Can I get a step by step guide to creating a fiberglass part with a tack free surface with mat and..

Discussion in 'Materials' started by Big_Chuck79, May 7, 2022.

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  1. Big_Chuck79
    Joined: May 2022
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    Location: Ohio River

    Big_Chuck79 New Member

    Polyester resin? I'm very interested in getting into fiberglass creation and have spent the past week investigating it, having known nothing about the process prior. It is for some reason difficult for me to find information on the process. It seems that my entire life have been coming to the point of me building a boat plane. I won't be starting any time soon but becoming proficient at fiberglassing will be one of the necessary steps.

    In the next week or so I plan on creating some fiberglass parts using parts of an old car I have sitting around as plugs and have some (potentially stupid) questions which I will list.

    1. How should I prepare the plug? Obviously, it must be very clean.

    2. Apparently, the ortho polyester resin I plan on using will leave "surface tack." I'm not looking to have a tacky dashboard or hull. So I would have to finish with a wax mixed resin. Wouldn't that mean I would start with this waxy resin, seeing as how the first layer laid will be the surface?

    3. I have heard of people applying a PVA, gelcoat then wax to their plug before laying mat. I may have messed that order up.

    4. Is a gelcoat necessary?

    5. How does the combination of strand mat and polyester hold up to the sun? Will it crack or warp easily?

    Thanks for any information that anybody can give me. Any advice is extremely valuable to me.
     
  2. kapnD
    Joined: Jan 2003
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    kapnD Senior Member

    Google is your best friend right now, you need to do a lot of reading.
     
  3. Big_Chuck79
    Joined: May 2022
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    Big_Chuck79 New Member

    I've been searching and reading for about 2-3 hours a day for a week. I'm not getting relevant answers or a definitive, detailed step by step process which is why I came here, also figured since I plan on building a hull at some point, I might as well stick around. I even searched "fiberglass forum" and got nothing but distributors and blogs that spend 1000 words telling you nothing.
     
  4. bajansailor
    Joined: Oct 2007
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    bajansailor Marine Surveyor

    The attached manual is very old (I think it is probably from the early 70's) but it might help a bit (?)

    If you ask Google to look for 'fibreglass boat repair manual' some good links come up.
     

    Attached Files:

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  5. Big_Chuck79
    Joined: May 2022
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    Big_Chuck79 New Member

    Good read. Thanks.
     
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  6. fallguy
    Joined: Dec 2016
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    fallguy Senior Member

    @ondarvr is pretty solid

    but there are probably a few youtubes

    mould, gelcoat, glass and poly, then maybe a cover coat

    of course the devil is details and I have always shied away from polyester for the stink
     
  7. kapnD
    Joined: Jan 2003
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    kapnD Senior Member

    and very smooth, and waxed repeatedly

    you will first build a mold from your plug, so your first layer will be against the mold, no air, no sticky, and the final layer will be the inner surface, rough and sticky , at least for a while.

    wax first, then PVA, then gelcoat and continue lamination schedule over tacky surface for best bond.

    no, but it’s normally considered a good idea

    Yes, it must be protected from UV by gelcoat or paint
     
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  8. ondarvr
    Joined: Dec 2005
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    ondarvr Senior Member

    To restate some of this.

    The mold side of any part will be 100% tack free. The back side of that same part will become virtually tack free over the next week, but... By the next day it will be tack free enough to handle and process in any type of production or building environment. It can be faster or slower if you desire.

    Production builders rarely use wax or any other similar product during the build, it's more towards the end when cosmetic coatings might be applied. In concealed areas nothing is applied to the back side of the laminate to create a more thoroughly cured surface.
     
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