For anyone starting and especially those building a 7, I posted a link to my Basic Builder Log (see Kitplane links). It's a nice way to track time and financials, plus there's a pretty accurate 7(a) inventory tab.
Alodine is finally done! All exterior surfaces have been alodined. I plan to vinyl wrap so the conversion coating will protect against corrosion and it adds zero weight so I still get the full benefit from the vinyl weight savings. I've got some samples that have been sitting outside in the heat, sun, snow and rain. Plan is to leave them out there till I pull the trigger on the vinyl. So far all are holding up nicely. One each on bare aluminum, alodine and P60G2 primer.
I learned a lot through the process.
- The most time consuming part was taping off areas so the chemicals wouldn't end up in the wrong place. Alumiprep will peel P60G2 off just like paint remover. The only tape that held up was black electrical tape. Cheapest was 10 rolls from Harbor Fright. Apply the electrical tape to the edge but leave the opposite edge loose. Then I used Gorilla tape by sliding the strip under the electrical tape, sticky side to the sticky side of the electrical tape to extend the barrier. Every other method leaked.
- Type of rinse water has no effect. I tried every one. Tap water works just as good. Use a tank sprayer to rinse.
- I got best results by scuffing first. Random orbital with maroon scotchbrite worked best followed by a wipe with denatured alcohol. Scrubbing wet with scotchbrite works too but way too messy.
- Alumiprep was easier than Bon Ami but it also worked well. I used foam brushes to apply. Use the widest one possible. Apply it fast. Keep the brush moving and keep the surface wet. Don't let it drip. Drips leave a mark. Leave the brush out of the solution when it's stored. Alumiprep breaks down the foam. Rinse the cleaner very well.
- Dry after each step with a hair dryer.
- Application of Alodine has to be done as quickly as humanly possible. Large foam brush works here too. Apply it as fast as possible and don't allow drips. Keep the brush moving. The surface converts almost immediately so drips will show forever. Keep it wet for several minutes. at 70 degrees I kept it wet for 10 minutes.
- Rinse and dry.