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  #31  
Old 11-17-2016, 08:56 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by clhug
I've seen other people mention papering fins. Can you explain what that means? I would assume that paper sucks up paint much more so do you still prime before the top coat? But are you saying that you don't have to sand the primer before the top coat?

Thanks!


*backstroking through the vitriol*
To each there own....

clhug:
Glad you asked. Use typing paper with school glue, glue stick or whatever works for you to cover the woodgrain. Below is a detailed How To posted on TRF. Give it a try and see what you think.
Personally I use self adhesive label paper to avoid wrinkling.

Papering fins thread on TRF

Just a few of my builds with papered fins






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  #32  
Old 11-17-2016, 10:20 AM
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neil_w neil_w is offline
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I am a yuuuge fan of papering fins. If I didn't have rockets to build I'd probably buy balsa sheets and paper them just for the sheer fun of it (I'm exaggerating, but only a little). Fin papering does not eliminate the need for priming or sanding, it just fills the wood grain very quickly and effectively. When your fins are papered, there's no such thing as discovering you missed a grain or two after you sand the primer. Your fins will be smooth. The paper does not absorb any excessive amount of paint; you just treat it like any other surface on the rocket. Paper gets used elsewhere in builds anyway, no difference here.

Papering also brings the bonus of adding a good amount of strength to balsa fins. You don't always need the extra strength but it can't hurt.

The biggest advantage for me is that I get foolproof results with much less work than anything else I've tried. I even papered a balsa transition, and it worked out great.

I have been successfully papering with self-stick label paper, and have documented my technique and results an endless number of times on TRF (I look forward to one day being the only person ever banned for too much fin papering). The technique is slightly different than the one Layne linked to.

There is a legitimate question about the longevity of the self-stick labels. I do everything I can to ensure that they are permanent, but only some years into the future will I be able to judge.

Here are a few examples (all from TRF), starting with the most recent:
- APRO Lander main fins
- My final current formula
- Papered transition
- More detailed post showing process

Attached are some sample pics, not all of which really show the fins that well, but whatever.

Anyway, use whatever technique works best for you. I enjoy doing it this way, and am happy with the results.
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  #33  
Old 11-17-2016, 02:41 PM
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Gary,
You do outstanding work. I'll check the TRF threads to learn of your magical ways.
STill haven't had time to build the new Achilles, maybe after the Christmas rush and getting the Spanish Inquisition released.


Quote:
Originally Posted by neil_w
I am a yuuuge fan of papering fins. If I didn't have rockets to build I'd probably buy balsa sheets and paper them just for the sheer fun of it (I'm exaggerating, but only a little). Fin papering does not eliminate the need for priming or sanding, it just fills the wood grain very quickly and effectively. When your fins are papered, there's no such thing as discovering you missed a grain or two after you sand the primer. Your fins will be smooth. The paper does not absorb any excessive amount of paint; you just treat it like any other surface on the rocket. Paper gets used elsewhere in builds anyway, no difference here.

Papering also brings the bonus of adding a good amount of strength to balsa fins. You don't always need the extra strength but it can't hurt.

The biggest advantage for me is that I get foolproof results with much less work than anything else I've tried. I even papered a balsa transition, and it worked out great.

I have been successfully papering with self-stick label paper, and have documented my technique and results an endless number of times on TRF (I look forward to one day being the only person ever banned for too much fin papering). The technique is slightly different than the one Layne linked to.

There is a legitimate question about the longevity of the self-stick labels. I do everything I can to ensure that they are permanent, but only some years into the future will I be able to judge.

Here are a few examples (all from TRF), starting with the most recent:
- APRO Lander main fins
- My final current formula
- Papered transition
- More detailed post showing process

Attached are some sample pics, not all of which really show the fins that well, but whatever.

Anyway, use whatever technique works best for you. I enjoy doing it this way, and am happy with the results.
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PembertonTechnologies.com
P.O. Box 250760
North Little Rock AR, 72225

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at NSL2007

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TRF (at) pembertontechnologies (dot) com
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  #34  
Old 11-17-2016, 03:27 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pem Tech
Gary,
You do outstanding work. I'll check the TRF threads to learn of your magical ways.
STill haven't had time to build the new Achilles, maybe after the Christmas rush and getting the Spanish Inquisition released.


I am not Gary... although, I could consider changing my name if sufficiently "motivated" (ahem).
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  #35  
Old 11-18-2016, 10:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by clhug
I've seen other people mention papering fins. Can you explain what that means? I would assume that paper sucks up paint much more so do you still prime before the top coat? But are you saying that you don't have to sand the primer before the top coat?

Thanks!


Here's a thread I did years ago detailing the process *I* use, which works wonderfully... Here's the relevant posts...

http://www.oldrocketforum.com/showp...406&postcount=6

http://www.oldrocketforum.com/showp...407&postcount=7

http://www.oldrocketforum.com/showp...408&postcount=8

http://www.oldrocketforum.com/showp...409&postcount=9

Which are part of this thread I did of a build of the Dr. Zooch Vanguard Eagle, here...

http://www.oldrocketforum.com/showthread.php?t=7444


No, papering doesn't "suck up much more paint"; it provides a MUCH simpler and more straightforward (and MUCH STRONGER) way to fill the balsa grain BEFORE giving the rocket the usual priming/sanding/painting treatment. The paper basically laminates the balsa fins, giving them MUCH more strength for very little weight gain, and gives you a nice smooth surface to primer. The rocket it still given about 2-3 coats of a good primer, allowed to dry overnight, and sanded with 220 grit followed by 400 grit, sometimes even "damp sanded" with moistened sandpaper to give the final surface treatment before paint application. I've detailed the process on that in other threads if you're interested...

Papering saves having to put a half-dozen coats of primer or sanding sealer on balsa fins trying to fill in the huge honkin' voids in the grain, and having to sand them all out smooth between coats (well, with primer you CAN spray 2-3 coats, sand it out, and then another 2-3 coats and sand it out again, and get *acceptable* results, but usually a third application/sanding cycle is required to get EXCELLENT results. Papering the fins takes care of the grain, and gives you a fin surface more like the rest of the rocket, so a single priming/sanding cycle is usually enough (sometimes a few 'touch ups' are required as needed, but very few) to produce a terrific surface ready for painting to get a top-notch finish on the rocket.

later! OL J R
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  #36  
Old 11-18-2016, 10:28 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pem Tech
*backstroking through the vitriol*
To each there own....

clhug:
Glad you asked. Use typing paper with school glue, glue stick or whatever works for you to cover the woodgrain. Below is a detailed How To posted on TRF. Give it a try and see what you think.
Personally I use self adhesive label paper to avoid wrinkling.

Papering fins thread on TRF

Just a few of my builds with papered fins








EXACTLY!!!

Every guy I've seen knock the papering of fins are using SOME OTHER METHOD OR MATERIALS than what Layne is talking about here... I use the EXACT SAME METHOD, and it WORKS, PERIOD!

That said, there are some "tricks" to it, but they're really easy.

First off, USE WHITE GLUE!!! Don't use yellow carpenters glue (shrinks too much) or (IMHO) other types of glue. Layne says he's had good luck with glue sticks and school glue, both variations on the plain old white Elmer's glue... I've had terrific luck with plain Elmer's white and haven't really tried the others, but I wouldn't be surprised that they worked. Yellow glue just doesn't behave the same, it shrinks too much, and causes problem.

SECOND, *THE* biggest problem I've seen is people using TOO MUCH GLUE. Use ONLY enough glue to completely cover the paper in a VERY THIN, EVEN COAT of glue... press the fin down HARD against the paper, then I apply another VERY THIN EVEN COAT of glue to the unpapered surface of the fin, and fold the fin over onto the rest of the paper, over the leading edge. YOU DO NOT WANT TOO MUCH GLUE OR THE PAPER WILL WRINKLE, WEAKEN AND TEAR, WARP THE FIN, ETC. Basically you should be able to wipe your finger across the glue-applied surface and it come away DAMP with glue, but NO EXCESS GLUE... People usually use too much glue in the MISTAKEN BELIEF that additional glue adds strength-- IT DOES NOT!!! Additional glue only WEAKENS the joint and creates problems from the water "solvent" in the white glue softening and distorting the paper.

THIRD, you need to take a round sharpie marker and BURNISH DOWN the paper onto the surface of the paper-encapsulated fin. Work from the leading edge toward the trailing edge of the fin, and from the center towards the root and tip edges of the fin. This squeezes out ALL excess glue and makes the paper settle down into intimate contact with the wood itself, with only the thinnest layer of glue solids between them to form the joint, and ensure that all air bubbles and other nasties are out of there and that the joint is GOOD AND TIGHT! The paper should be burnished over the edges of the fin to ensure that the edges are well sealed down-- in fact I run the sharpie marker around the paper and burnish it down to itself and the edges of the fin, to ensure absolutely good contact and "seal" the fin inside a layer of paper. The paper is then trimmed later with a SHARP X-ACTO blade to remove any paper from the tip and root edges and trim it down flush to the trailing edge of the fin once dried.

FOURTH, by using the "folded over the leading edge" technique (I detail in my Dr. Zooch Vanguard Eagle build thread) the paper is strongest where the aerodynamic loads on it are the strongest-- it's FOLDED OVER THE LEADING EDGE. Other techniques that are commonly used, using profile "cut-outs" of paper to "skin" the fins from BOTH SIDES, leave an exposed edge at the leading edge which the several hundred MPH slipstream of air rushing past the rocket is attempting to RIP OFF of the fin, making for a weak spot. Most of the delamination problems I've read about have come from people using "self-adhesive label paper" and other things with weak adhesives that are NOT THE BEST FOR PAPER AND WOOD BONDING APPLICATIONS and that leave an exposed edge where the slipstream can attack it in flight, and try to overcome this deficiency with CA "superglues" to essentially "nail" the paper down. If the paper is ONE PIECE that wraps OVER THE LEADING EDGE and then encapsulates BOTH SIDES of the fin, the only "seam" in the paper/glue joint is at the TRAILING EDGE, which the slipstream is PUSHING DOWN against the fin... I've NEVER had a white glue papered fin delaminate.

FIFTH, lots of people believe you have to use some "magic paper" or heavy duty cardstock to achieve any results... this is simply NOT TRUE and COUNTERPRODUCTIVE!!! I use ordinary Wal-Mart 60 pound PRINTER PAPER with perfect results. Heavy-weight paper and cardstock is harder to bend and get to stay "stuck down" because it wants to "straighten out" due to it's own thickness-- which is easier to fold and get it to hold a sharp crease?? Typing paper or construction paper or cardstock?? Same thing applies to papering fins! Some folks have, with varying degrees of success, tried various "butcher papers", "Freezer papers", etc. Some have detailed their failures due to these "exotic papers" and then condemn the entire process because of poor material selection. While some have experienced success and advocate for certain procedures and materials, which if it works for them and you can duplicate their results, GOOD FOR THEM AND FOR YOU! If not, *I* CAN report that using THIN LAYERS OF WHITE GLUE, wrapping the paper OVER THE LEADING EDGE TO ENCAPSULATE THE BALSA FIN, and using ORDINARY PRINTER OR TYPING PAPER *WILL* work, IF DONE CORRECTLY. Others have attempted using other papers like "self adhesive label paper" and such things, again, with varying levels of success and various longevity.

Check out the threads and posts I posted... try it AS SHOWN and if you do it RIGHT, it'll work!

Later! OL J R
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  #37  
Old 11-19-2016, 11:49 AM
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The only method of finishing balsa I take a more "dim view" upon than water-based priming/filling is coating it with paper.
Yechhh.
VOC-laden solvent-based ALL-STEPS finishing of wood or NOTHING for me.
Works the BEST and has the added bonus of PI$$ING-OFF enviro-whacko nut-jobs.
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  #38  
Old 11-19-2016, 12:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by luke strawwalker

FOURTH, by using the "folded over the leading edge" technique (I detail in my Dr. Zooch Vanguard Eagle build thread) the paper is strongest where the aerodynamic loads on it are the strongest-- it's FOLDED OVER THE LEADING EDGE. Other techniques that are commonly used, using profile "cut-outs" of paper to "skin" the fins from BOTH SIDES, leave an exposed edge at the leading edge which the several hundred MPH slipstream of air rushing past the rocket is attempting to RIP OFF of the fin, making for a weak spot. Most of the delamination problems I've read about have come from people using "self-adhesive label paper" and other things with weak adhesives that are NOT THE BEST FOR PAPER AND WOOD BONDING APPLICATIONS and that leave an exposed edge where the slipstream can attack it in flight, and try to overcome this deficiency with CA "superglues" to essentially "nail" the paper down. If the paper is ONE PIECE that wraps OVER THE LEADING EDGE and then encapsulates BOTH SIDES of the fin, the only "seam" in the paper/glue joint is at the TRAILING EDGE, which the slipstream is PUSHING DOWN against the fin... I've NEVER had a white glue papered fin delaminate.

FIFTH, lots of people believe you have to use some "magic paper" or heavy duty cardstock to achieve any results... this is simply NOT TRUE and COUNTERPRODUCTIVE!!! I use ordinary Wal-Mart 60 pound PRINTER PAPER with perfect results.

Later! OL J R


JR,
Points 4 and 5 are very important!
I don't paper all the time but when I do -
Laying the paper over the leading edge is the best way to go! Round just the leading edge, don't round the outside and trailing edges. You end up with a easy rounded leading edge that has no chance of peeling off.
The outside and trailing edges remain square. The paper is easy to trim off and that remaining square sides are easier to fill.
I have better luck using a glue stick. For smaller fins, the glue stick is not as wet and a pretty good working time before it sets up. On larger fins I's probably go with the white glue.

Self adhesive label paper does lift. I remember my old Gyroc hinges coming up.

60 lb. weight paper is great for papering. 110 lb. card stock is too heavy. You don't want to add weight to the back of the model.
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  #39  
Old 11-19-2016, 02:15 PM
clhug clhug is offline
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Thanks for all the info!
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  #40  
Old 11-20-2016, 12:02 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by neil_w
I am not Gary... although, I could consider changing my name if sufficiently "motivated" (ahem).



What have you done with Gary?!
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