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Attaching a Canopy (Neatly)

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Old 11-23-2005, 05:32 AM
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hnesitd1
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Default Attaching a Canopy (Neatly)

Gentlemen,

Please advise. What is a neatest and easiest method to attach a canopy? I have spent considerable time constructing a (monocote) model and can't bear the thought of screwing up the canopy. Any ideas? Thanks in advance.

GDJ
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Old 11-23-2005, 07:16 AM
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Default RE: Attaching a Canopy (Neatly)

I just want to tag into this thread because I am scratch building a vintage midwing with a windshield and wondering the same thing?
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Old 11-23-2005, 07:34 AM
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Default RE: Attaching a Canopy (Neatly)

Hi chaps
Use a PVA (White Wood Glue) dilute to taste, dry's clear and can be removed with a damp cloth, may take a long time to set as it uses evaporation to cure if the surfaces are not porus be patient.
MIke
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Old 11-23-2005, 07:51 AM
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Default RE: Attaching a Canopy (Neatly)

Formula 560 Canopy Glue -- Adheres well to monocoat or anything plasitic and even latex. Dries clear but flexible. Use it once and you'll never using anything else again.

Often plans may say you can use CA - But don't do it, you will probably get "flash" which will discolor or haze the clear plastic.
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Old 11-23-2005, 08:10 AM
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Default RE: Attaching a Canopy (Neatly)

I have tried the glue methods with mixed results. Now I fasten the canopies with small screws. In some cases small strips or similar may have to fastened to the fuse in order to anchor the screws, but over all the screws seem to work best for me.

DaveB
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Old 11-23-2005, 08:13 AM
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Default RE: Attaching a Canopy (Neatly)

Glue in small wooden tabs around the inside cockpit area and then use small screws to screw the cockpit on the plane.Also easy to take it back off if needed.
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Old 11-23-2005, 08:16 AM
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Default RE: Attaching a Canopy (Neatly)

Silicone, I glue them with it even in my 35% planes. It´s flexible and does not leave gaps where air can get inside the canopy. Sun will not do any harm to it and vibration does not separate it from the plane.

Small screws are good too.
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Old 11-23-2005, 08:41 AM
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Default RE: Attaching a Canopy (Neatly)

Small screws work good and allow you to remove the canopy if you ever decide to do that but.... The canopy isn't really supported well and it's possible to get trash underneath. Of course, since it's screwed on, you can clean it out. The screws don't stand up too good in a crash since they localize the damage to the plastic they've trapped. And the canopy doesn't have any real strength so you can't handle it with abandon.

The Formula 560 is fairly easy to use and does some very good things for you. It dries clear and doesn't craze. If you are careful to mark where it is to go and apply less than a pile of it, it will vanish when dry. I usually run silver (or black) striping tape around the seam after the glue is dry and the combination looks excellent. The result looks to others like I'm an excellent builder. Bonding down the canopy completely very often turns it into a very stiff and strong part of the model. If the canopy had any thickness to it at all, it's now a fairly rigid part of the model. It's often stronger than the fuselage. You can handle it without worry. I often sit models upside down on their canopy and only have to worry about scratches (so only do this on grass). I wouldn't do this on a bet with a canopy that is screwed on as it puts all the stress on the few screws and often distorts the plastic. But needless to say, you're not going to be able to get at what's inside that canopy. And if the glue job is solid around the entire outline, you might have a "balloon" that swells and shrinks with temperature, so I always drill a couple of tiny holes through the cockpit floor.

If you learned to iron monokote down, you'll be able to handle what little technique is required to glue canopies.

BTW, my 40s Ultimate ARF is setup with screws for it's canopy. I think they may have even predrilled the screw holes but am not sure. If so, I plan to use the screws to position and hold the canopy while my glue dries. Then I'll pull them and run a strip of tape. And the sucker will look REAL then.
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Old 11-23-2005, 11:41 AM
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Default RE: Attaching a Canopy (Neatly)

Thanks fellas...........I've ordered some Formula 560 ............sounds too good to be true. I'm also going to experiment with the silicone. (read Darock) I assume the striping tape is the type available in automotive stores? Ain't RC UNIVERSE great?
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Old 11-23-2005, 12:01 PM
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Default RE: Attaching a Canopy (Neatly)

Just remember silicon does not clean up easily. Usually cleaned with acetone, but this will eat plastic so don't use it. So don't get it all silicon were you don't want it. If you do, let the film dry, gently cut around the trim, then peal it off.
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Old 11-23-2005, 02:36 PM
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Default RE: Attaching a Canopy (Neatly)

Yea, as long as you have the Formula 560 coming, don't bother with the other stuff
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Old 11-24-2005, 09:54 AM
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Default RE: Attaching a Canopy (Neatly)

The 560 works good. Just a small bead will do fine. It's a good idea to smear some clear silicon along the seam afterward, making a fuel proof seam that will give a little protection/insurance. Trim tape afterwards looks good too, like a frame around the canopy.
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Old 11-24-2005, 11:20 AM
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Default RE: Attaching a Canopy (Neatly)

Skip the silicone, as it attracts dust like nobody's business. Your plane will always look dirty around the canopy seam. Wait for the 560.
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Old 11-25-2005, 10:40 AM
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Default RE: Attaching a Canopy (Neatly)

I have been using a product called Weldbond purchased from Lowes for a couple of years and it appears to be the same as canopy glue.

Bill
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Old 11-25-2005, 02:18 PM
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Default RE: Attaching a Canopy (Neatly)

Formula 560...period!
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Old 11-25-2005, 02:57 PM
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Default RE: Attaching a Canopy (Neatly)

Yeah, the striping tape is what's found in auto parts stores. Of course, the same stuff is packaged by the hobby suppliers and you can buy it in your LHS too. If the package says that it cures in the sun, it's probably auto striping and it seems to hold to the canopy plastics decently. Ultracote also packages striping tape and all that I've seen of it is actually just ultracote covering material.

And I'll join the crowd that says not to bother with the silicone.
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Old 11-25-2005, 08:52 PM
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Default RE: Attaching a Canopy (Neatly)

The Formula 560 was delivered yesterday..........I tried it on a scrap canopy and was very impressed with the results. Believe it or not I had experimented with Weldbond previously...I really don't think it provides the same degree of bonding as Formula 560 but I might be opening a can of worms with that statement. Yo! Flyranger......................Harry Higely has some very good tips on Bi-Planes (interplane struts, cabanes, etc) in his book, BIPES..............you had an earlier query on this? Anyway, I'm sated, eh. Thanks to ya 'all.
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Old 11-26-2005, 01:20 PM
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Default RE: Attaching a Canopy (Neatly)

I didn't see that anyone has mentioned the need to scuff the inside of the canopy with an emory board so the glue will have better adhesion. I also scuff or remove the Monokote on the fuselage at the point of contact. I have tried skipping this step and my canopy blew off during a knife edge. But RC560 is the good stuff.
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Old 11-26-2005, 10:06 PM
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Default RE: Attaching a Canopy (Neatly)

Speaking of RC560....

I set up a test this morning. It dawned on me that RC560 might be the perfect glue to use on control horns. I usually use epoxy when screwing the horns directly to balsa surfaces. I figure two or even 4 little screws and two little nylon bases really are just things "sitting tightly" on the balse and figure bonding them to the balsa is worth the effort. Also, I'm going to do something way out of the box to connect the top ailerons to the bottom ailerons on my Ultimate and figure the RC560 should help the design work.

I glued some horns and servo arms to a balsa sheet. The RC560 really looked good after it had time to dry clear. And after half the recommended time to fully cure, the test pieces I'd done for the "early grip" test took the pulling and bending great.

Why not rely on epoxy? Two things. First, glue out of a squeeze bottle saves building time. No big deal, but sometimes I just don't feel like doing the mixing. Second thing is more important to me. I've had some old horns pop off the epoxy. Truth is, they were OLD airplanes, but what the heck.... And if you read the RC560 bottle it says something that suggests it might grab plastic less passively than epoxy does. So I'm figuring that the RC560 might give a better, longer lasting connection to the plastic. And it's connection to the balsa is obviously more than good enough and certainly better than the balsa.

Hey, time to go down and try the 2nd set of test joints.
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