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General Aircraft: Tips & Techniques
Discussions on specific A/C building techniques.
Help Needed Polishing Canopies
armouredcharmer
_VISITCOMMUNITY
England - East Anglia, United Kingdom
Joined: June 09, 2009
KitMaker: 670 posts
AeroScale: 175 posts
Posted: Friday, July 03, 2009 - 08:01 PM UTC
Hi Gang,
Although i`ve been in our beloved hobby for over thirty years i`ve still to master some basic techniques.One such is how to polish mould seam lines/scratches out of canopies,on this subject i`m a complete novice.
Any and all tips on how to do this would be most welcome as i`ve two Revell 1/32 eagles on the go with hideous seam lines right down the centre of the canopies.
EdgarBrooks
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England - South East, United Kingdom
Joined: June 03, 2006
KitMaker: 397 posts
AeroScale: 384 posts
Posted: Friday, July 03, 2009 - 08:30 PM UTC
First, scrape away the most prominent part of the line, with a straight-edged blade. If you continually run your thumb across it, you'll be able to tell when it's virtually flat. The best material, that I've found, from this point, is Micromesh, packs of which are available in many of the shops which also stock Alclad metallic paints. Certainly, The Aviation Hobby Shop has them, and I'd expect Hannant's to have them, as well.
Treated like wet-and-dry sandpaper, and used wet, the method differs, markedly, from "ordinary" paper, since you should use each successive grade in straight lines, and at right angles to the preceding. The grade numbers bear no relation to standard paper grades; the last one is 12000, and feels incredibly smooth to the touch. Any scratches can be removed by this material; I've removed etched fingerprints from perspex before now. When you get used to using it, you'll find that Little Cars supply a sanding stick, with four grades already attached; however, used carefully, a pack of Micromesh will last for ages. Mine is 10+ years old. When the sanding is finished, a coat of gloss varnish (or a dip in Klear, if you can still find it) will finish the job.
Edgar
armouredcharmer
_VISITCOMMUNITY
England - East Anglia, United Kingdom
Joined: June 09, 2009
KitMaker: 670 posts
AeroScale: 175 posts
Posted: Saturday, July 04, 2009 - 07:26 AM UTC
Hi Edgar,
Thanks for the advice,i`m delivering in Lowestoft next week so hopefully i`ll be able to pop into Hannants and pick some up.
mvfrog
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California, United States
Joined: August 25, 2008
KitMaker: 369 posts
AeroScale: 104 posts
Posted: Saturday, July 04, 2009 - 07:38 AM UTC
The key here is the Klear. I had a canopy like the one you are talking about, so I sanded it with the various grades of sanding cloth until it was very smooth, but no longer clear. I dipped it in Future (Klear) and it came out crystal clear. I use it on all of my canopies because of the great job it works on the clarity of the clear plastic. Amazing stuff.

Matt