Antique biplanes have lots of fabric! Whether it's Ceconite or Stitts, this fabric will last a long time and provide a colorful and durable exterior for your flying machine. However, these systems weaken and wear out after 25 or 30 years, and need to be periodically replaced. The fabric and the paint on your airplane are the first things someone sees when they view you airplane, so this should be done well.
Here is an informational note from the company we buy POLYFIBER from - Consolidated Aircraft Coatings
It's A Complete System -- No More Shopping
When you cover your airplane with Poly-Fiber, you get
need. All the tools and materials, all from your Poly-Fiber distributor.
The Best Manual in the Business!
151 pages of step-by-step instruction, helpful photos, great nostalgic
cartoons, extra words of wisdom, and a delightful sense of humor. And we've
included our entire catalog of products, everything from fabrics to stirring
paddles. Current Procedure Manual No. 1 is Revision No. 21, dated
Throughout the US and Canada we conduct how-to workshops sponsored
by our distributors, EAA
SportAir Center. Our mini-workshops are also incorporated into major
airshows and fly-ins like Oshkosh, Sun 'n Fun, Copperstate, Arlington, Golden
West, and the PFA Rally in England. BIPE INC. CONDUCTS WORKSHOPS - CALL 561-818-4221
There's An Instructional Video.
This new EAA Sportair two-hour comprehensive video presents every aspect
of our Poly-Fiber fabric covering process in detail and in easy-to-understand
language. From preparing the airplane for covering to spraying on the colors,
you are guided step by step through the entire process by a professional EAA
Sportair fabric instructor. Covers: preparing surfaces, attaching the fabric,
tightening the fabric, applying the first coat of Poly-Brush, tying rib-lacing
knots, applying finishing tapes, spraying Poly-Spray, applying color coats.
You Always Have Worldwide Availability.
Our network of distributors covers the US, Canada, and much of the
world. On top of that, you'll find Poly-Fiber products in the catalogs of
all the major supply houses. You can always get the Poly-Fiber product
you need. BIPE INC SUPPLIES POLY FIBER PRODUCTS. CALL NOW 561-818-4221.
"Why should I use Poly-Fiber?"
Poly-Fiber is the only all-VINYL system
on the market today. As it dries, it bonds extremely well to
today's polyester fabrics and remains flexible.
Poly-Fiber does not support combustion.
Poly-Fiber is one of the lightest systems
available. Only eight coats are used. There are lightweight
Poly-Fiber is the most repairable of all
systems available today, and the repairs are as strong as the
Poly-Fiber can be rejuvenated after years
It has over 30 years of success as the Stits
Poly-Fiber system. Many original jobs done 30 years ago are still
Poly-Fiber is not particularly sensitive
to heat, cold, or humidity during application or throughout its
Poly-Fiber offers choices in fabric weights
and types of top coat paints. There are 50 top coat colors in
Poly-Tone and Aero-Thane.
Poly-Fiber has options for every aircraft
from a simple ultralight to the most sophisticated warbird.
"Is Poly-Fiber more expensive
than other systems?"
No, they all cost about the same! Although dope costs less per can
than Poly-Fiber, you use twice as much dope as Poly-Fiber. Price them out
for yourself. You'll find they pretty much even out.
"How many steps are there?"
There are just six basic steps:
Glue on the fabric with our Poly-Tak fabric cement; tighten
it with the heat of a calibrated clothing iron.
Brush on a coat of Poly-Brush fabric sealer.
Riblace, then apply gussets and finishing tapes with more Poly-Brush.
Spray on two more coats of Poly-Brush.
Spray on three cross coats of silver
Poly-Spray to block
Spray on two coats of top coat paint, either Poly-Tone
"That's six coats. How much
does that weigh?"
Surprising little. Total fabric and
coating weight is about 60 pounds, not the
usual 75. Smaller aircraft and ultralights average about 20 to 25 pounds.
For extreme ultralights it's possible to skip some steps and get down to 12
to 15 pounds, but this covering won't have all the capabilities of the full
"Can I use automotive paint over
a Poly-Fiber base?"
Since 2001, the FAA has required that fabric
covered aircraft (at least the fabric parts) be painted only with
topcoat paints tested and approved on an STC. Use of any other
topcoat paint will void the STC and airworthiness of the aircraft.
Up to 2001, the STC's "ended with the silver", and any type paint
was legal to use. This is no longer true. Over the years, increased
use of brittle automotive or industrial paints caused enough
cracking and delamination to cause the FAA to rethink approving
untested topcoat paints over fabric. Failed topcoat paints expose
polyester fabric to sunlight and UV damage. As of the latest
revision of the Poly Fiber STC Procedure Manual (revision 21,
September 2006), only the following topcoat paints are
approved on the Poly Fiber STC: Poly Tone, Aerothane, or Randolph
Ranthane. All three of these paints have long service lives over
fabric as well as an FAA Parts Manufacturing Authority (PMA), which
allows their application on certified aircraft. For instance, a J-3
Cub must have only Poly Tone, Aerothane or Ranthane over the
fabric parts, but you could use enamel or anything else over the
struts, cowl, fairings, etc. The keyword is FABRIC. Experimental
aircraft are not bound by these rules, however,
we do recommend using products with known
track records on fabric components.
Questions? Call Jerry at 1-888-747-2530 right now!
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