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Balsarite-Use ?

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Old 03-14-2006, 05:49 AM
  #1
glmilford
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Default Balsarite-Use ?

We use to apply balsarite on the wood before covering,is this still done? I'm just getting back into the hobby and want to cover my GL .Thanks ,Sparky
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Old 03-14-2006, 07:14 AM
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Default RE: Balsarite-Use ?

I have been in the hobby for 22 years and have never used it. There are so many good coverings to choose from these days. Various weights and strengths etc. Maybe someone else still uses it.
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Old 03-14-2006, 09:04 AM
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Default RE: Balsarite-Use ?

When I built my Riser 100, I was told to use it on the fuselage because it is make of ply. Supposedly it helps the monocote stick better. I did and there are fewer, if not any of those pesky bubbles that show up every now and then. I didn't use it on my GL (balsa fuselage) and I'm always ironing out bubbles. That's my 2c worth.

Keith
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Old 03-14-2006, 09:11 AM
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Default RE: Balsarite-Use ?

When I built my Riser 100, I was advised to use it (by the LHS) on the fuselage because it is made of ply. Supposedly it helps the monocote stick better. I did and there are fewer, if not any of those pesky bubbles that show up every now and then. I didn't use it on my GL (balsa fuselage) and I'm always ironing out bubbles. That's my 2c worth.

Keith
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Old 03-14-2006, 09:59 AM
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Default RE: Balsarite-Use ?

I wouldn't cover an airplane without it. If you haven't used it, you probably don't know how well it works. Jim
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Old 03-17-2006, 07:06 AM
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Default RE: Balsarite-Use ?

I've using Balsarite since I first discovered it back in the late 70's. It does everything that Coverite claims. It works better than dope for fuelproofing bare balsa and it doesn't discolor with age like fuel proof dope. It is flexible, and I believe it also helps the iron on films provide for greater structural support on open frames through the film being more securely anchored into the grain of the wood. It practically eliminates film from lifting due to air expansion between film and sheeting. It virtually prevents overlapped film seams from peeling, and it does it's job when you may have to reseal film which has peeled loose from it's adhesive and wouln't iron back on otherwise. Applying a thin layer surrounding a punture in your monokote assures a clean patch that lays where you want it while ironing it to the surrounding surface and will not shrink loose... and we all know what a bummer it can be when you have to peel off a patch when they don't go on right..
Balsarite thins beautifully with isopropyl alchohol. Two cans have lasted me 20 years, and I just had to buy my third can because my 2nd can disappeared out of my garage... I couln't find balsarite at my local hobbystores so I bought the SIG equivalent. The only difference that I can think of is the SiG stuff says to use acetone to thin. I'm intending to see if isopropyl will work but have yet to get around to it. Everyone knows how much we dispise the film coverings which skin most ARFs... You know, that poop which ain't even real iron on shrink film..? Apply a heat gun to try to tighten up the skin and the darn film just pulls and exposes wood... Won't stick back down so you CA it down..? Balsarite it and it stays down. While the restof the film on the non-treated surfaces comes off. The thinist layer of balsarite is probably more than requred. A pint costs less than 6 bucks, but I would pay 20 for it if I had to. I could rave on and on, and this product is deserving. More flyers should become aware of what a great product it is.
That is my 2 cents worth.
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Old 10-31-2010, 05:19 PM
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Default RE: Balsarite-Use ?

Another vote for Balsarite, bought some 3 years ago to apply Coverlite on small indoor models.........and used something else because I wasn't sure of how it would work! Recently I build a small RTP
type plane and decided to use the stuff finally! Well I was very impressed with how well it went on, just like tissue and dope without the smell[] and it shrink(Coverlite) beautifully without distortion of any kind. Since the adesive goes only were needed it save a lot of weight compared to film covering. The instructions provided with Coverlite sound more complex than its actually is and the price is very good!
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Old 11-01-2010, 11:59 AM
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Default RE: Balsarite-Use ?

I like using it in trouble areas like concave fillets or glassed areas (ie wing center sections). It really does help the covering stick better.

Also, it's recommended for use of Coverite's "micafilm" which is very strong and light but has no adhesive of its own.

I always thought it was the same thing as nitrate dope but I could be wrong. It does thin like dope and sure smells similar.
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Old 07-12-2012, 02:09 AM
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Default RE: Balsarite-Use ?

Was searching for a thread on how to make your own Balsarite since I can't buy that here. I think Greybeard recommended 50 % Elmers Wood Glue and 50% water, but can seem to find the thread. What other materials are folks using instead of Balsarite?
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Old 07-12-2012, 02:46 AM
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Default RE: Balsarite-Use ?


Quote:
ORIGINAL: michpittsman

I wouldn't cover an airplane without it. If you haven't used it, you probably don't know how well it works. Jim
+1

It is also great in and arond the engine compartment. For open cowl stuff, when you wrap covering around the front and trim it boy does it stick!

Great stuff...

Tom
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Old 07-12-2012, 10:07 PM
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Default RE: Balsarite-Use ?


Quote:
ORIGINAL: thailazer

Was searching for a thread on how to make your own Balsarite since I can't buy that here. I think Greybeard recommended 50 % Elmers Wood Glue and 50% water, but can seem to find the thread. What other materials are folks using instead of Balsarite?

That recipe sounds more like BalsaLoc. BalsaRite is a lacquer like product which smells a lot like aircraft dope.

I've read that the white PVA glue that used to be popular for use as a heat activated glue once it had been brushed on. If you get the white colour sort of wood glue it won't take much effort to experiment with how thickly it has to be applied.

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Old 07-12-2012, 11:02 PM
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Default RE: Balsarite-Use ?

BMatthews....Thanks for that, and your comments echo the thread I recall. Balsarite works really well in that it can (please excuse this wording!) "pass that gas" that is created when you heat the covering so that you don't get any bubbles. I might try acrylic concrete sealer which may have the same properties, but the lacquer is definitely worth a try. I'm recovering a J3 with ply sides right now and I want to make sure I don't make more problems than I want to deal with!
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Old 10-12-2012, 07:29 AM
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Default RE: Balsarite-Use ?

There are two types of Balsarite. One, when you open the can smells like butrate dope and is used for sealing the wood, fuelproofing and helping the iron on plastics stick better. I use it on all my wooden aircraft because it also helps keep the moisture out. I also use it to coat the entire airframe, inside and out, on my float planes. It can be identified by the green and white striped can.
The other is a paint on glue which becomes heat sensitive when applying fabrics which don't have a adhesive on them. It can be identified by the solid green can. I've never used this second product so I can't really comment on it's effictiveness.
For most modellers the first mentioned product is the one to use.
Peter
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Old 10-16-2012, 03:03 PM
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Default RE: Balsarite-Use ?

PeterC or Joe C.,
Which Coverite Balsarite formula is best suited for Micafilm?
I have 2 cans before me, one under:PN ,COVR2515-Balsa Conditioner-Film Formula in a green and white striped label. The labels states "NOTFORMICAFILM"

The other can under: PN, COVR2500 - Balsa Conditioner, FABRICFORMULA in a solid green label. The label also states "NOTFORMICAFILM"

The instructions on the back of the label are virtually indentical for both formulas. I'm about to apply Micafilm to a soaring glider and need to know which one to use.
Thanks in advance.

Art ARRO


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Old 10-16-2012, 04:09 PM
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Default RE: Balsarite-Use ?

Hi Art,
I don't think Micafilm has been available for a few years now, but if you have some I would check and see if the Micafilm in question has the adhesive back or not. (cut a small piece off and try it like regular medium heat plastic covering). I believe it was available both ways. If it has the adhesive back then use the striped can; if not, the other.
It seems odd that Coverite produced both Micafilm and Balsarite yet dosen't recommend it for their own covering.
Peter
(I haven't read the label for many years)
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Old 10-16-2012, 05:49 PM
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Default RE: Balsarite-Use ?

I always used the fabric formula for the micafilm (solid green label). PeterC is right they don't make micafilm anymore.

Put the fabric formula on a test piece of wood and let it dry before ironing on the micafilm.
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Old 10-17-2012, 04:36 AM
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Default RE: Balsarite-Use ?

Thanks for the info and I'll use the Fabric Formula on my latest soaring project.
I do have several rolls of Micafilm in my shop which is excellent for gliders and small electric powered models. Wish they continued making it.

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Old 10-17-2013, 10:56 PM
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PS balsarite is simply white PVA nothing more nothing less. Pay AUD $14 for Balsarite or $2 for PVA.
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Old 10-18-2013, 12:31 AM
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Hi guys, Two questions:

Flyoz, can you spell out PVA please? I'm not sure what it is: POLY.... ?

Someone mentioned it prevents overlaps from peeling off. I'm puzzled about that, one would have to put Balsarite on the lower covering ??

Thanks V.

Last edited by vasek; 10-18-2013 at 12:41 AM.
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Old 10-18-2013, 01:26 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by flyoz View Post
PS balsarite is simply white PVA nothing more nothing less. Pay AUD $14 for Balsarite or $2 for PVA.
Polyvinyl alcohol? I don't think so! PVA (mold release) is washed off with soap and water. Balsarite is waterproof.
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Old 10-18-2013, 07:07 AM
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Tower has it in stock and has for as long as I've been buying it.

http://www3.towerhobbies.com/cgi-bin/WTI0001P?I=LXB355
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Old 10-18-2013, 08:36 AM
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For the glue PVA stands for Poly Vinyl Acetate. If you are holding a bottle of thick white glue in your hand chances are good that it's PVA.

Whenever I've covered models with the old original Micafilm (I even still have a few rolls stock piled away that I reserve for special projects ) I use the dope like version of Balsarite. The important thing to remember is that it's a low temperature glue so turn down that iron or the stuff slips and slides and takes too long to cool. It also tends to wick into the wood too far if thinned by excess heat and the bond becomes less strong.

I prefer the dope like Balsarite over the BalsaLOC white glue version because of the faster drying time. Since Micafilm, Polyspan and some of the new films for parkflyers don't have glue on the back side. So overlapped edges need to be bonded down. That's where the faster drying time of the Balsarite comes in. I can paint some on and in a couple of minutes I can proceed with covering the other side. When done a rag dampened with dope thinner or cheap hardware store lacquer thinner will dissolve and clean off any excess at the seam edges so there is no odd looking sheen difference.

Last edited by BMatthews; 10-18-2013 at 08:42 AM.
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Old 10-18-2013, 08:49 AM
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Good catch BMatthews. As you said before the thick white stuff is "BalsaLoc" not "BalsaRite". This thread is about Balsrite.
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Old 10-18-2013, 02:35 PM
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Doh!! I meant Balsloc. Thanks BM and WJ I .hijacked the wrong thread lol
OPS PVA is Poly Vinyl Acetate, both soften and reset with heat ie you can paint PVA on balsa sheet and use the balsa sheet like iron on film
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Old 10-18-2013, 03:05 PM
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OK so diluted white glue won't do the job of balsarite, but since TH won't ship liquids overseas, is there a substitute I can buy over here?

Thanks,V.
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