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Old Jan 18, 2013, 06:26 PM
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redC5's Avatar
NE Georgia USA
Joined Jul 2010
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Covering info needed please

I am building a replica Sterling Mambo and would like to use something that looks like silk and dope covering. What coverings are available in the US that apply with self adhesive or glue on that would be similar to silk or even silkspan??? Preferably pre painted. I have some Coverite fabric but want some that is not as heavy.
Thanks,,,,
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Old Jan 18, 2013, 07:56 PM
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Johnstown, PA
Joined Feb 2004
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Coverite fabric has more texture and won't give you that translucent appearance of silk and dope either...

I wish I had some good suggestions , but I'm looking forward to seeing what you others are using for this!
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Old Jan 18, 2013, 08:13 PM
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Greg Knipp's Avatar
Manitowoc, Wisconsin
Joined Dec 2003
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You may want to go to the Balsa USA website and check out their Solartex. I have found that covering material to be translucent and the closest representation of silk and dope. The only area of concern may be in the weight category. It is somewhat heavier than the plastic iron on coverings like Monokote but if you are comparing the weight to true silk and dope it may be your best match.

Hope I have helped.

Greg
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Old Jan 18, 2013, 09:45 PM
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United States, CA, Garden Grove
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Solartex is quite opaque, Solarfilm would be lighter and more translucent, also cheaper and available in more places. I'm using Solartex on my Sig 1/6 scale J-3 Cub because it is quite opaque and resembles doped fabric.
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Old Jan 18, 2013, 10:55 PM
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Hi Red C5 well, you can try Tissue over Doculam...itīs light, strong and cheap... but have to work twice.
My TOMTIT is finished this way....
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Old Jan 19, 2013, 01:31 AM
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Monza Red's Avatar
Shrewsbury, Shropshire.
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Solartex do a range of transluscent colours called Vintage Red, Vintage Yellow, Vintage Blue and Vintage Orange. They also offer a transluscent white called Neutral and a transluscent cream called Antique. The purists will say that the colours are a little too opaque for a true representation of silk but they look alright to me. Solartex is expensive but very easy to use and fuel proof, however, if you want to retain your pristine appearence it would be better to give it a coat of varnish or fuel proofer.

My Senior Telemaster, pictured, is covered in Vintage Blue, Vintage Orange and Neutral Solartex.
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Old Jan 19, 2013, 02:03 AM
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United States, MA, Waltham
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If you can find Micafilm someplace, it's pretty good, but I don't think they make it anymore.

There is this stuff called Icarex that kite people use which can also be used for model airplanes. It's got some texture but I think it also has rip stop lines.

If you go to FAImodelsupply.com or bphobbies.com, you will find a few different kinds of covering which are supposed to have a bit of visual texture, but I don't know what they're like.

I really like Sig Stix It for applying this kind of thing, whether for ironing the covering on or flooding through porous covering with acetone to activate the stuff. I don't like BalsaLoc or Balsa Rite. I found that both of them would creep while you were trying to stick things down. But they may have been reformulated since I tried them last. Fab Tac, from the full sized airplane world, is very nice for the flood thru method. I don't know if it's good for iron on or not. Unfortunately, the stuff I like does involve solvents that require good ventilation, especially if anyone with a sensitive nose is in another part of the house while you're doing it.
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Old Jan 19, 2013, 03:06 AM
Sticks, Tissue & old Diesels
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In my opinion, the best solution is that given by Monza Red, above.
Solartex in "Antique", "Natural" or any of their vintage colors would meet all your requirements.
I apply a coat of polyurethane, full-strength around the nose, and thinned 50% over the rest of the plane.
In any case, unless you're a very good pilot and only fly in nice weather conditions, any tissue-based finish is going to be a bit fragile on a medium size RC aerobatic plane!
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Old Jan 19, 2013, 06:10 AM
Bob Imp
UK, Cardiff, Cardiff
Joined Nov 2006
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Quote:
Originally Posted by E-Challenged View Post
Solartex is quite opaque, Solarfilm would be lighter and more translucent, also cheaper and available in more places. I'm using Solartex on my Sig 1/6 scale J-3 Cub because it is quite opaque and resembles doped fabric.
You are right that Solartex is quite opaque but the Solartex Natural does show structure through the covering. I`ve used it often particularly on vintage type models.
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Old Jan 19, 2013, 06:26 AM
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As mentioned the vintage Solartex colours do have a reasonable degree of translucence : if available Solarfilm also have a range called Fibafilm which is like a shiny representation of doped tissue quite close to the old micafilm and applied in the same way ie you need to use some form of heatseal adhesive as the material comes without adhesive. It's lighter than tex and quite strong. There is also a range called litespan/airspan which is closer to tissue in looks and weight that is also heat shrink and requires heatseal adhesive.
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Old Jan 19, 2013, 06:46 AM
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redC5's Avatar
NE Georgia USA
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Thanks for all of the inputs.
I have used Micafilm before and would like to find some but I guess Solortex is my best bet.
This plane was my first attempt at RC back in the 50's and will be flown rudder only like the original. I have a quart of Sig Stixit already.
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Old Jan 19, 2013, 07:58 AM
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Another point in favor of the Solartex option is that, nowadays, we can "afford" tougher covering, as we're saving a lot of RC gear weight in relation to the original aircraft. Thus, even with heavier covering, you still end up with a lighter plane (and better control functions).
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Old Jan 19, 2013, 08:30 AM
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Originally Posted by brokenenglish View Post
Another point in favor of the Solartex option is that, nowadays, we can "afford" tougher covering, as we're saving a lot of RC gear weight in relation to the original aircraft. Thus, even with heavier covering, you still end up with a lighter plane (and better control functions).
Very true Brian - but don't forget heavier covering distributes the extra weight over the whole aeroplane, especially the wing-tips and tail end, whereas the extra radio weight was concentrated in the middle. I can assure you from considerable experience that models with light extremities, especially rudder controlled ones, handle MUCH better than the same model with heavy extremities.
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Old Jan 19, 2013, 08:37 AM
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United States, CA, Thousand Oaks
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Quote:
Originally Posted by redC5 View Post
Thanks for all of the inputs.
I have used Micafilm before and would like to find some but I guess Solortex is my best bet.
This plane was my first attempt at RC back in the 50's and will be flown rudder only like the original. I have a quart of Sig Stixit already.
I believe Micafilm is nothing more than repackaged Fibafilm, which is made in the UK by the Solarfilm folks. If you can live with a look that is more like Silkspan, a nice option is Polyspan. It's easy to work with and my 17-year-old Trenton Terror is covered with it, so I can attest to its durability.
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Old Jan 19, 2013, 09:36 AM
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Brandon Mississippi/Independence Kentucky
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I covered my Mambo with Silkspan and Coverlite. Coverlite is supplied by Coverite and is available from Tower Hobbies. I used orange Coverlite for the wing and stab. The yellow is Sig Silkspan. The red trim and black windows are Sig Tissue. I used Balsarite to apply the Coverlite and doped it after shrinking. The doped Coverlite looks very close to silk and dope to me.

Ralph B
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