My First…..or… How to Quit Worrying and Love the Foil
Ok gang this is the aircraft I lost my Foil Virginity too ! A 21st Century Toy P-47 that I sanded the markings off except the black area. I had STARED at my adhesive bottle for a couple of YEARS and I wanted to build a 1/32 Trumpeter English Electric (I love saying that) F1A Lightning. I did an Airfix 1/48 and used Metalizers and wasn’t happy with it.
I wanted the 1964 Number 56 Squadron demo team the “FIREBIRDS” and knew it had to be “foiled” to get the finish I wanted, or so I thought.
I needed to try it before I pulled my big kit out and looking around for a “victim” I spotted the 47 on the wall hanging there gathering dust.
I had a little experience with Bare Metal Foil and knew that was not the answer, so to the grocery store and picked up CHEAP foil to start.
I had found a few articles on the web and a couple in magazines and figured they were doing it the HARD way, as the adhesive directions said brush the stuff on the foil, let dry and apply, too messy. I have always had a hard time following directions and knew from my limited BMF experience that the adhesive on the foil would be hard to handle and wasteful.
I started putting it on the panel, burnishing it with a “make-up applicator” (looks like a Q-Tip but one end has a large flat pad ) that I purchased in the make-up dept. at Wallyworld, but didn’t know about steelwool yet.
I know that aluminum sheet generally comes in LARGE rolls (first grain) then is stamped or cut out (more machine marks) and in a lot of cases rolled(more grain) to put a curve in it and not all panels have their grain running in the same direction.
I started to foil the 47( shiny side down) and turn the foil on some panels a different direction so it would reflect different and once in awhile hit a panel with 2000 sand paper and discovered that I could dull it, but you could also polish it to a mirror shine if you wanted it to look like chrome.
I figured steelwool would be perfect medium to grain the foil and would rub with the grain on the foil or go opposite to get a different look and it worked.
When I finished foiling I sprayed it with Future,as I had some trouble with decals sticking to polished Metalizer’s in the passed and I wanted to test the Trumpeter decals on it.
Some say do not overcoat NMF finishes as it ruins the shine, but on foil you want to tone it down some or it looks TOO SHINYand will patina and start to show fingerprints (skin oil) that were not removed with alcohol or mineral spirits ,it might take afew years but they will come. They will come on your painted NMF also if exposed and not clear coated.
So the Trumpy decals are for 111 squadron and laid down nice and I have a British T-Bolt
I built 3 models for a 2nd Bomb Wing Headquater display in 1999 and were all Metalizer finish and look good IMHO,but still look like silver paint to me and I grew up around NMF A/C on military bases and it just was not good enough IMHO.
If you want horror stories about other NMF methods, brother I gotta bunch and for the most part they STINK and are MESSY.
Please feel free to ask questions as I have no problem in shepherding you to the
7 additional images. Click to enlarge.