Using Tracing Paper As Covering Material - RC Groups
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Mar 06, 2013, 09:34 PM
Experienced Balsa Mangler
Discussion

Using Tracing Paper As Covering Material


I've conducted a test of this paper from Office Max/Office Depot/Staples/etc..., amd the attached photos show the initial results.

The paper was glued to the frame using a 50-50 Titebond II and water mix. The glue was brushed onto the frame, then the paper was immediately pressed into the glue and pulled. A brush of water was used with a finger to pull the glue up into the fibers.

This produced a number of wrinkles, but once the glue dried, the paper was well attached. A mist spray of water caused the paper to seriously wrinkle (expansion), but when the water had fully evaporated, the paper had shrunk down very nicely.

The photos are of the after shots...

As soon as I can get some nitrate dope, I'll see how that pulls down.
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Mar 06, 2013, 09:51 PM
Registered User
williame3590's Avatar
I can see it being very brittle once finished. Let us know please.

Bill
Mar 07, 2013, 09:55 AM
Experienced Balsa Mangler
Quote:
Originally Posted by williame3590
I can see it being very brittle once finished. Let us know please.

Bill
I have to say, even without dope the paper seems to be very tough. Not sure I'd call it "brittle", but it is very light. When I tap on the frame, the paper acts like a sounding board. If I lightly tap on the paper, it sounds very much like a drum.

Whether or not it is usable as the only covering, I can't say yet. But using it as an under-layer for colored tissue might be a good idea.
Mar 08, 2013, 07:42 AM
Registered User
I'm very interested in hearing of your results. With silkspan becoming very scarce, finding another source of a suitable covering is important. Tracing paper tends to be more stiff and I wonder how easily it can be used over compound curves.

My guess is that it will be fairly tough, but once holed, I'm inclined to think that it may have a greater tendency to tear, moreso than silkspan, since it does not have the long fiber component of silkspan.

Keep us up to date on your experiment.
Mar 08, 2013, 08:47 AM
Registered User
Looks good Craig. You might find that you can also "iron" on the paper once the Weldbond glue has dried. There's no need to rush and get it stuck down when the glue is wet. Or after drying, and you find a wrinkle, or want to "move" the paper slightly, just heat the area up with your iron and "iron" it out flat.
You might also want to consider the Doculam. It is probably cheaper, lighter, and has the "glue" on one side.
John
Mar 13, 2013, 01:40 PM
Experienced Balsa Mangler
Finally got a can of nitrate dope (and some thinner), and tried it out on the first cover test done a few days ago.

First comment: OUCH! $21 for a quart of dope, $13 for a pint of thinner.

Second comments: Applied beautifully, dried quickly, the paper did not pucker like it did with the water. It stayed taut and formed a nice skin.

I am now going to begin papering the Envoy with this material, and using some color tissue as the trim. Pictures (in the build thread) as I proceed...
Mar 13, 2013, 01:45 PM
Registered User
williame3590's Avatar
That is great to hear, good luck on finishing her.

Bill
Mar 13, 2013, 07:02 PM
Registered User
The next time you need dope, try Aircraft Spruce. Randolph nitrate tautening dope is $14.65/QT.; nitrate thinner is $11.65/QT.

When purchased in quart containers, there are no hazmat shipping fees.
Mar 13, 2013, 10:31 PM
Registered User
Great tip Andrew. Thanks.

Larry
Mar 14, 2013, 03:38 PM
Experienced Balsa Mangler
Update -- Tracing paper has a wax-like coating that seems to completely prevent nitrate dope from penetrating through the weave. I just tried to work the dope through some wet paper, and could not get the wood wet at all. The substance acts like a blocker to the dope.

Back to the drawing board...

I'll be ordering some genuine tissue in a few days...
Mar 15, 2013, 11:40 AM
Registered User
Quote:
Originally Posted by cpmcgraw
Update -- Tracing paper has a wax-like coating that seems to completely prevent nitrate dope from penetrating through the weave. I just tried to work the dope through some wet paper, and could not get the wood wet at all. The substance acts like a blocker to the dope.
That's a shame that worked out that way. Will the thinner alone penetrate at all?
Mar 15, 2013, 04:08 PM
Experienced Balsa Mangler
Quote:
Originally Posted by Andrew0820
That's a shame that worked out that way. Will the thinner alone penetrate at all?
I haven't tried that yet. I'll see what happens when I get a chance. What I did notice is that nothing from the dope appeared to penetrate, even after rubbing repeatedly with the brush. The wood remained dry to the bone under where I had been rubbing. I figured at least some of the thinner component should have passed through, but it didn't.


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