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#396759
Question:
Has anyone tried applying 303 Aerospace Protectant to their dacron sails?


An LZ that I will most likely be flying into has plenty of wet, juicy, cow residue, and I hate to imagine that some of that residue may become deposited on my wingtips at some point (and oh gasp ... the new harness!) Perhaps if 303AP is applied beforehand, the 'deposits' will merely wash off the sail and/or harness without the dreaded staining.

I've used 303 AP on wetsuits, leathers, etc., but not on my sails (boat or HG) or harness as yet. Sailrite advocates the product for use on sailboat sails, and some UL pilots indicate that it does wonders for their dacron sails.

So.... comments?
Thanks!

http://www.sailrite.com/303-UV-Protectant-16oz

http://eaaforums.org/showthread.php?6668-U-V-Protection
User avatar
By Rick M
#396764
Tom, that's not about 303 at all.
Last edited by Rick M on Tue Mar 14, 2017 1:43 pm, edited 1 time in total.
User avatar
By TomGalvin
#396765
Wow that was weird. The link

http://www.hanggliding.org/viewtopic.ph ... w=previous

goes to the correct post, but if you trim off &view=previous then it takes you a completely different thread I guess it's just way the google crawls the forum for the search box on this site.

http://www.hanggliding.org/viewtopic.php?t=31839 is the direct link.

Basically Wills Wings says don't use it because it weakens the sail fabric strength.
User avatar
By DMarley
#396806
Thanks Tom.
After posting, I did some more digging and found that 303 aerospace protectant most likely is not a good option for the sailcloth we have in our sails.
http://ozreport.com/forum/viewtopic.php ... ht=polyant

Has anyone had any experience and success in cleaning their sails and harnesses when subjected to fresh cow cakes? Perhaps there is some protectant that pilots are aware of that prevents dirt and slime from permeating the weave of the cloth and allows easy clean-up?
If not, perhaps there is some safe detergent that will extract the cow stains in the cloth?
I'm asking this BEFORE I subject my new(ish) gear to the au naturale LZ.
Thanks
#396808
DMarley wrote:Thanks Tom. After posting, I did some more digging and found that 303 aerospace protectant most likely is not a good option for the sailcloth we have in our sails.
http://ozreport.com/forum/viewtopic.php ... ht=polyant
Has anyone had any experience and success in cleaning their sails and harnesses when subjected to fresh cow cakes? Perhaps there is some protectant that pilots are aware of that prevents dirt and slime from permeating the weave of the cloth and allows easy clean-up? If not, perhaps there is some safe detergent that will extract the cow stains in the cloth? I'm asking this BEFORE I subject my new(ish) gear to the au naturale LZ. Thanks
DMarley,

Prevention may be the best idea, there. You can carry a doggie tie-down, like a big corkscrew, that you can screw into the ground where you land. Tie the glider to the screw with enough rope to hold the keel almost horizontal. Pull the ribs near the wing tips, roll the sailcloth there, and cover the tips with tip-bags. The fabric shops or camping places should have heavy and water-repellent cloth, good for tip bags, such as Cordura (harness cloth) or something more waterproof. Once the tips are bagged, lengthen the nose-rope, enough to let the tips touch the ground when you fold the wings inward. If you carry a square yard of flexible plastic sheet with you, and somebody helps by bringing in the opposite wing when you do yours, even the tip bags will not need to touch the ground/ mud /crud. Roll, tie, and bag the sail, and carry it out to the road with the control bar still set up. You can lay the glider down on clean ground, to stow the control bar.

This is yer basic high-winds tear-down process anyway, when you land out in strong winds, so this is not exotic stuff. A rope, a screw, and good tip-bags should be all you need to keep things fairly clean.

:mrgreen:
User avatar
By idahoDal
#396809
Any mild detergent works just fine. I like Simple Green.
#396810
idahoDal wrote:Any mild detergent works just fine. I like Simple Green.
IdahoDal,

Simple Green is very bad for aluminum (causing hydrogen embrittlement, to be technical). There is no way back, once Simple Green touches your aluminum. It's okay, diluted, when doing a sail-off-the-airframe sail cleaning job. Rinse very thoroughly, then rinse again.

There is a version of Simple Green that is supposedly "safe" for aluminum, but it's somewhat hard to find and not cheap.
User avatar
By kukailimoku
#396813
Acetone is always a good option, it cleans most ickiness and leaves no residue. Many (most?) protectants make it nearly impossible for the seamstick that sailmakers use to adhere to the dacron, making even minor repairs difficult if not impossible.
User avatar
By idahoDal
#396825
The aircraft grade stuff is on Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Simple-Green-134 ... B001VXU7OE

I have never found actual proof of regular Simple Green eating aluminum when used normally. I did find this: http://dfwptp.blogspot.com/2009/12/simp ... ks-up.html

http://simplegreen.com/faqs/
When used with caution and according to the instructions, Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner has been safely and successfully used to clean aluminum. Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner, Crystal Simple Green Industrial Cleaner & Degreaser, and Simple Green Pressure Washer Concentrates have been used on aircraft, automotive, industrial and consumer aluminum items for over 20 years. However, caution and common sense must be used: aluminum is a soft metal that easily corrodes with unprotected exposure to water. The aqueous-base and alkalinity of Simple Green All-Purpose Cleaner can accelerate the corrosion process. Therefore, contact times for unprotected or unpainted aluminum surfaces should be kept as brief as the job will allow - never for more than 10 minutes. Large cleaning jobs should be conducted in smaller-area stages to achieve lower contact time. Rinsing after cleaning should always be extremely thorough - paying special attention to flush out cracks and crevices to remove all Simple Green product residues. Unfinished, uncoated or unpainted aluminum cleaned with Simple Green products should receive some sort of protectant after cleaning to prevent oxidation.

Simple Green has also developed break-through water based cleaners that are safe for use on metals, plastics, rubber and high tech alloys. Extreme Simple Green Aircraft & Precision Cleaner, Pro Series Simple Green Automotive Cleaner, and Simple Green Pro HD are available on both the industrial and retail markets, respectively. These products were initially developed for the aircraft industry and extensive testing shows that they are safe and effective on a variety of metals and other sensitive surfaces even in the most extreme circumstances.

Simple Green Stainless Steel One Step Cleaner & Polish is another option for cleaning polished aluminum. This product is designed for light duty metal cleaning and polishing.
I'm comfortable using it but ymmv.
User avatar
By DMarley
#396830
Thanks all for the suggestions.
User avatar
By idahoDal
#396832
I was hoping to find something on WW's website but did not. Does anyone know if different sail materials require different cleaning agents? Reading more about the aircraft stuff from Simple Green it says that its safe for carbon fiber too so if that works well enough on our sails maybe its worth the investment? Or should we just be using plain old Dawn or Joy dishsoap?
User avatar
By red
#396834
idahoDal wrote:The aircraft grade stuff is on Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Simple-Green-134 ... B001VXU7OE
I have never found actual proof of regular Simple Green eating aluminum when used normally.
IdahoDal,

I did not find the Lockheed source documents, but I did find this:

http://www.swaircraftappraisals.com/Mey ... 0Green.pdf

It says the metal mass was reduced by measurable amounts, but that was a long test. I know the USAF banned the product, in aircraft use, some years back. As I said, there is now a version that maker says is okay on aluminum. I couldn't say, there.
User avatar
By KTMPilot
#396835
[/quote]Has anyone had any experience and success in cleaning their sails and harnesses when subjected to fresh cow cakes?[quote]

Unfortunately, yes.
I use a cotton ball soaked in regular drug store hydrogen peroxide to soak /blot the stained fabric/sailcloth area and then let it work for about 5 minutes. Follow up with a warm water wash / mild detergent/soft bristle scrub brush of the area to remove the residual stain pigment.. Do not put hydrogen peroxide on the airframe.
User avatar
By klh
#396839
Folex carpet cleaner is pretty good on dirt, grass stains, blood. Probably works on dung. It's what WW uses to clean sails at the shop. Available at Home Depot in large spray bottles.

Acetone used sparingly is good for oils and inks.

As you suspect, once something saturates into the weave it's going to at least leave traces.
User avatar
By jlatorre
#396852
Speaking as a former sailmaker, I can tell you that unless AP303 has been reformulated in the past twenty years, it's not good for sails, unless having soft-as-a-tee-shirt sails is your thing.

I've always recommended a mild detergent, like dishwashing soap or liquid hand soap ... something you wouldn't mind having on your skin. The important thing is to rinse it, and then rinse it again, and then rinse it again. You want all traces of the detergent to be removed, lest it react with the UV in the sunlight to degrade the sail.

If you have really old, old copies of Hang Gliding magazine (or the ones available on CD from the USHGA, look for an article I wrote back around 1979. It was called, I believe, "More Than Color and Shape" or something like that. Lots of stuff on sail care there, and most of it is still relevant.
User avatar
By dayhead
#396855
Somehow we've forgotten that it's Bad Luck to wash a hang glider. Wash your your kite, and you're guaranteeing that you'll whack hard. Don't believe it? Well, go ahead and wash it, but don't ever say I didn't try to warn ya.

Some will say that it's just a superstition, and maybe there's some truth in that. But it's a belief that gets you out of having to wash your glider, and drink beer with your friends instead, so it's a good one.

That dirty sail is proof that you are an active pilot, and not a laundry man.
User avatar
By jlatorre
#396858
dayhead wrote:Wash your your kite, and you're guaranteeing that you'll whack hard.
So THAT'S what screwed up all those landings! 'Cause I must have washed hundreds of gliders in my time, although most of that consisted of rinsing test-flown gliders to get the salt off them before packing them up.
That dirty sail is proof that you are an active pilot, and not a laundry man.
Hadn't heard that one. But we used to say that bird poop on a sail was an avian seal of approval. God knows I've washed my share of seagull poop off sails.
By darkcloud
#396865
KLH is correct. This stuf easily COMPLETELY removed the blood that I dripped on my brand new white sailcloth. Like magic
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User avatar
By ascaro
#396872
303 anti-UV seems to work on dacron and technora too,but I's not so cheap.
I've put it on my previous wings and it seemed to work.

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