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Old 05-30-2018, 02:00 PM   #1
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Fiberglass work the horror and wonder

As someone who just started doing fiberglass projects I wanted to bring to my fellow boaters some observations.
Spend the money for good glass fiber, never get the cheap thin stuff that comes apart when cut. Covering everything including you with small fiberglass shards. You will finish faster and have a better outcome with thicker glass mat for most projects.
I am on the third day of cleaning fibers from the interior.
Cover yourself, head to toe You will be happier and healthier at the end of the day.
Now once you get the project complete and you get better at application you can sit back and admire your great work that will last decades.

Still itching,
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Old 05-30-2018, 03:15 PM   #2
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You haven't really lived until you've sanded carbon fiber. Makes fiberglass feel like a walk in the park.....
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Old 05-30-2018, 03:54 PM   #3
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appropriate cloth, matt or roving for the job.....

thicker isnt always better.....also.... matt always the right material.

after 45 years of playing with composites.... I still learn way too much on every project....
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Old 05-30-2018, 05:01 PM   #4
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I learned early on that for me at least, glass work was a "life's too short and my time is too valuable and my skills too low, so hire somebody who knows what they are doing" item.
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Old 05-30-2018, 05:50 PM   #5
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Fiberglass work the horror and wonder

Woven fiberglass, that looks like fabric, is easier to lay up, but harder to make fair. The pro’s will lay fabric - multiple thin layers are better than a few thick ones, because you get good wetting out - and then put down a layer of the stranded stuff. This gives you a surface that’s easier to fair.

So each type has its uses. For years I despised the big blob of fibers stuff, as it seemed to come apart when I hit it with resin, until I saw a you tube video where they mixed a batch of milled fibers & collodical silica with the stuff for a strong base layer in a build up.

Most of us amateurs overbuild everything, me included, so don’t swear it too much :-)
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Old 05-30-2018, 06:10 PM   #6
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Past fiberglass projects involved small scale repairs on surfboards and carbon fiber outrigger canoes. Definitely one of those jobs its best to have someone else do it when it involves some scale.
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Old 05-30-2018, 06:18 PM   #7
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if one is lucky enough to be able to afford it....
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Old 05-30-2018, 06:47 PM   #8
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biaxial is what I use. I’ve done a lot of glass work and a bunch on my trawler. Fiberglass places are the way to go. I like to use epoxy because it sticks better. You buy it by the weight of the cloth. It stays together and lays down great and makes great edges. No strings at all. Just buy good scissors to cut it.
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Old 05-30-2018, 06:50 PM   #9
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If you going to use glass buy the 3m kind and they have that at Home Depot. Not the biaxial though. In Saint Petersburg you can get a great deal on the biaxial.
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Old 05-30-2018, 06:54 PM   #10
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if one is lucky enough to be able to afford it....
Rest assured Psneeld, I put in my time.
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Old 05-30-2018, 07:05 PM   #11
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If you buy it at a store you can see what your getting. I bought the first at amazon and wish I wouldn’t have. Buy the good stuff and way easy to lay up. No stress and clean and can go thick as you want. Heavy biaxial is the way to go. Way stronger for the amount too. No soft spots with that down.
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Old 05-30-2018, 07:07 PM   #12
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The pros down here lay biaxial. Heavy weight too.
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Old 05-30-2018, 07:09 PM   #13
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Good stores don’t stock cloth or woven roven. Old school.
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Old 05-30-2018, 07:38 PM   #14
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Good suppliers will have biax cut in 4,6,8” strips to make fillets easy.
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Old 05-30-2018, 11:37 PM   #15
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Good stores don’t stock cloth or woven roven. Old school.
“Good Stores”, do stock everything, amateurs need to do their homework in order to purchase the correct material.
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Old 05-31-2018, 05:29 AM   #16
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"Good stores don’t stock cloth or woven roven. Old school. "

I would be wary of any purchase at a shop that doesn't carry a full line of materials.

When you ask for un waxed or waxed resin and get a blank stare ,,,,its time to purchase elsewhere.
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Old 05-31-2018, 05:36 AM   #17
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Theres still pkenty of projects that dont need exotics.

Covering a strip canoe you can go crazy and make it bulletproof or plain old 6oz S cloth like many use.

Many places only carry so much stock, but the doesnt mean those are the only materials that are used.
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Old 05-31-2018, 07:46 AM   #18
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I buy from U.S. Composites in Florida, no complaints. 1/2 the price of the West System stuff. West is exceptionally nice resin but way too pricey for an old beat up Taiwanese Tub like mine.

I've always used Epoxy.
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Old 05-31-2018, 09:11 AM   #19
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Carolina boys use lots of biaxial at 1208 and 1708. And epoxy. 1208 more friendly at radiuses.

They know what "glue flu" is too.

Once you start grinding, just live with the prickly feeling. It will go away with your next molt.

The shift knob on my truck still has epoxy on it.

Glass work. Ugghh.
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Old 05-31-2018, 10:27 AM   #20
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Glass work. Ugghh.
Agree. I have done lots of fiberglass work. I almost always use 1 1/2 ounze mat with polyester resin. I have used woven roving for strength a few times, but only in conjunction with mat. I was told by my local full service fiberglass supplier that it's best to first attach mat, then attach the roving to the mat for best adhesion.
What do I know? I just followed their lead and it has worked for me.
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