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Dbarrm

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Ill be the first to admit that painting is my downfall. I want my rockets to look nice but when It comes to the paint job, it needs a little help. How do I get the balsa wood to not show the gaps and seems in it. No matter how much I sand or paint they still show up. I here people talking about sanding sealer and even see it in the instructions but for the life of me cant find any. When I ask around no one knows what it is. Now I havent driven up to the big hobby store in my area yet, Its about a hour away and Ive been to busy. Does this stuff fill in the gaps and then you sand it smooth???? Here is a pic of what im talking about.

Thanks in advance.

Dan
 

solrules

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Many ways to do it:

--Sanding sealer, in a paint can, available mostly everywhere paint is sold
--Watered down white glue
--Elmers fill n' finish
--fiberglass (although you have to fill that weave in as well)
--lots of primer and sanding
--CA (never tried, although I have heard of people doing it)

I prefer sanding sealer, you brush it on, sand, repeat 2-3 times. Makes a baby butt smooth fin.
 

brianc

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Originally posted by Dbarrm
people talking about sanding sealer and even see it in the instructions but for the life of me cant find any.
Dan-

I just tried for the first time Minwax Sanding Sealer. It's working out great!
Before, I used primer but lately the balsa has just been soaking that up
too much.

I found the Minwax @ WalMart for about $8 / quart (smallest container they had).
In the same area, you can get a 12-pack of foam brushes and disposable paint
trays (with a wire wiper) each for a buck...

HTH!
 

bsexton

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And let's not forget the "spray adhesive and cover with paper" technique. It adds strength but very little additional weight. I have tried all of the techniques already mentioned and they all work to some degree - some better than others. I suggest you try a few and see what you like best. The one I use the most is Elmer's Fill 'N Finish thinned with a little (and I mean little) water.
 

Dbarrm

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Well I just put a coat of watered down yellow glue and im again waiting for glue to dry. When its dry and sanded ill put another coat of paint and submit another pic.

Dan
 

lalligood

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I have found that Elmer's Fill 'n' Finish diluted down to a consistency somewhere between peanut butter & ketchup works on pretty much any kind of wood that you would use on a rocket (balsa, poplar, basswood, and/or birch).

Typically I use a popcicle stick to stir & spread the stuff but sometimes ya just gotta get your hands a little dirty & smooth it out with a finger :) The trick is to not let it get too thick on the surface because you have to sand it all off! You just want to fill in the grain & leave a smooth surface. Usually you can get the desired result in only one coat :D

A small tub (that should last you quite a while) is only $5 or $6 at your local home improvement store...

HTH,
 

Dbarrm

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Well I just repainted the fin after doing the sealing and sanding. The pic is kinda dark but you can see how much better it looks. Thanks for the info.

Dan
 

jerryb

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Originally posted by Dbarrm
Well I just repainted the fin after doing the sealing and sanding. The pic is kinda dark but you can see how much better it looks. Thanks for the info.

Dan
I've been using Elmers Carpenter's Wood Filler..

the Stainable kind... comes in a toothpaste looking squeeze tube... comes in white.. and natural... its about the consistency of toothpaste right out of the tube...and i tend to thin it out a bit so it spreads easier..

later
Jerryb
 

Dbarrm

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Now that my fin has dried overnight and I have better light I can still see the lines in the wood some but for my first attempt it looks good. Im going to go out and see if I can find some of the products you guys were talking about. The wood glue seems to shrink alot.

Dan
 

Micromeister

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Dan:
I start off one of my Tech-tip articles with the line "You CAN achive babies butt smooth painted finishes from a Spary can."
Let me direct you to 4 Tech-Tip article files, in the Library of narhams.org I think these papers will help you with your finishing struggles starting with Tech-Tip 002 on fillers through Tech-Tip 005 on brushes and brushwork detailing. It sometimes helps having something you can refer back to later;)
Hope these writings help
Keep em flyin well finished!
 

Dbarrm

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Thanks guys for the reading material. Ill look these over and try one/both on my next project.

Dan
 

astrowolf67

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And, dont forget the old reliable Kilz spray primer. When I've got a lot of grain and deep spirals to till, that's what I use. I spray one good coat on the fins and spirals only, let it dry, sand it down, then spray a coat on the whole rocket, sand smooth, and continue with the normal painting process.
 
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