Anyone have experience working with carbon fiber?

Discussion in 'Boat Yard Basics' started by Sheremeta, Apr 24, 2013.

  1. Sheremeta

    Sheremeta Well-Known Member

    I'm thinking about doing some carbon fiber work and have a few questions. Can anyone help me?
     
  2. CurtisWright

    CurtisWright Light, Strong, Cheap. Pick Two.

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    What is the application? I have Zero experience with Carbon, but If I can talk you into using glass then I am sure I can help.
     

  3. Sheremeta

    Sheremeta Well-Known Member

    Thanks. Can I laminate my front bulkhead with carbon fiber? It's for appearance only.

    This is what I'm looking a
    http://compositeenvisions.com/raw-fabric-cloth-2/reflections-carbon-fiber-145/
     
  4. Snookdaddy

    Snookdaddy Well-Known Member

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  5. DuckNut

    DuckNut Brandon, FL

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    Black fiberglass cloth would also be significantly cheaper as well and works the same as white.
     
  6. Sheremeta

    Sheremeta Well-Known Member

    Thanks guys. I want to use real carbon and that reflections stuff will match my color scheme with the green. It's not a lot of area so I'm only looking at $90 for the cloth and $40 for the clear polyester resin. So will it stick to sanded glass? The top cap will hide the top edge and I was thinking about awlfair for the bottom edge to blend in with the deck then tape off and spray awlgrip.
     
  7. DuckNut

    DuckNut Brandon, FL

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    There is more to it than that. If you are looking to make it a high gloss then you have a lot of work ahead. The glass smooth surface is normally achieved from a mold. Without a mold it will take a huge amount of time to get that look.

    There are some shortcuts. Post a pic of what you are trying to achieve and maybe I can help you out.
     
  8. Sheremeta

    Sheremeta Well-Known Member

    Thanks. I want to laminate this bulkhead.
    [​IMG]

    I would make a template out of cardboard then cut the sheet and lay it up. When it cures I would then cut out the holes for the rod tubes and sand them out and sand the entire sheet with 1000 grit until smooth. Can I continue to use resin and sand with 1000 grit until I get the glass effect?
     
  9. AfterHours2

    AfterHours2 Stripper in my own Mind!

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    Ive been wanting to know the same thing for some time now so Im curious to hear the correct method. There was a post a while ago on here where someone made a nosecap for his gheenoe then used the carbon cloth. It came out awesome. I will have to look it up. As far as the smooth glass look, can the clear be wetsanded and buffed or does another type of clear need to be used on top of the resin? Hope it works for ya..
     
  10. Sheremeta

    Sheremeta Well-Known Member

    The resin I found dries water clear. I'm going to call the supplier to see if it can be treated the same as polyurethane. The other option is to build up a layer of PPG automative urethane clear coat which is wet sanded between coats. We are only talking about a thin coat. The higher quality of the carbon fiber weave the smoother it will be. If this works as I imagine I will do the sides and rear bulkhead as well.
     
  11. firecat1981

    firecat1981 BBA Counselor

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    Instead of trying to laminate it traditionally to the bulkhead, wouldn't it be a lot easier to just make a sheet on a flat surface, cut it to fit, and then adhere it to the bulkhead? It would be worlds easier cause you could do it on a few saw horses instead of trying to get it perfect on a vertical surface.

    I'd use a piece of smooth formica or other flat plastic, as a flat mould and lay it up like you would in a boat mould. The results will be the same, but with much less work and less chance for a mess up.
     
  12. DuckNut

    DuckNut Brandon, FL

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    FC- you nailed it.

    On a vertical surface like that you will never get a glass surface.  You need to manufacture the piece and then install it.

    I use a plate of tempered glass and a quick coat of wax.  This will allow the resin to saturate the cloth and become the "mold".  then just pop it off the glass and cut to fit and epoxy it to the bulkhead.

    If you sand it after it has hardened you risk hitting the fibers and you will F it up.  Make sure that you use enough resin so you don't end up with dry spots when you pop it off the glass. 

    I use glass because some resins don't like formica or other plastics. :-/

    Casa - where do you live?
     
  13. firecat1981

    firecat1981 BBA Counselor

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    Crap, forgot he might be using poly instead of epoxy. Glass would be a good bet.
     
  14. cutrunner

    cutrunner Cert. Yamaha technician

    I may not be an expert on fiberglass but I did stay at. Holliday inn last night and this sounds like good advice
     
  15. DuckNut

    DuckNut Brandon, FL

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    Calling Casa..Hello Casa-

    Where do you live. I may be able to hook you up with some glass.

    Tempered glass. Tempered has tremendous strength until you chip the side. Regular plate glass is just too dangerous to work with.
     
  16. Sheremeta

    Sheremeta Well-Known Member

    I'm in st augustine. Thanks for the offer. I think I'm going to abandon the idea for now. I have a lot of work to do with getting the top cap ready for paint and non skid. It would have been nice to wrap all vertical surfaces in the green reflections carbon fiber. The inside of the hull sides are not straight and I would need to lay it up on the boat to fit the contour.
     
  17. DuckNut

    DuckNut Brandon, FL

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    When you are done with the cap let me know and I will tell you how to do it.
     
  18. Sheremeta

    Sheremeta Well-Known Member

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