Questions and Answers - Aircraft Fabric Covering | Aircraft Systems

Questions and Answers - Aircraft Fabric Covering

Study Aid Questions

Fill in the Blanks

1. Organic fabrics, like linen and ________, were the original fabrics used for covering airframes but their tendency to ________ gave way to a process known as ________.

2. Organic fabrics generally only last ________ years.

3. ________ fabric is the standard covering currently being used in the United States.

4. Pinked edges have been cut into a continuous series of V’s by machine or special ________ to prevent ________.

5. Deviations from the supplemental type certificate in any way renders the aircraft ________.

6. A ________ field approval may be acquired to deviate from the original covering process or material.

7. ________ is the single most destructive element that causes polyester fabric to deteriorate.

8. To achieve a level and deep glossy finish, ________ is added to slow dry time.

9. Finishing tape is used to cover all ________ and rib lacing to provide a smooth finish and ________.

10. Fungicide and mildewicide are only required for ________ fabric.

11. Loose fabric affects the ________ distribution and ________ the airframe.

12. A ________ may be used per the manufacturer’s instruction if the dope coating is found to have cracks but the fabric itself is still ________.

13. Breaking strength is determined by cutting a test strip, taken from an area that is ________ to the elements, which is ________ by 4‐6 inches.

14. The ________ method of re‐covering uses multiple flat sections of fabric attached to the frame whereas the envelope method uses ________ envelopes to cover the aircraft.

15. It is important in the re‐covering process that the ________ , ________ , and ventilation be controlled.

16. Fabric coatings should be applied with a high‐ ________ , low‐________ sprayer.

17. Some of the primary concerns of fabric seams are strength, elasticity, ________ and good ________.

18. Closer spacing of rib lacing should be done in the area that experiences ________, about one propeller width plus ________.

19. Inspection rings are left intact and only removed when ________ is required. It is then closed using preformed ________ panels.

20. Fabric gussets, installed as ________, reinforce cable guide openings and ________‐attached fitting areas.


1. Warp describes the direction across the width of the fabric. TRUE/FALSE

2. The same materials and techniques must be used when replacing aircraft fabric. TRUE/FALSE

3. A TSO is a technical standard order issued by the manufacturer for specific parts, materials, processes, and appliances use on civil aircraft. TRUE/FALSE

4. Only companies with a PMA may manufacture and sell aviation fabric. TRUE/FALSE

5. The same thread may be used to hand sew and machine sew aviation fabric. TRUE/FALSE

6. Prior to airframe covering, the structure must be primed. TRUE/FALSE

7. Fabric cement is used to attach the fabric to the airframe. TRUE/FALSE

8. Fabric is still airworthy down to 70% of the breaking strength of new fabric. TRUE/FALSE

9. Fabric test strips should have all the coatings left on to get an accurate measurement of the fabric’s breaking strength. TRUE/FALSE

10. Punch testers like Seyboth and Maule give an accurate representation of the fabric breaking strength. TRUE/FALSE

11. The Maule punch tester does not puncture airworthy fabric during testing. TRUE/FALSE

12. Fuselage and wings can be covered with one large envelope. TRUE/FALSE

13. Many of the substances used to re‐cover an aircraft are highly toxic. TRUE/FALSE

14. Old adhesive stuck to the airframe can be removed with MEK. TRUE/FALSE

15. Polyester fabric generally incorporates sewn seams. TRUE/FALSE

16. An ordinary household iron may be used to heat shrink fabric. TRUE/FALSE

17. Heat shrinking should be done evenly by starting from one end and progressing to the other end. TRUE/FALSE

18. Finishing tape is applied to all seams, edges, and ribs. TRUE/FALSE

19. Wing leading edges usually receive the narrowest amount of finishing tape to reduce irregularities during the covering process. TRUE/FALSE

20. There is no compromise in strength between cemented repairs and sewn repairs. TRUE/FALSE

Knowledge Application Questions

1. How do aircraft designers address the flammability of nitrate doping and the process they used for application?

2. Explain why replacing cotton fabric with polyester fabric aircraft is considered a major alteration.

3. Describe what anti‐chafe tape is and when it is used.

4. Describe the difference between hand thread and machine thread.

5. How are the holes inside grommets created?

6. Explain the process of re‐covering an aircraft using the blanket method.

7. What are some of the necessary personal protection equipment needed when re‐covering an aircraft?

8. What is used to produce a smooth finish on leading edges of aluminum wings? What is essential when considering this process?

9. Describe the process of heat shrinking fabric.

10. What is the purpose of a drain grommet and where are they located?

11. How are finishing tapes applied at the leading and trailing edges?

12. What is fabric primer and what does it do?

Multiple Choice Questions

1. What does the term bias mean in relation to fabric coverings?
a. The weave across the width of the fabric
b. The warp along the direction of the fabric
c. A cut or fold made at a diagonal to the warp

2. Which 14 CFR part 43 Appendix states what maintenance actions are considered minor and major repairs?
a. A
b. B
c. C

3. Major fabric repairs need to be inspected by?
a. Airframe mechanic
b. Airframe and Powerplant mechanic
c. Airframe and Powerplant mechanic with an Inspection Authorization

4. Where is reinforcing tape most commonly used?
a. Seams
b. Rib caps
c. Around inspection rings

5. Which of the following is used to create reinforced drain holes in aircraft fabric?
a. Inspection rings
b. Spring clips
c. Grommets

6. What type of coating is applied to protect the fabric from UV light?
a. Primer
b. Sealer
c. Filler

7. When is accelerator used when applying fabric topcoats?
a. Temperatures below ideal working temperatures
b. Temperatures above ideal working temperatures
c. Humidity above ideal working conditions

8. What is the key ingredient in the Poly‐Fiber covering system?
a. Polyurethane
b. Vinyl
c. Water‐based glue

9. Aircraft with wing loading of 9 lb/ft2 and over should have fabric strength at or above:
a. Grade A
b. Intermediate grade
c. Lightweight

10. Aircraft with a VNE of 135 mph or less are considered to be unairworthy when the fabric breaking strength has deteriorated to below:
a. 56
b. 46
c. 35

11. Re‐covering a fabric aircraft is considered:
a. A minor repair or alteration
b. A major repair or alteration
c. General maintenance

12. Which fabric covering system is nonhazardous?
a. Superflite
b. Air‐Tech
c. Stewart

13. Critical airflow areas such as the leading edge require how many inches of overlap at the seam?
a. 1‐2
b. 2‐4
c. 4‐6

14. How much does polyester fabric shrink at 350°F?
a. 5%
b. 8%
c. 10%

15. Which of the following repairs require sewing?
a. Cotton fabric repairs
b. Polyester fabric repairs
c. Neither A or B

16. Where can technicians find instructions about tying the correct knots during the rib lacing process?
a. STC and maintenance manuals
b. AC 43.13‐1
c. Both A & B

17. What should be applied to rib caps that are not rounded over?
a. Anti‐chafe tape
b. Reinforcing tape
c. Surface tape

18. How many blankets does it usually take to cover a wing?
a. 1
b. 2
c. At least 4

19. Which of the following is not a FAA approved method of testing?
a. Test strip method
b. IA visual and NDT inspection method
c. Mechanical fabric strength testers

20. Which of the following fabrics is no longer available?
a. Grade A cotton
b. Lightweight polyester
c. Ceconite 101

21. Which tape is already pre‐shrunk?
a. Anti‐chafe tape
b. Rib bracing tape
c. Surface tape

22. What additive increases the overall flexibility and life of a coating?
a. Thinner
b. Retarder
c. Rejuvenator

23. Finishing tape (surface tape) is used for what purpose?
a. To help prevent 'ripple formation' in covering fabric.
b. To provide additional anti‐tear resistance under reinforcement tape.
c. To provide additional wear resistance over the edges of fabric forming structures.

24. The determining factor(s) for the selection of the correct weight of textile fabric to be used in covering any type of aircraft is the
a. maximum wing loading.
b. speed of the aircraft.
c. speed of the aircraft and the maximum wing loading.

25. Any protrusions in the fabric covering are reinforced with:
a. Rings
b. Grommets
c. Gussets


General History and Fabric Terms
Approved Materials
Available Covering Processes
Determining Fabric Condition-Repair or Recover?
Fabric Strength
Polyester Fabric Repairs
General Fabric Covering Process