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BetterAircraft Offers Simpler Oratex Fabric Solution

BetterAircraftFabric's new fabric, paints, and adhesives offer a less labor-intensive approach to finishing your aircraft project.

By Dave Higdon

July 25, 2015 - Among the more labor-intensive and challenging aspects of finishing a fabric-covered aircraft is, well, applying and finishing the fabric.

Admittedly, the current standards are major advances over the industry standard cotton-and-dope process. But even more-advanced systems still require some work and substances you wouldn't do unless you had to.

The new Oratex system from BetterAircraftFabric provides builders with an option free of dopes, and even suitable for use with no added finish—no paint, no nothing.

The company offers the fabrics in six distinct colors, among them Cub Yellow, Corsair Blue, Fokker Red, and Olive Drab.

Oratex covering cloth comes in two weights, one suitable for aircraft weighing up to 1,323 pounds and another for aircraft weighing up to 13,228 pounds. The system also includes compatible fabric strips in different widths for use to custom-stripe the aircraft, plus self-adhesive patching materials for the lighter cloth.

For the builder—or for owner recovering an aircraft—interested in a color unavailable in fabric catalog the Oratex system offers flexible paints compatible with the fabric. The paints can stretch and flex with the cloth without cracking or flaking, according to BetterAircraftFabric.

And BetterAircrafFabric also offers a special damage-indicator paint suitable for composite aircraft structures. The paint can flex and stretch with the structure beneath without cracking or flaking.

But should the composite airframe take a hit hard enough to incur damage the paint changes to show that damage may have been incurred. Depending on the hardener used, the paint can be brushed on or sprayed.

Both the damage-indicator paint and the flexible paint are available in myriad colors—including some florescent hues that allow almost unlimited custom design work.

During EAA AirVenture Oshkosh 2015 you can find the BetterAircraftFabric folks in both the Aircraft Spruce & Specialty Building A, Spaces 1156 and 1157, and in The Fun Fly Zone area in Spaces 942 and 943.


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