Which Foam for Core?

Discussion in 'Fiberglass and Composite Boat Building' started by Toby P, May 2, 2006.

  1. Toby P
    Joined: Jan 2006
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    Toby P Junior Member

    I am looking to build a 4.3m (14ft) sailing boat of moderately high performance. It will be sailed mostly on lakes, with the occasional outing on the sea - so fairly low loads. I am thinking of using foam sandwich construction - but which foam should I use? Airex, Corecell, Divinycell or anything else? What are the advantages and disadvantages of each? My priorities are for the boat to be light, long lasting and not overly expensive.

    Many thanks.
     
  2. antonfourie
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    antonfourie Senior Member

  3. Toby P
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    Toby P Junior Member

    Thanks Anton, there is some useful stuff there. However, most of the articles seem to be written by SP, hence the slight bias about SAN foams.

    I definitely want to go for a SAN foam like Corecell, or a PVC foam but I wondered what the most popular ones at the moment are.

    Divinycell, Klegecell, Airex etc all seem to be similar stuff - which is the best?
     
  4. antonfourie
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    antonfourie Senior Member

    That depends alot on money and what is avilable where you are. I did have some data comparing all of them, but it is not on this PC (work PC), I think that Airex came out best in the money vs strength vs workability
     
  5. jimslade
    Joined: Aug 2005
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    jimslade Senior Member

    Check out Nida core. I've had good success using it.
     

  6. SailDesign
    Joined: Jan 2003
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    SailDesign Old Phart! Stay upwind..

    For your purposes, Airex will be a pain, since it cannot be sanded easily, and therefore must either conform perfectly to the shape, or be kerfed and thus heavier (resin sits in the slots...)
    Corecell or balsa would be the best bet. I know balsa gets a bad rap, sometimes deservedly, but it is still good stuff when used properly (i.e. NEVER, NEVER drill through a balssa-cored laminate - use it where there will be NO HOLES and use foam in the holey areas.)
    In the shop, we use Corecell or balsa exclusively for sandwich structure, and Divinycell for anything that is less important.
    Steve
     
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