The two most important tools for using ORATEX®
covering, are a good-quality, accurately-controllable, digital hot-air
gun and a good accurately-controllable iron. Some smaller tools
and materials are useful and best discussed prior to beginning.
Is the fabric repairable if damaged?
If the fabric (and only the fabric) is dented but not punctured,
the dent may be removed with a heat gun. If there is a puncture
(again only to the fabric), repairing is possible by gluing in a
patch of the same fabric. In all cases there should be an assessment
in order to ensure that there is no structural damage.
Both of these repairs are relatively simple, but the correct process
per the instruction manual must be followed.
Can I paint over ORATEX®
fabric is not necessary for making it
airtight, resistant to oil, fuel and UV. However painting is possible
for those who wish to do so. Any painting adds stiffness and weight so
this should be considered carefully. The correct paints should be used
so as not to compromise the properties of the fabric.
have a range of paints and fillers.
Must tape edges be pinked?
adhesive is good enough to not require
pinked edges so straight-cut edges may be used.
Can I use adhesives other than
ORATEX® hot-melt adhesive for bonding the fabric?
It is strongly advised to follow the ORATEX®
carefully and not to deviate on the use of other adhesives. The bond
between the fabric and the aircraft structure is obviously very
important. The ORATEX®
hot-melt adhesive is water-based
so it is not a problem to ship. So you are advised to purchase and
use the correct product.
Does the hot-melt adhesive have a
Yes. In addition, and to remove any doubt, always make up test pieces
to verify the adhesive is achieving its pull-test strength as
described in the instructions. It is such a small thing to do and
should be done for your own piece of mind whenever a batch of adhesive
is used. Record the test result in your build log.
Does the fabric have a shelf-life?
No. Store it safely away from heat until needed.
If I donít paint, how do I decorate or
personalize my aircraft?
There is a wide range of ORATEX®
products, cutting film,
trim stripes, both narrow and wide. These are very light and designed
to be used as decorative trim. There is a vast range of colours including
metallic, fluorescent and pearl. These can be fixed and also removed by
heat. This makes it much easier to be creative and customize your plane
in a way that would normally be difficult and expensive with paint. If
you donít like your first attempt, you can remove it and do it again.
This is something you would be very reluctant to do with paint.
Where do I get help and advice?
The distributor for Australia and New Zealand will help and support as
much as possible. Help is a usually a phone-call or email away in a
similar time-zone which makes it easier to have a low-cost, in-depth
discussion. It is important to have all your questions asked and answered
and the job well-planned. If the question or application is new or
particularly difficult, then the suppliers in Germany can be consulted
as required. Training is an option where needed.