Tech Questions - Selecting Your Fabric


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Is the fabric used for aircraft a special fabric?

Yes, it is a polyester fabric that is tested for certain properties and specially woven for aircraft. It must meet standards established by the FAA.

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What is dacron fabric?

Dacron is a DuPont trade name for the filaments used in polyester fabric. It is the same as polyester fabric.

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Selecting the proper type and weight of fabric is confusing. How do I know what type to use on my airplane?

This is a common question. To begin, if you are covering a production airplane, you must use a 'certified' fabric. That means the fabric has been properly inspected and approved for use on your airplane. Three weights of fabric are available: lightweight, medium weight, and heavy weight. Go to the Products tab, select Fabrics, Padding, Tapes and Thread, and then select Fabrics to see the current Fabric Product Data Sheet with fabric specifications ( http://www.conaircraft.com/products/polyfiber/fabrics_padding_threads_tapes/fabrics.php ). Use the chart below to select your fabric.

Airplane Type

Ultralights, Very-Light Aircraft, Gliders, and Aircraft with less than 65 HP - Light Weight Fabric

All Normal Service Aircraft-kit aircraft, Antiques, classics, new production aircraft, and most airplanes using normal airports. - Medium Weight Fabric

Aerobatic aircraft, ag-aircraft, Warbirds, and all larger aircraft & aircraft operating off of rough fields - Heavy Weight

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I am covering an experimental airplane. Can I use uncertified fabric?

The answer is yes, you legally can use any fabric. However, to ensure you have a good quality you should only use certified fabric that has been properly inspected. Using uncertified fabric is somewhat risky as to whether it has proper strength and elongation properties.

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I notice that my fabric has a stamp on it. Is that normal and will the ink bleed through after I have finished the covering process?

The fabric is stamped as being inspected and then certified. You should see the stamp on all certified fabric. The special ink used for this will not bleed through. However, you should never mark the fabric with ink. Use only a pencil.

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