Paint repair on EPO Foam

Posted by in Front Page, Projects on 15 Apr, 2013

After lots of reading on rcgroups.com and other forums, I created a decent method to paint my EPO Corsair.

This method worked for me so feel free to try it.

Tools

  • Filler (light weight wall/gib/plaster filler/spackle) - Selleys Permafilla
  • Filler knife
  • Craft knife/box knife
  • Sandpaper – 320grade (grade isn’t important, don’t get too fine though)
  • Methylated Spirits (Denatured alcohol)
  • Rag  (I used an old facecloth)
  • Acrylic paint – from Spotlight $4 a bottle
  • Paint brush
  • Paint tray
  • Drop sheet – big plastic sheet from the $2 store. Keeps paint off everything
  • Disposable gloves
  • Masking tape (I used sellotape/office tape)

First I repaired all the dings and holes in my plane. I wanted a smoother finish of the fuselage. After hot gluing pieces back t ogether, it was rather out of shape and the surface was inconsitent. I also ripped off all the decals as I ordered new ones to apply after painting.

Prep for the filler; I carefully cut out gutters in the glue joins on each repair. This allowed the filler somewhere to go. We don’t want a bulge of filler over the glue – that would defeat the purpose. Use the craft knife to carefully gut away any excess glue and some shallow gutters in the glue joins.

2013-04-07 10.33.00

Now the filler knife was too big, so I ended up cutting half of the 2 inch blade off so I my filler knife was only 1 inch wide. Some people use an old craft knife blade.

Apply the filler over depressions in your repair work and over the where you’ve cut some glue away. Don’t put too much on as you’ll have a hard time sanding it off. It dries rock hard. After you’ve put some on, use your filler knife to smooth it over as to keep it tidy and get rid of any excess.

2013-04-07 09.57.16

Once this is dry use your sand paper to smooth over your repair work. It will look nice and flush with the foam once you’re done. Don’t fret if you are sanding some of the original paint off the foam. We are painting it remember.

Now we need to clean off the dust you’ve created. We want the plane nice and clean before we paint it.

2013-04-07 10.11.32

Put some meths on your rag and carefully wipe over your plane. Use your gloves too as we don’t want the oils from your skin transferring dirt to the foam. If some of your paint comes off, don’t worry at all. Don’t use too much meths, you’re only lightly cleaning it to prep for painting – not sterilizing it before surgery. If you use too much meths you may damage your foam.

Once the meths has dried (it should only take a minute or two) we are ready to paint – almost.

I’m going to assume your plane has multiple colours. You will want to choose a colour to paint until you’re done with it, then move on to another. Get your tape and take a length off. Put it on and off your clothes so it becomes less sticky. Use this less sticky sticky-tape to  border the other colour you’re not colouring. Taping the edges of where you’re painting will give you nice defined zones.

Setup your drop sheet over wherever you’re painting. Put some paint on your tray from the bottle/tube and put a very light coat on your plane. We are going to do 4-6 coats so don’t worry if you can see the original paint through the first few coats.

The acrylic might take 1-2 hours to dry – depending on how much you put on per coat. You should start to smile after about the 3rd coat, when the new paint is all that you’ll see (you shouldn’t see the original paint or foam).  Repeat this for about 4-6 coats or until you are happy. Remember, you are adding weight to your plane by way of the paint.

2013-04-07 17.24.29

 

Ready for the decals to arrive!

Edit: Decals have arrived. Here is the finished product.

2013-04-17 21.15.55-4

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