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Old 10-14-2008, 01:49 PM   #1
jswigart
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Default Opinions on covering materials please?

I am trying to restore a couple of very old old timers.
The silk has become very brittle and tears easily.

I don't like silkspan, it is too fragile, but I am trying to find some type of covering that will be as light as possible, be tough, and yet look like period covering.
Coverite would be a choice, but it is very heavy.

I'm hoping to find something that will not require dope.

What suggestions do you have?
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Old 10-14-2008, 01:58 PM   #2
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Default Lightweight Covering For OT's?

Hello Jswigart,
There is a covering called Coverlite (also Litespan from Hobby-Lobby.com) that might fit your needs; http://www.coverite.com/covering/covq1800.html
It looks like doped tissue but is much stronger. It's not self-adhesive, requires a brushed on adhesive called BalsaLoc or Stix-It, then is ironed on like UltraCote or Monokote.
I've used it several times, it's more work-intensive than a regular iron-on but has a beautiful finish.
Good Luck!
Ron
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Old 10-14-2008, 04:18 PM   #3
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Default Photos Of LiteSpan Covering

Hi Jswigart,
Here's a few photos of red and white Litespan over an open structure;
# 4 is a close-up, hopefully it shows the weave or grain of the material.
http://www.hobby-lobby.com/litespan.htm
Ron


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Old 10-14-2008, 10:47 PM   #4
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one word...or is it 2?..superfabric.

its a bit heavier but very easy to use and very authentic.
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Old 10-16-2008, 06:27 PM   #5
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Has anyone tried Microlite by Coverite?

http://www.coverite.com/covering/covq0240.html

For electric-powered planes whose performance depends on keeping weight low, Microlite iron-on covering is the perfect choice. In the past, lightweight coverings required a brush-on adhesive, but Microlite’s adhesive layer is built in — just lay it in place and iron it on! Strong and durable, with a high-gloss shine, Microlite is a great choice for electric aircraft.

Seems like nice stuff, but I haven't used it. I may try this, and it may convert me from a silkspan fan. I'm tired of puting a fingernail thru Silkspan.

Oooh, just noticed this...
*Microlite is not fuelproof, should not be used on foam surfaces, and cannot be painted.

Not sure if that's an issue for you, but I like to paint my models sometimes...
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Old 10-17-2008, 02:17 AM   #6
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Default MicroLite?

Hello 7car7,
Yes, I've used Microlite (or SoLite, Nelson LiteSpan, same stuff) on several models. It's very easy to apply, goes around curves well (within limits) and is very hard to remove, great adhesive.
On the minus side, it tears more easily than the thicker iron-ons, but is still much more rip-resistant than tissue or silkspan. The colors will slightly fade if left in sunlight for long periods.
Here are some photos of MicroLite-covered models;
Good Luck!
Ron


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Old 10-17-2008, 04:22 PM   #7
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Very classy covering jobs there. Thanks for showing those.
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Old 12-23-2008, 09:30 PM   #8
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I like the coverite
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Old 12-24-2008, 01:57 PM   #9
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My Majestic Major is covered in Solartex for the yellow and Glosstex for the black, (from the Solarfilm company). It's probably one of the heaviest coverings, but then it is a fairly big model. Solartex does tend to look very much like doped nylon, and certainly goes on easy.


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Old 12-30-2008, 05:48 AM   #10
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For smaller models, Coverite has the Microlite at 0.6 oz/sq yd, Coverlite at 1 oz/sq yd can duplicate silkspan and for larger models, I imagine their 21st Century Fabric at 3.1 oz/ sq yd should look like a silk/dope covering. I tried the Super Coverite on a 72" Antique once, but while it looked like fabric, the planhe came out rather heavy, and needed a dope finish for stqability. It tended to loosen in the sun otherwise.
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Old 07-16-2009, 04:22 AM   #11
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Default mica film

I have been using micafilm for years and it is still on many of the planes I originally covered in it.

It has the silk span look but is finished and fuel proof from the go...

It shrinks just like monocoat but is impervios to the shattering that mylar based coverings are over time.

My Mini Challenger . . . 20 years old . . still has the original top sheet in trans red I put on when I built it and has only been reshrunk twice since I covered it. . . .

It is had to find but ask in the for sale forum and several rolls will turn up.

If you want that silkspan look without all the work but strength of monocoat, this is the only want to go.
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Old 10-03-2009, 12:50 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by pval3 View Post
I have been using micafilm for years and it is still on many of the planes I originally covered in it.

It has the silk span look but is finished and fuel proof from the go...

It shrinks just like monocoat but is impervios to the shattering that mylar based coverings are over time.

My Mini Challenger . . . 20 years old . . still has the original top sheet in trans red I put on when I built it and has only been reshrunk twice since I covered it. . . .

It is had to find but ask in the for sale forum and several rolls will turn up.

If you want that silkspan look without all the work but strength of monocoat, this is the only want to go.
It's easy enough to find. Tower carries it, but it only comes in red and yellow. I haven't used this covering before, is it transparent like MonoKote or Ultracote, or a foggy transparent?

Ed
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Old 10-11-2009, 05:06 AM   #13
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I am covering a Sig Tri-Star with a fully sheeted wing and plans to set it up for E-Flight. I was thinking about Silkspan with a light coat of dope and paint but I want to keep the weight down! Seems like the silk, dope and paint would be much heavier than Monocoat! The plane has a cone nose leading to some plastic parts to add shape to the nose so Film covering would seem to be tough to get to look clean and nice!

Your thoughts!
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Old 10-11-2009, 07:30 AM   #14
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Default Tri-Star Covering?

Hello Dino, Welcome to Wattflyer!
It depends on which iron-on and exactly how much weight to "too heavy".
Here's a link to most of the covering weights, in grams per square foot;
http://www.wattflyer.com/forums/showthread.php?t=10443
But a short version is, based on a wing of 432 square inches (3 square feet) with covering on the top + bottom, so we're covering six square feet;
MicroLite, Solite (1.950 gr/sq.ft) = 11.70 grams
LiteSpan (needs adhesive) 2.674 gr/sq.ft) = 16.044 grams
UltraCoat Trans Lite (3.4 gr/sq.ft) = 20.4 grams
Colored Micafilm (3.5 gr/sq.ft, roughly) = 21.0 grams
Light White Silk, 5 coats nitrate dope (3.57 gr/sq.ft) = 21.42 grams
MicaFilm Red/yellow (4.0 gr/sq.ft) = 24.0 grams
UltraCoat Trans Regular (5.0 gr/sq.ft) 30.0 grams
EconoKote/TowerKote (5.670 gr/sq.ft) = 34.02 grams
MonoKote Red (5.8) Black (6.0) = 34.8 grams - 36.0 grams
White tissue, 4 coats 50/50 butyrate dope (6.879 gr/sq.ft) = 41.274 grams
So, the difference between the lightest self-adhesive iron-on (SoLite, Microlite) and a silked, nitrate-doped (clear) covering is only 10 grams, less than 1/3 of an ounce. Butyrate dope is much heavier, and there you would save about 30 grams, slightly over 1 ounce.
Note that the doped figures are for clear dope. Colored dope is much heavier.
There's also the "Patch" factor. Iron-on is fairly rip-resistant and easy to patch, doped covering less so.
Personally, I like the look of the "Transparent" iron-ons with opaque trim and over sheet balsa they have great visibility. These are more like tinted or lightly colored coverings. Here's a few photos;
Good Luck!
Ron


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Old 10-11-2009, 08:06 AM   #15
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Great looking Edge btw, I always stick to the towerkote (econokote) for light weight and low heat applications. I've covered a guillows with it, just have to be patient with the iron, don't heat to fast so you can gauge the shrinking. That opaque looks great though, unfortunately it's not made in the econokote that I've found. What would you suggest for a low heat (fairly fragile frame) and low weight application in the opaque? I have a Waco thats supposed to be doped, but this opaque would look great on it I think with some light trim work.
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Old 10-11-2009, 11:37 AM   #16
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Doculam is an interesting covering material. It is generally used to protect paper documents and cards and is applied like the other iron-on coverings. It has its own adhesive, shrinks with moderate heat, and turns crystal clear when applied. Acrylic paints adhere very well and it does not shrink as powerfully as some of the other coverings, so it will not tend to warp light-weight structures.

Painted Doculam looks very much like doped tissue. It is available from many sources in 500' rolls for about as much as 6' of the other coverings making it a very economical option even when factoring in the price of the acrylic paint. Painting with acrylics does not require a lot of ventilation as it is water-based and essentially nontoxic, and there are a multitude of colors available. For electric ships, a fuel-proof covering is not necessary.

After many flights, it has remained drum-tight with no loosening, sagging or lifting.


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Old 10-11-2009, 12:30 PM   #17
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Default ducolam/mylar/silkspan

On your tristar, I assume you are covering closed wod surfaces only (i.e. wing sheeted white foam) Another option is to apply and seal the silkspan with water based polyurithane and then paint with whatever you want . .

Remember that if you get the dope onto the foam in any way, evne leaching through the wood) it will destroy the foam. Water based Poly is inert!

It is a little heavier than the dopen but goes on much easier, will not give you headaches for a week and can be painted with just about anything you want.

Phil
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Old 10-11-2009, 01:21 PM   #18
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Default Waco Covering?

Hello Chris,
For a low-temperature, lightweight covering, I'd recommend MicroLite/Solite; http://www.coverite.com/covering/covq0240.html
All the models in post # 6 are covered with this, as well as the green/white DL Glider in post # 14.
Good Luck!
Ron
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Old 10-11-2009, 04:24 PM   #19
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Thanks Ron, I've used coverlite (and I think they make black baron which I've had good results with but heavy) before, never tried the microlite. Been considering it...now I'll give it a shot for sure. Thanks for the tip and link.
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Old 10-11-2009, 08:38 PM   #20
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Originally Posted by pval3 View Post
On your tristar, I assume you are covering closed wod surfaces only (i.e. wing sheeted white foam) Another option is to apply and seal the silkspan with water based polyurithane and then paint with whatever you want . .

Remember that if you get the dope onto the foam in any way, evne leaching through the wood) it will destroy the foam. Water based Poly is inert!

It is a little heavier than the dopen but goes on much easier, will not give you headaches for a week and can be painted with just about anything you want.

Phil
Thanks! It does have a foam core wing! I wzs going to ask about dope with it but didnt! I also thought about using film on the wing and dope on the fuse, but now I am leaning toward using ultracote on the whole thing! I plan to over power it and dont plan on doing any 3D with a canard pusher so a few extra oz will not kill me! I thought she silk and dope would be heavier than film but I guess not!
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Old 08-31-2014, 09:33 PM   #21
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Good evening Ray,
Question if I may, your building thread on the M.M inspired me to start building one myself.
The pictures that you show are very helpfull especially on the subject of engine set up etc.
I am using your set up ( hope you don't mind) with the Axi motor.
My question: I notice on this picture of your M.M that you installed the elevator servo at the rear of the fuselage close to the stabilo.
Is this a better set up than the original push- pull rod, can you recommend this set up?
Regards,
Peter Hart- Netherlands.

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Old 08-31-2014, 11:03 PM   #22
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Goodluck getting an answer. That post was 5 years old.
Henry
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Old 09-01-2014, 09:13 PM   #23
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Vintage is supposed to be timeless-
Nevertheless, good observation I did not notice in time.
Regards,
Peter.

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