Stainless Steel Honey Comb core experence

Discussion in 'Fiberglass and Composite Boat Building' started by spenance, Apr 18, 2012.

  1. spenance
    Joined: Dec 2010
    Posts: 53
    Likes: 3, Points: 18, Legacy Rep: 66
    Location: Hammondsport, NY

    spenance Junior Member

    Been researching the use of honey combs and have come across a stash of
    1" stainless steel honey comb available for the right price.
    I have looked at all the data with all the testing that I can find and seem to just scrach my head.
    I have concluded to make some test panels of various combinations of glass matt -carbon fiber- epoxy, do some sheer, compression and load tests till distruction.
    This will give me some basic info to apply to what I need for hull construction.
    I am planning to use this info to build a small racing inboard hydroplane.
    My gut feeling is stainless steel core may be an option to work well in these extreme conditions.
    I am looking for some thought from people with experence using stainless steel honey comb core.
    What preperation does the surface need for adhesion?
    Are there any sucesses or failures that anyone can share?
    Thanks, Spencer
  2. Ilan Voyager
    Joined: May 2004
    Posts: 1,288
    Likes: 217, Points: 63, Legacy Rep: 758
    Location: Cancun Mexico

    Ilan Voyager Senior Member

    SS welded honeycomb has been mainly used with silver brazed SS plates. The stuff is rather heavy and has been used on very special applications.
    There is SS glued honeycomb, mainly for flat panels on transport applications like trains and trucks.
    I have used very little experience as it has almost none application on boats where is preferred to have a energy dissipating structure rather a too stiff structure.

    The problem that a SS honeycomb is rather stiff at the beginning and will fail suddenly as the cells walls are very truly very thin and will buckle suddenly.
    Not very easy to cut and doesn't like curves. We used it glued with a special epoxy glue with the ordinary preparation (cleaning) and gloves as the fingerprints are deadly for gluing metals. It was for flat panels supposedly anti-fire.

    If you use carbon fiber for the panels take care of the corrosion problems.

    On a small racing hydroplane a good PVC foam like Airex will have better use and will be easier for manufacturing the panels. Honeycombs are rather delicate to use and ask experienced builders for curved or compounded panels.

    Gut is not good on material strength and structure. Calculations and experience are better indicators. I have big doubts that other hydroplanes, even big, have used SS honeycomb...and with racing I can assure you that they have tried any useful material at any price but my knowledge about hydroplanes is very limited.
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