Questions and Answers If you have general RC questions or answers discuss it here.

21st Century Fabric Covering

Reply

Old 10-07-2006, 11:27 PM
  #1  
JCOKEEFE
Thread Starter
My Feedback: (2)
 
Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: Fairfield Glade, TN
Posts: 549
Gallery
My Gallery
Models
My Models
Ratings
My Feedback
Default 21st Century Fabric Covering

[8D]I'm looking for opinions on the current quality
of 21st Century fabric covering. Does it cover well?
Do seams/overlaps stay sealed?

What is the quality of matching 21 Century spray paint
and does it match up well with the covering?

Thanks.
JCOKEEFE is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 10-08-2006, 09:23 AM
  #2  
bhady
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: Fairmont, MN
Posts: 271
Gallery
My Gallery
Models
My Models
Ratings
My Feedback
Default RE: 21st Century Fabric Covering

I've been wondering the same thing. I'm building an old GP Aeromaster kit and think the fabric would be the way to go. In reading some of the other threads here on RCU, it seems there are a lot of opinions on covering materials out there. Some say they have no problems, others do. Some say Monocote and some of hte other films suck, others love it. Hard to know who's right, kind of like Chev vs. Ford vs. Mopar debates I guess. This should be an interesting thread you started.

bhady
bhady is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 10-08-2006, 10:11 PM
  #3  
Campy
Senior Member
My Feedback: (1)
 
Campy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: Baltic, CT
Posts: 3,613
Gallery
My Gallery
Models
My Models
Ratings
My Feedback
Default RE: 21st Century Fabric Covering

Coverite fabric covering is a good covering, HOWEVER, you need to coat the airframe AND any overlap seams with Balsarite or Sig StixIt in order for the covering to stay adhered. The adhesive on the Coverite fabric, in my opinion, is not that good. In addition, Coverite fabric is one of the heaviest coverings out there.

I have never used the Century 21 paint, so I can not comment on it.

I would suggest SolarTex (Balsa USA ) instead. It is noticeably lighter in weight and has an excellent adhesive on it - you will not need to coat the airframe or overlap seams with Balsarite or StixIt to insure adhesion.

Both coverings are easy to work with and cover wingtips very nicely. It is close between the 2 of them, but I feel SolarTex is slightly easier to use on wingtips.

For bhady:

Monokote has changed in the last several years, and not for the better. Many people will recommend Ultracote instead of Monokote due to ease of usage and lower heat requirements. You will also find that the Ultracote paints are a much closer match to the covering than Lusterkote, do not have the "spitting problem " of Lusterkote and "lay" better.
Campy is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 10-11-2006, 02:57 AM
  #4  
ho2zoo
My Feedback: (5)
 
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: Louisville, KY
Posts: 1,069
Gallery
My Gallery
Models
My Models
Ratings
My Feedback
Default RE: 21st Century Fabric Covering

I have covered 2 planes with 21st Century fabric. I pretty much agree with Campy on it. It goes on pretty well, goes around curves easier than Monocote, and looks great. As he said, it is kinda heavy though.

I tried the 21st century spray paint and hated it! Was thin and watery and took 4 or 5 coats to get a decent coverage.
ho2zoo is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 10-11-2006, 07:58 AM
  #5  
MinnFlyer
Senior Member
My Feedback: (4)
 
MinnFlyer's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2002
Location: Willmar, MN
Posts: 28,519
Gallery
My Gallery
Models
My Models
Ratings
My Feedback
Default RE: 21st Century Fabric Covering

I think 21st Century paint is about the best I've ever used. But it must be used as per the directions (Which is not difficult at all)
MinnFlyer is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 10-11-2006, 08:10 AM
  #6  
JCOKEEFE
Thread Starter
My Feedback: (2)
 
Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: Fairfield Glade, TN
Posts: 549
Gallery
My Gallery
Models
My Models
Ratings
My Feedback
Default RE: 21st Century Fabric Covering

ORIGINAL: MinnFlyer

I think 21st Century paint is about the best I've ever used. But it must be used as per the directions (Which is not difficult at all)
[8D]Any comments/opinions on the fabric covering which is
available in colors?
JCOKEEFE is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 10-11-2006, 08:17 AM
  #7  
MinnFlyer
Senior Member
My Feedback: (4)
 
MinnFlyer's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2002
Location: Willmar, MN
Posts: 28,519
Gallery
My Gallery
Models
My Models
Ratings
My Feedback
Default RE: 21st Century Fabric Covering

I have seen the fabric and it looks great, but I have only used it once - on a wing with no matching paint. And unfortunately, the plane didn't last long enough for me to comment on durability
MinnFlyer is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 10-11-2006, 08:18 AM
  #8  
waagbuck
Senior Member
My Feedback: (1)
 
waagbuck's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: McLean, VA
Posts: 402
Gallery
My Gallery
Models
My Models
Ratings
My Feedback
Default RE: 21st Century Fabric Covering

Before committing to a fabric covering, check out Solartex. www.balsausa.com.

waagbuck is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 10-11-2006, 08:52 AM
  #9  
JCOKEEFE
Thread Starter
My Feedback: (2)
 
Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: Fairfield Glade, TN
Posts: 549
Gallery
My Gallery
Models
My Models
Ratings
My Feedback
Default RE: 21st Century Fabric Covering

ORIGINAL: waagbuck

Before committing to a fabric covering, check out Solartex. www.balsausa.com.

I have checked out Solartex and I am told that it is subject to
staining if not coated with something after it is applied to the airframe.
To my knowledge, 21st Century fabric doesn't require an additional
application of anything after it goes on the airframe.
JCOKEEFE is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 10-11-2006, 03:03 PM
  #10  
mscic-RCU
Senior Member
My Feedback: (6)
 
mscic-RCU's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: New London, OH
Posts: 1,237
Gallery
My Gallery
Models
My Models
Ratings
My Feedback
Default RE: 21st Century Fabric Covering

I have used 21st fabric. Easy to use, goes around curves easily. Seams can be difficult to seal sometimes. Need to accurately set iron temperature for best results. I use a 21st century thermometer for this. Finish is outstanding as it is painted. Smooth and does not need to be sealed. Can be a bit heavy though, only drawback other than cost.
mscic-RCU is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 10-11-2006, 03:11 PM
  #11  
khodges
Senior Member
My Feedback: (1)
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: newton, NC
Posts: 5,443
Gallery
My Gallery
Models
My Models
Ratings
My Feedback
Default RE: 21st Century Fabric Covering

I agree with all the above on both 21st century and Solartex. I have covered two planes with 21st fabric. I found it to be durable, with a very nice finish, which is "slicker" than Solartex, meaning the weave is filled in more. However, it is quite a bit heavier than Solartex, and WAY heavier than the plastic films. I re-covered a Rascal 40 with 21st fabric after a crash repair, and had to add about 4 ounces of nose weight to balance it. The only thing that changed was the covering, so I know the fabric is what made it tail-heavy.

The other shortfalls I find with 21st Century is that it is thicker, and seams do not hide as well, and I could not get it to form around curves as well as Solartex, nor stay as tight once shrunk.

The only thing I have found with Solartex that could be better is the "cleanability". It's harder to get grime off, as it seems to get buried in the fabric weave. A clearcoat of just about any type usually cures that, though.

Between the two, I like Solartex much better. I have three planes covered with it, none of them wrinkle, the edges stay put, and it takes latex paint wonderfully.
khodges is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 10-11-2006, 05:26 PM
  #12  
JCOKEEFE
Thread Starter
My Feedback: (2)
 
Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: Fairfield Glade, TN
Posts: 549
Gallery
My Gallery
Models
My Models
Ratings
My Feedback
Default RE: 21st Century Fabric Covering

[8D]Would you agree that Solartex could be sprayed, after covering,
with a clear coat of, let's say, Ultracote clear??

Thanks.
JCOKEEFE is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 10-11-2006, 05:41 PM
  #13  
Ed_Moorman
My Feedback: (1)
 
Ed_Moorman's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: Shalimar, FL
Posts: 4,059
Gallery
My Gallery
Models
My Models
Ratings
My Feedback
Default RE: 21st Century Fabric Covering

One thing many people do not realize about iron on fabric covering is that it does not add to the strength of the airframe. Its actual failure strength is very high, but it stretches enough to allow the underlying framework to break. As I recall, in their 4* kits Sig mentions to not use fabric covering. Film covering actually adds to the overall strength of the airplane.

In support of this, I had the main spar, a balsa one, break in a D-7 kit I had. I was doing snaps and other hard maneuvers and the spar cracked near the fuselage. The wing didn't fail since both wings were tied together with struts and I didn't discover it until I was cleaning up. I replaced the spar with a spruce one.

As someone said, 21st Century fabric is heavy.
Ed_Moorman is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 10-11-2006, 06:02 PM
  #14  
JCOKEEFE
Thread Starter
My Feedback: (2)
 
Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: Fairfield Glade, TN
Posts: 549
Gallery
My Gallery
Models
My Models
Ratings
My Feedback
Default RE: 21st Century Fabric Covering

ORIGINAL: Ed_Moorman

One thing many people do not realize about iron on fabric covering is that it does not add to the strength of the airframe. Its actual failure strength is very high, but it stretches enough to allow the underlying framework to break. As I recall, in their 4* kits Sig mentions to not use fabric covering. Film covering actually adds to the overall strength of the airplane.

In support of this, I had the main spar, a balsa one, break in a D-7 kit I had. I was doing snaps and other hard maneuvers and the spar cracked near the fuselage. The wing didn't fail since both wings were tied together with struts and I didn't discover it until I was cleaning up. I replaced the spar with a spruce one.

As someone said, 21st Century fabric is heavy.
Thanks, Ed. Good point, something I had heard of before,
but had forgotten about.
JCOKEEFE is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 10-11-2006, 09:23 PM
  #15  
sebo
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: jacksonville, FL
Posts: 2,229
Gallery
My Gallery
Models
My Models
Ratings
My Feedback
Default RE: 21st Century Fabric Covering

I used 21st century yellow on two aircraft. also used the paint. had to prime with white to make the yellow look correct. Initially used grey primer and it made the yellow look horrible.
sebo is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 10-12-2006, 03:18 PM
  #16  
khodges
Senior Member
My Feedback: (1)
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: newton, NC
Posts: 5,443
Gallery
My Gallery
Models
My Models
Ratings
My Feedback
Default RE: 21st Century Fabric Covering

I've tried the 21st Century Cub Yellow paint, didn't care for how poorly it covered. You have to use a white primer or undercoat, then it's okay. It acts almost like a translucent "candy" coat, shows what's under it, and no amount of coats will hide a darker undercoat. It IS a tenacious paint, though, seems pretty durable.
khodges is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 10-12-2006, 09:45 PM
  #17  
JCOKEEFE
Thread Starter
My Feedback: (2)
 
Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: Fairfield Glade, TN
Posts: 549
Gallery
My Gallery
Models
My Models
Ratings
My Feedback
Default RE: 21st Century Fabric Covering

[8D]Thanks, guys, for ALL of your input. I have just
started building the Dynaflite Super Decath and is
the reason for my questions. I still haven't made
up my mind as to what type of covering that I will
want to use on this aircraft, but all of your responses
will be of help when I reach that point.
JCOKEEFE is offline  
Reply With Quote

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us Archive Advertising Cookie Policy Privacy Statement Terms of Service