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Stits Covered 1/4 Scale Cub

Old 11-02-2015, 01:16 PM
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Love2FlyMN
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Default Stits Covered 1/4 Scale Cub

I did some looking around to try to figure out how much of each of the materials I need. I don't really want to read for hours sifting through other threads.

When I called stits, they told me it would cost about $300 to cover my cub, and I thought that sounded like wayyy too much.
I think it would cost that much if I went ahead and put the UV protection paint on and everything, but I don't think that's necessary.

So I just want to double check that my bill of materials will be enough to get my Cub covered.

4 yards Lite Fabric (I believe it's 60" wide)
1 Pint PolyTak
1 Quart Poly tone (J-3 OEM Yellow)
1 Qt Poly brush.


Is there anything else I'll need? MEK for thinning the poly brush for spraying?? Where would I get this?

Thanks in advance.
Old 11-02-2015, 01:20 PM
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Love2FlyMN
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Also, light kits...What would be a good light kit for this? I saw some on Ebay for like $30, but I don't think they had the light controller.
Old 11-02-2015, 02:57 PM
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Chip Mull at F&M has always been right on relative to his recommendations for how much paint and covering would be required. I haven't ordered in a while so I can't quote exact amounts but 4 yds sounds about right for a 1/scale cub. However, 1 quart of the yellow will not suffice. Yellow is notoriously hard to get a good even, opaque color with. I think it is usually recommended to put down a coat of white first to help (although this might not be needed if you don't put down the UV undercoat), but in any case you'll need at least 2 quarts of yellow. I normally clear coat as well but I guess that's not required. Be aware that the UV undercoating also serves to do much of the weave filling. If you skip this step, you may end up with the weave being more pronounced than you would like.
Old 11-03-2015, 01:16 PM
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Love2FlyMN
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I thought poly brush was responsible for filling the weave?

Thinking I might just use SolarTex. How much of this will I need? Is Solartex the one that a lot of people use instead of fabric/dope?
Old 11-03-2015, 02:21 PM
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Solartex is easier and a whole lot of people swear by it. I've never used it except for some commercial pinked rib tapes cut from it. You should be able to calculate how much you'll need based on the size of your wings and fuse and the width and length of the solartex rolls.
Old 11-03-2015, 06:17 PM
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Originally Posted by Love2FlyMN View Post
I thought poly brush was responsible for filling the weave?

Thinking I might just use SolarTex. How much of this will I need? Is Solartex the one that a lot of people use instead of fabric/dope?
The Solar Tex is far inferior to the polyfiber in every way. Polyfiber applied properly is drum tight and very tough. Solar Tex is much more flimsy and may need to be shrunk again with handling and changes in temperature. The iron on adhesive is poor compared to the bond you get with the polytak.

You can even scrub marks off the polytone with bleach with no effect to the finish.

Dennis
Old 11-03-2015, 06:22 PM
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Originally Posted by RBACONS View Post
Chip Mull at F&M has always been right on relative to his recommendations for how much paint and covering would be required. I haven't ordered in a while so I can't quote exact amounts but 4 yds sounds about right for a 1/scale cub. However, 1 quart of the yellow will not suffice. Yellow is notoriously hard to get a good even, opaque color with. I think it is usually recommended to put down a coat of white first to help (although this might not be needed if you don't put down the UV undercoat), but in any case you'll need at least 2 quarts of yellow. I normally clear coat as well but I guess that's not required. Be aware that the UV undercoating also serves to do much of the weave filling. If you skip this step, you may end up with the weave being more pronounced than you would like.
+1, you will use way more paint material than you can imagine! A CUB has a considerable area to cover and then you have to consider multiple coats, waste, thinning, cleanup, etc. From past experience, $300 sounds about right!

Do you have experience with painted fabric coverings of any type? Do you have a well ventilated area to work in? I hope you are not going to attempt this in a house as the Stits paints have an incredible odor and the MEK base solvent can be explosive. Are you going to spray or brush the finish coats ..... spraying works best for most people.
Old 11-03-2015, 08:54 PM
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Say no to solartex. You are on the right track using poly lite. I use the poly-tak around the perimeter, shrink it like they say to, One thing I do that is kind of cool is I glue threads to paper and cut it to simulate the stitches, then cover it over with the finishing tape. I use stix-it to adhere the rib stitch strips and the finishing tape then seal the whole thing with 2 or 3 light coats of nitrate dope. I like to spray the coats with it thinned enough to be sprayed. about 70% dope and the rest lacquer thinner. I don't fill the weave because the primer I use fills it adequately enough for me. I use Klass-Kote epoxy systems so, even the primer is a two part deal.
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Old 11-03-2015, 08:58 PM
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Steve S. Helland
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Yes Solar-tex is less expensive but the quality of the poly lite job is worth it in my opinion. The Klass-Kote paint for my 1/4 scale biplane cost is right around 200 bucks...just for the paint, but when I'm done it will be show room quality and nobody on the planet will have one just like mine!
Old 11-04-2015, 10:43 AM
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Glad you guys said it. I just didn't want to start a covering brand war.

One more thing to note. If you do go with the Stits Polyfiber, get the temperature meter they sell. You do need to use the proper temperatures or you risk imploding your airframe.
Old 11-04-2015, 01:41 PM
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The temp meter - are you just talking about an IR thermometer? I do have one of those if so.

I don't really care to do the pinking or anything fancy, unless it's recommended for durability. I'm not trying to get any more scale than it's an airplane and it's painted Cub yellow.

I don't think the UV protection would be necessary because it's not like it's going to sit out in the sun day after day.

I work in the aviation industry and my coworker uses Stits on his full sized planes and he said the UV layer shouldn't be necessary. He told me just just poly-taks, then poly brush the first layer of dope on, then sprays two more layers after that.

I will be working it in my garage with ample ventilation.
Old 11-04-2015, 02:42 PM
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Originally Posted by Love2FlyMN View Post
I did some looking around to try to figure out how much of each of the materials I need. I don't really want to read for hours sifting through other threads.

When I called stits, they told me it would cost about $300 to cover my cub, and I thought that sounded like wayyy too much.
I think it would cost that much if I went ahead and put the UV protection paint on and everything, but I don't think that's necessary.

So I just want to double check that my bill of materials will be enough to get my Cub covered.

4 yards Lite Fabric (I believe it's 60" wide)
1 Pint PolyTak
1 Quart Poly tone (J-3 OEM Yellow)
1 Qt Poly brush.


Is there anything else I'll need? MEK for thinning the poly brush for spraying?? Where would I get this?

Thanks in advance.
I used the Polyfiber system on my 1/4 cub. $250-300 is about right. Go here for your needs http://www.polyfiber.com/
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Old 11-04-2015, 02:46 PM
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Love2FlyMN
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Polyfiber is the same as Stits, no?

Did you use all of the different coats of paint and do pinking etc?

Basically I'm just looking for the bare minimum...What is going to get me in the air? My only requirement is that my airplane flies and the paint looks OK.
Old 11-04-2015, 03:15 PM
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Originally Posted by Love2FlyMN View Post
Polyfiber is the same as Stits, no?

Did you use all of the different coats of paint and do pinking etc?

Basically I'm just looking for the bare minimum...What is going to get me in the air? My only requirement is that my airplane flies and the paint looks OK.
Yes

Yes, I have done a few by this method.

There are several steps to the Stits/polyfiber systems. If you are new to the hobby then I would consider another alternative. If you have been doing modeling for a while then maybe give it s try, It is a far superior finish for aircraft but requires patience, time and $$$.
Old 11-04-2015, 04:23 PM
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I have done a few with the Stits system as well. Stits has a nice tutorial on their site, I recommend reading it, the polyfibre is the same as polylite. I recommend Sig Stix-it for attaching the fabric much easier than the polytak, no the polyspray is not necessary, this is all I use now and have been for several years. Here are a few models I have done with it.
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Last edited by acerc; 11-04-2015 at 04:30 PM.
Old 11-04-2015, 04:43 PM
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Originally Posted by Love2FlyMN View Post
The temp meter - are you just talking about an IR thermometer? I do have one of those if so.
Yes, the IR Thermometer. You should be all set then. And spraying 2 coats of the polybrush instead of 1 coat should help with filling the weave.

You can use MEK to thin the products (polytak and the paints) rather than buying the expensive reducer and to clean your spray equipment. Get gloves to work with any of the "poly" products or MEK. Nitrile will dissolve, powder-free latex are not entirely impermeable to the solvents but easy to come by and better than nothing. I use a disposable 3M respirator when working with the stuff. About $25 and lasts for a year or 2 if you keep it in a sealed zip lock bag. Don't underestimate the potential nastiness of the fumes.
Old 11-04-2015, 04:52 PM
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One other thing, don't go over about 280 when shrinking and watch it as you go. This fabric is very strong and if fully heated will break frame work. The fabric will shrink about 10-12% which is a lot and make's compound curve's such as the Cub's tail fin a breeze. This fabric will not wrinkle or deform after it is finished such as most other hobby grade covering's.
Old 11-04-2015, 05:57 PM
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solartex then use pink it iron on !!! then spray cub yellow slow CA on stitching //// Looks Like full scale no primer just shoot single stage Dupont paint over it all ....
Old 11-05-2015, 08:45 AM
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Wow, great input everyone.

Thanks very much.

So the main components I'll need...

4 yards Lite Fabric (I believe it's 60" wide)
1 Pint PolyTak or Stix-it
1-2 Quarts Poly tone (J-3 OEM Yellow) (I will try to calculate based on 1 gallon covering 200 sq ft
1 Qt Poly brush.
MEK for thinning. (Does this take place of the Poly dope 65-75 reducer?)


Thanks again, the input is much appreciated.
Old 11-05-2015, 10:04 AM
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One tip for any CUB yellow user. This seems to be the most mis-matched color in the world. I have sourced paint from multiple vendors in Dope, Stits, Klass-Kote, automotive Poly-U and hobby sources and rarely will any of these paints exactly match the others. Point being, when you source your paint, use the same single source for all the paint you will use. I've had the best luck with Klass-Kote as it seems to work well over fabric (is flexible in thin film thicknesses) and solid surfaces such as cowls, etc. Coverage is very good and cost is reasonable.
Old 11-05-2015, 10:15 AM
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I don't understand why you want to go with Stits if you aren't going to do a lot of scale detailing. If the goal is, as you said, just to get it covered and in the air as quickly as possible, you won't see many of the benefits of using a fabric system. Do the plane in pre painted Solartex and shoot a coat of clear on it, then paint the stripe down the side and put the decals on. You can have that all done in the time it'll take just to apply the fabric with the Stits system. And Solartex does hold up fairly well. Yes, it will need to be reshrunk from time to time, and it will eventually start to come loose at the seams. But for a practical everyday flyer, it's the way to go.
Old 11-05-2015, 10:24 AM
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I don't want to have to re-shrink and re-seal edges. I want something that's more durable than iron on. It's not about getting it in the air as quickly as possible, it's about getting a decent covering on and not spending forever detailing something out if I don't really care about a 100% scale look.
Maybe if I had more time and nothing else going on I'd detail it out, but I'm not in that phase of my life right now.
Old 11-05-2015, 12:07 PM
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Originally Posted by Propworn View Post
The Solar Tex is far inferior to the polyfiber in every way. Polyfiber applied properly is drum tight and very tough. Solar Tex is much more flimsy and may need to be shrunk again with handling and changes in temperature. The iron on adhesive is poor compared to the bond you get with the polytak.

You can even scrub marks off the polytone with bleach with no effect to the finish.

Dennis
I haven't had that experience at all. I think Solartex/Worldtex is great stuff, especially for rounded wingtips.

If you look at my models you can see a Stampe that was done in white Solartex and orange Worldtex and a Corsair that was done in white Solartex painted with Rustoleum over a white Towerkote primer. The covering stayed tight as long as I had them and was very easy doing compound curves.

Last edited by rgburrill; 11-05-2015 at 12:17 PM.
Old 11-05-2015, 12:27 PM
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ACERC, That last giant pitts is beautiful!
Old 11-05-2015, 01:17 PM
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Originally Posted by Love2FlyMN View Post
Wow, great input everyone.

Thanks very much.

So the main components I'll need...

4 yards Lite Fabric (I believe it's 60" wide)
1 Pint PolyTak or Stix-it
1-2 Quarts Poly tone (J-3 OEM Yellow) (I will try to calculate based on 1 gallon covering 200 sq ft
1 Qt Poly brush.
MEK for thinning. (Does this take place of the Poly dope 65-75 reducer?)


Thanks again, the input is much appreciated.
Don't kid yourself. You will need at least 2 quarts of the yellow for a 1/4 scale cub because yellow takes more coats to get opaque. And yes, use MEK for thinning instead of the reducer. I've seen no difference between using the expensive reducer and using MEK. Also, I thin the polytak slightly as well. It helps it brush on easier, stays wet a few seconds longer (allowing you to do slightly larger sections at once), and avoids some lumpiness that you can get if the polytak is too thick.

When you're done, your plane, fabric, and paint will be good for 20+ years.

Couple of notes. Subsequent coats of paint melt into the previous coat. So if you get dust or something in your paint, when its dry you can pick it out or wet sand it out and when you do the next coat, you'll never know it was there. Also, if you get a run, you can carefully keep misting it to keep it wet and it will lay down to a large extent. Be aware this also means that MEK and/or acetone will remove your paint job (and Polytak as well), even when its fully dry. Other than that, its impervious to glow, gas, and electrons.

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