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Oct 15, 2015, 08:03 AM
Lift is where you find it.
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Decrypting TopModel CZ assembly sheets


I'm about to launch into the build (or rather assembly- it's not really a build per se) of a TopModel Astra and find myself a little bemused by the instruction manual. This is my first time doing one of these "pictorially assembled" models and I'm sure that once you get the hang of it, most of them go together about the same. I think I understand most of it, but I want to solicit advice from those who have been there and done that: are there any pitfalls to avoid while assembling from this kind of instruction sheet? Any suggestions or caveats are appreciated.

For instance, is it safe to assume that "dry-bond adhesive" refers to CA?

BTW- for those of you who haven't seen a kit from TopModel, let me say that they offer extremely high quality and impressive stuff. I'm sure there will be other TopModel kits in my future.
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Oct 15, 2015, 09:58 AM
That thing almost hit me
Tahoed's Avatar
Generally, any substance that binds two surfaces together.

Dry - to change the physical state of an adhesive or an adherend by the loss of solvent constituents by evaporation or absorption, or both.

So, dry bond could be white glue (aliphatic resin), CA, or epoxy.
Oct 15, 2015, 10:15 AM
Lift is where you find it.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tahoed
Generally, any substance that binds two surfaces together.

Dry - to change the physical state of an adhesive or an adherend by the loss of solvent constituents by evaporation or absorption, or both.

So, dry bond could be white glue (aliphatic resin), CA, or epoxy.
Not epoxy for sure, at least in the context of this instruction set- epoxy specified by the word "epoxy" at several points. Also, I noticed another little bottle image elsewhere that had a lightening bolt on it. I would guess that's CA.

The dry bond is also noted as "Chemopren". Possibly something like Duco or what we used to call "airplane glue" with acetone as a solvent?

Addendum- finally did my due diligence and searched google. Chemopren is contact cement- the type where you put it on both surfaces, let them dry and the bond is made when the dry surfaces are pressed together. Thus, I suppose, "dry-bond adhesive"
Last edited by 2400RDR; Oct 15, 2015 at 10:20 AM. Reason: added info
Oct 15, 2015, 11:06 AM
Registered User
On the top models that I have built I used Titebond. It is used in most wood shops.

I found (after I had built) that Esprit has some good pictures of how to build Top Models on their web site.

Also you may want to explore what they call for in pushrods. A sub like Golden Rods may be in order.

Good Luck from an another novice (beginner) assembler.
Oct 15, 2015, 12:36 PM
That thing almost hit me
Tahoed's Avatar
Just looked at the plans. Calls for 5 min epoxy along with 15 min epoxy for the tailboom and a of couple spots uses CA. (Use the medium) Yes, it's the bottle with the lightning bolt. If you look closely at the epoxy bottles you'll see either a 5 or a 15. Hope that helps.
Oct 15, 2015, 01:00 PM
Lift is where you find it.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tahoed
Just looked at the plans. Calls for 5 min epoxy along with 15 min epoxy for the tailboom and a of couple spots uses CA. (Use the medium) Yes, it's the bottle with the lightning bolt. If you look closely at the epoxy bottles you'll see either a 5 or a 15. Hope that helps.
Right you are- I saw those. The place where they call for the contact cement is where the servos are glued to the servo covers, and then where the servo covers are glued onto the wing. It's called "kontaktni lepidlo".
Oct 15, 2015, 05:06 PM
Registered User
Play it safe , use 30 minute so you can reposition things as necessary.
The last thing I'd use is 5 minute anything .
c/ a isn't one of my favorites either .
Oct 15, 2015, 06:49 PM
Lift is where you find it.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jetmaven
Play it safe , use 30 minute so you can reposition things as necessary.
The last thing I'd use is 5 minute anything .
c/ a isn't one of my favorites either .
I'm never in a hurry when I build, and if I use epoxy, it's always the slow set type.

Heck, my last build was a big woody glider (OLY IIS) and I used mostly Titebond wood glue. Very little CA in the plane, and epoxy only where absolutely necessary. It turned out very nicely.
Oct 15, 2015, 07:17 PM
That thing almost hit me
Tahoed's Avatar
And if you use ca, make sure you use an applicator tip, so you don't get too much in any spot. Some accelerator is is handy also.
Oct 15, 2015, 08:20 PM
Still circling in sink...
The only thing that threw me off to any serious extent with the Grafas instructions was the picture of the drill. It doesn't mean "drill" necessarily - it means any kind of tool. Choose for yourself according to the need, sometimes a drill, sometimes a Dremel tool, whatever.
Oct 16, 2015, 06:07 AM
Lift is where you find it.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tom1968
The only thing that threw me off to any serious extent with the Grafas instructions was the picture of the drill. It doesn't mean "drill" necessarily - it means any kind of tool. Choose for yourself according to the need, sometimes a drill, sometimes a Dremel tool, whatever.
Thanks for that advice- the drawing is a bit ambiguous. Along those lines, the only thing that looks daunting is locating and making the hole(s) in the fuselage for the mounting pin(s) on the front of the wing. Looks like you only get one try, and it has to be perfect the first time. Any advice on how to do that?
Oct 17, 2015, 08:04 PM
Still circling in sink...
My advice: Start small and center it as best you can. If it's off center, use a jeweler's file to center it before it gets to full size. If I recall correctly, I finished it off with a final drill slightly undersize, then wrapping sand paper around a dowel that was just a little smaller than the hole and carefully sanding around and around until it was up to size.
Mar 10, 2016, 09:43 AM
Suspended Account
Quote:
Originally Posted by NoResults
On the top models that I have built I used Titebond. It is used in most wood shops.

I found (after I had built) that Esprit has some good pictures of how to build Top Models on their web site.

Also you may want to explore what they call for in pushrods. A sub like Golden Rods may be in order.

Good Luck from an another novice (beginner) assembler.
I tried looking for TOPMODEL building information on Esprit's site, I couldn't find anything. Do you have a link to this?
Mar 10, 2016, 12:30 PM
Registered User

Servo Covers


If the servo covers are similar to the ones on my Top Model Siesta 1.9, they are very thin plastic that you glue the servo to and then glue the cover and servo to the wing. I used goop. If you use a more solid glue, removing them can be very difficult. With goop you can use a thin blade and slice them off with little damage.

I do like the quality of the kits, but as you point out, some of the wording is a shade confusing.
Jun 28, 2018, 08:02 AM
Registered User
Quote:
Originally Posted by 2400RDR
Right you are- I saw those. The place where they call for the contact cement is where the servos are glued to the servo covers, and then where the servo covers are glued onto the wing. It's called "kontaktni lepidlo".
(It's called UHU POR on my build sheet)

I am finishing the build of a Sweet and have possibly decoded the Topmodel glue materials, I think?
The zigzag adhesive is UHU POR. Available from Amazon I believe it is contact adhesive you put on both pieces, let dry and stick together. As such it makes a very strong bond so it may be difficult to remove. This is for the servo covers and sticking the servos down. I am going to use FoamTac instead because I have it and like it.
As for general gluing of the model I use Clear Gorilla Glue for everything else. It works cleanly, strong as epoxy, and easy to clean up. That includes the firewall! Yup!


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