Author: AKeson

Stiff to the core

The thickness of the laminate will affect its stiffness. Stiffness can be increased by adding structural supports to the backside of the laminate, such as bulkheads and stringers in a boat. Another way to increase stiffness while minimizing the weight of carrying a solid glass and resin cross section is to use a core material. Core materials are fairly wide ranging. They include wood; especially end-grain balsa and plywood. Plastics such as foamed PVC, foamed polyurethane, honeycombed polypropylene, and several others can be used with success. Paper honeycomb and cardboard can also be used with success in the proper application. The biggest key to successful core use is successful adhesion and capture of the coring material. It needs to be part of the laminate in order to be beneficial. Each material has their own downfall, and these must be considered for each application. Wood and paper rot if exposed to water. Some of the thermoplastics materials melt and deform under high temperatures. Some are too expensive. Plywood and Balsa have density ranges across the sheets, while plastics are much more controlled and consistent. Ideally the core material is placed directly in the center of the cross-section of the laminate so that the neutral axis passes in the center of the core material. This balances the loading forces of compression and tension under loading conditions from either side. The...

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Model and Sculpture

Composites have great effectiveness for creating low-volume and one-off production runs. A quick layup can be shaped over a rough foam carving before being sanded, smoothed, and painted. Autobody filler (Bondo) is shares the same chemistry as the polyester and vinylester resins and bonds very well to surfaces that are either just hitting cure stage or are sanded with sandpaper rougher than 80 grit. The range of shapes, details, and size are almost limitless from here. This is why fiberglass is very commonly used in Hollywood movie sets, amusement parks, and sculptures. These structures do need proper support from moving over time. Even if the structure is not meant to be weight-bearing they need to at least support themselves. There is some amount of thermal expansion that happens with temperature changes which can lead to crack development. The complexity of the geometry and thickness of the laminate are variables to consider when figuring howmuch additional support must be added. Building a frame with welded steel tubing or screwed dimensional lumber is one way to support a fiberglass structure. And another school of thought is to create supporting ribs with flat stock to hold the shape. Both of these supporting structures are commonly attached via resin and glass...

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Composites Overview

Composites processes are generally low cost with regards to tooling and equipment costs, depending upon what process is used viagra tabs for comparison. The flip side is that the processes are labor intensive and the quality is operator dependent. The room-temp cure resins allow for working time windows that must be monitored so that the work is complete before the resins get hard. It is one of those things where you only get one chance to get everything in place and the resins and glass consolidated before things are locked together permanently. The forgiveness is that there are ways to repair the laminate with additional time and money. There will be grinding and dust and reworking something that could have been done better from the first time. online pharmacy viagra paypal Repairing will not look as nice, nor perform as well as a properly planned and completed first attempt. Safety is something that needs lots of attention. The processes are very operator dependent and we are working with chemicals here, so workers must be protected. Many of these chemicals are regulated by several government agencies. This is why these chemicals are generally difficult to obtain on the street. The styrene-based polyesters and vinylesters require respiratory protection and skin protection, as styrene is considered by some (California) to be a possible carcinogen. There is a time weighted average for breathing...

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Reinforcement to resin ratio

Reinforcement and resin are mutually beneficial to each other. The reinforcement is the strength in the system and the resin is the binder that holds the reinforcement together and shapes the product. The ratio is important in creating the optimal characteristics of cost, quality, and weight of the final product. The reinforcement may consist of glass fibers (fiberglass), carbon fiber, kevlar, as well as a myriad of other natural and man-made fibers. The resin may consist of thermoset polyester, thermoset vinylester, thermoset polyurethane, epoxy, as well as any thermoplastics. As these are combined to create a product, the ratio used can create a wide range of properties. The process used and processing goes a long way towards the actual resin to reinforcement ratio. Hand layup is extremely operator dependent where a good, careful laminator can achieve a 30-40% glass loading depending on the design of the glass and the time allowed. Sprayup processing will allow for glass loading up in the 25 to 35% range. This process is usually a faster pace production process where more advanced equipment is used, though it is generally hand-operated and again operator dependent. Resin Infusion processing can achieve reinforcement ratios towards 60% depending upon the reinforcements used and the processing. Some reinforcements have voids in them for the resin flow, which remain full at cure and lower the reinforcement ratio. Infusion processing will...

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Energy Conservation

Composites are such a great material for energy conservation. Their superior stiffness to weight ratio allows for them to replace other materials in sectors like transportation in order to gain weight savings. These weight savings of course require less energy to move and stop the vehicles. This of course comes back to the horsepower to weight ratios which are no secret formula. They were discovered decades ago by racers of all kinds who made their vehicles as light as possible to gain advantage, many times using fiberglass. The sailboat guys know it too; the lightweight carbon fiber masts reduce weight versus aluminum to buying viagra now gain a weight advantage. Drag car bodies made of lightweight fiberglass instead of sheet metal or aluminum. Circle track cars with fiberglass hoods, noses, and bumpers. Examples of conserving energy with composites, and the racers got it right a long time...

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