Lacquer...why not? - HeliFreak
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Painting and Airbrushing Tips / Techniques Painting and Airbrushing Tips / Techniques

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Old 08-17-2016, 08:41 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Lacquer...why not?

I have noticed that most of the painters on here are using a base coat/clear coat system, typically urethane. I have used PPG urethanes on large RC airplane fiberglass and carbon fiber parts with excellent results. I do not doubt the superiority of these paint systems for heli canopies but GAWD is that stuff expensive!!! Another drawback is that it needs to be custom mixed at an auto paint store or ordered online.

I’ve got several canopies and tail booms that I’m going to be painting soon in good ‘ol Lacquer. I did a couple of test pieces (Goblin 500 booms) in fluorescent rattle-can lacquer with rattle-can lacquer clear coat and was satisfied with the results. The paint is CHEAP and you can get it almost anywhere. I’m sure I can achieve better results using my mini HVLP gun (0.8mm tip) to shoot the primer and base coats, airbrushing the fancy stuff, then using the HVLP gun for the clear lacquer.

I can get clear automotive lacquer here for around $5 per quart. I am also going to try mixing up my own paint using raw pigment powder. The pigments are extremely cheap and can be mixed with clear lacquer. Has anyone else tried this?

Given the limited lifespan of 3D heli parts I just can’t see spending $100+ on paint for a couple of canopies.

Feedback (positive or negative) appreciated!

Last edited by TT; 08-18-2016 at 09:39 AM..
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Old 08-21-2016, 02:48 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Lacquer will give off fine line cracks all over the canopy.
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Old 09-06-2016, 09:57 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Lacquer is brittle. It wont take the flexing of the canopys. Automovitive paint today have a more flexible formula. Base/clear coat systems also dry much faster so you can do multi color much faster.
Lacquer will with time crack from srinkage, also to get a shine you had to cut and buff then clear and cut and buff to get a shine. Also the paint today resist nitro much. Lacquer will melt if nitro gets on it.
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