What paint wont damage the outer body of my rocket

Discussion in 'Mid Power Rocketry (MPR)' started by Brian, Mar 25, 2020 at 2:01 AM.

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  1. Mar 25, 2020 at 2:01 AM #1

    Brian

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    What paint should I be using, I am not sure and do ont want to damage the rocket. I would prefer a spray on type of thing.
     
  2. Mar 25, 2020 at 3:07 AM #2

    David Schwantz

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    Brian, I cannot think of any paint that will damage a rocket tube. Paint may attack other types of paint. But if you have a bare surface you can just about start with anything that you like. Just keep in mind, if you add other colors, clear coat to keep it the same as the base coat. Myself, I use PPG Omni a lot. But I have the equipment to do so. There are some many types and brands out there. Post some facts about your rocket, type of material, paint scheme that you'd like, where can you spray. Also, if you have used a certain paint in the past and it has worked for you, might want to stick with what you know.
     
  3. Mar 25, 2020 at 3:09 AM #3

    Brian

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    Never painted a rocket really but I wasnt sure if their was going to be types of paints I am supposed to use and not use. so I guess I will use spray paint.
     
  4. Mar 25, 2020 at 3:28 AM #4

    heada

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    Unless you're using something with very high solvents on Quantum Tube (PML kits) then no worries. Pretty much any paint will be fine.
     
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  5. Mar 25, 2020 at 3:28 AM #5

    Brian

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  6. Mar 25, 2020 at 4:08 AM #6

    afadeev

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    Nothing to worry about with PML quantum tubes (QT) either.
    Any rattle can spray paint will work.

    If not using QT or fiberglass, then filling in the spirals will be fun, with multiple coats of primer and sanding on the menu.
    Then a few layers of same-brand main coat.
    Then clear coat.

    Or, just fly naked!
     
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  7. Mar 25, 2020 at 4:09 AM #7

    Brian

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    Haha Fly naked... But yeah the spirals is the only thing im worried will stick out but thanks for the help.
     
  8. Mar 25, 2020 at 4:15 AM #8

    BABAR

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    Be consistent with one type of paint per rocket, so don’t mix lacquers and enamels.

    Also build, do a simple paint job, and fly a few rockets before you start doing really fancy paint jobs. Kind of discouraging to spend days making the paint job look good when rocket lawn darts or lands in a tree or pond on first flights.

    Great example of an experience rocketeer making a masterpiece that was destroyed on maiden flight.

    https://www.rocketryforum.com/threads/open-body-missile-build-for-my-level-2.24733/

    Go to post 64

    He took it FAR better than I would have!
     
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  9. Mar 25, 2020 at 4:16 AM #9

    Nytrunner

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    Make sure the surface is prepped for paint or you'll get wrinkles or it'll flake off.
    The quality of the result is directly proportional to proper surface prep. (especially for gloss coats)

    For cardboard tubes, that probably just means light sanding and primer. You can use elmers wood filler to fill spirals pre-painting, or bondo spot and glazing putty (the 1 part stuff) after primer

    For plastic nosecones, they need to be cleaned first (soap and warm water, or alcohol) and lightly sanded so the surface has some "tooth" 220 grit is fine

    wood is pretty much ready for primer, but the grain will show through. If you want to eliminate the grain, you'll need to use some sort of filler (filler primer, wood filler, bondo, some even use coats of superglue to fill grain)

    Pay special attention to your primer/paint can directions, including the environmental conditions and the recoat times. For recoat, if you can smell paint on the surface still, it may not be fully cured yet. Er on the side of patience
     
  10. Mar 25, 2020 at 5:16 PM #10

    BMcD

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    It is my understanding that if the directions on the can give a recoat window, the paint is enamel. If you can recoat anytime, the paint is lacquer. So my question 1 is, "Is that correct?"

    Question 2: "What is acrylic?" Is it a type of enamel? Or might an acrylic paint be either lacquer or enamel?

    Thanks.
     
  11. Mar 25, 2020 at 5:44 PM #11

    Brian

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    jeeez He took that paint job pretty far...
     
  12. Mar 25, 2020 at 6:09 PM #12

    Antares JS

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    I don't know about question 1, but acrylic paint is water-based and enamels and lacquers are oil-based. Like water and oil, they do not mix.
     
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  13. Mar 25, 2020 at 6:10 PM #13

    Brian

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    Im going to use just 2 colors for the rocket and use spray paint so I dont have much to worry about mixing:)
     
  14. Mar 25, 2020 at 6:13 PM #14

    Antares JS

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    For dealing with spirals, the first and most obvious choice is to use a wood filler or automotive spot putty to fill in the groove before or after primer and sanding smooth. The second option is to use a thick coat of automotive filler primer and sand smooth. It may take doing this two or three times to completely eliminate the spiral, depending on how tight it is.
     
  15. Mar 25, 2020 at 6:14 PM #15

    Brian

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    Ok that I did need to know Thanks for the info on that I will do so.
     
  16. Mar 25, 2020 at 6:38 PM #16

    neil_w

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    This is only partially true. The term "acrylic" applies to a wide variety of paint types. There are acrylic enamels and acrylic lacquers. Paints that are simply labeled "acrylic" are indeed usually (?) water-based, like the acrylic craft paints you get at Michael's and such.

    Strongly recommend you head on over to the NAR page and read Chris Michielssen's (@hcmbanjo on this forum) overview of basic rocket building techniques. Also go read his blog for a wealth of additional valuable info. All your basic questions will be answered.
     
  17. Mar 25, 2020 at 6:42 PM #17

    boatgeek

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    You can spend as much or as little time on painting as you like. I have seen absolute works of art here. I personally tend toward a 5-10 foot paint job. If you can’t see the defects from 5-10 feet away, good enough. I know someone who paints in the field just before launch. Drips, runs, and paint all over his hands? Check. The rockets fly just about as well.

    One trick that is really helpful is if you do a two-color paint job, put the break between colors at the CP. then you’ll always know where it is when you prep for flight.
     
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  18. Mar 25, 2020 at 6:56 PM #18

    neil_w

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    Hey, that's a great idea. I would generalize it to "incorporate the CP location into the paint scheme." Like!
     
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  19. Mar 25, 2020 at 7:34 PM #19

    BABAR

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    third option: ignore them
    fourth option: paint the rocket and cover them with thin strips of colored (or black) electrical tape. If you go with a white background and red tape, instant Candy Cane!
     
  20. Mar 25, 2020 at 8:54 PM #20

    Nathan

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    Acrylic paint can be enamel or lacquer. Any paint where the binder is an acrylic resin is an acrylic paint. Almost all paint that you might use to paint a rocket has an acrylic binder. The exception is urethane enamel, where the binder is a urethane. All cars these days are painted with urethane enamel, but that is very toxic and should not be used to paint rockets unless you have the proper protective gear. The main difference between acrylic enamel and acrylic lacquer is that lacquer is dry as soon as the solvents evaporate while enamel has to cure, which is the process of the molecules in the binder forming polymers.
     
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  21. Mar 26, 2020 at 4:38 AM #21

    Nytrunner

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    Excellent summary Nathan

    Now I've heard the sequence "Acrylics over Enamels over Lacquers"

    If the enamels and lacquers are acrylic resin based, what is the "acrylic" from that saying?

    And can you give examples of common brands of each (for example, Rusto 2X is an enamel)
     
    Last edited: Mar 26, 2020 at 12:16 PM

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