Tue, Jul 31, 2012
Iron-On Polyester Fabric Covering For Light Aircraft
By David Juwel
The ORATEX covering for General Aviation aircraft was actually designed for model aircraft. In 2001, the Zurich University of Applied Sciences in Switzerland, developed a microlight glider that used off-the-shelf model aircraft covering to cover the glider. The project was very successful and led to the development of a new covering for full-sized aircraft.
Today, ORATEX UL 600 is available for aircraft with a MTOW up to 600kg. This is followed by ORATEX 3000 for aircraft with a MTOW up to 3000kg (Piper Cubs, Pitts Special, experimentals, homebuilts and other open structure aircraft.)
Simplicity of application is the impressive key benefit. The covering application technique is new: you simply put the adhesive on the airframe and those parts of the covering to be glued to the airframe, let it dry, then iron the covering on. It’s as simple as that! It can be flown either painted or unpainted. No more dope, fillers, sealers or sanding! The weight of the covering is consistent every time it is used.
Aircraft construction is not an issue either. It can be aluminum, steel, wood or composite. It may even be sewn if rib stitching is required by the aircraft designer.
To see it on an actual aircraft, go to the Ultralight area and look at the “Bodacious” aircraft. The entire aircraft is covered with this type of covering, and the owner of the aircraft, Mr. Steele, was very enthusiastic about it. The company representative, Mr. Siegfried Lanitz from the Lanitz-Prena Folien Factory, will be happy to meet with you to discuss the covering of your current or future project.
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