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Old Oct 05, 2002, 05:48 AM
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Martin Hunter's Avatar
Kamloops, BC, Canada
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You now have a mystery wing underneath this messy piece of covering. That's ok
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Old Oct 05, 2002, 05:51 AM
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Martin Hunter's Avatar
Kamloops, BC, Canada
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Tack the covering down for the first couple of inches along the main spar near the center of the wing. For this wing, I've done that at the top of this photo just outboard of the dihedral joint. Pull the wing tight at the spar out at the wingtip
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Old Oct 05, 2002, 05:53 AM
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Martin Hunter's Avatar
Kamloops, BC, Canada
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Before going too far, here's the iron I'm using and how hot (not) it is for tacking the solite down. The picture isn't the best, but it's a 12 year old tower hobbies iron, and the setting is at 1.25 out of about 4 maximum on the dial. I don't have the foggiest clue what the real temperature would be.
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Old Oct 05, 2002, 05:55 AM
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Kamloops, BC, Canada
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... and if it makes a difference, here's my heatgun. I use the nozzle attachment that makes a long narrow opening
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Old Oct 05, 2002, 05:56 AM
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Martin Hunter's Avatar
Kamloops, BC, Canada
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Back on topic - tack down the covering to the spar out at the wingtip for a couple of inches, and voila! Those ugly wrinkles you were hoping to see go away will now stay there on their own. Don't worry about it! Note that when I say wingtip, I mean the very last vertical rib. The overhang we left in the covering earlier will be used for the wingtip itself.
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Old Oct 05, 2002, 05:59 AM
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Martin Hunter's Avatar
Kamloops, BC, Canada
Joined Feb 2002
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At the leading and trailing edge near the center of the wing, precisely forward and aft of where you tacked the covering to the spar, stick it to the wing. Pull it tight before tacking it down, of course. The wrinkles will double up and become diagonal on you.

I should point out that all of these steps I'm doing on both halves of the wing at the same time. Do one side, and then the other for every little step. That way you're not fighting loose covering when you're nearly done one side.
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Old Oct 05, 2002, 06:02 AM
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Kamloops, BC, Canada
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Do the same at the last rib, pulling tight mostly across the wing, but slightly outboard to tighten any slack between the tip and root where you've tacked the covering down.
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Old Oct 05, 2002, 06:04 AM
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Martin Hunter's Avatar
Kamloops, BC, Canada
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My favorite method of pulling the covering tight, holding the wing, and ironing all at the same time with only two hands is to use the weight of the wing to help you. In this pic, the leading edge is still on the table, but I'm holding the trailing edge up and pulling the covering at the same time.

Work your way along both the leading and trailing edges tacking the covering down along the whole distance. If you get some minor wrinkles, leave a bulge in the covering and a 1/4" un-ironed space on either side of it. Do NOT just iron it down or it could become permanent.
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Old Oct 05, 2002, 06:05 AM
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Kamloops, BC, Canada
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Leading edge
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Old Oct 05, 2002, 06:07 AM
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Once that's accomplished (and don't forget to do the other side) go around the entire wing, ironing down the covering to the very outer edges of the wing. Don't fold the covering around any edge yet, as that's coming up after some trimming.
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Old Oct 05, 2002, 06:10 AM
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Kamloops, BC, Canada
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The most difficult part of trimming is cutting out around fuselage openings on the wing or around aileron/flap bays. I like the 45 degree angle method. I just make a cut half way between the two sides and generall the tiny triangle of uncovered area left between them will never get seen. In some cases, it's prefered to leave the overhang entirely over one edge. It's entirely up to how it will look when done. These cuts are easiest to do if you can lay that part of the wing and covering flat against your work bench. With a dihedral wing, that's not always possible, though.
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Old Oct 05, 2002, 06:13 AM
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Kamloops, BC, Canada
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You will want to cut away any corners where folding the covering over will cause it to fold into itself. An outside 90 degree corner on a wingtip is an example of this. Using a rolling motion, iron the covering down around the sides.
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Old Oct 05, 2002, 06:15 AM
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Kamloops, BC, Canada
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Let's get rid of that awful looking extra covering hanging down there. There are tons of methods of cutting the excess off, but here's what I've found to be the quickest and easiest. If you lay your knife along the other side (in this case the bottom of the wing), where the blade meets the covering you'll see will be about 1/8" above the edge. That's perfect overhang. Use your knife positioned this way all around the wing except for the wingtips, and cut off that excess. Make sure to pull the covering tight perpendicular to your cut or you could end up with a jagged line. Worse you, you could tear the covering.
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Old Oct 05, 2002, 06:17 AM
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You're left with edges that look like this trailing edge. The line here is straight but the covering doesn't sit perfect, so the picture came out looking like a drunk monkey cut it
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Old Oct 05, 2002, 06:18 AM
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Kamloops, BC, Canada
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Leave your wingtips trimmed like so.
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