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Old 06-12-2019, 08:39 PM
the mole's Avatar
the mole the mole is offline
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Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Illinois
Posts: 606
Default Tip for Boyce Aerospace 3D Saturn models

Right off the bat, the reason I am starting this thread is to get anyone and everyone to help each other in building these new and different made model rockets. The reason I call them different made rockets is that there are no balsa fins and in some cases very little paper tubes to build the rocket with. They are made with plastic filament melted together to form the shape and detail of the rockets. In my thinking, this is a rather new way to produce a model rocket. Not too many companies are using this process right now.

I have been buying kits from Boyce-Aerospace Hobbies for a few years. The first kits I bought from them was the Micro Saturns kits in 2016. Next came Nike Hercule and two Cox Saturn 1Bs. I got good flights from all of them, but the painting and finishing were the hardest things to get done on them. As time has gone on I have gotten better at finishing but I still find things to help me out. The one thing I can tell you is these models take some time and a lot of sanding to get a decent look. So I thought as more people start to build these 3D created rockets that we could post tip and tricks on building, painting, and finishing these kits here in one thread. (Please if you have a criticism of these kits start a thread of your own not on this thread. Thank you.)

So I will start things off with my first tip. After receiving your kit start by taking sandpaper and clean up the model. Sand rough spots. There are some small string and little bumps of plastic that need to be removed. Just a basic clean up before putting that first coat of primer.

Tip two, primer model with WHITE primer. I have learned the hard way GRAY primer is a lot harder to cover over and if the final paint job gets scratched the gray will show through badly.

Tip three, this has to do with the Saturn Models. After you cut the tank tubes take the leftover pieces and use them to make covers to place on the tube mounts on the Fin Can and Lower Transition to protect them from overspray of primer. When I'm sanding the Fin Can or Lower Transition I remove one cover at a time to let me know what part of the Fin Can I have sanded. I do the same with the Lower Transition.

Last tip for now. I have found these little sanding sticks at Hobby Lobby. They work great for sanding small area of the Fin Can and of course Lower Transition. Small metal files help out a lot as well.

Enough for now. If anyone has anything to add please do.
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Old 06-12-2019, 10:44 PM
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tbzep tbzep is offline
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Location: TN
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Originally Posted by the mole
Tip two, primer model with WHITE primer. I have learned the hard way GRAY primer is a lot harder to cover over and if the final paint job gets scratched the gray will show through badly.

I believe I asked this on another thread, but it would be good to have it in this one because many of us have never used it. What particular white primer do you recommend to grip this type of plastic? Our grey lacquer primers dry quickly and can be sanded in a few hours. What is the cure time for your primer?
I love sanding.
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Old 06-13-2019, 08:32 AM
the mole's Avatar
the mole the mole is offline
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Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Illinois
Posts: 606

For a primer, I like to use KRYLON and I have used Rust-Oleum also Tamiya. I have good luck with all these. I can find these at local hardware stores and Tamiya at Hobby Lobby. In my case, I go by how heavy a coat of primer I put on as to how much time I'm able to work on them. A lite coat can be worked on sooner than a heavy coat. Tbzep I have seen some of your rockets here and you do like sanding so you won't have any problems. I'm glad to see you get your hands on one of these rockets. I'm sure you will have plenty to say about build this 3D type project.

The white putty I use is Tamiya from Hobby Lobby. I also have used Squadron white putty but I have to order it.

I get good results from all these products. I like to let my primer and putty dry for a day or two before I start sanding.
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Old 06-13-2019, 12:43 PM
zog139 zog139 is offline
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Location: Maryland
Posts: 207

Thanks for starting this and sharing tips. Looking forward to building my 1B.
Jim Filler
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Old 06-13-2019, 01:15 PM
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teflonrocketry1 teflonrocketry1 is offline
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Whitehouse, Ohio
Posts: 264

KRYLON changed their paint and primer formulations. The Colormaster white primer #3455 doesn't even qualify as primer in my opinion. It goes on thin and runny making it difficult to avoid drips and runs. The primer has almost no build and the coat is translucent. It takes several days to dry to the point where it can be dry sanded, and every KRYLON paint I put over it wrinkles, bubbles and crazes. I stopped using all KRYLON products a few years ago after I noticed this change. KRYLON used to be my go-to brand for painting rockets, but since this reformulation I have had nothing but trouble with their spray paints. The technical help for these products at Sherwin Williams is abysmal, I doubt the people that answer the phone or emails have ever used the products! It is no wonder that the shelves at Walmart always seem to be very well stocked with KRYLON paints these days, I think a lot of other people have figured out that the new formulations of KRYLON spray paint are inferior and not worth the money.

I was eventually informed by technical help at Sherwin Williams that the KRYLON Industrial ACRYLI-QUIK Acrylic Lacquers are the same as the old KRYLON formulations that I used to purchase from Walmart. They are available for $8.49 per 12 ounce can from MSC Industrial Supply visit:

KRYLON ACRYLI-QUIK White Primer # K01315A07 is available from FullSource for $31.49 per case of 6 at: Grainger also sells this product:

I am now using Rust-Oleum spray paints which are enamels and not lacquers. I like their Painters Touch Flat White primer #248058, but you then have to use an enamel paint over it as any lacquers, and especially KRYLON paints will cause the primer coat to wrinkle and alligator the top coat.
Bruce S. Levison, NAR #69055

Last edited by teflonrocketry1 : 06-13-2019 at 01:39 PM.
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Old 06-13-2019, 01:55 PM
the mole's Avatar
the mole the mole is offline
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Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Illinois
Posts: 606

A big thanks on the tip for the KRYLON primers. I had used KRYLON paints in the past but when Hobby Lobby open up so close to me I have been using TESTORS Flat White for all my 3D models in the last few years. Thanks again, you may have saved someone a bad experience.
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Old 06-13-2019, 07:57 PM
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Flash Flash is offline
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Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 213

A big thank you to "The Mole" for starting this build thread and for the encouragement of keeping everything positive and focused!

Here is a youtube link to a good video on how to finish 3d printed parts.

Here are some pics of my tube cutting tool sold by North Coast Rockets. I have both the Saturn 1's rough in so to speak.

Just got my 1B yesterday. I'm actually going to be doing two different builds on that rocket. I will be doing a straight forward Boyce Aerospace build and I'm going to be doing a close to scratch build using only the Shapeway 1/100 3D printed Fin Can unit and Graff's molded body wraps.

thank you!
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Last edited by Flash : 06-13-2019 at 09:21 PM.
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