Newbies with some questions


New member
Hey y’all so my boys are wanting to get into rc airplane flying. I used to fly years ago and I’m glad they are getting into it. My question is how should we or what is the best ways to finish the airplane as far as a color scheme? Do we use paint, tape or what? Thanks y’all! Our kits should be arriving soon and just want everything here.

The Fopster

Master member
I'm a big fan of using coloured packing tape. It is cheap, quick and easy - and it adds a little strength to your model. With a little imagination it's amazing what you can do!


The flite test paper covered foam (brown) takes spray paint very well, but might take 2 lightish coats to cover over the darker brown. The dollar store foam (white) will peel off the foam if you go too heavy on paint and get it wet, but works pretty well with 2-3 very light coats, ~20 min drying time in between

Don't bother painting until you cra--fly it!


Site Moderator
Staff member
Paint or tape is a personal choice, there is no right or wrong answer. You can also paint a base color & tape a contrasting color. I agree with Nick. Your first plane or two are mostly sacrificed learning to fly. Dont spend a lot of effort making it look great, just a bit of color to improve visibility.

I use colored packing tape for the reasons above. In the sky colors tend to disappear, all you can see is light and dark. I always have a light and a dark color on each side of the wing. Some will make the left side different from the right. I prefer to make the top different from the bottom. Once again personal choice.

Use any pattern you want. I use a stripe or two. Going one way on top and the other way on the bottom.

I only know of two sources of colored tape. Carton sealing tape from Tape Planet and wing tape from Hobby King. If anyone has another source please mention it.
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Well-known member
I agree with above comment to wait on painting until they get some stick time in the air with it. I didn't add color to the first 2 planes i built years ago. Good thing too because they didn't last. lol What kits did you get? Pro Tip - Before you build, take the parts and trace them out on some poster board. That way when your kids crash, you have templates to make repair parts or build a whole new plane.

But, if/when you do add color, there's many different ways. As stated above, colored tape is quick and easy, but not my personal favorite.
When painting the FT kits, make sure you scuff the paper with some fine grit sandpaper or some steel wool. The FT kits have a waxy coating on them that makes them water resistant, this coating prevents the paint from sticking. Scuffing the surface gives the paint something to stick too. I use Rustoleum 2x spray paint. Make sure you use multiple light coats and NOT try to get all covered with one coat. If you soak it with paint it will delaminate the paper from the foam.

Blue painters tape works good for crisp lines but make sure you remove some of the stickiness by putting the tape on your shirt a couple times before you apply to the parts. This is especially important when applying the painters tape on already painted parts.

I also like to print off decals. If you have a standard inkjet printer, just use google image to find what you want. I personally use Microsoft paint to get the image the exact size I want as I don't really have any other software. Then you print it. I then take the printed picture and using some thin packing tape, cover the decal front and back, and then cut it out and apply with some spray glue. This is how I did the decals on the attached pictures. For bigger decals like the decals on my 3D XL wings, I used the print in tile function on Microsoft paint and just cut/taped them together. The result is actually pretty good for how easy it is.


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New member
Thanks for the response guys! I appreciate it. We already have a plane from eflite, the piper cub. They are really good with that one but now they want to start building them. We got the legacy and the round disc looking thing. I still have my nitro planes going on years ago but I’m pretty new to the whole electric side and how to keep weight down. If I built a plane that was heavy I would used to just put a bigger motor on it. I guess I can still do that same thing. But I want them to not just fly but learn how to build also. It taught me a lot as a kid.