It maybe light but is it really that strong ??

Discussion in 'Fiberglass and Composite Boat Building' started by tunnels, Feb 10, 2013.

  1. tunnels

    tunnels Previous Member

    Over time i see and hear infusion is the bees knees and we should be doing it more and more ! we only ever see and hear all the good things infusion has to offer but some where in the back ground will be an equal number of not so good things as well !! so what happens to them ?? No one what to put there hand up and say it was a disaster or it didnt work , or it broke or what ever !!.
    Ok its lighter and has less resin and uses lots of consumble bits and bobs But what happens if the guys doing it dont get the glass in the right place ? what happens if the overlaps of materials are all up the spout sure its looks great and is light weight But is it really that much stronger ??
    It sure as hell cant be quicker but it could be lighter without all that surplus resin in the layup !!But if you use peel ply its possible to get rid of most of its any way !
    Has any one done a side by side comparison chart to record all the steps to compare directly agains the other on the very same item ??. :confused::eek:
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2013
  2. tunnels

    tunnels Previous Member

    No one willing to stick there neck on the line ??

    Seems lots people reading and no comment !!

    I can see advantaged in resin saving and getting a nice finish when making parts but this is also achieveable simply by using peel ply when you laminate!! and you dont have a great mountain of throwaway rubbish at the end of the job .
    Sopping resin out of a lay up is making the glass lay up thinner more brittle and becomes like a carrot ! ever tried to bend a carrot ?Should try it some time !! its a little scary .
    My biggest concern is not only the lack of resin in the lay up but also the way the dry glass gets laid on the job before the consumables get placed . Over laps and lap joins etc etc . as the glass gets pressed into corners it is pulling away from some where and what started to be a good lover lap is now reduced in size but you dont know because its buried and covered over and impossible to see.
    I will still stay with what i know and works and never had problems !:D
  3. Steve W
    Joined: Jul 2004
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    Steve W Senior Member

    Actually infusion does not necessarilly produce a lighter part because even though the resin/glass ratio is improved every void gets filled with resin but it should be stronger and longer lasting.

  4. Petros
    Joined: Oct 2007
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    Petros Senior Member

    I guess it depends on what your goals are; low cost than all the extra labor and discarded materials of infusion and vacuum bagging would rule that out. Light weight, than getting all the excess resin out becomes more important that cost.

    I have always wondered if there was a way to get the layup without using that much resin in the first place, to get a light weight build-up, and save the cost of the excess resin, and the materials, you throw away.
  5. FMS
    Joined: Jul 2011
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    FMS Senior Member

    A one-off presents a risk. In production, infusion should allow a methodical and repeatable setup before the resin starts to flow.
    Yes a detailed case study of a builder converting from hand layup to infusion would be valuable - please someone that has done such a study post some data on actual time, material cost, and weight savings for a full part. What I have seen are reports on test panels and overviews:
    Infusion Comes to Park Isle Marine:
    Quality Over Quantity Or The Best Of Both Worlds?
  6. tunnels

    tunnels Previous Member

    I have done some infusion work and can see the merits in the quality of the glass and resin .
    Its the laying of the dry glass and getting everything in the right place with the right overlaps and joins and holding it there that is my biggest concern . Decks and deck bits like hatchs panels and superstructure of cabins etc not a problem ,but hulls i am still to be convinced 100% its the best way to go . Osmsos is another issue have asked that question a few times over the years and never get answers . There must be some terrible failures have happened over all the time its been going on for like has happend with just ordinary glassing .:)

    THANKS FOR THE POST OF PARKISLEMARINE I have saved to my things to read and reread and will just that in the very near future
  7. El_Guero

    El_Guero Previous Member


    It all goes to quality control. If properly designed, and quality controlled, a production line should be able to save cost and minimize weight.

    But, that requires solid engineering and design from the beginning. And then it would require good workers.

  8. tunnels

    tunnels Previous Member

    Silicone skins any one ??

    Last time i was at the Shanghai composites show a company was producing lots of the same item so they had Silicone skins for the inside to cover the surface of the glass and the pipe fitting was built into the skin and just fitted into the skin and the outside sat against a sharpish edge so no tape was required any where . was very clever and vertually no waste what so ever .
    Was only a small part of a couple square mtrs but the only waste was the feed tube that had hard resin in it but was only just over 1 mtr long . when done just peel off the skin and fold it up and release the item then wax and mask and regelcoat when it was hard lay the glass and peel ply and into another product !! now that was magic and what i could really get into that but on a bigger scale
    They were recycling the system in quite a short time so could produce a lot of product in a day . two people could operate a number of moulds on a turn table and the process was continuous .
  9. rxcomposite
    Joined: Jan 2005
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    rxcomposite Senior Member

    If I stick my neck out, you promise not to chop off my head?:D
  10. tunnels

    tunnels Previous Member

    Never ! You are to valuable !! :p
    How was your chinese new year ??:D
  11. El_Guero

    El_Guero Previous Member

    88 foot hulls on turntables .... you could cut the cost of catamarans and make them affordable for the common man ....

    Volksmarans .... copyrighted .... but, I will lease it too you cheaply.
  12. masalai
    Joined: Oct 2007
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    Location: cruising, Australia

    masalai masalai

  13. PAR
    Joined: Nov 2003
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    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    Engineering is all about cost effectiveness. When developing any project (yachts included) very early in the process, a price point is established. Even a very high end racer may make compromises in techniques, methods, materials and other considerations. Their wish list may have hoped they could work this particular aspect in, but the realities of the processes force their hand. Admittedly, price point isn't as big a concern on an all out racer, but as you work down from the very narrow focus of this type of project, to something more amenable, which typically attempts to stuff more boob into the bra, the realities of the project's price point comes to bare.

    A yacht designed to meet a wide audience's desires is the most at risk, in this regard. There's absolutely no doubt that a Catalina 22 could be much faster, utilizing exotic materials and techniques, but she'd lose her primary market goals, from the adjusted price point. On the other hand, you could limit a competitive class to stringent guidelines for these materials, techniques and engineering, to level the playing field to some degree. In fact, this is done regularly.

    The bottom line is engineering and the resulting methods, techniques and material choices can and do make lighter, stronger structures. A comparative look at displacements over the last 50 years, on 40 foot yachts will clearly show the results, but only in as much as the perceived market can tolerate associated costs. From a business stand point, it makes little sense to offer a product engineered well over the expectations of the market, so a reasonable target is established and the product is engineered to meet it, little more. It's the result of a simple business decision.
  14. groper
    Joined: Jun 2011
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    groper Senior Member


    Firstly, yes, plenty of engineers have actually tested the composites made with infusion and wet layup, and pre-preg autoclave, and just about any other method you care to drum up... they have to know the properties in order to design effectively. If you care to do some googling, you will find the results of this testing. All the evidence points to stronger mechanical properties for infused laminates, owing to higher fibre volume fractions and lower void content. You will not find any evidence to the contrary. You hypothetical situation of "what happens when it goes wrong" applies to anything in this world, if goes wrong its gone wrong - either fix it or scrap it... same goes for hand laid stuff too.

    Im not a professional, so i have no bias, but from what ive seen and acheived with infusion, it wins hands down on all fronts. I get better quality laminates, i use less resin, i can make panels faster than by hand laying, and for thick laminates in excess of 1000gsm fibre weight per side of sandwich panels, the FINISHED COST IS ALSO LOWER DUE TO THE REDUCTION IN RESIN CONSUMPTION. The last part in capitols, applies when you shop carefully for your consumables and dial your infusion process. The composites suppliers will rip you blind for proper infusion consumables - these are not required to have successful infusions.

    You dont need to throw away heaps of consumables in every infusion process... however the SCRIMP infusion process does create a huge pile of waste plastics! This however, this is not the only way to infuse! A better method in terms of waste material and cost, is to use infusion grid cut and perforated core material. No throw away flow media and perforated film. Or of you dont wish to infuse a sandwich laminate, you can use "in laminate" flow enhancer by using continous filament mat or other low permeability fabric for example. Theres heaps of ways to infuse something, really depends on what your doing as to what materials you might use and which method is best suited.

    Tunnels, as a laminator, you really should learn to do it mate, your mad to keep living in the dark ages...

  15. tunnels

    tunnels Previous Member

    Not dark ages just dimly lite !

    AS of a few days ago the company where i was working closed down competely , folded there stuff and moved back into there old factory they used to have . But they had no work of any sort any way so now i am sitting on my hands till if find another place to work . Have sent applications to a couple of places just waiting in line as usual . I am asured of a job but may not start for a coulpe of months yet !!. Guys pretty slow at getting moving !!.

    Dark ages no !! Infusion i learned a long time ago but each place i went they poohed poohed the idea and stuck with there antiquated way of thinking so just walked out after a couple of moths .
    Lots has changed over the last 5 years so sort of had my hands tied yet again . There a load of materials now that wernt even throught of then .
    If i was back in nz in my own workshop not a problem but thats 10,000 kms away and there no work so to speak in nz . So after my new years visit repacked my bag and came back to china again !. Its cheaper to live and easyer living without breaking the bank . :D:p
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