Lightweight Fabric Covering? - RC Groups
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Nov 23, 2009, 08:30 AM
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Lightweight Fabric Covering?


I am finishing a SIG Smiths Biplane and want to use a fabric covering. 21 st century fabric seems very heavy for an electric conversion. I have seen ARFs with a very light textured covering, but don't know where to buy it. Does anyone have any suggestions?
Vito
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Nov 24, 2009, 12:57 PM
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In a fabric type covering, Fibafilm (similar to Micafilm) is likely going to be the lightest, I think. 21st is indeed heavy, over 2oz a square yard. Fibafilm is half that but you have to use BalsaLoc or something similar since there is no adhesive on it...
Last edited by pmisuinas; Nov 27, 2009 at 07:16 AM.
Nov 24, 2009, 01:28 PM
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Vito,

I looked up Solartex which I have used on a PT-19 I built and it is also heavy at almost 2.5 to 3 oz per yard. Too bad, because it is really easy to work with. I think that your choices will be somewhat limited unless you want to go with a more traditional dope and silk finish. By they way, I also have a Mini Plane on my workbench at this time.

Aerodrome RC has a non woven material which they recommend for their models which can be shrunk using an iron, however, you need to coat the wood with adhesive first. Obviously, you would also need to paint it once everything is covered. The advantage of this is that you can paint and give the plane a nice sheen without it being glossy. Probably a little more scale like than Monokote.

I like the look of fabric, but you need to keep in mind that even on a full scale plane, the weave is not visible, so it would be even less so in a model. With that in mind, a regular film finish such as ultracote might be adequate (a little less shinny than monokote in my opinion).

Good luck,

Teo
Nov 27, 2009, 08:18 PM
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park aviator's Avatar
i just use solartex on 40in span and up
Nov 28, 2009, 03:54 AM
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I've started using SoLite (by SolarFilm) on non-stressed areas of my models because it's about half the weight of regular SolarFilm. Used on the tail surfaces it's helped reduce the need for lead in the nose of one of my models.
Nov 30, 2009, 09:53 PM
Culper Junior
In the November issue of Model Aviation Bob Aberle states he uses Coverite brand Microlite for smaller models. Claims he covered all of a 200 sq. inch Lanzo Bomber and the difference of before/after covering in weight was .6 ounce. That was the whole airplane. And Microlite has built in adhesive-no painting and waiting to finish.

www.coverite.com

Just a thought.
Dec 01, 2009, 12:19 PM
Ron
Ron
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Actually, you can use polyester dress lining and baslarite...iron it down on the glued parts, shrink it with a heat gun...and you can use dope to finish/seal it.
Dec 02, 2009, 12:22 PM
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Try Polyspan; do a search
https://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showthread.php?t=170038
http://www.aerodromerc.com/Polyspan.pdf

Tony
Dec 13, 2009, 10:10 AM
Deal Honestly or Don't Deal
Try www.nelsonhobby.com They have what you are looking for.

sarg96
Dec 17, 2009, 11:21 PM
Electric Airplane Junkie
bhchan's Avatar
Sig Koverall.

Brian, an EAJ
Dec 26, 2009, 06:58 PM
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I found some Hobby Lobby Superfabric at a yard sale and thought it was worth a try. I just applied it to one on my wings. It looks great and tightened up w/o wrinkles. It is basically exactly what I was looking for.
Vito
Nov 24, 2017, 03:39 AM
Registered User
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ron
Actually, you can use polyester dress lining and baslarite...iron it down on the glued parts, shrink it with a heat gun...and you can use dope to finish/seal it.
I have used lightweight Terylene cloth as covering on 3 of my current planes.
I bought the fabric at Spotlight - a fabrics shop in Australia
Makes for a VERY strong model.

I stretch and pin the cloth in one piece where I can every 6 mm or so (on wings from trailing edge to trailing edge ) then dope around the outer edges to glue the fabric to the balsa.
Pinning the fabric in place is a tedious process I have to admit and not a job everyone would want to do.

Rather than filling the weave with dope I use thinned down clear water-based Polyurethane.
Dope tends to pull the fabric around the framework making it stand out - but WPPU doesn't do that.

When I was in my late teens and flying control line models I met a guy who was covering his planes with Terylene cloth.
I saw that when he crashed he just picked up the plane and flew it again - little or no damage done, So since then have covered all my balsa models with Terylene cloth with the same success.

Last year my Lazy Bee came down in a vertical nose-dive from about 80 feet straight into hard ground when the motor came out and cut through the rubber bands holding the wing on.
The nose broke off in front of the wing on hitting the ground - but that is all the damage sustained. It was a relatively simple and quick job to rebuild the nose and get it flying again.
This plane is built from 4mm balsa sticks and covered with Terylene.

I figure it is better to spend several hours doing the covering with Terylene than spend weeks repairing a model.

Pics of my Twins Cargo Plane built in Balsa and Terylene fabric
Dec 20, 2017, 02:19 PM
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E-Challenged's Avatar
There are light weight polyester coverings like "Litespan" and "Coverlite" that give an olde tyme doped silk look. One side is shiny and the other is matte. Framework must be painted with Balsarite or Balsaloc or similar covering adhesizes , coverings have no adhesive for lightness. Let adhesive dry and iron on the covering. The coverings edges must be painted with adhesives for material to stick to itself. Hard to mask and paint, use trim film or vinyl decals. It's translucent, shows framework. Silver has some problems.
Dec 20, 2017, 07:01 PM
Registered User
Quote:
Originally Posted by Yachtie04
I have used lightweight Terylene cloth as covering on 3 of my current planes.
I bought the fabric at Spotlight - a fabrics shop in Australia
Makes for a VERY strong model.

I stretch and pin the cloth in one piece where I can every 6 mm or so (on wings from trailing edge to trailing edge ) then dope around the outer edges to glue the fabric to the balsa.
Pinning the fabric in place is a tedious process I have to admit and not a job everyone would want to do.

Rather than filling the weave with dope I use thinned down clear water-based Polyurethane.
Dope tends to pull the fabric around the framework making it stand out - but WPPU doesn't do that.

When I was in my late teens and flying control line models I met a guy who was covering his planes with Terylene cloth.
I saw that when he crashed he just picked up the plane and flew it again - little or no damage done, So since then have covered all my balsa models with Terylene cloth with the same success.

Last year my Lazy Bee came down in a vertical nose-dive from about 80 feet straight into hard ground when the motor came out and cut through the rubber bands holding the wing on.
The nose broke off in front of the wing on hitting the ground - but that is all the damage sustained. It was a relatively simple and quick job to rebuild the nose and get it flying again.
This plane is built from 4mm balsa sticks and covered with Terylene.

I figure it is better to spend several hours doing the covering with Terylene than spend weeks repairing a model.

Pics of my Twins Cargo Plane built in Balsa and Terylene fabric
Never having heard of Terylene, I goggled the word........ from what I read Terylene is an early brand name for woven or knitted polyester fabric..... and looking at the covering on the model in the above post, I strongly suspect Terylene (of the same weight) is what in North America is known as generic 100% polyester lining and which many modelers use as a cheaper substitute for Sig branded Koverall (which does have an adhesive on one side)

ah, another instance of being separated by a common language (smiley)

Michael in Ontario, Canada
Dec 21, 2017, 08:58 AM
Registered User
I used Polyspan and WBP on my AC47 (top flite DC3 kit). Polyspan is a randomly woven polyester dress lining material (I've read it comes from Germany).

On my new project WV-2 I used Polyspan and WBP on the wings, horz stab and both outboard vert stabs. I used a woven dress lining material form Joann Fabrics on the center vert stab and rudder using WBP (wanted to test this type). The stuff from Joann Fabrics was on sale for $1 a yard very cheap. I attaching this fabric with white glue thinned with water and 2 coats of Varathane 3x WBP (this stuff like Pacer resin). https://www.rustoleum.com/product-ca...k-polyurethane
After drying there was a lot of fuzz showing on the center vert stab and rudder thought I might have to start over but a quick sanding with 220 and fuzz was gone.

I'm building a 76" ME262 EDF out of foam (the above WV-2 is all foam) may try the Joann dress lining material with Pacer resin on this.

Tony


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