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  1. #1
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    Yellow Conversion

    after much consideration... I have decided to do a yellow color conversion similar to what I did with my previous Alias. it would be awesome if Traxxas would consider yellow as an option on their models, but they don't, so it is what it is. they make a white roll hoop, but not a white canopy? shame, as white is the easiest to paint with the best cured color appearance, so, I will be repainting my original red canopy and roll hoop. it will cure a little darker over the red, but still look nice.

    the same color I used before, 1632 "bug yellow", and Tamiya translucent yellow for the front LED lenses, but the rear will be green as opposed to the blue I used on the Alias. since the rear indicator lights on the Aton are green, seems appropriate to go with green on the rear lenses and motor pod collars. I really liked how the blue and yellow look together, so really not decided on that. I will order both green and blue and experiment before I decide?

    I was able to remove all the decals without damaging them and have them on a protective sheet for re-application later. I removed the white "spine" on the canopy and will leave that white since it will have white blades on the front, and black on the rear.

    this will be a work in process, and I am not going to get in to a hurry. just gonna take my time and do it right. I like the orange conversion, very nice visibility, but yellow is much better. I figure if I trash the yellow in a crash... orange is a good go to color. the yellow is pretty much a one time deal, but I will give it a shot.

    I will post progress as I go.
    Fly fast, Fly hard, and forget about the outcome.

  2. #2
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    I'll admit that I've always wondered what a yellow Aton would look like. I'm in.
    Is owning 27 RC's too many? No way!

  3. #3
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    i would love to go all out and do the frame in yellow as well, but this one isnt as easy to switch everything over to like the Alias is. i have not had to do that yet but have watched the video of it being done, looks like fun, lol. i may experiment with that on a spare frame for down the road, but for now, canopy and roll hoop will be all i change. those only will make switching back easy if i need to. with the black frame, those will look pretty good i think and i decided on green for the rear leg and motor pod lenses. decals will be another hurdle, but i think i can use a yellow sharpie and color the two rear pod decals, and one for the bottom of the battery box... we'll see.
    Fly fast, Fly hard, and forget about the outcome.

  4. #4
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    Local sign shop could have some scraps of yellow vinyl to cut your own ... or just buy a strip from them .
    Just a thought

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  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by hemidoo View Post
    Local sign shop could have some scraps of yellow vinyl to cut your own ... or just buy a strip from them .
    Just a thought

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    Thanks for the tip.

    Sadly, I live in smallville USA, lol, not much out here along those lines. I have a sheet of neon yellow wing tape but it think it will be too bright for this flavor of yellow paint. I will give tower hobby a look... They have all kinds of that stuff. Except for the motor pods and the bottom of the battery box, I don't use the others on these Traxxas sheets I have, so wouldn't need much at all.
    I knew I forgot something in my order last night... The green decal sheet. Oh well, I am a little ways off from needing it... Next order.
    Fly fast, Fly hard, and forget about the outcome.

  6. #6
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    I got my green rear leg lenses today. they are nice, but they just don't quite do it for me. time to order the blue ones and see if they have the appeal I am looking for? I kinda think the orange ones I already have on it might look pretty good, but I will get the blues and compare all the options.

    been too cold to try and paint the canopy and roll hoop, or convert the clear lenses to yellow with the translucent paint... so it is just a waiting game right now. I will have a better feel for which lenses to use in contrast, once I have the main parts done.
    Fly fast, Fly hard, and forget about the outcome.

  7. #7
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    today i was able to get the pod rings and the leg lenses sprayed with the translucent yellow, and installed. it actually looks pretty good like it is with the orange stuff. the pod rings dont transfer light to the far outside as well as the factory tinted ones, but they will be ok.




    i used a small circle of yellow wing tape stuck to the front of the added front LED flood lights, to diffuse them a little. they are still very bright, but i think this will keep them from blinding me and it gives them a yellow glow.

    i decided to order a black canopy to paint yellow. i dont want to have to paint the underside to save on additional weight, so just having it blacked out works better.

    that's my progress so far.
    Fly fast, Fly hard, and forget about the outcome.

  8. #8
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    Awesome look !

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  9. #9
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    Maybe if you are looking for yellow, substitute the Traxxas led's with yellow ones and keep the clear lenses?
    Regards,
    Bill Randall
    Perth, Western Australia

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by BillR View Post
    Maybe if you are looking for yellow, substitute the Traxxas led's with yellow ones and keep the clear lenses?
    does someone make these LED's in yellow as plug and play, or are you talking about soldering in replacements? I decided that I didn't want to make this so permanent that I could easily go back to my original orange color scheme if I ever needed to.
    Fly fast, Fly hard, and forget about the outcome.

  11. #11
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    I was able to sit down and cut out the standard decals from my sheet of yellow wing tape. this wing tape is more of a neon versus the 1632 Bug Yellow that the canopy and roll hoop will be, but they will be highly visible. still keeping my options open for the shade of yellow i will use. maybe i will find a shade closer to the wing tape, the search continues, but the Bug Yellow is definitely very visible.

    here is the battery box...
    Last edited by spoonerrw; 05-07-2017 at 12:54 PM.
    Fly fast, Fly hard, and forget about the outcome.

  12. #12
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    after searching around, I went to Tamiya's website and looked at the color charts. I went with their TS-16 glossy yellow, then ordered a monokote trim sheet in normal yellow. the decal placement above will be exactly the same for the battery box, but with a more matched color. I will need to re-cut a set for the motor pods, but that is simple enough to do. the shades will be a little bit darker than the Bug Yellow, but that is what I was looking for... a little darker. I have the blue rear leg and motor lenses coming along with a single set of blue blades (just to see how they will look with this), for comparison, but black rear blades are the plan.

    I am also going to paint (lightly) one set of white blades with this yellow. I realize that this will affect weight and balance of the blades, but it worked out fine when I did them for the Alias. if I see any noticeable effect, I am putting enough white in to this color scheme that white blades will look fine if that is how it has to be, we will see?

    finally, I have a plan on what I what it to look like, everything is on it's way. just a waiting game now for the stuff to arrive and warm weather to settle in so I can get out in the sun and paint.
    Fly fast, Fly hard, and forget about the outcome.

  13. #13
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    Cool color project ! Pretty sure a few even coats of paint on a set of blades will cause zero issues .

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by spoonerrw View Post
    does someone make these LED's in yellow as plug and play, or are you talking about soldering in replacements? I decided that I didn't want to make this so permanent that I could easily go back to my original orange color scheme if I ever needed to.
    Was thinking more on the lines of obtaining as set of the led harness which is readily available and changing the led's on that(yes a bit of cutting, soldering and heatshrinking required!), so if you want to revert back to standard at a later date just unplug remove and replace with original.
    Regards,
    Bill Randall
    Perth, Western Australia

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by hemidoo View Post
    Cool color project ! Pretty sure a few even coats of paint on a set of blades will cause zero issues .
    it worked out pretty well on the Alias, so should be ok on the Aton? what I will be looking for is smooth and level lift off in expert mode. the main drawback to this are crashes. a crash means spraying a new set which is why I am keeping white in the color scheme, to make white blades a natural match for the rest. I will be clear coating the canopy and roll hoop which will help with damage to those, but the reality is that this is the trade off with doing a conversion when stock parts are not available in the colors you like... it will be worth the effort I think . I test sprayed one side of an old prop with the 1632 I have tonight just to make sure the paint would bond with it... it turned out really nice with no sags or air bubbles. just gotta do it in light coats.

    Quote Originally Posted by BillR View Post
    Was thinking more on the lines of obtaining as set of the led harness which is readily available and changing the led's on that(yes a bit of cutting, soldering and heatshrinking required!), so if you want to revert back to standard at a later date just unplug remove and replace with original.
    thanks Bill... it is something to consider for down the road perhaps? not sure who makes this size of bulbs in yellow, Rakon maybe, but want to get all the other components done and tested before i commit to things like that. clear lenses illuminated from yellow bulbs would be the best option, but I have found that the lenses colored with the translucent paint offer an even and diffused glow and work out very well for night flying.
    Fly fast, Fly hard, and forget about the outcome.

  16. #16
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    I went ahead and ordered the front sets​ of of leg lights to experiment around​ with while I get all the other parts done. I like Bill's idea, but don't want to have to try and match bulb size/type, cut, and solder aftermarket lights in. I am going to see if I can color or tint them.
    Fly fast, Fly hard, and forget about the outcome.

  17. #17
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    My yellow trim sheet will be there waiting for me tonight. I can hopefully sit down after work and get the three I need cut out. I have been looking for the Traxxas decal.sheet in blue, but that must be really popular? No one has it in stock anywhere that I can find... Guess that one will have to wait for a little while yet.

    With these front leg lights I have coming, I have a couple ideas on how to tint them yellow. How much trouble is it to remove them from the Aton and replace them? My plan is just to plug the tinted ones in loose to see how they glow, then change them if they look ok.
    Fly fast, Fly hard, and forget about the outcome.

  18. #18
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    The lights are easy to remove , getting them back in and the wires tucked away takes a little time . the connector has locking tabs where it connects to the board , I use pointed tweezers to easily release them.

  19. #19
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    Thanks hemidoo.

    I went over my spare main frame and looks like the motors have to come out as well. I will try tinting the new ones then check them out before I move forward with replacing them. using clear lenses with tinted bulbs would be brighter, but the translucent painted lenses will bright enough if it comes down to it.

    I got the new decals cut out. they appear a little darker when applied over the black frame parts, but look much better then the neon. just waiting for the paint and canopy, then I will size it all up to see how close it will all match up together.

    all that is left to order is the stock decal sheet in blue once I find it in stock.
    Fly fast, Fly hard, and forget about the outcome.

  20. #20
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    The motor only has 3 screws holding it in , easy to remove. When you disconnect the motor connections make sure there nice and tight on install. Re- crimp if needed as just a little loose can give quick motor drop outs when flying. It's happened to me a few times . The LED in the motor pod typically comes out really hard .. a hard plastic small poker works good to get it out of there .

    Place a layer of white under the yellow if you want more brightness

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  21. #21
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    I saw a frame change video a few months back and remember the guy saying how hard it was to remove that particular light. I probably won't be able to use the translucent paint if it is that tight of a fit as it will probably get marred off on reinstall? I was kinda hoping that I could just unbolt the motor and let it hang for no more then I would need to do... Can I do that hemidoo?

    I have these sharpie brush markers and I have a yellow. They work really well and I may just brush them in place without removing them. Goo gone takes it back off if I don't like how they look.

    Once I get the canopy, roll hoop, and paint and get those done... I will tear in to it and try out these ideas before final reassembly.
    Fly fast, Fly hard, and forget about the outcome.

  22. #22
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    There's not a lot of slack in the motor wires (3) , they run down the bottom of the arm and go up through the motor pod to the bottom of the motor. The connectors are staggered in the arm .... Blue , Grey, Black.
    Last edited by hemidoo; 05-11-2017 at 09:01 PM. Reason: add

  23. #23
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    ok, thanks hemidoo... I will cross that bridge when the time comes.

    I forgot to mention above your idea about adding white under the yellow worked. I just used the whole underside decal (outer and center) then added the yellow over it. nice and bright now. when I add on the strips for the motor pods, I will just apply the yellow over the white ones that are already there.

    the paint, black canopy, blue blades-leg-motor lenses all came today. I will be working on the painting within the next week as time allows. I will have to allow a day or two for curing before I can reapply the decals, then clear coat. most likely a couple weeks before I am ready to unveil the final version, but I have it all except the blue decal sheet and can start moving on it.
    Fly fast, Fly hard, and forget about the outcome.

  24. #24
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    well, I unboxed my two cans of Tamiya paint last night before bed and compared it to my yellow decals... no match. the Tamiya is a very nice shade of bright yellow, but too light compared to the trim sheet color. sooooo, I went to the hardware store this morning, which is what I should of done to start with, and found a can of Krylon Super Maxx yellow. it is very close, maybe just a little lighter in shade, but close enough that it wont be obvious.

    this hardware store also had cans of neon yellow that are an identical match to the neon yellow trim sheet if have. I almost did it and got one, but changed my mind. it would be cool and highly visible, but just way to bright for my tastes, lol.

    I don't want this conversion held up over a blue decal sheet being out of stock, so until it comes back in somewhere... I will use a sharpie blue brush marker on a white set. that will get me by and get this done.

    now just gotta get some free time and start on it.
    Fly fast, Fly hard, and forget about the outcome.

  25. #25
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    Ebay has the blue set


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  26. #26
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    Amazon also. TRAXXAS 7981

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    Last edited by hemidoo; 05-12-2017 at 11:58 AM.

  27. #27
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    Thanks hemidoo.
    eBay didn't show any the day before yesterday, so I will check again tonight after work. I never thought about amazon, so will check them as well.

    Edit: Saw the one from eBay on my phone... Ordered it. Thanks hemidoo!
    Last edited by spoonerrw; 05-12-2017 at 01:15 PM.
    Fly fast, Fly hard, and forget about the outcome.

  28. #28
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    Cool .. Your color project sounds like it'll look sweet !

  29. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by hemidoo View Post
    Cool .. Your color project sounds like it'll look sweet !
    I hope so... This is quite a bit of work just to satisfy my obsession with yellow, lol.
    Fly fast, Fly hard, and forget about the outcome.

  30. #30
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    Ha ! I have a thing for orange

  31. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by hemidoo View Post
    Ha ! I have a thing for orange
    lol... yes, I love mine too in orange. if this yellow doesn't work out the way I want... I will go back to it.
    Fly fast, Fly hard, and forget about the outcome.

  32. #32
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    You stick with the yellow, we're going orange out here in SoCal

    Lol

    I've been tossing around the idea of a color change for a while after reading this thread now I'm thinking about it more seriously

  33. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by boostpsi View Post
    You stick with the yellow, we're going orange out here in SoCal

    Lol

    I've been tossing around the idea of a color change for a while after reading this thread now I'm thinking about it more seriously
    lol

    I finally had a little free time today. it is sunny, warm (but windy), soooo... out I went to paint. this Krylon shade of yellow is amazing!!! I love it!!! just the right balance between dark and lite. I sat down last night and re-cut the decals I am going to use but this time, I placed oversized sections of the yellow wing tape directly to the white decals then trimmed out a single decal with the yellow on top. just like hemidoo said above... they are brighter. I am not sure they are going to match close enough after seeing the paint in true form, but if they don't... this shade of yellow, with blue rear lenses, blue or black rear blades and clear lenses with white blades on the front, using the standard white decals if I have to... it will be amazing looking!

    I put the clear front lenses back in last night, just or now. I need to hit the others lightly again with translucent paint just to even things up a bit. I decided not to remove the lights and try tinting them. I just don't know the breakdown of this one enough yet to mess with that. translucent lenses or clear ones... it will look great!

    I wont touch the roll hoop or the canopy for a week now. this is to make sure the paint is fully cured and that it does not do anything odd, like deforming or warping them. once I am sure they are cured and ok, then I will re-apply the stock decals and clear coat.

    I would say... go for it boostpsi!
    Fly fast, Fly hard, and forget about the outcome.

  34. #34
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    here are the roll hoop and the canopy without the center spine...



    ... pretty nice, huh?

    main blades are cheap enough so tomorrow, I will try to do a set in this color for the front. after the paint set on the roll hoop and canopy, I compared them to the decals I made from my monokote trim sheet... the two match perfectly!
    Last edited by spoonerrw; 05-14-2017 at 11:28 PM.
    Fly fast, Fly hard, and forget about the outcome.

  35. #35
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    Nice! How much prep work did you do to the plastic before spraying ? And did you use primer before the color?

  36. #36
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    I removed all the stock decals, wiped it all down with an alcohol wipe, let it dry, then sprayed it... no primer to save on weight. this Krylon paint is designed for tough to spray surfaces. I did three nice thin even coats letting them tack up before doing the next.

    once I get the white spine back on the canopy, and all the decals back on... it is all going to look amazing!
    Fly fast, Fly hard, and forget about the outcome.

  37. #37
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    👍

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  38. #38
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    I test sprayed one side of an old white blade today. looks great but gotta be careful to keep the coats thin and light. no more time for a couple days, but will spray up a new set soon. got my blue decal sheet today as well. now I have everything.
    Fly fast, Fly hard, and forget about the outcome.

  39. #39
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    I managed to have a little time today before errands and work and got a set of white blades sprayed with this yellow. they turned out really good. I had to spray from a few feet away, in short even bursts, in order to avoid any runs or heavy coating and that did the job very nicely. this Krylon Super Maxx paint seems to be a perfect choice for a job like this.

    just have to let everything cure up, do the decals, clear coat the canopy and roll hoop, then put it all together... probably next weekend.

    i'm getting closer to completion.
    Fly fast, Fly hard, and forget about the outcome.

  40. #40
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    Sounds like it's getting close now !

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