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Old 05-11-2021, 02:45 PM   #61
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Thanks for the quick response. I will study your whole thread on this so I don't ask stuff you've already written. I'm searching for the Sande/Virola marine ply now in my area. Do you have any secrets to getting the cloth to make a nice tight fit when you lay it over the edge of door to the other side? I've struggled with this in the past and ended up with bubbles under the cloth (it was saturated at first, but as it cured it lifted - almost as if the cloth stretched). I even tried plastic push pins to hold it down during the cure - no luck. Maybe it was because I was working with material only 1/2" thick, but suggestions are helpful.
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Old 05-11-2021, 04:19 PM   #62
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Originally Posted by Desert Trawler View Post
Thanks for the quick response. I will study your whole thread on this so I don't ask stuff you've already written. I'm searching for the Sande/Virola marine ply now in my area. Do you have any secrets to getting the cloth to make a nice tight fit when you lay it over the edge of door to the other side? I've struggled with this in the past and ended up with bubbles under the cloth (it was saturated at first, but as it cured it lifted - almost as if the cloth stretched). I even tried plastic push pins to hold it down during the cure - no luck. Maybe it was because I was working with material only 1/2" thick, but suggestions are helpful.
I buy the Virola/Sande plywood at Architectural Wood in Tacoma, WA.

I radius the edges with a 1/4" round over router bit so cloth will drape around the corner.

I drape the cloth over the plywood, pull the wrinkles out and apply epoxy by pouring it over the cloth. I spread the epoxy with the smooth side of a West System 809 notched spreader over a small area and allow the epoxy to soak through the cloth and into the wood. The cloth will turn translucent when saturated. I continue to spread the epoxy with the spreader until the whole surface is saturated, squeeging the excess epoxy to the next area. I roll the whole surface with a finned aluminum laminate roller pushing the cloth against the wood, which brings excess epoxy to the surface, which is squeegeed away.

I squeegee the cloth around the radiused edges and let the weight of the hanging cloth pull the cloth tight to the edge. I use the aluminum roller to push the cloth around the corner and squeegee away excess epoxy.

I roll and squeegee the whole thing again and get rid of excess epoxy by blotting with a paper towel. The goal is to have minimum epoxy under and on the cloth. Excess epoxy under the cloth tend to lift the cloth or allow it to move.

As the epoxy starts to tack up, I continue to roll the cloth with the aluminum roller to make sure there are no voids, excess epoxy or lifting cloth paying extra attention to the corners and edges.

When the epoxy is fully cured the next morning, I fill the weave by pouring epoxy onto the cloth and spread it evenly with the smallest notch on the notched spreader. Then roll it with a yellow foam roller. When that gets tacky, apply another coat of epoxy as before.

The purpose of the cloth is not for strength. It's purpose is to insure an uniform epoxy thickness, puncture resistance and a smooth hard surface for paint.

If I'm applying cloth to a surface with nail or screw holes, I'll apply epoxy over the whole surface, fill the holes with filler and sand lightly before applying cloth. Precoating plywood edges will prevent the porous wood from absorbing epoxy, starving the cloth of epoxy which cause cloth lifting.
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Old 04-09-2022, 09:03 AM   #63
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City: Inverness, Fl
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Hi. Your doors look fantastic! and the detailed discussion and pictures will be a huge help as we undertake our project. We are adding a similar sliding door to the port side of our 36 europa trawler. I would love to use plywood as you have done but I'm curious if you have any concerns that it might warp over time.
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Old 04-09-2022, 01:51 PM   #64
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Hi. Your doors look fantastic! and the detailed discussion and pictures will be a huge help as we undertake our project. We are adding a similar sliding door to the port side of our 36 europa trawler. I would love to use plywood as you have done but I'm curious if you have any concerns that it might warp over time.
As long as the plywood is dry, flat and the plywood is 100% encapsulated with epoxy, not allowing any moisture intrusion, the plywood should not warp. Make sure the plywood is on a flat table or support while applying the epoxy and FG cloth since the glass will lock in any warp.

I use sliced cut Verola mahogany marine plywood which is flat when purchased instead of the rotary sliced fir plywood, which is usually warped.

If you can not locate flat marine plywood, you can glue two sheets of warped plywood with the warps facing each other making sure to do this on a perfectly flat table. If done properly, the two warped plywood will cancel each other and produce a flat door and the epoxy adhesive will lock in the shape.
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Old 04-09-2022, 09:17 PM   #65
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Thanks! I'll see what's available around here.
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