Results 1 to 17 of 17

Thread: Need feedback for suggested procedures to clean polytone finished fabric plane

  1. #1
    cubnut93's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Posts
    128
    Post Thanks / Like

    Need feedback for suggested procedures to clean polytone finished fabric plane

    I helped a friend restore his L-21B airplane a few years back. He does not fly it much since it was finished, so it is still in great shape. This month it finally warmed up enough to start doing some work at his hangar. First on the list was to clean up the Super Cub. The question that I had was what do you use to wash an airplane that was restored with the Poly-Fiber system? I know enough that I should not use any wax or polish. So I just used plain water-hosed it down wet and washed it with a bucket of water with a very small amount of Dawn Dishwashing Liquid (I mean a VERY SMALL amount--like a half of a cap full in 5 gallons)

    There were some areas that had bug splatter that was left on the wing edge too long that didn't want to come off. I assume that "bug splatter" should be washed off as soon as possible or it will leave marks.

    Someone told me once that he used womens panty hose to get the bug spatter off. Any truth to that or was he pulling my leg?
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Click image for larger version. 

Name:	2014.08.26 (12).jpg 
Views:	102 
Size:	408.4 KB 
ID:	36979   Click image for larger version. 

Name:	2014.08.26 (11).jpg 
Views:	106 
Size:	399.5 KB 
ID:	36980   Click image for larger version. 

Name:	2014.08.26 (6).jpg 
Views:	106 
Size:	403.3 KB 
ID:	36981   Click image for larger version. 

Name:	2014.08.26 (1).jpg 
Views:	102 
Size:	466.9 KB 
ID:	36982   Click image for larger version. 

Name:	2014.08.26 (5).jpg 
Views:	112 
Size:	439.0 KB 
ID:	36983  


  2. #2
    Richgj3's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    LI,NY
    Posts
    870
    Post Thanks / Like
    My Legend had Poly Tone. It’s the worst finish I could imagine putting on anything. If you look at it the wrong way, it stains. And they don’t come out. You can wash it with any mild soap. I had mine for 12 years. There was never any damage from washing. Just everything else. I chose it because I wanted a finish that looked more like dope than the shinny finish that was the other choice at the time.

    Mine was the first Legend. I believed they stopped offering Poly Tone early on because of customer complaints about the staining on the finish.

    Rich
    Thanks windy thanked for this post

  3. #3

    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Posts
    5,927
    Post Thanks / Like
    It can be top-coated. We have a yellow J-3 with Poly Tone, and the earlier STC applies. I may re-tape it and get a local pro to hit it with urethane. I believe the Stewarts finish is approved for any STC, and properly applied it is glossy.

    Poly Tone does not sand or compound well, and cleaning is an absolute bear. But that military paint looks good from here - just clean it with Pledge and fly it.

    I have been using Pledge since 1976, and have had zero problems with repairs. Never use the cheap substitutes - they will make refinishing impossible.

  4. #4
    www.SkupTech.com mike mcs repair's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    chugiak AK
    Posts
    8,920
    Post Thanks / Like
    you use the stuff thats MADE TO DO IT by the original manufacturer..... amazing stuff!!!

    http://www.aircraftspruce.com/catalo...fcleaners2.php

  5. #5
    FdxLou's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Location
    Atlanta Ga. 6ga0 Stoney Point Airfield
    Posts
    1,627
    Post Thanks / Like
    The best way to get rid of those old bugs is to wet a dryer sheet(Bounce?) and let the soapy detergent soften it. Rinse with clean water. Worked for 14 years on my Polytone Smith Cub. Yes, lots of staining shows thru the “Cub Yellow” over time.

    Lou
    Thanks flyboyrv3 thanked for this post

  6. #6

    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Posts
    3,138
    Post Thanks / Like
    Interesting topic. Most maintenance cleaners are neutral. High alkalinity is good for stripping but not good for regular cleaning for most surfaces. Dish soaps are neutral so no threat. So are most floor cleaners, etc. Strippers and degreasers are alkaline. High alkaline cleaners require skin protection, unless you plan to rob a bank and don't want to leave fingerprints.
    Last edited by stewartb; 05-12-2018 at 08:14 PM.
    Likes tripper liked this post

  7. #7
    Doug Budd's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2015
    Location
    Crawford Nebraska
    Posts
    79
    Post Thanks / Like
    Been using this on my cub and pacer with no problems. Both covered with polyfiber. Click image for larger version. 

Name:	D6622A01-342B-4739-A4AC-D88B945D22F8.jpg 
Views:	49 
Size:	62.5 KB 
ID:	37036 he bugs melt away works good on oil and other things.

  8. #8

    Join Date
    May 2017
    Posts
    9
    Post Thanks / Like
    I use “wash n wax all” and a micro fiber cloth for bugs and light dirt. I use simple green on the belly and tougher spots. Sometimes I dilute it, sometimes I don’t. No problems yet.


    Sent from my iPhone using SuperCub.Org

  9. #9

    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Location
    Inkom, Idaho
    Posts
    1,063
    Post Thanks / Like
    I've been using this stuff for over 20 years, not for overall cleaning but in "problem areas."

    I've used Poly-Tone on the last 5 kitplanes I've built, I love the ease of application and easy repair it offers. We Poly-Tone fans are a distinct minority I guess as a plane owner I'd prefer a slicker surface but as a builder owner I prefer it. Some planes look TOO damn shiny, I prefer a more retro look. If I build another I'll use Oratex and sidestep the entire issue.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Click image for larger version. 

Name:	IMG_20180513_122518498.jpg 
Views:	37 
Size:	127.5 KB 
ID:	37040  

  10. #10
    cubnut93's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Posts
    128
    Post Thanks / Like

    Wash-Wax-All

    Thanks for all of your replies. I found a new bottle of Wash-Wax-All that has never been opened. I called the company about using it on the cub. They said that it does not contain any "polish" or "silicones" so it would not be a problem using their product on fabric covered airplanes finished with Poly-Tone paint. I asked if their product would have a tendency to make a semi gloss Poly-Tone OD turn more glossy and they said that it would not do that. I still am reluctant to use something that has the word "WAX" in its name! So I guess I need to think about this for awhile.

    Thanks again for all your help
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Click image for larger version. 

Name:	IMG_0854.JPG 
Views:	29 
Size:	149.9 KB 
ID:	37044  
    Likes rideandfly liked this post

  11. #11
    n40ff's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    WV
    Posts
    766
    Post Thanks / Like
    Fuel drail is handy so I usually use 100LL on belly. The rest gets Lemon Pledge. It does stain but so does the dope on the other airplane. I shoot the birds in the hangar that eat berries, almost impossible to remove. Maybe paint the next one purple?

    Been using it for almost 50 years (maybe not the best but again "handy"). I don't know how many times Marcia has said as she entered the hangar, "So that's where my Pledge went?"

    Of coarse my airplanes here in WV are more like a PU than a show piece.

    Jack
    Last edited by n40ff; 05-14-2018 at 10:55 AM.

  12. #12

    Join Date
    May 2016
    Location
    Olympia, WA
    Posts
    14
    Post Thanks / Like
    The idea that you can't/shouldn't wax Poly Tone is nonsense. Poly Fiber's manual actually tells you what wax to use. You absolutely SHOULD have a coat of wax on Poly Tone to protect it from stains and other environmental factors. Having a glossy polyurethane finish on that L-21 would look nowhere close to original or authentic.

    Use a natural carnauba wax like PF recommends. Get several coats on the leading edge to make bug removal easier, same with the area behind the fuel fillers, to keep fuel stains to a minimum. If you need to patch or repair, just make sure you use a silicone and wax remover FIRST to remove the residue before you begin your patch work. Same story with rejuvenating - all surfaces being treated should be wiped down with a good silicone and wax remover first. Frankly, the amount of effort required to do this to Poly Tone is a lot less that the amount of effort it takes to put a patch or repair in a polyurethane finish.
    Likes Hardtailjohn, OldCuby liked this post

  13. #13

    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Posts
    5,927
    Post Thanks / Like
    We have a Poly Tone Cub. Aside from the fact that even Norm Douthit cannot get them to match the original Stits Cub Yellow, we have tapes pulling up, and general ugliness. I can repair the tapes by re-taping, but I have not yet found a way to just inject glue and seal the tape, thus avoiding the color mismatch problem.

    So far, I have tried injecting Poly Tak, Stewarts glue, and Cyano-Acrylate. Any ideas short of retaping and repainting the whole airplane?

  14. #14

    Join Date
    May 2016
    Location
    Olympia, WA
    Posts
    14
    Post Thanks / Like
    Quote Originally Posted by bob turner View Post
    We have a Poly Tone Cub. Aside from the fact that even Norm Douthit cannot get them to match the original Stits Cub Yellow, we have tapes pulling up, and general ugliness. I can repair the tapes by re-taping, but I have not yet found a way to just inject glue and seal the tape, thus avoiding the color mismatch problem.

    So far, I have tried injecting Poly Tak, Stewarts glue, and Cyano-Acrylate. Any ideas short of retaping and repainting the whole airplane?
    This is a difficult issue to offer suggestions for. Poly Tak has a limited application - glue seams and gluing foreign objects like grommets and inspection rings to fabric. Aside from that, it's not very often the right choice because it doesn't remain flexible like Poly Brush does, so it will crack much sooner, and doesn't fill the fabric weave very easily . It's also very difficult to get a tape to stick back down without making a mess of the surrounding coatings when the color coat is Poly Tone. That's because as a single-part color, anything with MEK in it will make Poly Tone gooey or remove it.

    In this case, I'd mask off the area immediately adjacent to the tape to be repaired. Then I'd pull back the tape to access the underside of it, and brush in several applications of unthinned Poly Brush until you have built some up. Then, apply a very light, but wet coat of Poly Brush, and allow the tape to lay back down into it and gently press it down and work it with your fingertips, taking care to keep the Poly Brush under the tape instead of oozing out on to the surrounding fabric.

    This isn't a great fix, though - as tapes are meant to be laid into liquid PB and then brushed with a dry brush to work the Poly Brush up through the weave of the tape from below. The fact that you won't be able to do this with an already painted tape, means the adhesion you get will be sub-par.

    In my experience, these kind of fixes rarely go as planned, and sometimes lead to a bigger issue than you had in the first place. Best of luck!
    Thanks tripper thanked for this post

  15. #15
    Steve Pierce's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Location
    Graham, TX
    Posts
    17,143
    Post Thanks / Like
    Bob, If it is Polytone over Polyfiber then the tapes will iron down using a 220 degree iron over a piece of parchment paper. Did this on almost an entire Tri-Pacer many years ago because someone didn't get their tapes stuck down good upon installing them. Warning, do not remove the parchment paper until it has cooled or the finish down to the Polybrush will stick to the parchment paper and not the fabric. Expletives will follow.
    Steve Pierce

    Everybody is ignorant, only on different subjects.
    Will Rogers

  16. #16

    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Posts
    5,927
    Post Thanks / Like
    Good idea! I will try it.

  17. #17
    coxcub's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Location
    Devon, England
    Posts
    203
    Post Thanks / Like
    I use non stick oven liner instead of parchment paper - never a problem with it lifting the poly tone off and the iron slides over it really well.

    Frank

Similar Threads

  1. How to remove painted N numbers on fabric plane?
    By ChickenCub in forum Cafe Supercub
    Replies: 11
    Last Post: 06-21-2017, 02:44 PM
  2. What do you use to clean your fabric?
    By AvidFlyer in forum Cafe Supercub
    Replies: 13
    Last Post: 01-20-2010, 08:01 PM
  3. Replies: 0
    Last Post: 07-18-2006, 01:38 PM

Bookmarks

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •