There’s an previous saying within the passion that goes: “When you’re completed “constructing” your scale RC airplane, you’re solely half performed!” That’s as a result of all our efforts of gluing and bolting elements collectively leads as much as one closing objective—producing a clean and even floor to use the masking to.
With any cloth masking job, the top outcomes are solely pretty much as good because the surfaces being masking. A mean masking job utilized over , even and well-sanded construction will look significantly better than a superb masking job performed over a poorly constructed, tough construction. So earlier than going any additional, go over your airplane with a fine-tooth comb. Sand and fill and sand once more, any imperfections or uneven edges and joints. Use a tack fabric to wash the surfaces and use your fingertips (together with your eyes closed), to really feel the surfaces. As soon as every little thing is sweet and clean and clear, we will begin masking!
It’s essential to take away all of the and issues like management horns, pushrods, hinges, servos, engines, and so forth. Then go over every little thing and ensure the airframe is clean and has no damaged glue joints.
All of your edges should be rounded and sanded clean. Save all of your in a useful container so you’ll be able to simply discover every little thing after masking is full.
For my Balsa USA 1/Three-scale Fokker Triplane, I’m utilizing the Stits Lite fabric and the Poly Tone ending system. accessible from F&M Enterprises. I’ve been utilizing this materials since 1995 and have lined a dozen scale fashions all with nice success. The material, adhesive, sealer and paint are all formulated to work collectively and F&M Enterprises doesn’t advocate or assure the outcomes for those who use another cloth or substitute different supplies. With that stated, I’ve completed fashions with Stits Lite utilized over SuperShrink cloth from Coverite, however the completed mannequin did require some reshrinking after a season or two of flying. All my Stits Lite cloth lined fashions, have by no means required reshrinking to take away sags or wrinkles, even after years of flying.
Stits Lite provides wanted:
- Masking Cloth
- Poly-Tak heat-activated cloth glue
- Poly-Brush cloth sealer
- Poly-Spray silver undercoat
- Poly-Tone paint
You’ll additionally want: a pointy passion knife and alternative blades, a masking iron, ½ inch and 1 inch sable hair brushes, paper towels, and MEK (methyl-ethyl-ketone) solvent for thinning the glue and cleansing up your brushes and spray tools.
Hold your cloth masking materials in its bag till you might be able to cowl your airplane. Then preserve the unused materials secure and away from the realm the place you might be gluing the fabric to the mannequin.
MEK is common solvent and is excellent for cleansing up and thinning Poly Tak glue. Don’t use it to skinny the Poly Tone paint nonetheless. Reducer is used for that.
Now clear off your workbench actually good after which collect the masking supplies.
1. Place the management floor over the material and reduce it to dimension leaving about an inch of fabric throughout. It is extremely necessary to make use of sharp knife blades and change them usually. The material dulls the blades shortly. Get a 100-count pack of #11 X-Acto or Hobbico blades. As soon as you narrow the primary piece of cloth, go forward and reduce a second piece for the opposite facet. The material has no interior or outer floor.
2. Pour some Poy-Tak adhesive right into a glass container that has a twist-on lid and use your ½ inch brush to use some adhesive throughout the outer edges of the rudder. The glue dries shortly so apply it shortly a couple of inches at a time as you go. By the point you apply glue to a second management floor, the primary might be dry and able to go.
Three. To start attaching the material to the management floor apply extra adhesive working briefly 2 to three inch sections and press the material down onto the moist glue. Rub it down clean together with your fingers and let dry. This takes solely a minute or two. I apply glue in a single spot (see high of rudder,) after which pull the fabric just a little to take away any sags and wrinkles and apply glue on the alternative edge. Apply extra glue and pull the fabric once more as till all the perimeters are glued down and the fabric is wrinkle free.
four. Now flip the management floor over and repeat the method. Apply just a little glue, clean the material down and pull the fabric working a couple of inches at a time. The material ought to overlap the primary facet about Three/eight inch round edges. Carry the fabric up barely and use a small brush to use glue the place the fabric overlaps and rub it down clean. I discover it useful to attend a simply few seconds to let the adhesive begin to setup then press it down together with your fingers.
Store Tip: In the event you discover a cussed space the place the material is caught down uneven, brush just a little MEK solvent to the skin of the material to reactivate the glue underneath it. Additionally, for those who drip some adhesive on the skin of the material, you need to use MEK and a paper towel to take away it earlier than portray.
5. After the adhesive has fully dried, apply warmth, (together with your iron set at about 250 levels,) and go over any edges the place cloth isn’t fully sealed down. As soon as the perimeters have cooled off, apply warmth to the middle of the management floor and work the iron outward. You’ll be amazed how simply and shortly the material shrinks and the wrinkles disappear.
The method is identical for all management surfaces just like the rudder, horizontal stabilizer, elevators and ailerons. When masking a mannequin, I prefer to cowl all of the management surfaces first to get into the swing of issues earlier than transferring onto bigger buildings.
Place your elements on the material to reduce your waste materials
Accomplished Elevators. Discover that hinge blocks are usually not touching the masking materials
Right here’s the stailizer and rudder are fully lined and positioned on the fuselage.
Here’s a shut up of the elevator. Discover the outlet for the RObart HingePoints is obvious and uncovered. The material is glued down neatly across the hinge opening.
6. For the fuselage, apply the primary coat of glue to the place the masking will are available contact with, let dry and canopy to the underside surfaces. Trim the perimeters neatly, apply extra glue and seal the perimeters down over the outer edges and onto the edges of the longerons. I additionally reduce the fabric additional lengthy and seal the perimeters to the within of the wing saddles and the formers on this space.
Do that to another openings within the cloth like across the tailskid.
Work all of the wrinkles out earlier than transferring to the subsequent floor. Solely after all of the surfaces are lined and a lot of the wrinkles have been eliminated must you apply warmth.
7. As soon as the underside is roofed, deal with the vertical sides in the identical method. Neatly trim the perimeters in order that they wrap across the high and backside longerons and seal them down with glue and clean it down together with your fingers.
eight. Cowl the tail saddle the place the horizontal stabilizer units, first so you’ll be able to overlap the edges and high masking so they’re hidden when the stabilizer is bolted into place. Simply take your time and make all of your seams neat, straight and clean.
Now apply the masking to the highest aft portion of the fuselage and work the fabric down and seal with glue on the outer edges. Tack it into place on the tail and work ahead pulling slack and wrinkles out as your work ahead and outward.
Trim the fabric to provide clean, neat seams. After all of the masking materials is in place and main wrinkles and slack eliminated, you’ll be able to then go over every little thing with the masking iron set at 300 levels for a closing shrink. Avoid seams and edges.
9. When you have got openings for management linkages, pushrods and management cables, make a small slit within the cloth and slip the by means of earlier than gluing the material in place. Then fastidiously glue the material in place across the space. After the mannequin has been lined and painted you’ll be able to add scale fairings and patches to assist the material.
10. You must also apply loads of glue to the supporting buildings across the management exits so you have got a powerful cloth bond. It will forestall wrinkling at these areas.
Security Tip: MEK solvent is a powerful, harmful chemical and will at all times be used with warning. Additionally it is strongly advisable that you simply use chemical proof gloves, or use a barrier cream like “invisble gloves” (accessible from F&M Industries) to stop the solvent from absorbing into your pores and skin. This hand cream additionally makes it very simple to wash off dried glue out of your fingers.
That’s it for now. Keep tuned and I’ll be again with suggestions and methods for masking the wings.
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