Latex paint on fabric covering

Discussion in 'Finishing Techniques' started by Othman, Apr 12, 2006.

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  1. Apr 12, 2006 #1

    Othman

    Othman

    Othman

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    Hello eveyone,

    I found this article on the Bowers Flybaby website, thought it was pretty interesting. Does anyone have any experience with using latex paint on fabric?

    What are your opinions on this application?

    http://www.bowersflybaby.com/tech/latex.html
     
  2. Apr 12, 2006 #2

    Craig

    Craig

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    Latex

    Ashraf -

    The last place that you want to save money is in the finishing.

    EVERY time you open your hanger doors, what you will see is the outside of the airplane, with all the beauty that you put into it with your hard work.

    Yes, Latex will work. It will be heavier than some finishing products, lighter than others. You still need to encapsulate the fabric, put in some UV protection, and develop a finish coat

    The latex-painted airplanes that I've seen have been downright UGLY, and I would not to claim one as my own.

    For a fast, complete finish, check out Mike Loehle's systems. One black primer coat, one white primer coat, color, and clear. You can do without the clear, but it really protects the paint. Sometimes Mike is able to finish an entire airplane in one day.

    Traditional dope gives a good finish, albeit a bit labor intensive. Polyfiber gives a good, durable, good-looking finish also, witha bit less work, and a bit less gloss unless you finish with their urethane paint, which is highly glossy.

    Make that airplane as beautiful as you can - you have devoted several years of your life to it.
     
  3. Apr 12, 2006 #3

    sonex293

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    Loehle System

    I too like Mike Loehle's system ...

    Loehle Aero Coatings

    Craig, Did you attend Mike's SnF seminar this year? I remember Mike saying the same things you just did! Mike has a great knowledge of paint systems and his presentation this year was very informative.

    --
    Michael
     
  4. Apr 12, 2006 #4

    Othman

    Othman

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    Noted... Latex paint will stay in the house.
     
  5. Apr 13, 2006 #5

    Craig

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    Mike's Forum

    Michael -
    Yes, I did attend the forum. I have started a small business dealing with covering/painting airplanes, and had been introduced to the system about 6 months ago - after seeing it on a gorgeoud Stearman.

    Most of the good systems - Loehle's, Polyfiber - are very easy to use when done properly, and seem to last forever.

    And it is always a joy to open the hanger door and see YOUR little beauty shining at you!
     
  6. Apr 13, 2006 #6

    sonex293

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    Loehle System Weight

    I've got a question into Mike, but haven't gotten a response yet. I'm giving him some time to recover from the SnF trip!

    Maybe you might know the answer. Next summer I'll be painting an all aluminum aircraft and trying to determing how much weight a properlly applied primer(white)/color/clear Loehle system is per square foot. I'd love to order a small quantity of his paints and paint several 1'x1' aluminum squares and measure the before and after weights and get high,low and average numbers. Couldn't take that much product. But for an experiment, I think that would cost too much. I don't want exact numbers, just ballpark numbers. Any ideas?

    Later,
    Michael
    Sonex #293
     
  7. Apr 13, 2006 #7

    Craig

    Craig

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    Weight

    Michael, I really don't know. A typical homebuilt like Cub-size usually has between 45 and 75 lb. in the cover and finish. It is about 8-10 lb. for the fabric, the rest is glue and paint and reinforcements.

    Mike delivers good mil thickness in his various coats - about 2 mil/coat for four coats, or 8-10 mils. But that is still thinner than Polyfiber, with 1 mil per coat for a minimum of 12 coats, or dope, with 30-40 coats at 0.5 mil each.

    It will be interesting to see his response, or your test on foot-square pieces of aluminum! Better get a gram scale.
     
  8. Oct 10, 2009 #8

    xj35s

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    Old post but.... Fisher Flying Products just posted Latex as an acceptable way of covering. I need to recover my wings the least expensive way. What do you all think of it on an all wood wing?

    Whomever covered my FP202 did a poor job and I'm uncertain what was used. It's peeling off and leaving clean fabric. I think if I can peel all of it off I can do the paint without removing the Dacron. The cloth was glued and tightened beautifully. I'm not sure what went wrong with the sealing process.
     
  9. Oct 11, 2009 #9

    Dan Thomas

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    I did the latex thing and it's awfully heavy. I used an automotive urethane as a topcoat, and once the job was done the cost was as bad as if I had used Poly-fiber all the way. You mostly get what you pay for, but in this case I got a lot less.

    If your finish is peeling off and leaving the fabric bare, the first coat was sprayed on. Poly-Fiber, for instance, will warn you to brush the first coat into the fabric; this forces the stuff through the weave and encapsulates the fibers, making it impossible for it to fall off. Subsequent coats spayed on will melt into the previous coat and bond well, but spraying onto bare fabric will just result in it's sitting right on the surface. Since the fabric is polyester, it's slippery and not much will actually stick to it; it has to wrap around every fiber.

    Dan
     
  10. Oct 11, 2009 #10

    xj35s

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    Thanks Dan, did you use just 3 coats? It seems two are sufficient to fill the weave. then a top coat of color choice?

    I have to be honest, I'm looking at cost alone on this. I may do the poly fiber if the coat on there peels clean. Dacron+ poly is too much for me right now.
     
  11. Oct 12, 2009 #11

    Dan Thomas

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    I did two coats of black as a UV blocker (which I've since heard may be less than ideal; black blocks visible light but it might let UV through) and a coat of white so the yellow had some hope of covering it. All three were wet-sanded between coats, and latex wet-sands beautifully.
     
  12. Oct 12, 2009 #12

    Topaz

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    The special carbon-black paint used as a UV block on composite airplanes should do the trick in one coat.
     
  13. Oct 12, 2009 #13

    BBerson

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    We need more scientific study of this. As Dan said, UV is not visible light. UV can be blocked by clear films. Ordinary sun block for skin, for example, is clear. I have heard that transparent mica is also used for a UV barrier in clearcoat paints.

    Since UV light is more energetic than visible light, it could penetrate deep like X-rays, but who knows for sure?

    The titanium dioxide in white paint may be just as good as carbon black.

    I have been looking for good data regarding paint thickness, so far I have not found much.
     
  14. Oct 13, 2009 #14

    Topaz

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    I was speaking of the UV-barrier primers made specifically for homebuilt composite aircraft use. They seem to do a dandy job of protecting fiberglass/epoxy structures in actual use, with some of the older EZ airframes having more than thirty years of service and exposure.

    UV is still light, in the lay sense. It just happens to be just beyond our visual range. X-rays are quite a bit farther along in the EM spectrum.
     
  15. Oct 13, 2009 #15

    bmcj

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    I've read of people successfully spraying a thinned latex over an aircraft-grade silver UV coating.
     
  16. Oct 14, 2009 #16

    xj35s

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    That's along the lines I'm thinking. One good Latex paint for base coat and uv protection. One more for full seal of material and Final color coat. Maybe two coats would be enough?
     
  17. Oct 14, 2009 #17

    BBerson

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    I am trying to eliminate the primer coats to save weight and expense. If a couple coats of white is proven sufficient, then extra primer is not required. I have not seen any actual test results to determine that primer is any better than white paint for UV protection.

    Older gliders were protected with white gelcoat only, no primer. Most gliders are painted with polyurethane now. The question is: how thick of coating is needed?
     
  18. Oct 14, 2009 #18

    bmcj

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    I believe you can still buy the aluminum powder to mix in your paint for UV protection rather than buy the pre-mixed paint.
     
  19. Oct 14, 2009 #19

    BBerson

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    I bought some aluminum powder and tried it. I mixed it with the white paint and it changed the color somewhat. But my point is this: who knows how much is required and what works based on actual testing? Just because the paint salesman wants to sell an extra $1000 dollars of primer is not useful. I want real information.

    Why is aluminum powder any different than titanium dioxide (white pigment)?
     
  20. Oct 14, 2009 #20

    Dan Thomas

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    Aluminum powder is a mechanical UV blocker and it stops all light if there's enough of it. It does take a pile of it, though; in a gallon can there'll be an inch of it settled on the bottom.

    Skimping on covering systems is a good way to burn money. As I said before, I did the latex thing and wish I hadn't; I paid good money and got an inferior finish.

    Dan
     

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