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Using Future Floor Wax on Your Rockets

Future Floor Wax (now called "Pledge With Future Shine") has been used for years by rocket builders to give their rockets a glossy shine and to protect the decals and paint. This is a brief tutorial on how to use Future on your rockets.

Step 1: Search the The Rocketry Forum for "Future" and read up!  Everything I know, I learned from the forum.

Step 2: Acquire some "Future" floor wax. It is now commonly sold as "Pledge with Future Shine." It's this stuff.

Step 2b. While you are at the store, also get some Simple Green cleaner. I use this one.


Step 3. Build and paint your rocket as normal. Apply decals, either waterslide or stick-on vinyl, as per instructions. Note, there's no need for a clear coat either under or over the decals.

Step 4. When decals are dry (if waterslide), make sure you have some masking tape around the nose cone shoulder and set it fairly loosely on the rocket. Future will wick in and glue the NC to the body tube if you aren't careful.

Step 5. I set the rocket either on a canvas tarp in my basement or in the garage suspended on a stick through the motor mount. The acrylic polish makes a mess, so you should have something to absorb the overspray and to wipe up drips.

Step 6. Get a hand pump sprayer (like the one the Simple green comes in, or buy an empty spray bottle from Target for $1). Into the bottle pour straight Future (Pledge with Future Shine) or a mix of 3 to 4 parts Future to one part Simple Green. I get a better gloss with the Simple Green mix.

Step 7. Spray the rocket to saturation. It should be totally wet and dripping. Let the excess drip off. Don't worry about any bubbles. They will pop and the surface will level out on its own. My sprayer results in a veritable foam. In 30 minutes that will all be gone.

Step 8. After 5 minutes I come back and use a paper towel to blot off any drips at the bottom edges (but stay away from the rest of the rocket).

Step 9. Come back tomorrow and you'll find a glossy rocket. Carefully take out the nose cone and unmask the shoulder.

Step 10. Despite advice to the contrary, I sometimes do a repeat application.  I've found that, in some cases, it improves the gloss. I guess this should have come before unmasking the NC.

Contributed by Marc Goldstein


Roger Smith (June 23, 2011)

The above article first appeared in The Rocketry Forum as a post by Marc_G. The post, originally titled "A Primer on Future Floor Wax Usage," is reprinted here with Marc's permission.

For more tips on using Future on rockets, please visit TRF and read Marc's original post and the replies to it.

Roger Smith (June 28, 2011)

To learn more about Future, visit The Complete Future.

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