Thinning Dope

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    My question is,do I have to use Sig thinner with Sig butyrate dope?Can I use regular paint thinner?Thank you

    Bill Shailor

    No. I was floored by my recent purchase of thinner and dope as to how much the prices have gone up! I wish something else could be used….


    Thank you for the info.The stuff is shure pricey for what you get.

    Glenn Schneider

    Regular paint thinner is mineral spirits and totally unsuited for use with dope of any kind. Also dismayed with the price of dope and thinner I bought some hardware store lacquer thinner and have been using it to clean my brushes rather than use the expensive Sig thinner for that and seems to be working just fine. I’ve yet to experiment with the lacquer thinner to thin the dope itself, might work. Straight acetone, also available at the hardware store, may also work particularly with nitrate. Thermals Glenn

    Derek McGuckin


    John Seymour

    The best solution to the high cost of dope and thinner is to purchase from a full scale aircraft dope and fabric supplier and save over half the price of buying from a model supplier. You can buy in larger quantities and save even more.

    The company I have used is Aircraft Technical Support, located just outside Columbus, Ohio. They stock Randolph brand dope products, which has been in use for many decades and is considered the best by many, myself included. Their website is There are, of course, a few other dope suppliers out there, but I would highly recommend this one. 🙂

    George Reinhart

    When I buy dope and thinner, I get mine at an aicraft supply house around Meacahm Field in Fort Worth, it’s always fresh. A gallon of dope and a couple of gallons of thinner will last me several years. I f I need s a small quantity of something I don’t have I go over to my friend’s place (he restores J-3’s) and beg, borrow, or steal the little bit that I need. Besides, I tried some of the Sig stuff and didn’t much like it.



    Well, to answer you question, directly……which apparently everyone is avoiding……yes, you do have to use the manufacturers thinners. This is what I do for a living. And the reason being is, it’s chemically balanced. These things aren’t just dreamed up in some guys garage. They spend years devoloping them in state of the art laboratories. So, don’t be a tight ass and worry about the cost… the one guy said….head on down to your local aviation supply store and shell out $50 or what ever the current rate is and buy some of the good stuff. And definitely don’t just go buy some acetone. That’s ok for cleaning you equipment and some of the lower end brushes. It can cause fogging or give you that milky look. OK?
    I think you get my point…..if you spend a lot of your precious time, creating your masterpiece……don’t blow it by trying to cut corners and save a nickle. Good luck and may the thermal gods find favor in your efforts.


    I thin Nitrate, Butyrate, and KlassKote Epoxy with DuPont 3608S Acrylic Lacquer thinner.
    Its for automotive paint. Available anywhere.

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