How Much Does a Tattoo Gun Cost?
A tattoo gun is a hand-held device used to create a permanent mark on the skin using indelible ink. If you are going to be a tattoo artist, learning how to use a tattoo gun is vital. No matter what tattoo shop you enter, you will see some model of tattoo gun. Modern tattoo machines use electromagnetic coils to move an armature bar up and down. There are quite a number of tattoo machines, but liners and shaders are the most common machines from a technical stand point. Liners will be used to draw the outline or small wording of a tattoo, while a shader will be used to fill in the outline with different colors. The make and model that you choose will depend on personal preference since each type will feel and perform a little differently. The cost of each model will be similar, but there are some that cost slightly more than the rest.
How much does it cost?
- The cost of a tattoo gun greatly depends on the type of tattoo gun, material from which the tattoo gun is made, and the company from which you are going to purchase it. Most tattoo guns are going to come as part of a kit, and these kits are usually going to cost anywhere from as little as $50 to as much as $900. Machines commonly found in a professional shop are going to be within the $500-$900 range.
- For example, this Deluxe Tattoo Kit with 11 needles and a powered gun retails for $60 to $110 on Amazon.
What is going to be included?
- Mechanically, there are coil tattoo machines, pneumatic machines, and rotary machines. The rotary tattoo machine is based on rotary technology and use an electric motor to drive the needles. Coil tattoo machines use an electromagnetic circuit to move the needle grouping and have several variations from single-coiled to triple-coiled machines. A liner tattoo machine lays ink in the skin in one single pass to create a dominant line and uses a short contact circuit. Lastly, a shader tattoo machine is used to shade variants of black ink using a bigger contact gap than the liner and finally the pneumatic tattoo machine is powered by an air compressor to drive the needles up and down.
- A tattoo gun is a slang term for tattoo machine, therefore it is commonly used to refer to the tattoo machine. A tattoo gun is made up of needles, and the number of needles in the machine depends on the type of gun. The needles will range in size, usually referred to as gauges, and each needle can be used to do different parts of a tattoo and give a different design.
- Tattoo guns are usually sold in kits and starter kits, which are perfect for entry-level tattoo artists.
- If purchasing a kit, it will typically come with the following: a carrying bag, disposable needles, a set of inks, and sample patterns.
What are the extra costs?
- There are quite a few extra costs to think about what you purchase a tattoo gun. First is the cost of needles that are used in the tattoo gun. These needles will need to be changed with each tattoo for sanitary purposes, so they will be disposable and will usually come in bulk packages. Make sure that the package you purchase includes needles of all sizes.
- If you order the tattoo gun online, you will most likely have to pay for shipping charges. Some websites may include shipping if you spend a certain amount of money.
- Every tattoo that you do will use ink, so this ink will need to be replaced quite often. Since black is the color that is used most often, you will probably need a lot more of this.
- If you are going to open your own tattoo shop, you may want to think about other equipment such as piercing guns.
- Necessary repairs, such as repairing springs, may be required down the road. These parts are often less than $5; however, if you require the assistance of a professional to fix your machine, the labor costs can be higher than $75.
- If you need to learn how to use the machine or need practice on doing the tattoos, you can inquire at local shops to see if you can intern there while you are learning.
Tips to know
- Try to avoid the cheaper machines. These machines tend to cause rashes and scars. If this were to happen, it would cost twice, if not triple the amount you initially invested. Also, if your customers are not satisfied you will have a hard time staying in business.
How can I save money?
- Money can be saved by purchasing a high quality metal tattoo gun at a cheap price to avoid future expenses. Proper research should be done before you even consider making the purchase. Good machines are not sold for low prices. Do not be cheap.
- Consider purchasing a machine used on websites such as eBay. This is a great way to save more than 40%.