This simple and lightweight process provides an alternative to traditional aircraft coverings. As the finish is applied, the layers merge together into one cohesive whole which is unbelievably strong. Using a sharp pocket knife, I found it impossible to scrape the HIPEC finish of a sample of Ceconite fabric. If applied properly, there is no sanding required to create a mirror-smooth finish with the HIPEC system!
HIPEC uses a special sun barrier that also glues the fabric to the airframe. This eliminates the need for ribstitching, fabric tapes, and saves weight plus a lot of labor. Talking with some builders who have used HIPEC, we couldn’t find anyone who didn’t like it. One gentleman had used HIPEC on his Jodel decades ago and said it still looked completely new. We had a chance to see two of the Lazairs recovered and they looked great, very slick without all those tapes on them.
The secret to the whole process is that the HIPEC Sun Barrier adheres the fabric to the wingribs and other structures so well that no tapes, rib stitching or other mechanical means are needed to back up the attachment. Tests have shown that the adhesion does not break down over time, even when water-immersed for years or exposed to sun or harmful chemicals such as fuel and oil. The bursting tests conducted indicate that the system gives superior strength to any other means of attachment.
My 2/3 scale Jenny took just short of a year to complete. FAA gave the nod last month and she’s in the air. She has the HIPEC covering system… I will never ever use another system to cover an experimental aircraft. I have completed many fabric coverings and I can assure your readers that the Hipec system is by far not only th easiest and cheapest but by far the most durable. There is no other system that you can apply that gives the quality the Hipec system does. A total of 3 coats and you can fold a sample like a piece of paper and it won’t crack and I dare you to tear or rip it.
I covered my J3 float plane in 2000 and it still looks great! We had a hail storm three years ago which caused several punctures. Friend’s plane, same place, same storm, done with dope was un-airworthy from the hail damage. Repaired mine with several “loonie” dollar sized prefinished patches. Just proves the merits of Hipec.