How light can this be made....

Discussion in 'Fiberglass and Composite Boat Building' started by racetuner, Aug 3, 2009.

  1. racetuner
    Joined: Aug 2009
    Posts: 8
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    Location: USA

    racetuner Junior Member

    I have a general inquiry for those expereinced with making strong light parts in glass and/or other composites. Im not concerned with what materials you use (within reason) just about realistically how much you think this part would weigh being stong enough to withstand winds of say 130 mph(its a cowling for a race vehicle)

    The overall length would be about 16' width about 48" verticle height 12-18" The outter diamond shape as shown in cross section would be basically flat.

    Im preferable to an outler layer of carbon or kevlar hybrid for looks but thats not essential. The outer 3" or so should be flat of minimal thickness and of enough strenght to hold fastening devices(possible Dzus or similar) The outer skirt does not need to be super strong when unattached to its mate, just enough to be handled. The outter skirt would get most of its strength from the area its attached to.

    Is that enough info for a ball park?

    Im thinking of 1-2 layers of cloth with a layer of core, foam or balsa etc then 1-2 more layers of cloth. Im sure vacuum bagging would be best for weight but how much can one expect to reduce by adding that complexity?

    TIA
     

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  2. racetuner
    Joined: Aug 2009
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    Location: USA

    racetuner Junior Member

    Perhaps I can also provide a best estimate of total surface area. Im estimating aprox 66 sq' of area. (there will be holes cut out etc)

    Would it be possible to make this part weighting less than 40 lbs? 30?
     
  3. tinhorn
    Joined: Jan 2008
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    Location: Massachusetts South Shore.

    tinhorn Senior Member

    See if you can get your hands on a sample of Parabeam. This is a kickbutt core material that won't crush like balsa or foam. I messed around with it when I made kit car bodies, and there was zero perceptible flexing when a car body was lifted by one corner. (And THAT was easy to do because the finished product is so light.)

    The only weird thing about this stuff was that I had to add wax to the resin so the stuff would cure internally - in all that hollow space. I suppose guys who use paper honeycomb run into the same dilemma but it was a new one for me.

    If I was trusting a Dzus fastener to hold something in place, I'd trust Parabeam to hold the Dzus fasterner.
     

  4. tunnels

    tunnels Previous Member

    To make a panel strong and light weight is really quite easy .
    Id be using one layer of Carbon cloth and making it with epoxy resin .
    To get the strength of rigidity remember this , SHAPE = STRENGTH !! have a look at door and body panels on cars and see how they have gone about making those panels ridgid ! :p
     
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