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Any Monokote users here?

Discussion in 'Covering and Painting' started by Truckracer, Dec 23, 2015.

  1. stangflyer

    stangflyer I like 'em "BIG"!

    Not really sure if there would be a way to know if you got an old batch or new. But I would venture a guess that unless you are dealing with a "mom and pop" LHS, you're probably going to get new stock covering with the updated materials. Don't get me wrong, there was a time when I absolutely loved Monokote. I will admit, I struggled with it years ago when I was new to the hobby. My first covering job coming back to the hobby after being absent from it for 8 years yielded about the same result. I just can't acclimate to it's characteristics. Not that I can't lay it down and look nice. Just that it has always been more difficult for me. Going around compound corners such as rounded wing tips on a Mustang or really pretty much anything for that matter. When I did the complete recover of my 260 with Ultracote, I seen a remarkable difference in the two brands. While Mono needs more heat to lay down, the Ultra goes down with less heat and adheres really well. I like the way Ultra goes around corners. It seems more "pliable" and is easier to stretch around compound corners without wrinkling. One thing I have noticed about both coverings is this. Mono is pretty much impossible to get removed without some serious heat to pull it up. Ultracote will usually come completely up leaving no residue or remaining covering with a little applied heat from a heat gun.

    I hope your covering job goes as you hope it will. Be paitent with the Ultracote. Once you figure it out, professional results are a snap.
  2. I've used lots of Ultracote over the years so no stranger to how it works. I was just hoping that Monokote had got their act together again and I could go back to that. I guess not to be though.

    Even when Monokote was still a great product, I always considered that both Ultracote and Monokote had their own unique qualities and characteristics that set them apart from each other. For some years I used both products depending on the particular application and I was happy with both products.
    stangflyer likes this.
  3. Remember the good old days when just the heat from your thumb would get monotone to stick to the balsa? Used to able to stretch and shrink around compound curves with relative ease. I hope they can get it back to what it used to be. Much better colors, glossier,and longer lasting than Ultracote.
  4. mndless

    mndless Don't know a thing..

    Do we know if Windex still reacts with this stuff ??
    -Rick- likes this.
  5. -Rick-

    -Rick- 70cc twin V2

    Yes, something I'd like to know as well...
  6. If you're referring to trim application, I just did a test over a 24 - 30 hr period on a test panel and there was no adhesion between the trim level and base Monokote. I used Windex from a spray bottle.

    I have a couple of rolls of the new Monokote here now and have been doing test panels on an old junk glider wing. Adhesion to itself and to wood simply sucks at best. It refuses to shrink unless very high temperatures are applied and at temperatures below 300 degrees, the covering actually gets looser when heated! As a control, I have quite a bit of the older Monokote (15 + years) and the same tests on this material shows the old familiar Monokote many of us used and liked years ago.

    One huge difference I noted early on: Old Monokote shrinks at a lower temperature and shrinks when the heat is applied. The new Monokote shrinks a bit at temperatures over 300 degrees but most of the shrink takes place as the covering cools! Old Monokote shrinks way more than the new material and I can hardly pry the seams apart. The seams on the new material peel apart with ease. Very, very different materials we're dealing with here. I find the new material mostly unsuitable for any airplane I'm building. This really leaves me feeling disgusted and that's being kind with words.

    Edit: On the Tower Hobbies website, for each monokote product, in the tech notes section, application temperatures are noted. These temperatures work fairly well for the old product but the covering just sits there and stares at you if you try to use them on the new product. They should just say "Impossible to apply correctly at any temperature"!
    Last edited: Dec 26, 2015
    mndless likes this.
  7. I've never had a problem applying MonoKote.
  8. Bunky, I have a couple of rolls here that just might challenge you a bit!

    I couldn't estimate how much Monokote I've applied over many decades but this stuff is completely different than it once was. The only thing similar between the old material and this new stuff is the name and perhaps the color selection which are still much better than what Ultracote offers.

    I'd read several threads about the problem but for the most part I just poo-pooed them as application errors. They were right, its crap. I'm going to give it one more chance and order a roll or two from Tower in hopes what I just picked up from the local shop was from a bad batch that was perhaps corrected in new stock.
  9. Matt

    Matt Guest

    Great... I have a 54% G200 I am about to cover and I love monokote because in my opinion it looks brand new and keeps its high gloss much longer than ultracote... All that I have used so far was my fathers batch and he has been flying since 1964 so he has a huge stash of old stock that works amazing... With the new plane I have to buy more and now I am nervous with how it will work..
  10. If you buy more (new) covering, I'd definitely do some tests with it before using it on a prized new model. I'd be curious to hear your results. I don't mind change but for covering, it has to stick and it has to shrink and stay tight!

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