[79FT]: Building Things

Tagged with "paint":

Chips and Dings

...Cleetus-Style


On: Mar 11, 2021
In: [Chickenhouse Charger] Electrical Rebuild
Time logged: 22.5
Tags: 6781G, MA5 Charger, paint, fabric, polyfiber

The end in sight; fixing up all the chipping off paint was one of the remaining little things to fix on the Charger before she could take back to the air.

Regardless of history, I knew that she was painted with Polyfiber and Polytone (MEK test proved that).

Back in 2019, when I just got her, this was one of the things I have discussed with a couple of fabric folks, and a few folks from Polyfiber during Oshkosh. With variations, this approach is what seems to be the common theme unless one wants to do a drastic restore - either rejuvenate, or recover.

But first, she needed a bath after almost 2 years in the hangar :).

One wing donw, one to go

One wing donw, one to go

What a difference, eh?

I had a bunch of areas like this:

Chips and cracks

Chips and cracks

Large and small, mostly in the prop wash area where things drum the most.

The approach is not much to talk about. I called it Cleetus-style: a perfect redneck fix for chips in fabric that's purely functional and ugly as hell, and even has the perfect color of duct-tape.

First, I would chip out all the flaking paint, while not being too aggressive: one of the guys I talked to said that if you get to excited with chipping and peeling, you can peel the whole plane if the coatings are starting to lift.

Chipped

Chipped

Then, I would take a rag wet with MEK, and work those edges of remaining paint to melt and blend them in, creating somewhat of a "slope"...

Feathered edges

Feathered edges

And then, I would layer silver (Polyspray) on top of pink (Polybrush) until it was just the perfect level of ugly, and I would feel that I have enough Polyspray to prevent UV attacking the fabric... Doing a 60 watt bulb test to see if any light's coming thru was not really adequately possible for these cracks really, and I opted for layering silver thick enough to be sure I'll have a sufficient amount.

The result?

Perfect ugliness

Perfect ugliness

Perfect ugliness! "You're giving your plane leprosy", remarked my old buddy Jimmy C., accidentally bumping into me in my hangar when he was at the airport. "Yep", I said. Indeed.

Interestingly enough, roughly at the same time someone with a similar problem was soliciting advice on the Biplane Forum. I offered making him a short video about my process, and it turned out to be a much better illustration than what I got above.

Here it is.


Forget all that stuff about thrust and drag, lift and gravity, an airplane flies because of money.



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