How to Connect a Tattoo Gun to a Power Box

Tattooing is an art, and is best practised under the guidance of an experienced professional. Setting up your tattoo gun correctly is the first step to ensuring a successful result. Tattoo guns need a power source and most are connected to the gun in a similar fashion. Connecting your tattoo gun to its power source should be done once the gun has been assembled. Practice on fruit or synthetic skin to ensure that the tattoo gun settings are correct before proceeding. Tattoo guns should only be used by trained professionals.

Plug the power cable (supplied with the tattoo gun) into the 1/8 inch jack at the back of the tattoo gun. The other end will fit into the 1/4 inch jack on the footswitch assembly. The footswitch controls the power to the gun.

Plug the two wires from the footswitch into the two jacks on the front of the power supply box. The black wire goes into the black plug and the red wire goes into the red plug. Most tattoo guns and their accompanying power supplies are interchangeable.

Turn the voltage control knob to the middle setting. This sets the voltage. Tattoo guns run between 6 and 15 volts. A change in voltage will change the speed of the tattoo gun. Artists like to work at different speeds. Most like to keep the voltage steady at between 8 and 10 volts for all their work. Others like to set the voltage to 13 volts as it enables them to work faster. Practice and experience will help you to find a speed that best suits your style.


Always use new, clean needles and clean all equipment after use to prevent the spread of infectious diseases.

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About the Author

Nicole Fotheringham has been a writer since 1997. She was born in South Africa and began as a reporter for the "Natal Mercury" and "Cape Argus" newspapers. Fotheringham has a master's degree in English literature from the University of KwaZulu-Natal.