Rotary Vs. Coil Tattoo Machines
The tattoo machine is undoubtedly the most important tool for artists to create fine and perfect designs. Regarding their types, tattoo machines are available in different designs, shapes, and functions. Usually, there are 4 types of tattooing devices, but coil and Rotary are the most common.
But which one is best when it comes to Rotary vs. coil tattoo machines?
Rotary tattoo machines are typically popular because of their ergonomic, lightweight, and pen-style designs. These machines operate quietly and generate minimal vibrations. Additionally, they’re equally suitable for versatile tattooing work, including lining, shading, and color packing.
Furthermore, rotary machines are easier to use. On the other hand, coil tattoo machines have classic and traditional style designs. Usually, these machines are more powerful, affordable, and easier to clean and repair than their counterparts.
Both machines are ideal for different types of tattooing work, and tattoo artists choose between them based on the demands of their ink artwork. However, those mentioned above are only pros of these machines. They also have some drawbacks, so let’s explore their advantages and disadvantages in greater detail.
Rotary Vs. Coil Tattoo Machines
What is a Rotary Tattoo Machine, and How Does it Work?
A rotary machine is a modern tattooing tool used to create tattoo designs. The motor is connected to the cam. When the motor rotates, the cam moves the needles up or down. These machines are perfect for user-friendly control and design. Furthermore, they are easy to use and set up; even wireless tattoo machines are like plug-and-play.
What is a Coil Tattoo Machine and How Does it Work?
A coil tattooing tool is a traditional-style tattoo machine used to create permanent body artwork. It is also commonly referred to as a tattoo gun.
The coil tattoo machine is one of the most popular and common devices tattoo artists use. This tool uses electric coils to drive the needle’s movement for inserting ink into the skin. This device consists of the following important components:
Coils: These cables are used to supply electric power to machines.
Armature Bar: This component makes contact with a coil to provide vertical motion for the needles.
Springs: This creates tension within the armature bar while ensuring consistent and controlled needle movements.
Contact Points: These components are designed to be responsive to establish a connection between the coils and the power source.
Capacitor: The capacitor stores and releases electrical energy.
Tube and Grip: The tube component holds the needle and is connected to the grip. Artists control this part of the machine during the
Rotary Vs. Coil Tattoo Machines
Let’s understand the main pros and cons of each option to determine which one is better:
Versatility in Tattooing Applications
To finalize best tattoo design, artwork requires multiple techniques, such as lining, shading, and packing. And to get the best result for these techniques, the best tools are a must. Coil gun comes in 2 different variants, like shader and liner.
Usually, a shader is used for shading and coloring effects, while a liner gun is used to create solid, crisp, and fine lines. So, it means artists must buy these tattoo guns separately for lining and shading. However, most coil tattoo kits come with both of these two machines.
On the other hand, rotary tattoo machines are versatile in their operation. They’re equally good to do any tattooing work, whether it’s lining or color packing. You only need to change the necessary needles to switch between these tasks. Nevertheless, rotary model machines are not ideal for crafting personalized tattoo designs.
Way They Function
Both of these machines operate or run in different ways regarding the motion of a needle. Traditional tattooing devices use an electric coil to push the armature bar when current passes.
As a result, it causes the movement of needles. However, this process on the skin feels like someone is hitting with a hammer. In other words, it pushes harder hitting, which can even damage the skin.
While rotary machines use a motor that drives the movement of needles up and down smoothly, this process results in a flawless and smooth motion, minimizing skin damage.
Easy of Use
This is the most important feature when buying any tattoo machine. Rotary model machines have ergonomic, lightweight, and easy-to-use control. Their simplicity and ease of use not only make them perfect for beginners but also for experienced artists. Additionally, these devices do not cause hand fatigue or discomfort during extended usage sessions.
However, coil machines are the most difficult to handle and use, especially for beginners. This is because they lack smooth motion and the vibrations they create, making them challenging to operate.
Ink design sessions are often lengthy. Therefore, it’s important to have a lightweight tool that can be used for an extended period without causing strain on the hands and wrists.
When comparing rotary tattoo machines to coil tattoo machines, rotary devices are lighter in weight. This makes them ideal for artists who wish to prevent fatigue in their fingers and hands.While coil machines are heavier, they can lead to hand fatigue and cramps during long tattoo sessions.
Output of Noise
As it’s a natural process to produce a noise when a device runs. However, the noise level depends on the tool type, its internal configuration, and overall material. As for noise output, both of these devices create a buzzing sound.
Coil machines, however, tend to produce more noise and additional vibrations during tattooing. On the other hand, rotary devices operate with less noise and smoother motions. However, not all rotating machines are quiet; some create sound like a coil.
The Coil device used electric wires to provide power to the machine. Since these coils directly get power to the socket, they offer more power and rapid needle movements. As a result, it provides more hard-hitting and deep skin penetration.
Ideally, this feature makes traditional tattooing tools perfect for creating large, complex, and custom ink designs. On the other hand, a rotary machine uses a motor to operate. While rotary devices offer smoother operation and superior motion quality, they lack the same power level as their competitors.
Maintenance and Cleaning
Regular maintenance and cleaning are necessary to ensure the tattoo machine’s longevity and maintain cleanliness and hygiene during tattooing operations. When it comes to cleaning, coil machines are advantageous due to the ease of separating their parts. Additionally, artists can maintain them without difficulty.
However, rotary model machines can be challenging to clean and maintain. This is due to their relatively complex components that might be difficult to comprehend and separate, especially in the case of a wireless rotary tattoo machine.
Regarding pricing, coil tattoo machines are more budget-friendly, while rotary models tend to be more expensive. The price typically varies based on the brand, material, quality, and features. In general, wired machines are available for $40 to $100. On the other hand, rotary tattoo machines can be found within the range of $80 to $300 and sometimes even higher.
Do tattoo artists still use coil machines?
Yes, many artists still use coil machines in their professional tattooing work. These devices are affordable, easier to clean, and provide more power, which is why most artists prefer using them for these reasons.
What is the difference between rotary and coil lines?
Rotary machines utilize a motor to drive the movement of the needle. Typically, these devices are lightweight, user-friendly, operate smoothly, and produce minimal noise. On the other hand, coil machines are highly cost-effective and powerful and require simple cleaning and maintenance.
Is the Rotary tattoo machine good?
They are all perfect when considering motion quality, a lightweight and ergonomic design, ease of use, smooth needle movement, and quiet operation.
Is Rotary better than coil?
Yes, in many features, they’re good.
Is coil or Rotary better for beginners?
Usually, rotary tools are much better to do tattooing as beginners because of their user-friendly controls and smooth operation.
What are the benefits of a coil tattoo machine?
Coil tattoo machines offer greater power, easier cleaning, a budget-friendly price, and more straightforward maintenance.
What are the three types of tattoo machines?
Both of these machines are good for different tattooing needs. Usually, it depends on the artist who performs the tattooing work. However, rotary tattoo machines are lightweight, super comfortable to use, versatile in tattooing operations, and run quietly. On the other hand, coil machines are powerful, budget-friendly, and easier to maintain.