Tattoo Machine Kits
Tattoo machine kits vary in price depending on the company your buying the kits from and the quality of the tattoo kits in question. For a decent power supply your talking from £110 to £189 for something good, but if your looking for cheap then E-bay is an option where they can go as low as £18 to £30, just remember that you get what you pay for.
Another alternative would be to buy custom tattoo machines but you’d need to be an experienced tattooist first to know what your require. However, you can pick some good deals up from custom tattoo machine makers over on eBay from around £190. My tip is to shop around as you can pick up some good tattoo machine kits by going down the custom route, yeah there a little bit more expensive than off the peg but their worth the money and if you treat them right, they should last you a lifetime if you have opted for well made over cheap. In the long run they will pay for themselves over and over.
Next thing you need to look for in your tattoo machine kit would be the flip pedals and the clip cords which come in at around £25 going down to the £10 mark for the cheaper ones.
Tubes, well what can I say, its the same old maxim that your going to get what you pay for and the prices can range quite a bit dependent on quality. There’s the option of going for the disposable plastic types which cost pennies and you can throw them away after use. The problem with these is down to weight, as you will lose some of the control you would normally have with your tattoo gun. Also as their plastic the plastic can break down if your using them for any length of time.
Needles are always going to be disposable, and you should be able to pick up a pack of these for around £12 for say 50, however, this price can vary depending on the grouping, where the broader range will come at a higher cost.
Work surfaces can come in all shapes and sizes from a granite worktop to glass on a regular worktop. If your a mobile tattooist then you’ll probably work off the top off a toolbox.
Tattoo chairs are another important thing to have, you just have to have a decent chair to work out of and these can range anywhere from £400 for a good mid range one up to around £1000. If your mobile then you can pick up a folding tattoo chair for around £60 that you can fit easily in the boot of your car.
Caps can be purchased in 100’s 500’s or 1000’s its up to you but its generally cheaper to buy 1000 at a time for £8 or so dependent on the size.
Inks can be very personal to what you like and what effect your trying to achieve. Try to stay away from the really cheap unknown brand stuff. A good black to use for outlining would be something like the Japanese Kuro Sumi ink which should set you back around £20 for a 12oz bottle. Buy smaller quantities of various inks to start with until you find the right ink for you, your style and your machine.
If you have been browsing ebay and noticed a tattoo machine kit that has caught your eye then the following may be of use to you..
First of all dont pick out the tattoo kit that contains the most tattoo equipment as this will inevitably be the kit with the cheapest and most unreliable equipment. How else do you think their able to bundle more things.
I would not really reccomend buying a tattoo kit and would try to steer you to individual pieces of tattoo eqipment thats right for you. However, if you must buy a tattoo machine kit then here is what to look out for.
Dont think about buying the kit that contains more than two tattoo guns as you only need two. One tattoo gun is for Outlining and the other tattoo machine you will use for the shading. One power supply with a peddle is more than enough. The kit should also contain some tubes and steel tips to get you started but if you have not got an autoclave (you probably wont if your buying a kit) then you need to look for some disposable tips. That way you can just throw away the tips after use rather than trying to sterilize your steels and not doing a good job of it. To sterilize you need an autoclave.
The kits will also come with needles and although they will work to some for of degree, don’t believe the blurb saying they are top quality as they are probably cheep Chinese needles.
Forget the ink that comes with any kit, unless your just going to play around with some tattoo practice skin. The tattoo ink that will come with the kit will not be recognized by your local authority and may get you in trouble if you start putting it into peoples skin. Also it will fade and produce a nasty tattoo.
You’ll also need to make sure there’s some grommets in there along with some ink cups.
A think the tattoo kit will probably not contain will be tracing paper and some hectograph paper as you will need this for designs and transferring it to skin.
Remember that if the kit contains the words Pro tattoo equipment or similar and its cheap, chances are it certainly wont be used by any tattoo pro worth his salt and it will almost certainly be made in china.
I hope this helps if your looking at putting together your own tattoo machine kit and happy tattooing.