Nearly 140 yrs ago, Thomas Edison invented an electrical pen to quicken the procedure of creating duplicate copies of content. Little did he know that within fifteen years, someone would discover how to convert his electric pens, called Stencil-Pens, into Tattoo Equipment. That somebody was Sam O’Reilly, who developed the 1st ink tube and needle system for use with Edison’s rotary-powered electric pens in 1851. Just 20 days after O’Reilly filed his tattoo ink reservoir patent, a gentleman known as Thomas Riley patented the 1st single-coil tattoo machine throughout the pond inside london, England. Soon after, fellow Londoner Alfred Charles South came up with the first double-coil tattoo machine. The ideas laid forth by these founding fathers of modern tattooing have been steadily improved upon from the time.
The tattoo machine has evolved by leaps and bounds since O’Reilly, Riley and South invented the initial three iterations of the rotary and coil tattoo machines. Coil tattoo machines are not any longer so heavy that they need to be suspended from your ceiling being operable, like South’s first double-coil tattoo machine was. Rotary tattoo machines are much more advanced and represent some of the quietest, gentlest tattoo machines on the market today. Let’s check out what makes these 2 types of modern-day tattoo machines tick.
How Rotary Tattoo Machines WorkRotary and coil tattoo machines function in two alternative methods to achieve the same goal of inserting ink underneath the surface of the skin (i.e. epidermis) and depositing it in the secondary layer of skin, called the dermis. Over a rotary tattoo machine, the needle bar is mounted on a nub in addition to a cylindrical motor that spins clockwise, moving the needle bar to and fro in a linear fashion as being the motor rotates (see image to right). That motion inserts tattoo needles in the skin and retracts them smoothly, in a series of constant, fluid motions. Coil tattoo machines work quite differently, in a much more complicated fashion. They utilize electromagnetic current to make and break a circuit in the cyclical fashion, moving the needles connected to the machine forward to the skin when the circuit is produced and retracting them once the circuit breaks.
When power is sent to a coil tattoo machine, the two coils are charged and transformed into an electromagnet (see image below). The electromagnet developed by the coils pulls the machine’s armature bar down towards coils, which subsequently forces the attached tattoo needles down and into the skin. The downward motion from the armature bar pulls the leading spring down with it and results in the spring to disconnect in the contact screw above it that the second before had completed a circuit. How Coil Tattoo Machines WorkThat burglary the circuit causes the electromagnetic field to collapse momentarily, releasing the armature bar through the coils. The spring connected to the armature bar would like to move returning to its natural position, plus it pulls the armature bar with it. If the front spring reconnects using the contact screw, the circuit and electromagnetic field are re-established. That starts the process yet again, pulling the armature bar down again, forcing the attached needles into the skin, pulling the top spring outside the contact screw, and breaking the circuit yet again.
How a coil machine is powered creates a hammer-like effect that drives tattoo needles into the skin more forcefully than they’d be moved by a rotary motor. There’s constant power sent to a rotary motor that keeps it transferring a fluid, clockwise pattern, pushing needles to the skin and pulling them back out more smoothly. Rotary tattoo machines therefore tend to be gentler of the epidermis, and tattoos made up of rotary tattoo machines often heal faster together with less scarring–particularly when inked by novice tattoo artists. Having said that, if you enjoy the buzz of tattoo machines that’s traditionally related to tattoo shops, then a coil tattoo machine is definitely the selection for you–specifically if you’re a highly skilled artist who are able to run a coil machine with finesse. Rotary machines are extremely quiet in comparison, and there are fewer moving parts involved, which means they’re typically more low-maintenance than traditional coil machines.
To make it easier for you to compare and contrast coil and rotary tattoo machines side-by-side, we’ve provided the next chart detailing the general advantages and disadvantages artists have raised about each type of machine. Please note that your particular artistic experience, the caliber of the machine you choose, along with your experience with the two primary kinds of tattoo machines will all impact the personal benefits and drawbacks you experience using a rotary tattoo machine versus a coil tattoo machine. These a few of the normal factors you should think about before deciding which type of machine to get.
Once you’ve decided that you might want either a coil or a rotary tattoo machine, it’s a chance to take a close look at the tattoo machine brands and models available. These list contains a few of the top options offered on PainfulPleasures.com. To get a comprehensive listing of the tattoo machines open to you, please visit our Tattoo Machines section. You can even read our full Coil vs. Rotary Tattoo Machines article for further in-depth information about the brands further down, rotary and coil tattoo machine diagrams, and further specifics of the differences between these 2 kinds of tattoo machines.
Baltimore Street Irons Tattoo MachinesBaltimore Street Irons Coil Tattoo Machines – This Pennsylvania-based tattoo machine company was established by Charles “Trey” Freeland in 2007, but Trey’s been making tattoo machines since 1996 and the man still has an active role in all of the parts of his business. Every Baltimore Street Irons coil tattoo machine is crafted with great skill and dedication. All of the machine parts and tattoo machines they manufacture are thoroughly tested and are available tuned so they’re ready to use right out of the box.Bishop Rotary Tattoo Machines
Bishop Rotary Tattoo Machines – These 4 oz. rotary tattoo machines are incredibly perfectly balanced they feel practically weightless with you. They alleviate wrist pain and signs of carpel tunnel syndrome, and enable artists to operate faster and longer. Each Bishop Rotary machine has a Swiss Maxon motor encased in billet aircraft-grade aluminum. This machine utilizes a needle clip as opposed to the traditional rubber band setup, eliminating unwanted needle motion. Each needle cartridge is hand-assembled and guaranteed for a lifetime.
Borg Tattoo Machines Borg Coil Tattoo Machines – These traditional coil tattoo machines are handmade carefully in the us. Borg tattoo machines provide lightweight, single-piece aluminum frames, which can make these machines light overall and incredibly well-balanced. Each aspect of every machine is hand-crafted in Borg’s workshops, using their 8 wrap coils on their silver contact screws. Both Borg liners and shaders weigh in at merely 5.5 oz. each, making them very easy to maneuver when you tattoo.
Cheyenne Hawk Rotary Tattoo Machines – The Cheyenne Hawk Thunder and Spirit are a pair of the lightest tattoo machines available on the market, weighing in at roughly 3.9 oz. (110g) each making use of their grips attached. Cheyenne Hawk tattoo machines provide all the key benefits of rotary machines without sacrificing the feedback response inherent in coil tattoo machines, and their fine craftsmanship gives artists the best degree of control. They’re lightweight and flexible, and they also have long-life ball-bearing motors. You can utilize these dynamic rotary machines with nearly any conventional power source.
CTPS Saveria Tattoo MachinesCTPS Saveria Coil & Rotary Tattoo Machines – Top South American tattoo machine manufacturer CTPS Saveria has been hand-crafting exquisite coil and rotary tattoo machines in Argentina for more than 37 years. Each machine they produce is carefully hand-assembled over an 8-hour period. Their machines run strong even at low voltages and may be used immediately out of the box. CTPS Saveria offers several rotary tattoo machine options and 5 varieties of coil tattoo machines that come with a number of liners, shaders and painters.Precision Tattoo Machines by CTPS Saveria
CTPS also manufactures Precision coil tattoo machines, that they can make excusively for Painful Pleasures. The Precision brand encompasses lines of medical, piercing and tattoo supplies of the very best quality which are sold for some of the finest prices you’ll find online, and our coil tattoo machines are no exception.
Dead Nuts Ink Coil Tattoo Machines – This California-based company employs a team of machining and engineering veterans at hand craft their fine coil tattoo machines from raw materials. Dead Nuts Ink Tattoo MachinesThey make their own hardware in-house and might customize any one of their tattoo machines in order to meet specific artists’ needs. Each Dead Nuts Ink tattoo machine is crafted from just one-piece Cast Ductile Iron frame that’s finished in-house, hand-signed, numbered, perfectly tuned for fast out-of-the-box use, and sent using a lifetime warranty.
Dragonfly Tattoo Machines by Ink MachinesDragonfly Rotary Tattoo Machines by Ink Machines – This Swedish tattoo machine manufacturer uses its high quality facility and broad industry knowledge to create unique rotary tattoo machines at highly-competitive prices. Their Dragonfly rotary tattoo machine is an ergonomic, state-of-the-art machine created from the best-quality materials available. It’s a light-weight, quiet machine by having an adjustable suspension system that permits artists to easily adjust needle hitting force, and it includes a needle bar retainer. Take advantage of the Dragonfly tattoo machine with any standard grips, tubes, needles, and tattoo power source.
Ego Apex Overkill & Little Ego Tattoo MachinesEgo Rotary Tattoo Machines – World-renowned tattoo artist Bez of Triplesix Studios developed the small Ego and Ego Apex Overkill having a wrist-friendly design that shifts every one of the weight forward to give Ego tattoo machines an almost pen-like feel and artists maximum needle control. The Little Ego is constructed from quality, scratch-free plastics and contains an exclusive UV coating that means it is simple to clean. The newer Ego Apex Overkill is crafted from an excellent block of aircraft aluminum that weighs under half a pound, and it includes a Swiss-made Maxon Overkill motor. Use Bez’s power triangles with one of these rotary machines to simulate the spring effect of coil tattoo machines and get an ideal give and throw each and every time you tattoo.
FK Irons Coil Tattoo Machines – All Fallen King Irons (FK Irons) AL13 coil tattoo machines are carefully-crafted from the most challenging aircraft-grade aluminum available, leading them to be extremely lightweight while also indestructible. FK Irons conventional and cutback lining and shading coil tattoo machines all weigh in at only 4.5 oz. (~127.6g) each. The cutback liners and shaders use a shorter front spring, so they run faster even if used in the same voltage since the conventional liners and shaders. The lighter armature bar on FK Irons soft shaders enables them to run faster and much more softly than their color packers.
Godoy Tattoo MachinesGodoy Machines Coil Tattoo Machines – Godoy Machines focuses on innovation through experimentation. They make an effort to educate tattoo artists of all the skill levels and give probably the most up-to-date tattooing information available through their seminars and books like Tattoo Machines along with their Secrets. Godoy believes that you’ll be better equipped to make use of any tattoo as soon as you understand fully the way your tattoo machine functions, which is the basis behind their educational endeavors. Take pleasure in the solid functionality of your Godoy coil tattoo machine and learn how it operates in and out with Godoy Machines’ book, which comes in both English and Spanish and in a number of formats.
InkJecta Rotary Tattoo Machines – The InkJecta Flite v2.1 is created in Australia for tattoo artists, by tattoo artists. These lightweight, long-lasting rotary tattoo machines possess a long-grain “fiber” construction, and they also assist artists in creating superior tattoos. Both the InkJecta Flite v2.1 Combo and Vice models come with brushless 5 watt Maxon motors that can make these appliances unique; they’re the sole rotary machines available on the market that have the capacity to run at lower speeds without having to sacrifice power or the standard of work. Utilize the Combo model with adjustable grips and also the Vice model with flex and fixed grips.
Pirat Tattoo MachinesPirat Coil Tattoo Machines – Pirat tattoo machines are handmade inside the Czech Republic from durable iron and aluminum. They are precise, lightweight, smooth-running coil tattoo machines that are available both in liner and shader varieties. Pirat offers their coil tattoo machines in 16 standardized models as well as a special group of “one-piece only” machines. Additionally, they intend to release a fresh rotary tattoo machine later this year.Skin 2 Rotary Tattoo Machines
Skin 2 Rotary Tattoo Machines – The Facial Skin 2 rotary tattoo machine carries a unique adjustable give that lets you set the equipment “harder” for lining and “softer” for filling, shading and coloring utilizing the adjustment notches about the cap. These lightweight, silent machines from Italy also produce minimal vibrations. Each Skin 2 tattoo machine comes with a Swiss-made motor as well as a needle clip as opposed to rubber bands, weighs in at just 3.2 oz. (90g), and definately will support as much as 55 magnum needles. This really is a fast, high-quality rotary tattoo machine that will help you ink a top-notch tattoo every time you use it.
Spektra Rotary Tattoo Machines by FK IronsSpektra Rotary Tattoo Machines by FK Irons – Along with their coil machines, FK Irons also offers a collection of rotary tattoo machines. Choose from the Spektra Halo and Spektra Direkt rotary tattoo machines, which each offer unique advantages. The Spektra Halo tattoo machine delivers ultimate performance having its autoclavable body and innovative MotorBolt System. Having some different MotorBolts gives you the flexibility to modify stroke on the fly by just changing motors via the Halo’s easy 1/4-turn mechanism. The Spektra Direkt tattoo machine has body-mounted strokes that stay inside of the machine body, along with the casing is precision-machined from solid aircraft-grade aluminum that’s anodized in your choice of 7 different colors. This 2.8 oz. machine is not hard to move and posseses an adjustable stroke module containing 3 setting options. It’s a virtually maintenance-free tattoo machine having a Hex Drive motor system that cuts down on the axial load in the motor shaft to extend the motor’s life and reduce vibrations.Stigma Rotary Tattoo Machines.
Stigma-Rotary Tattoo Machines – Stigma-Rotary tattoo machines are durable, ergonomic, and simple to advance rotary machines manufactured by a world-leading tattoo machine manufacturer. These sleek-looking machines have the strongest Swiss-made Maxon motors on the market, and they’re completed a lasting sheen that keeps them looking pristine even after many years of use. Stigma-Rotary tattoo machines are reliable, powerful and stylish rotary machines that include an 21dexjpky warranty. Select from 4 styles, such as the Amen, the Beast, the Hyper V3, and the Prodigy, as well as a large choice of Stigma rotary machine parts that you can use to help keep your machine running efficiently.
Tatmatic Tattoo MachinesTatmatic Mfg. Coil Tattoo Machines – Tatmatic Manufacturing offers a type of coil tattoo machines developed by Dave Ritchie, who builds high-quality machines only for professional tattoo artists. The grade of his work shows in every single one among Tatmatic’s hard-hitting, precise and trendy coil tattoo machines. Both our Tatmatic liners and shaders feature 6 wrap coils.
Valor Direct Rotary Tattoo Machines by TatSoul – After more than 2 yrs in development, the Valor by TatSoul is finally here! These rotary tattoo machines were created by several of the finest tattoo artists in the business with impeccable craftsmanship and the purpose of making a rotary machine that outperforms other tattoo machines in every single possible way. The Valor Direct rotary tattoo machine features a sleek yet practical body that conveys its power and sturdiness. Each Valor Direct machine is hand-assembled and tested by TatSoul’s in-house team to ensure perfection in fit and performance. These are typically strong, lightweight, needle cartridge that perform brilliantly.
Vital Tattoo MachinesVital Machines Coil Tattoo Machines – Vital Machines strives for that highest construction in the marketplace, they’re continuously improving their machines, they don’t scrimp, as well as their staff is made up of machinists, designers, engineers, and tattoo artists with many years of industry experience. With one of these standards into position, Vital Machines has produced a brand of versatile coil tattoo machines which are lightweight, agile, adjustable, powerful, durable, and able to work with all of you day, every day. Vital Machines come in the usa from aircraft-grade aluminum, in addition to their easy-to-clean, professionally-anodized exteriors won’t chip or fade. Inside they contain the highest grade of magnetic steel, insulators produced from durable aircraft composite that doesn’t crack or distort, highly-conductive brass and copper electrical components, and mechanical parts produced from tempered tool steel that won’t dent, bend or break.
Welker Coil & Rotary Tattoo Machines – Each precision Welker tattoo machine is CNC machined from a single part of 1018 Cold-Rolled Steel in Welker’s state-of-the-art machine shop. Welker coil tattoo machines are offered with the selection of a blue “antique” or black oxide frame finish, both of which have finished brass binding posts and make contact with screws. Welker Rotary Tattoo MachinesYou are able to use nearly any size and elegance of tubes by using these hand-tuned machines, which have unique Welker grips and therefore are guaranteed for a lifetime. Together with their coil machines, Welker also now offers both a typical rotary as well as an adjustable rotary tattoo machine. The adjustable machine incorporates a spring tension that you can screw to regulate the hit to the preference, whereas the conventional rotary machine includes a medium throw and the capability to adjust the hit off of the power supply.