Some of the technical specifications said 1 year UV protection or 3 year. I am not sure what that means as regards a steady loss of strength or not. Might want to keep it inside when not flying after you finish. Might be instructive to build a test frame with scraps, and get a fabric punch tester to test for any loss of strength if you do decide to keep it outside.So far I keep it outside the shop to work on it.
During winter it will be stored in my storage unit with it's wings folded back.
I found this as to strength. see attachmentI have done a little research, comparing 1 brand of shrink wrap with oratex for use on a mini max or US ultralight. The shrink wrap, like oratex, would save time and weight over traditional coverings that need filling and painting.
Shrink Wrap Containment for Buildings and Construction - Pro-tect Plastic & Supply, Inc.
priced smallest rolls available
Construction Industrial Shrink Wrap
flame retardant, uv protection
12 mil .065lb/sf $.21/sf
10.5mil .056lb/sf $.16/sf
9mil .049lb/sf $.14/sf
boat wrap - white and blue available
7mil .035lb/sf $.084/sf 5.04oz/yd
2"x60yds 9.5 mil seam tape $8.50 white 4" & 6" tape available
I could not find the similar breaking and tear strength specs for the wrap. I am assuming it is less than any common cloth
TECHNICAL SPECIFICATIONS / DOWNLOAD SOLARIG™ 172 DATASHEET
Parameter Units Specification
Cloth Weight oz/sqft 5.1 ± 5%
Thickness mil 8±1
Breaking Strength lb/inch ≥84
Elongation at Break % ≥20
Tear Strength lb ≥33
Light Transmission % 88%
Diffused Light % 60% ± 5%
Direct Light % 28% ± 5%
Thermicity (Lower is better) 20
UV stability Years of warranty 6 years
6000 .31 - .35lb/sf about $91/yd 2013 72.22/yd or $8.03/sf including tape
Tensile strength lengthwise: Min. 1300 – 1600 N/50 mm
Tensile strength crosswise: Min. 1100 – 1400 N/50 mm
Breaking extension lengthwise: 12 – 20%
Breaking extension crosswise: 12 – 20%
Tear propagation load lengthwise: 26 – 32 N
Tear propagation load crosswise: 28 – 34 N
600 .20 - .27lb/sf estimate of $50/yd or $5.56/sf including tape
Tensile strength lengthwise: 750 – 1050 N/50 mm
Tensile strength crosswise: 650 – 950 N/50 mm
Breaking extension lengthwise: 10 – 18%
Breaking extension crosswise: 11 – 20%
Tear propagation load lengthwise: 18 – 24 N
Tear propagation load crosswise: 16 – 22 N
commonly used fabrics, fillers, and paints systems can be heavier by 20lbs or more than oratex according to this poster on Wings Forum • View topic - Oratex:
Postby cmcgeary » Wed May 01, 2013 7:45 am
I've also been researching this stuff. It comes in 2 weights (600UL and 6000). Still trying to do a direct strength comparison between it and convention fabrics like Ceconite. Given 90 sq yards of material, plus trim tape costs, etc., I estimate ~$4500 to cover in 600UL and ~$6500 to cover in 6000. Folks on the Supercub site are saying to figure on $5000 in materials to cover a Supercub in Polyfiber.
Finding accurate material weights for conventional fabrics was difficult, but Brian over at Supercub.org did some painting and weighing. According to him, 3.16 oz Polyfiber with PolyTone & PolySpray weighs 6.3 oz/sq yard covered for UV only. Painted white, you're up to 7.6 oz/sq yard. Someone else weighed the same fabric with Stewart Systems Grey at 6.4 oz/sq yard. 600UL weighs between 3 and 3.5 oz/sq yard depending on color. 6000 weighs 4.2 to 4.6 oz/sq yard. So, if you cover the SuperSTOL like the Sun'n'Fun bird (2/3 UV silver, 1/3 Red & black paint, all 2.7 oz Superflite), you end up with about 35 lb of covering. Cover the bird in Oratex 6000, you end up at 26 lb for the heaviest color. If you cover all in the heaviest Oratex 600UL, you end up at 20 lb.
Since my Dad and I want to build the SuperSTOL we have on order in my basement, and we don't want to gas ourselves, our wives or the cat, the Oratex sounds great! It's a 35 minute drive to the airport (my alternate build site). I'll save the difference in cost in gas alone. Now, I just have to figure out how much of the plane we can safely cover in 600UL.....
Yes, the more you spend, the better material you get.
for my slow little mini-max, I will use ~38yds fabric or wrap.
I estimate $2500 to cover it in oratex 600 in 2016.
the boat wrap only comes in large rolls, 1400sf for the smallest. Thats 155yds. But it is only $118 plus shipping for a 14'x100' roll (no mid-wing seams). Add 2 rolls of seam tape and their spray glue to pre-tape the ribs and edges. I'm at about $150+ and 12lbs. a little heavier than Oratex at about 10lb, and not nearly as durable, nor colorful. a Polyfiber with PolyTone & PolySpray would be just over 18lbs if you know what you are doing. Even heavier with latex paint. I could sell the remaining wrap or keep it for recovering. I would prefer oratex, but for this inexpensive build, I just can't justify the extra cost.
Since it has been used on an ultralight before with good results, I would try it. I may have to recover in a few years worst case. but at that price I am still ahead.
I wouldn't use it on anything that flys over ~90mph or weighs more than 500 or so pounds until more test have been made. I think a good test would be to make a frame, cover and test it. In the winter i can get up to 75mph winds near the foothills west of denver, that would be a good test also. I have a door frame that would be a perfect test bed. I have some left over polyfiber to test with also. I will have a closer look at their glue before using it, but it sounds like it is formulated for use with this wrap.
I guess I have talked my self into at least testing the wrap.