TheCoatingStore.com

Results 1 to 6 of 6

Thread: FM-2 Wildcat

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Bay Area, California
    Posts
    331

    Default FM-2 Wildcat

    I was reading a thread where someone was trying to put 2K paint over a Rustoleum spray primer. Caught my attention because that is exactly what happned here during this planes restoration. However, we had a very unique situation facilitated by a unique volunteer aboard the USS Hornet.

    These are pictures of the raw plane as we got it from Pensacola after being pulled from Lake Michigan after a crashed take off from one of the two training carriers there during WWII. They donate the4 plane, retain ownership, and you get to restore. Typical ditching with bent props and caved in lower right side. Years in the water led to an encrusted engine by very little rust overall.
    Attached Images Attached Images

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Bay Area, California
    Posts
    331

    Default

    Next the three year restoration process covering every aspect of the plane. General idea here: fuselage, wings, ailerons, landing gear, cockpit, and engine.
    Attached Images Attached Images

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Bay Area, California
    Posts
    331

    Default

    The engine was done off premises. The lead volunteer had a shop where he had done advance engine work for Mercedes and Porsche race engines so that is where the engine went. The wings were also repaired in this shop.
    Attached Images Attached Images

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Bay Area, California
    Posts
    331

    Default

    Final pictures of the finished plane. This is where that one volunteer came into play. Turns out his day job is as a paint chemist. He works for a company where he creates formulas for many kinds of paint for many kinds of applications. The issue here was how would a 2K paint adhere to this Rustoleum primer. Rustoleum told him there should be no problems yet his first mix started to shrink and lift some after a 10 minutes test application. Turns out Rustoleum meant only their paints on their primer. Duh, why didn't you say that in the first place. So back to the drawing board. He then came back with a new 2K formula that would stick to this 1K primer. After dealing with a silicon issue, just a little silicon spray contaminated the whole entire work area, he was ready to paint. The paint for us is free after he makes it up at the Fresno plant. The amazing thing is that it was so successful in being that the company turned it into three new lines of paint products for sale to the public.

    Then, of course later on, two people later on dismissed his talents after the mixed up lots of paint for our S-2 Tracker. The new plane captain said he had his own paint guy who knew what to do. In actually it those guys know what to do and use because our chemist is the one who teaches them. So that paint was used on our F-8 Crusader (circa 1957) as it needed all it's control surfaces restored as the balsam wood deteriorated over the decades. In the end we got a new CEO, retired Navy Captain, who understood what happened, made corrections in the course, and brought him back into the crew. He devised a paint for all 50 galley tables. He mixed a durable paint for the entire hanger deck. He will be giving me his secret additive to add to our stash of haze gray paint to turn it into a 2K paint with a much longer life span.
    Attached Images Attached Images

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Bay Area, California
    Posts
    331

    Default

    Some of the detail. This project was tough on the group. One volunteer had a heart attack and passed away. Another long time volunteer back to 2001 decided to quit after this was finished in 2015. Other volunteers said they would no longer work with the lead man. The lead man was very picky about the work but he could also be a big pain in the ass which is why some said never again. I wasn't on this plane but I had a run in with him about the plane for some dumb reason to me. Too bad since he has facilities we don't have but he got way, way too serious and the guys here are volunteers. They enjoy the work they do but one doesn't need a whip.

    The antenna picture shows where the plane was sanded and then re-sprayed again to achieve a smoother surface. Practice, practice aboard the ship. Last week saw an aileron for the S-2 painted as a test and it was smooth as silk.
    Attached Images Attached Images

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Posts
    42,791

    Default

    I've painted a few planes but none like that. Beautiful work!

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •