coil tattoo machines -Operational Differences

Both the rotary tattoo machine and the coil tattoo machine can be used to create great tattoos, the main difference between them is the way the needles move in the machine. In the coil tattoo machines, electromagnetic current passes through the coils to draw and release the armature bar which in turn injects and retracts the needles, Coil machines work like a hammer, giving them more of a punch. A rotary machine has a more gentle process to its inner workings, it features a slick electric motor that makes use of a cyclical motion to move the needle nice and smoothly. Additionally, the rotary machine is extremely quiet and they produce less damage to the skin. Overall, a rotary provides a more gentle process than a coil tattoo machine.

Rotary VS Coil tattoo machines-Particular Differences

Weight: Coil machines have two coils or electromagnets, an armature bar where the needle attaches to the machine, a contact screw and springs inside, so a coil machine is bulkier than a rotary. when drawing a larger tattoo design, you will feel fatigued in your arm and hand due to the coil machine’s bulkier feature. Rotary machines have following simple parts: a small electric motor, cam wheel and needle bar, are much lighter than coil machines, so artists can work longer sessions without tiring their hands and fingers.

Noise: If you’ve ever walked into a tattoo parlor and heard the familiar buzzing sound, you know they’re using coil machines. When a coil machine releases and retracts the needles, it makes a clicking sound. For first-time tattoo clients, hearing the coil machine sounds might feel nervous and shake the body, messing up the design and damaging the skin. The rotary machines however, because a motor in general is smoother – produce a lot less sound, giving an impression to first time users that the process is going to be less painful.

Versatility: The most advantageous point about rotary machine is that tattoo artists can use them for lining and shading. All the artist needs to do is change the needle, you will not need to change machines frequently. But that is not possible with a coil tattoo device, coil machine can either draw lines or shade. It cannot do both, so two coil machines are needed when completing a tattoo.

Machine maintenance: Tattoo machine is a good helper for tattoo artists. It’s important to ensure proper maintenance of the tattoo machine to extend its life and keep its powerful performance. In this respect, coil machines are superior to rotary machines. Coil machines are easy to disassemble and clean, while rotary machines require more skill in maintenance and regular lubrication for optimal use.

Movement of the Needle: The needle movement of a coil tattoo machine is rough because the electromagnetic field is interrupted and re-established with each cycle. But in a rotary tattoo machine, the needle movement is smooth due to the electricity’s consistent flow.

Skill Level Requirement: Coil tattoo machines require expertise to handle as they are heavy and shall be used precisely. In contrast, rotary tattoo machines are lightweight, produce less sound, and do not vibrate. This means that using it is hassle-free. Also, a beginner doesn’t require practice to get familiar with it.

Rotary VS Coil tattoo machines – Overview

The rotary machine is simple in structure, friendly to beginners, easy to get started and master, light in weight and less damage to the skin, a rotary tattoo machine can be suitable for all styles of tattoos. The downside is that it is expensive, and in addition, it has a closed body, which makes it difficult for individuals to diagnose and repair once the machine fails.

Coil machines are low price, easier to maintain, and can create smooth lines and better shading. They are easier to maintain but lack the fluidity of motion in the needles, it is not recommended for beginners or inexperienced tattooists. But for professional tattoo artists, a coil machine is adept at making different types of tattoos with large and complex designs with precision.

In conclusion

Coil and rotary machines complement each other with their unique characteristics. When we consider all the differences between rotary or coil tattoo machines, we come to a conclusion. It’s really up to the individual tattoo artist to decide which one they like.

Before making any final decisions, Do your research and try both types . Whatever machine one is using, the ultimate objective is to make the tattoo design perfect. Consider your experience level and talk to other artists in the tattoo industry. Then, make your own decision.

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