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Resin or covering

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Old 06-19-2003, 11:13 PM
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mebljr
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Default Resin or covering

Hi, I'am getting to the point of putting on finish on a Topflite F8 bearcat and i'am not very good at iron coverings, a guy at the LHS suggest trying resin and hardner to seal, then paint. should i struggle with mono. or go wilh resin? Any suggestons would be helpful. PS,While at the LHS. The same guy told me about mico balloons. He wanted to know where i've been. What the heck! Can someone inform me on this how and where to use it? ANYHELP? Thanks
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Old 06-20-2003, 08:28 AM
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Mike James
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Default Don't do it!

Finishing resin alone (without glass cloth) will tend to crack over time, wrecking your paint job. You might get lucky, but it's not suggested.

Microballoons come in two main varieties: There are glass microballoons, which look like white baby powder in their raw form. Actually, they are microscopic glass spheres, which make a very tough filler, when combined with resin. Then there are the phenolic micro-balloons (Dave Brown is one source) which are a reddish clay color, also used as a filler with resin. The phenolic is a bit easier to sand than the glass. Both types are inert, so the proportion of them in the mix is only limited by the texture you want. (More filler equals a weaker, but more easily sanded surface.)

Fiberglassing (in your case, probably using .5 oz. or .75 oz. cloth) is a great way to go, but I wouldn't do it the first time on a nice model. Film coverings are much more forgiving, and you can usually get very good results, if you follow each manufacturer's directions on temperature and application.

I suggest trying your glassing technique on some scrap material, and do ALL the steps, just as you will on your model. Take a piece of wood and make at least a couple of "dings" in it. Then you can practice using different consistencies of the epoxy/microballoon mixture to fill and sand the dings. Then glass the surface. Finally, prime, re-sand, and paint the surface, using all the same chemicals you intend to use on your plane. Better to risk scrap material than a nicely-built kit.

If you do a search here on "glass" or "fiberglass", you'll find a wealth of information on polyester, epoxy, and polyurethane techniques, along with the associated primers and paints. It's not rocket science, but it's not child's play either. ... and ...Buy a LOT of sandpaper.
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