was Micafilm always in transparent?

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    i have a roll of Yellow and may have found a source for “new old stock”…………..were the colors always in a transparent system?

    Lee Hines

    Some Micafilm was transluscent.
    I have seen Red & Yellow at least.

    John Oian


    there was also a “clear” that was a very translucent white with very little scrim on the back. It was considerably lighter than the colored and shrunk better. It could be colored by spraying dye on the rough side. I don’t know about the origins of the heavier colored version, but the clear was actually “In real life” called I believe “Test 505” and was used for a short time on spinnakers for the 505 sailboat. This was in the late seventies but I think they found it too fragile (I had a 505 at the time but only heard about the new “hot spinnaker cloth”). It’s still sought after by the R/C sailboat crowd for regular sails.I saw somewhere where someone had a new batch made up but because it cost so much for the small batch, he was selling it for BIG bucks to R/C sailors.

    The red and yellow were somewhat transparent (about like silkspan) and I think the blue might be the same.

    George Reinhart

    I owned a sail loft for 20 years and used a lot of “test 505” well maybe not so much by loft standards but probably 1000-1500 yards over a two or three year period. Lovely stuff to work with but very small demand.
    The primary use for the 505 material was drifter type running spinnakers on light boats up to 35 feet.
    We usually taped the seams with double sticky tape with a rubber based adhesive though at times we tried glue transfer tape on some of the smaller chutes.
    My contact at Howe and Bainbridge told me at the time that it was originally used in the camping tent business as a moisture barrier. I seem to remember he told me it 1/4 mil with a 1/4 oz. scrim. You might only have a use for the chute once or twice a year but if you did, it was a “killer app.” I called up one time a couple of years ago to see if there was any laying about in a forgotten warehouse corner and was told it was long gone but they would make new run for me if I would take 5000 yards of it.

    John Oian


    Thanks for the info on the sailcloth. I never saw any of the material, but just heard from the sailors at the Melbourne 505 nationals that it didn’t hold up well and was kind of a one shot sail. At the time I considered myself lucky if I could just keep the thing right side up with the rip stop spinnaker I had! I know that most of the stuff we use for our models probably has some “real” other use eg European dress lining aka “Polyspan”(if it was made exclusively for us we couldn’t afford most of it).



    it fascinates me how so much has changed since i left almost 20 years ago.
    back then Monokote was a very useable covering, and now it’s total junk.
    Ultracote Lite looks to be it’s replacement provided the structure is tuat………..Carbon fiber has taken that to a new level.
    Micafilm was used back then, but probably because of it’s challenge for securing it to the framework made it a not so popular product.
    having done unglued mylar in the past makes the challenge rather easy, but i can see how the RC world has thrown good materials in the trash.
    been dealing with a nice guy up in Canada who had several rolls of Red, Yellow and White.
    i originally bought a few Globee plugs from him to which he had 2 dozen more to which the Micafilm subject came up.
    he sent pictures and the rest is Paypal history 😀

    most intersting of all is the info John and Pete posted………..never know what we have till it’s gone tho..

    Dean McGinnes

    I have some translucent red and yellow. How does it compare with Ultracote and Ultracote Lite as to weight, stiffness, and ease of use?

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