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  #16 (permalink)  
Old 11-03-2004, 10:38 PM
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carbon fiber

hey guys carbon fiber isn't that much different than laminating fiberglass, the biggest difference is that you need to use epoxy resin instead of poly resin. as long as you have a good shaped and smooth substrate . use something in the range of 6 to 12 oz cloth and be very careful to lay the cloth evenly using a bondo squeegee to spread the resin thoroughly into the cloth , let it set up overnight ,(be shure not to disturb the cloth too much by spreading it too hard) and then follow with a good coat of clear gelcoat( clear will take forever to fill ) trust me on this we have a 65 ac cobra replica that has a 73 pound carbon fiber body on it with about a 7500 dollar paint job on it.dont skimp when doing carbon fiber unless you want it to look like you did.
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Old 11-04-2004, 07:15 AM
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I don't mean to jack this thread, but to say that car looks awsome is an understatement. Lowdown99, is there a possibility that you could start another thread, or post an article walking us through the basic steps on how to make parts like those for the Cobra? I am trying to convince myself (and my son) that I can make a hood scoop for his car. It sounds like several of us can benefit from your experience.

Jerry
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Old 11-04-2004, 07:16 AM
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Re: carbon fiber

Quote:
Originally posted by lowdown99
hey guys carbon fiber isn't that much different than laminating fiberglass, . . . .
Very true but if this is a first time in doing laminates, likelihood is that it won't come out in the pristine knockout look you are after. Like any skill, building laminates takes practice and a few junk parts. On a high profile item like a dash, mistakes will bug the peewadden out of you!
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Old 11-05-2004, 07:32 PM
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For a flat panel or even gentle curves, I used a sheet of perspex (to make a car audio enclosure look like carbon fibre) and found some 'carbon look' contact. Once complete, it looked a million bucks and fooled many people that saw the finished product. Sorry, I have no photos. The contact was from a hardware store here in New Zealand, but I have seen it in automotive parts stores.
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Old 11-05-2004, 09:10 PM
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There is a web site that has a self adhesive carbon fiber that is sold in sheets which may proove valuable to many of you http://www.machv.com/cafiplsh.html this is some pretty nice stuff to work with as well as rigid sheets for flat surfaces

i meant to add this to my last reply but forgot untill i had allready posted it. one neat look i have done for a local rice rocket honda was instead of him buying a real carbon fiber hood fascia and fenders was. i ground the entire front of the car with 36 grit roloc disc, covered the sheetmetal with a layer of resin then rolled out the carbon fiber and smoothed it with a large squeegee getting as little resin as it took to saturate it then after it dried i quickly went over itwith some 240 grit sand paper to knock off the lumps then added a coat of surfboard gelcoat (crystal clear) then after a few days when it was totally cured i laid out flames as a negative outline masked inside the flames and painted the rest to match the car, the final effect was a set of flames which were carbon fiber, this was awsome looking ! he won all the recent shows he went to with this thing including best of paint at three events, ill try to find some pics to get on here. just thought i'd give some ideas and allways remember , just because you havent seen it doesnt mean it cant be done .

Last edited by lowdown99; 11-05-2004 at 09:10 PM.
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Old 11-09-2004, 11:27 AM
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Just an FYI, Grassroots Motorsports has an article on this in their October 2004 issue.
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Old 11-11-2004, 06:23 PM
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Graphite(Carbon fiber),Kevlar, and glass

If you really want to duplicate a part then you must use a bagging technique (unless you have a industrial 200 to 350 oven. Its actually quite simple if you want it to be. Really all you need to do is know that scissors are the main tool for forming other than your hands to push the material flat. I would use some latex gloves to keep the material from splinting in my hand. If you are not experienced in this Field then do a experiment. Take a bowl or maybe even a old cell phone cover (If you can do this properly then you should be alright) , and try laying it up. For this application use a thin sheet of material (.050 or smaller), and lay the cloth on a flat surface (precut to fit with enough cloth to hang off the edges of your part). Next use Vaseline or a film release and apply it to your part. Then take you resin (premixed) and pour a little on the cloth. Then use a very smooth linear edge squeegee and press the resin into your material. Once the material is properly soaked (you will have to judge this on graphite) lay it in the center most surface of your part. If you are using the bowl idea you will need to use your scissors to cut the material up to almost the center so the material will lay flat on the sides of the bowl giving it the required contour. You will need to do this all the way around the bowl until the material is flush with the surface. Remember if you want it to look stylish then lay it up stylish.Repeat the procedure until you have acquired the thickness your part needs. Next You may want to use peel ply yo acquire a smooth sand-able surface. Applying peel ply is the same as applying your material (don't worry if you have hang over on your peel ply as long as it is touching most of your lay-ed up material.There is a wax release paper (used to keep your part from sticking to your bag and cotton cloth) you can use but its not necessary when you use peel ply because the ply should separate every thing anyway. Now you can bag your part. To do this you will need some sort of bagging material, tacky tape, Cotton cloth (used to allow even suction across the part), Vacuum orphas, and a venture (Used for if you do not have a vacuum then you can use an air compressor ). Cut the bag leaving a generous amount to work with. Put the part in the center of your bag. Tuck your bag in under your part so when it is under suction it will lay flat. Now lay a strip of cotton across the part (Leave a little hang over for your vacuum orphas). Depending on the type of vacuum orphas you use lay the lower section on the cotton. Now complete the bag using the tacky tape (Only use one side of the tape at a time. There is a technique for doing this preventing any leakage. If you decide to try this just E-mail me. Once your bag is complete cut a small hole over you orphas to connect its counter part (razors work best). Connect the venture to the orphas and a pneumatic line to the venture. The bag should suck down shortly. Once the bag is sucked down you may hear air leaks( You can fix these by pressing firmly in the area of the leak or by using more tacky tape to reinforce the leak. Now allow your part to set up for the require time of your resin at the appropriate temp. (unless you have a oven to cook it in> However when using any type of plastic I would not recommend a oven because the part is likely to warp). Finally after the part has set up pull all of your materials apart (carefully to avoid VOIDS) and use a dye grinder or whatever you have to cut the extra material off, and sand you part to perfection.
REMEMBER THIS IS EASIER DONE THAN SAID
Once you have the process down you can move on to more bold lay ups. I assume if you have access to a autoclave you already know the procedures, and probably have access to prepreg.

LOWDOWN 99 is right about the resins (you cant shop around for your resin, and if you have any questions about a resin just E-mail me.

Last edited by Justin Mc; 11-11-2004 at 07:41 PM.
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  #23 (permalink)  
Old 11-12-2004, 04:59 PM
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If you are really seerious about doing your own carbon fiber, look at this! They offer CF supplies, how-to videos, and even a hands-on training class!
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Old 11-12-2004, 05:48 PM
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select products is where to go if you have a problem like too much money to blow , or cant do a little searching for info on the net. you can purchase th esame exact items at half the cost at shopmaninc.com, as for speaker rings and such , if you cant rout out a set yourself , you probably shoulnt be attempting this kind of stuff anyway, you'll probably end up bonded to your project for life . as for the autoclave and such , unless you are building structural parts and such all this is just appearance stuff which doesnt need the bagging and autoclave.use senseand you will do fine
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Old 11-12-2004, 09:33 PM
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How can I make carbon fiber

Is there a school one can attend to learn how to make carbon fiber components?

jay
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Old 11-12-2004, 10:23 PM
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Re: How can I make carbon fiber

Quote:
Originally posted by Rain_dog
Is there a school one can attend to learn how to make carbon fiber components?

jay
Yes, read my post two above this one. These guys may be a waste of time for experts like lowdown99 but for a novice they seem to be a great resource. Videos, hands-on schools, and all the components that are sure to be compatible.
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Old 11-15-2004, 11:20 PM
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sorry this took me so long to post...

I finished uploading some fiber pics to my gallery. these are wet-layup ontop of fiberglass and painted metal. the epoxy resin will bond to just about any gripping surface, such as lightly sanded painted metal (in the case of the gas tank). It takes a ridiculous amount of wet sanding to get the final product to look good, and my process does not account for UV-protection on the pieces (epoxy resin will yellow over time with exposure to UV). Nonetheless, I get many compliments on my bike, which was my "experimental" phase of carbon / composite wet layup study. Overall I'm happy with the outcome, even before polishing the engine bay the results are spectacular. I can't wait to set all my polished aluminum parts against that backdrop when the motor goes in. If you have any questions feel free to email me.

Cheers

the blonde weasel

i'll just attach one photo for those unfortunate souls still using dialup. high-res versions available in my gallery.

Last edited by blndweasel; 11-15-2004 at 11:28 PM.
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  #28 (permalink)  
Old 12-15-2004, 10:33 AM
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I've never laid any composites, but plan on doing something soon. I have found this project aircraft place that sells a "composites practice kit" which might be good for picking up some technique before ruining your precious carbon fiber:

http://www.aircraftspruce.com/catalo...racticekit.php
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  #29 (permalink)  
Old 12-15-2004, 03:29 PM
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another good site is rcuniverse.com go to the airplane section of the forum buttons... and scroll down till you find composite fabrication and repair... whole bunch of good info there and most of those people like to save their pennies so they have insight on making ovens, vacuum bagging tools out of old fridges, and different fabrication techniques for making light pieces.. tons of free info there
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  #30 (permalink)  
Old 12-17-2004, 12:26 PM
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For flat and simple curve parts you can just get a carbon overlay and bond it on. Look at http://www.cstsales.com/CCAccentPanels.htm It's not cheap but a lot less work and will save a lot of "practice parts".

I get my carbon from http://www.carb.com/ , best prices I found. I bought about 12 yards.

I'm doing carbon/wood/carbon interior panels for my Corvette. http://corvetteforum.net/classics/gr...corvette15.htm I'm not nearly as good at it as the guys in our shop but have found it is much easier to get a good finish with vacuum bagging than without, as the wet layups have lots of pin-holes in the corners of the fabric weave. It helps if you put a layer of resin with cavasil mixed in to thicken it into the mold first.

You can also put a top layer of very fine weave fiberglass cloth on, as it will disapear when wetted out. You can do this either in the original laminate or as a second bond if you use a peal ply. If you sand the surface for the second bond you will never get all the white resin dust out of the pinholes, and this in turn helps propogate new pin holes in the next layer.

-Greg
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