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Painting Cox Foam Wings

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Thinking Painting Cox Foam Wings

Post  ama353 on Mon Jun 02, 2014 1:14 pm

I have foam wings (as supplied with the Chipmunk and Me-109 Super Stunter) and parts to build a couple of the Fw-190A "Butcher Birds" from Cox plans.

Question: Can the foam wings be painted? Thanks in advance for sharing your experiences!

Dennis
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Thinking Re: Painting Cox Foam Wings

Post  RknRusty on Mon Jun 02, 2014 2:04 pm

I'll be watching for answers too, as I have a set of 48" symmetrical foam wings and have no idea how to work with them. They'll make a nice plane someday when I do.
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Thinking Re: Painting Cox Foam Wings

Post  ian1954 on Mon Jun 02, 2014 2:15 pm

It really depends on the type of foam and the surface finish.
 
I have painted "Elapor" foam after lightly sanding the surface with 500 grit paper and used acrylic paint with no issues.

I have also used a water based polyurathane but when this was applied to an unidentified foam - the foam softened.
 
I used some foam packing to support a model I was doping and watched the foam dissolve after I rested the brush on it. I assume that anything cellulose base is a "no no".
 
I think any foam will react to "solvent" based paints - a difficult one to answer - some are tougher than others.
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Thinking Re: Painting Cox Foam Wings

Post  Ken Cook on Mon Jun 02, 2014 2:26 pm

I use the Nelson water based poly. Any latex house paint can be used and top coated with Nelson clear. Another paint I use is the upside down spray paint which is a water formula available in neon colors. I use this extensively on combat foamies followed with iron on clear covering. Enamel paints will work such as Rustoleum. The problem with these paints in the spray can is the vehicle that delivers the paint from the can. If your too close it will melt the foam. Spraying at a distance works however. It's a very easy line to cross however and the crinkling occurs. Ken
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Thinking Re: Painting Cox Foam Wings

Post  ian1954 on Mon Jun 02, 2014 3:27 pm

Ken is definitely well practised in foam painting.

I looked at this site following Ken's post

http://www.nelsonpaint.com/

but I have to say that I still wouldn't be able to select a paint.

Household paints in the UK - Gloss, Satin, Matt and water based emulsions are all too heavy for models.

Not all paints and varnishes say much about the constituents. Some, for example, advise cleaning brushes with water and yet thinning the paint with white spirit.

I found acrilic paints to be best thinned for spraying with isoproponol and a little water.

What we call enamel paints - like Humbrol - are solvent based and can be thinned with naptha, white spirit or cellulose thinners.
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Thinking Re: Painting Cox Foam Wings

Post  duke.johnson on Mon Jun 02, 2014 3:57 pm

I don't know what happened to my post. Here we go again.

Two ways I've had success.

1) mix/thin white glue 50-50 with water, brush on foam, apply silk or poly span. use a playing card to smooth covering and remove excess glue, apply glue to dry spot if needed, let dry, sand lightly,apply another coat of thinned glue, let dry, sand if needed, paint with just about any spray can paint

2) cover with SLC iron on film from Corehouse, sand covering with green ScotchBrite type pads, make sure to have tight seams in covering, paint with just about any spray can paint.

Test first!

I like Lusterkote and Rustoleum. I have not tried this on Cox wing cores, but it has worked on all foams I've used. I've recently painted DTF with Minwax water bases Poly spray and then painted with several light coats of paint.
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Thinking Re: Painting Cox Foam Wings

Post  Ken Cook on Mon Jun 02, 2014 4:24 pm

Here's the link ( http://www.nelsonhobby.com/hobby_paint.php ) to Nelson's hobby paint. Fuel proof up to 50% nitro using the crosslinker, I use 45% exclusively. The paint is expensive but with practice it goes a long way with good results. It's best to call John the owner as the website is usually down or not working. Ken
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Thinking Re: Painting Cox Foam Wings

Post  batjac on Mon Jun 02, 2014 7:25 pm

duke.johnson wrote: I've recently painted DTF with Minwax water bases Poly spray and then painted with several light coats of paint.

Duke, any pictures of vid of this method?

The Inquiring Mark
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Thinking Re: Painting Cox Foam Wings

Post  duke.johnson on Mon Jun 02, 2014 8:46 pm

batjac wrote:
duke.johnson wrote: I've recently painted DTF with Minwax water bases Poly spray and then painted with several light coats of paint.

Duke, any pictures of vid of this method?

The Inquiring Mark

I saw it on the flite test website.
http://www.flitetest.com/articles/minwax-on-your-plane
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Thinking Re: Painting Cox Foam Wings

Post  GallopingGhostler on Mon Jul 07, 2014 8:08 am

Pactra used to have their urethane series of spray paints that was fuel proof and safe for foam. I used that back in the 1980's. I've used water based latex paints then a coating of oil based polyurethane varnish on foam to fuel proof it. I imagine the oil based Rust-O-Leum color paints would work also. I would spray those using equipment. I don't know if the propellants in their spray cans is safe, or if the spray can versions are fuel proof.
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