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Old 12-09-2007, 01:13 AM   #1
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Default wantin to start glassin

Hey gang, I am wanting to start doing some fibergalass work. Ain't never done any and I want to start. can anyone point me in the right direction to get started.


Thanks,

Tim
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Old 12-09-2007, 09:29 AM   #2
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you need to get a fiberglass repair kit, start with that because it has everything in in you need

remember it takes alot of work and fine detail to get perfect, but its not hard
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Old 12-09-2007, 11:14 AM   #3
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Default Re: wantin to start glassin

Quote:
Originally Posted by bonnevillemac
Hey gang, I am wanting to start doing some fibergalass work. Ain't never done any and I want to start. can anyone point me in the right direction to get started.

Depends on what you plan to make or repair Tim.

If you are repairing an existing part, then you need to figure out what type of resin was used to make the original, then use the same style (Typically a part would have been layed up using either Epoxy resin or Polyester resin) You can find these material at most auto paint supply houses, or a dealer in marine supplies.

The cheapest, polyester resin, is also what gets sold in your local auto parts store/walmart as "bondo"...it usually heavily laden with fillers to thicken it up to the consistancy of puding for use as a body repair filler. I don't really care for the stuff, it has it'* uses but it'* not for use in making structural parts.

For making your own parts from scratch, you can use fiberglass as just a reinforcement to some othe material (such as wood or cardboard) to form a composite part. Or, you can make a part by first making a mold of the original, then making the part in the mold.

In terms of strength, woven cloth with expoy resin is typically the strongest and most accurate layup (best way to make a new part with the least shrinkage)

Polyester resin and chopped glass is the other end of the spectrum..brittle, shrinks a bit when it cures, absorbs moisture. Makes good cosmetic parts on the cheap.

The procedure for doing a layup (making a glass sandwich) are pretty much the same.

1.) Mix a small batch of the resin per the instruction on the can. (polyester resin is catalyzed with a very small amount of MEK, Epoxy resin is typically mixed nearly equal parts A & B components) Once mixed, you need to work quick because the stuff will stay fluid for only a short time (like 20 minutes or so) before the curing process lights off.

2.) Wet out the surface to be glassed with a little of the resin (just paint it on)

3.) Put a layer of cloth on the wet surface and spread out more resin on top.

3.) compact the wet glass and resin to remove any air bubbles and excess resin.

Repeat 2, 3, and 4 until you have enough thickness for the strength you need in the part.

It'* not really a hard processes, it just takes experience to get the wet glass to conform to the shape of the part. (sharp corners are a bear to get right)

So, what is it you have in mind to do?
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Old 12-09-2007, 11:45 AM   #4
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Please don't use parts store resin'*, or materials in general. The dry time sucks, applying it sucks, and all in all, it just sucks.

Spend your money and buy quality product. The last 'glass project, my gallon of good quality resin (US Composite'*) cost me right about $60. The matting cost me another $40. Rage Gold Filler is another investment in itself.

I've done my fair share of 'glass projects to know this. So take it for what it is.
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Old 12-09-2007, 10:25 PM   #5
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Hey guys thanks for the info. I currently build speaker enclosures, and also give a certain amount of guidance for installations and speakr systems in general. Because of my situation I do not do full installs, due in large part to insurance and liablility. It is just a local thing right now mostly for friends. I'm staying busy with it though.

I want to start 'glassin because that is the way the industry has turned. You still have a large overall use for MDF, but, for custom work you really need to do the 'glass.
And also because it intruges me. I know very little about the medium in itself and I just want to learn how to do it.

Chris, I figured that fiberglass is like most anything else you get what you pay for. I had read some of your other posts and I knew to go with the better stuff. Where can I find the Rage Gold and is there a particular place to get the other stuff I need?

Thanks again for the info,

Tim
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Old 12-09-2007, 10:41 PM   #6
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You should be able to get most good quality glassing products at most any auto body parts store. Thats where I got my filler, resin, and matting.

I do installs for a living. I have years of experience even before work. I know so many tips, tricks, and other stupid things, that it'* rediculous.
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Old 12-10-2007, 08:51 AM   #7
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Ok,

You are not really making "structural" parts, so just about anything will fly. The issue with buying from parts stores is that resin has a shelf life. If it sits around inside the can on a store shelf, it doesn't want to cure properly. Buying from paint supply houses will get you resin that hasn't been around as long. The big distributors (Abbco, and few others) can get you the freshest resins, but you pay the shipping.


The stuff I make is a little different, it'* all structural parts and they are layed up in a mold: Boat hulls and motorcycle fairings....



For speaker housings, the process is a little different, You are making a box, plate, or tube out of foam or wood, then glassing over that. If I had to make one, I would use thin foam to make the shape of the component, including ay details like trim rings around the speakers or compound curves to blend it into the rest of the interior. The use epoxy resin and chop mat glass to cover the foam. When done, a solvent like Styrene can dissolve the foam, leaving just the fiberglass shell.

Just a though.
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Old 12-10-2007, 09:56 AM   #8
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I used hardly any wood: http://www.bonnevilleclub.com/forum/...fiberglass+box

The bits and pieces I did use were on long, straight, flat parts for integrity.
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