LOC IRIS 1.63" Park-Flier - paint tutorial at end

Discussion in 'Mid Power Rocketry (MPR)' started by Tyler P, Jan 7, 2020.

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  1. Jan 7, 2020 #1

    Tyler P

    Tyler P

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    So, I'm pretty much fully hooked on building again. Powering through my build pile so I can justify the next big project, lol!

    Up next is the LOC IRIS 1.63" park-flier to go along with my collection of sounding rockets that is growing with each new build.

    I picked this one up to compliment my larger 3" version that I built a year and a half ago.

    As per usual, a complement of good quality tubes, heavy nose cone, thick birch ply fins, nylon chute with nomex blanket, and woven nylon elastic shock cord.

    Will dive into this one tomorrow evening! 20200106_223126.jpg 20200106_223748.jpg
     
  2. Jan 7, 2020 #2

    mbeels

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    Wow, at this rate, you can launch a new rocket every week, for the summer! At some point, I'd be interested in seeing your airbrush choices and techniques in more detail. You get some nice results, quickly.
     
  3. Jan 7, 2020 #3

    Tyler P

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    I'm sure I'll slow down at some point, haha!

    I appreciate the kind words. I'll show some of my painting stuff in this thread. I don't do or use anything super fancy, just have figured out some decent products and prepping methods.

    This scheme requires a bit of masking, so I'll show a bit more of how I do it.
     
  4. Jan 8, 2020 #4

    Theory

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    yes, please do. this is one area where i have much "room for improvement"
     
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  5. Jan 10, 2020 #5

    Tyler P

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    Got a start on things today. I started with fin prep because it's just about my least favorite part of builds.

    I started with bevelling the edges. Because I'm kinda lazy and have a bench sander, I gave them a point instead of rounding them


    20200109_160342.jpg 20200109_160315.jpg

    Then I sanded them with 150 grit and 400 and applied 3 coats of EZE-Kote with a brush, fast-drying them between coats on my shop heater. 20200109_162142.jpg 20200109_161600.jpg
     
  6. Jan 10, 2020 #6

    Tyler P

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    After doing the three coats of EZE-Kote by brush, I sanded with 400 grit again and airbrushed 2 more coats, sanding in between and then hanging to dry. 20200109_163055.jpg 20200109_171719.jpg
    The final result comes out pretty nice and gives a decently smooth surface for paint.
    20200109_180126.jpg
     
  7. Jan 10, 2020 #7

    Tyler P

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    Next, I took on the motor mount assembly. Again, using an Estes screw on retainer, I had to make some small modifications for it to look nice and function properly.

    I sanded down both the lower centering ring and the retainer ring. The full-sized counterparts are shown with the modified pieces. I did this in order for the lower ring to be recessed slightly while allowing the retainer cap to screw up to the body of the rocket. 20200109_173913.jpg
    I also took the advice from another rocketeer on my previous thread on the BBX, and took the flutes off the retainer cap. Cleans it up very nicely! 20200109_182106.jpg 20200109_183137.jpg

    Here was a test fit of a motor to see how far I needed to go with modifying for the retainer to fit properly. 20200109_174930.jpg
     
    Last edited: Jan 10, 2020
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  8. Jan 10, 2020 #8

    Tyler P

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    So now you can see some coupler building and fin attaching...some smart people may or may not notice that I didn't have many pics of the engine mount...I forgot to take pics of the whole thing, and also forgot something else before I stuffed it in the rocket!

    20200109_193745.jpg
    20200109_185350.jpg 20200109_200449.jpg
    After I attached the fins I realized that I didn't attach the shock cord...DOH! That has now added an extra step to the build...a baffle.
     
  9. Jan 10, 2020 #9

    Tyler P

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    I decided to cut the coupler in half and use half to make a baffle and shock cord attachment point.

    Over to the bandsaw to cut some bulkheads... 20200109_194614.jpg

    After I cut them out I sanded them down on the bench sander until they fit the coupler.
    20200109_195615.jpg 20200109_195727.jpg
    I will drill the bulkheads to make a baffle and install an eye-bolt in the top for shock cord attachment. Then I will probably attach some kevlar or paracord to it so that I can attach the shock cord outside the body tube and be able to replace it if needed. Then it will get installed with epoxy so I can push it down far enough to allow for room for the recovery gear without it getting stuck before proper placement.

    To be continued with the finished baffle! Done for tonight!
     
  10. Jan 10, 2020 #10

    mbeels

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    That retainer does look nice, I may copy that idea. It works out really well on this rocket as it matches the body tube diameter.

    Regarding the shock cord, I saw another good idea recently. This person tied it in a circle around the attachment point within the body tube, so it could be fed around in a loop and inspected. Also, by cutting it and tying on a new one, it could be replaced. (hard to describe in text)
     
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  11. Jan 10, 2020 #11

    Tyler P

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    I think I understand what you're saying, actually. I'll try that first and see how it works out.
     
  12. Jan 11, 2020 #12

    Tyler P

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    Finished up the baffle. I'm not actually super concerned if it operates fully as a baffle, as this kit comes with a nomex square anyway, but it should help a bit with the gases, anyway.

    3/16" eye bolt installed for shock cord attachment.

    20200111_104204.jpg 20200111_104215.jpg 20200111_104446.jpg 20200111_111328.jpg
     
  13. Jan 11, 2020 #13

    Tyler P

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    Recovery installed to check for space. It packs snug but should be alright.
    20200111_114655.jpg 20200111_115415.jpg
     
  14. Jan 11, 2020 #14

    Tyler P

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    Mixed up some 30-minute BSI epoxy with SIG micro balloons.

    Lay a bead with a toothpick and then smooth with a finger dipped in rubbing alcohol. This works very well for smaller rockets.

    20200111_131714.jpg 20200111_132626.jpg 20200111_132635.jpg
     
  15. Jan 11, 2020 #15

    Tyler P

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    Waiting for the filets to cure and then we'll get to the paint prep portion of the build. 20200111_135013.jpg 20200111_134936.jpg
     
  16. Jan 11, 2020 #16

    kuririn

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    I hope you mean gloved finger. Even if you're not allergic to epoxy now, you can develop one with continued exposure. Please be safe.
     
  17. Jan 11, 2020 #17

    Tyler P

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    I promise from now on I will. I need to get some nitrile gloves that fit properly.
     
  18. Jan 11, 2020 #18

    Tyler P

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    So, my paint prep goes as follows: sand everything down with 150 grit.

    Spray on a coat of EZE-Kote (Deluxe Materials water-based polyurethane laminating and finishing resin, available through Horizon Hobby and Tower Hobbies in the USA, and Great Hobbies in Canada) and dry.

    Sand again with 400 grit and airbrush on a "wet" coat of EZE-Kote and dry.

    This leaves the model with a smooth and durable finish for the paint to adhere to and keeps any paper from delaminating from the tubes when you paint, mask, and remove tape.

    This time around I decided to use a spary gun that I don't normally use and was reminded why. That gun has now been relegated to the trash after spraying what felt like a spackle coat on the first coat. Sanded smooth and went back to my Paasche Talon airbrush, which works beautifully.

    I've given pics of the EZE-Kote and its QR code if anyone wants to look it up. Best stuff ever. It's actually made for glassing but works beautifully as a coating as well. 20200111_161940.jpg 20200111_162012.jpg 20200111_163216.jpg 20200111_163241.jpg 20200111_163255.jpg
     
  19. Jan 11, 2020 #19

    Tyler P

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    On goes a coat of Vallejo Premium white primer. I typically use AutoAir white sealer but I have a couple bottles of this to use as well.

    Up next is masking. I will likely mask to paint the fins first and then mask them up. Then I will give it a solid white coat as a base. Next I would paint the black in the roll pattern and also the upper third of the rocket that will be final coated in silver. After the upper portion is painted black, then I lay the silver.

    I will show the process as I do it, but that will be all for today!

    20200111_165704.jpg
     
  20. Jan 12, 2020 #20

    Tyler P

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    Okay, so here we go. Masking. This is a pretty straightforward roll pattern and coloured fins.

    I start by drawing out the pattern. In this case, the roll pattern splits at the fin tips, so you have a built in reference point. I use the Estes line marking tool for keeping the line straight up the body. Any 90° angle iron will do, though. I also used a wrap of masking tape to mark the line around the body tube.

    20200112_075849.jpg

    Next, I lay down the masking tape to cover whatever portion of the rocket I don't want paint on. In this case, I taped off all the areas that would be black. To make clean cuts on the roll pattern I installed a fresh #11 blade in my hobby knife. 20200112_080430.jpg

    Spray the white.
    20200112_083536.jpg

    Normally, I would have given the whole rocket a solid base of white and worked off that. This time around I chose to remask the white so that the paint would end up more or less level over the whole rocket. Otherwise, you end up with the black areas being raised on top of the white.
     
  21. Jan 12, 2020 #21

    Tyler P

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    Moving on to the fins, I masked off just enough area to protect from overspray while I painted the red.
    20200112_085638.jpg
    After spraying the red, I peeled all the masking and then remasked over the white and the fins, leaving only the areas to be painted black uncovered.
    20200112_090311.jpg 20200112_093241.jpg

    Next, I sprayed a nice even coat of black over all the exposed areas. Black is also used as a base coat for silver, so the areas that will be silver get a coat.
    20200112_094443.jpg
    Then you mask off to protect from overspray and lay the silver down. Typically, I have to apply at least two coats of silver over the black to make it even without dark spots.
    20200112_100216.jpg
     
  22. Jan 12, 2020 #22

    Tyler P

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    Finally, you peel all your masking and touch up any small areas that may have bled with a paint brush. I use a flat-tipped brush when working on roll patterns because it's easier to cut straight lines with it.

    Add your decal and done!

    20200112_102453.jpg 20200112_102557.jpg

    A few little extra tidbits: when spraying water-based acrylics I use a product that Vallejo makes called Airbrush Flow Improver. This both acts as a thinner and improves drying time, along with doing what its name implies. If you're using a gravity feed brush, a couple drops of this stuff in the cup, mixed in with a toothpick makes spraying paint a pleasure.

    A major one is working from light colours to dark! Always start with your light colours first, as it's much easier to cover lights with darks. Also, if you want a colour to be bright, start with a white base-coat. With fluorescent colours, this is a must. If you want a colour be be darker, spray it over a darker base-coat.

    I also use a hairdryer to flash the paint off between coats. I usually flash it off and then let the surface cool for a few minutes, which allows the paint to cool and harden. The key is doing light coats. If you spray too heavy you'll get runs. It will also not allow the paint to dry fully underneath for much longer periods of time.

    I also use Spray Nine Multi-Purpose Cleaner to clean my airbrush between colours. It has the benefit of having a stream spray setting to help blast the paint out of the bottom of your cup, along with being able to break the paint down easily. I spray it through the brush. This was discovered a few years ago when I just had nothing else in the shop to use. It's all I use now.

    If anyone has specific questions, I'll do my best to answer. I'm not a pro by any means, but this works for me.
     
    Last edited: Jan 12, 2020
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  23. Jan 12, 2020 #23

    kuririn

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    Nice work and great tips.
     
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  24. Jan 12, 2020 #24

    mbeels

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    Thanks for posting those details. This is very informative.

    Do you use the EZE -Kote even when you prime? What are the benefits of both EZE Kote and primer?

    What are your thoughts or preferences between a gravity feed or siphon feed airbrush?

    Is the Airbrush Flow Improver still water clean-up?

    When you use the heat gun, can you mask the next coat sooner, even if the paint underneath is still not fully dry?

    What size/type of compressor do you use or recommend?

    Thanks! Being able to airbrush a water based paint seems very appealing to me.
     
  25. Jan 12, 2020 #25

    Tyler P

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    Yes, I use EZE-Kote as the step before priming. The product is a finishing/laminating resin, so it gives the cardboard a tough coating that keeps masking tape from pulling up the paper coating. Paint typically softens the paper, making it too easy for the tape to rip it up. The EZE-Kote prevents that.

    I do prime over it because the EZE-Kote finishes shiny and I feel the paint adheres better to the primer.

    I prefer gravity feed because I do other paint projects that require finer detail. Gravity feed brushes offer a more consistent paint flow, so less chance of air pockets and sputtery spray. That being said, for large projects that require a higher volume of paint, siphon feed is attractive because you can run a bigger paint container. It would work well for priming and single-colour rockets where you don't want to stop and refill.

    I, however, do not own a siphon feed brush. I have three gravity feeds.

    Yes. It gets mixed with the paint like a thinner.

    I don't use a heat gun, although I own one. The hair drier uses much lower heat than a heat gun, even when on high-heat.

    Yes, this does allow for masking sooner because it dries the paint more quickly. Waterbased paint, as a rule, dries more quickly anyway but the warm air blowing over speeds the process up further.

    No, I would not mask over paint that is not fully dry. The tape will pull the damp paint off the surface. This is why you do it in lighter coats. It allows each coat to cure more quickly, allowing you to work faster.

    I use 20 gallon stand-up compressor. This is really only because I happen to have one. I use it for my air tools.

    A 5 gallon brad nailer compressor would work fine. Paasche also makes a nice little airbrush compressor with a tank on it. They tend to be more expensive than your typical tool compressor, but they're very quiet in comparison, and usually come with a moisture trap. A moisture trap is very importand on smaller compressors and when using oil-based paints. It keeps water out of your paint and air lines. My 20 gallon has enough volume that I never have moisture problems but I would install a moisture trap if I was spraying oil or lacquer paint.

    No problem! Using waterbased paint allows me to paint all winter in my basement workshop. It doesn't stink up the house or have harsh chemicals in it.
     
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  26. Jan 12, 2020 #26

    mbeels

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    Yes, that is a big draw for me. My family doesn't like the smell (neither do I, really) even if I spray outdoors and bring the rockets inside to dry. Plus, it takes several days between coats, so you're able to move much faster with water based paints. Overall, lots of advantages!
     
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  27. Jan 19, 2020 #27

    Greg Furtman

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    Is this the stuff?
    https://www.amazon.com/Spray-Nine-26832-Degreaser-Disinfectant/dp/B0014COKYU

    And is this like the Airbrush Flow Improver?
    https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B01D9O3CXA/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o08_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1
     
  28. Jan 19, 2020 #28

    Tyler P

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    Yes, those two products will do the job!
     
  29. Jan 19, 2020 #29

    Greg Furtman

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    Tyler, Where in Canada are you located, eh? :rolleyes:
     
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  30. Jan 19, 2020 #30

    Jozef

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    Another very nice build, Tyler That is a lot of rail guide. A short section at the bottom and short section forward should would reduce drag and alignment issues.... and looks. You can also cut the ends of the guides at an angle. It makes them look stealthy and does not degrade their function. Glad to see you picked up on the Estes retainer flute trim.
     

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