Shooting the silver on the lower left wing

May 30, 2012

Tonight I removed the masking paper for the silver areas and re-masked the areas that were blue and white. I then sanded the areas that get the silver, blew and wiped it down, washed with alcohol loaded it into the booth and shot the silver. I was having problems keeping the silver from sagging on me so i prepared for that by setting it horizontal on the saw horses. Sure enough after the third coat it was starting so show signs of running so I quickly took it off the vertical and laid it on the saw horses to save the job and I did. The last coat I painted on the horizontal and it was much much easier. After 30 minutes I pulled the tapes and masking paper and this is what I got: How sweet does that look!

Time spent tonight 5 hours
Total time spent 1349 hours

Finishing the masking and shooting the blue on the lower left wing

May 29, 2012

A nice long weekend (5 days!) out to LA where I spent some time with family and also flew about an hour in an S-2B, man that was awesome to get back into a Pitts, thanks Daniel! Anyway I got right to work on the lower wing finished the masking monday night. Also on Monday night was put the canopy together for the final time with brand new hardware looks so nice with that blue on it. Tuesday night I was able to sand it (scuff) for the blue drag it into the booth and shoot it. Came out pretty good. I will get some photos of the whole thing after I’m done with the silver.

Time spent last two days 6 hours
Total time spent

Masking the lower left wing, Finishing the silver on the cowling, painting the canopy metal

May 20, 2012

Today I got quite a bit of work acomplished. I started off by moving the upper wing out of the paint booth and hanging it to continue curing. I dropped the lower left wing down onto the saw horses. I attached the lower left aileron and started laying some tape lines for the lower wing. I simply laid down a straight line of 3/4″ fine-line down the edge of the leading edge. I then free-handed the radius to the tip. The masking was A lot easier than I thought it was going to be. I then measured along the rear spar root to the tip and got 90″ so I divided that by 6 and got my invasion strip increment of 15″. I then taped the lines inside (where it would stay white).

After I laid out the lines. I thought I better get started on the engine cowling silver stripe so that it could cure a while so that I could move it out of booth to paint something else. I remasked the lines and then masked off the white, sanded it down, and then took it into the booth for some paint. I mixed up some silver and shot both cowlings. about 30-40 minutes later I pulled the fine line tapes to allow the paint to roll over to a smooth line.

While those dried I continued working on the lower wing by flipping it over and laying out the line for the top surface. Again easier than I thought and free handing it was the way to go.

while the cowling dried I worked on masking the lower and upper surface areas that were going to stay white and silver. (sorry no picture for the upper surface.

After the cowlings had dried for about 4 hours I pulled the masking material and hung them on the fuselage carefully as the paint was still slightly soft, dry to the touch but was still curing. Man, she really is coming together.

After all that I decided it was high time to paint the canopy metal parts blue so I scuffed the primer with some scotch brite and hung them up in the booth and shot the blue onto them.

Time spent today 10 hours
Total time spent 1338 hours

Priming the canopy metal and Painting the Upper wing (again!)

May 19, 2012

So today I thought it was high time to give the upper wing another shot of paint. But before I did that I thought it was also high time to prime my canopy parts so that I could top coat those this weekend. I did that and took a couple hour break to let them dry.

After several hours I started in on moving my upper wing into the booth and in prepparation to paint. I cleaned it off with compressed air and alcohol damp rag and then started mixing paint. As you may remember the last time I started off with a new gallon of paint that was later deemed a bad lot of paint. I confirmed this with my new batch of paint since it set up right at the 10 minute marks for both the first and second coat. The third coat took a little bit longer maybe 20-25 minutes. But not big deal there just gave me more time to mix up my second batch of paint. After the third coat I estimated that I would need about 300 more grams of paint to finish to include what was in my pot. I was off by 25 grams it seems as I ran out of paint with two rib bays to go. I ran out of the booth mixed up 50 more grams and finished shooting the wing with no ill effects. Just so I don’t forget I also painted my instrument panel as well.

Well the end result was fantastic, they look glossy and smooth!

Time spent today 4 hours
Total time spent 1328 hours

Shooting the white on the engine cowling and re-shoot on the rudder

May 18, 2012

Tonight I painted the white on the engine cowlings and I repainted the tip of the rudder where I sanded down a few runs. After they cured for a couple of hours I decided to hang them up on the fuse to see how it looks. Turned out pretty darn good!

Time spent tonight 2 hours
Total time spent 1324 hours

Pulling the masking and masking and sanding the cowlings

May 17, 2012

So tonight I was pretty excited to pull all the masking off the fuselage and the sheet metal panels. They turned out great beside the rudder which had a good sized run in it so I sanded it smooth to re-shoot it.

After I finish that I got to work on the engine cowling and masked them up in preparation to shoot the white on them. I then sanded them down.

Time spent today 2 hours
Total time spent 1322 hours

Shooting the White on the fuse, panels, and rudder

May 16, 2012

Tonight I carted the fuse into the paint booth and decided I could paint the fuse, the panels and the rudder all at once. So I did. 2 hours later I was done and the tape lines were pulled. I did put a bit too much paint on the rudder and will have to sand that down and re-paint it the next day. Sorry no pictures of the rudder or panels.

Time spent 2 hours
Total time spent 1320 hours

Re-masking the fuse for the white

May 15, 2012

Tonight I re-taped the trim line between the white and the silver and re-masked the fuselage and panels areas that have silver and slice of blue from where my previous masking stoped. Really tried to lessen my work so that i wouldn’t have to remask everything. After that I sanded down the white areas and cleand the to be painted areas with alcohol. I’ll see if I can get some white sprayed on tomorrow.

Time spent 2 hours
Total Time spent 1318 hours

Shooting the siliver on the fuse

May 14, 2012

Tonight I wanted to get the silver on the fuse in hopes to finish the fuselage this week sometime. Anyway I unloaded the panels and the ladder and rolled the fuse into the booth. It was pre-sanded the other day so I quickly wiped it down again with alcohol and tacked it off. I mixed some paint and got to shooting. 42 minutes later I was done, and about 1 later I started to pull the tapes everything pulled well but what I am learning is you need to be a little more ginger with sanding then I was. Some of the tapes don’t pull super clean but we are talking a very very small amount and it nearly un-noticeable if you don’t know where to look.

Time spent today 2 hours
Total time spent 1316 hours

Masking and painting the panels and rudder

May 13, 2012

Today I spent a good chunk of time masking off the sheet metal panels and prepping the fuselage and panels for the silver mettalic paint. I masked off anything that wasn’t going to get painted and really pressed the 3M 233+ fineline into the surface with a credit card to make sure there would be no bleed through. I then scuff sanded the area to be painted with some 320 sand paper and then gave it a good cleaning with alcohol. I tried to make my life easier by masking off the lines that I was going to paint then bringing the masking paper up to about 1/4 or 1/2 inch of the that line then bridging the gap between so that when I go to pull the tape while wet that I don’t have to mess with paper too that greatly increases the changes of touching the paint and ruining your paint job. As for the sanding, I just sanded with the tape lines intact and tape holds up just fine.

A few words on masking tape. I have both the 3M blue vinyl like electrical tape and the green 3M 233+ fineline tape. I had heard that they make the same sharp line which is awesome since the blue fine line is $11-13 per 35 yard roll where as the 1 inch green tape is only $7 (in town) or (ordered on TCP global $4 per roll but you pay shipping). Both can be sanded on, however the green won’t turn corners as well, but will conform to fairly tight radius if you get the 1/2″ or less. The green is also good for long straight runs as it stays straighter than the blue which will wiggle bad on a long straight run. I tested both on a test panel and as it turns out they do make the same sharp line only if the green is pressed down with a card.

Anyway I loaded the panels and rudder into the booth and shot the silver on to them 30 mintues after I was done I pulled the tapes making sure to “sheer” the line and I was left with a great sharp line! no bleed through. Make sure you wear gloves doing this or you will have paint all over your fingers!

Time spent today 8 hours
Total time spent 1314 hours