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codebreaker77 12-29-2009 11:04 AM

making a custom dashboard
 
New to this and I want to make my own design for my cars dashboard I would be grateful if I could get help on what type of molding I should use. I was going to carve a dash out of Styrofoam and use that. Only after reading some post the talk of heat from the compounds for the fiberglass would melt it. Any help please.

itsmecord 12-29-2009 12:47 PM

I have only done a little bit of glassing but I will give you my take on it.
I would make a frame work out of MDF then, you can use spandex/ponte/fleece to "skin" the dash after which you would reinforce it with fiber mat. As far as heat goes in my experience it's not a huge deal if you don't rush things. Lay up 3-4 layers and let it cure,then you can decide if you wanna change the shape here, or there. Another possible method would be make your frame work out of ??? MDF if it was me,then use potters foam (the green stuff at walmart) and build up and shape how you want it. The resin will not eat it,and its not very effected by the heat buildup. Have you visited http://www.fiberglassforums.com/ ? If not I would suggest it as there are alot of dash builds going on there.

302 Z28 12-29-2009 01:10 PM

Rule of thumb: Polyester resin (Fiberglass) will melt Styrofoam. If you are going to use Styrofoam then use epoxy resin ($$). If you want to use the cheaper polyester resin you must use urethane foam. You can build up the dash with foam, cut it, or sand it to shape. Once your final shape is arrived at use the method above to cover it.

You could use Styrofoam and polyester resin but you must add a barrier to the surface of the foam fist to prevent the resin from touching the foam. This is usually done with clear packaging tape.

Vince

itsmecord 12-29-2009 05:55 PM

For whatever reason it doe snot melt the potters foam. I use it on all my smaller stuff where stretching spandex would have an undesirable outcome.
The pink stuff from lowes/home depot..... WILL MELT !!! Then there is some whit foam there as well that will not melt...

NEW INTERIORS 12-29-2009 07:05 PM

The green foam at Hobby Lobby work's well with fiber glass..It's the green foam they use in the bottom of Flower pots.. ;) and it sands really good too.. ;)

codebreaker77 12-29-2009 08:25 PM

more questions
 
Thanks for everything. I had thoughts of a solid block 85"x45"x36" of the white Styrofoam and was unsure. It will cost $240 for the size block I just gave above. Can I get that big of potters foam in one piece. Also, what is MDF?

Chevrolet4x4s 12-29-2009 09:00 PM

at that much for they styrofoam I would use mdf then go from there.
Shane

ogre 12-29-2009 10:24 PM

:eek: :eek: DANGER DANGER WILL ROBINSON!!! :eek: :eek:

fiberglassforums.com is addictive and a known marriage wrecker

:evil: proceed at your own risk :evil:

http://i306.photobucket.com/albums/n...0529091519.jpg

http://i306.photobucket.com/albums/n...0529091520.jpg

YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED!



:sweat:

ogre 12-29-2009 10:30 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by codebreaker77
Thanks for everything. I had thoughts of a solid block 85"x45"x36" of the white Styrofoam and was unsure. It will cost $240 for the size block I just gave above. Can I get that big of potters foam in one piece. Also, what is MDF?

you won't need any styrofoam. not needed. read some of the builds there.
MDF = medium density fiberboard = realy thick, realy hard cardboard ;)

my 58 apache build on fiberglassforums.com

302 Z28 12-30-2009 07:46 AM

FWIW, you can glue smaller pieces of foam together to make it work, it doesn't have to be one solid block.

And the warning about the fiberglass forum should be heeded, it is very addictive. You will be building all sorts of things from fiberglass before you realize it.

Vince

codebreaker77 12-31-2009 01:39 AM

As far as the Fleece
 
As far as the Fleece goes, does it matter what color I use or is that not important. I ask because the Walmart around here is going to cut the price and do away with all there fabric. If color doesn't matter than I plan on buying allot of it.

302 Z28 12-31-2009 07:14 AM

Color does not matter. Be advised however that fleece really soaks up the resin so it's going to take more resin than other fabrics.

Vince

itsmecord 12-31-2009 12:05 PM

I really like spandex type material, color does not mater at all. As long as whatever you get stretches. Look for a material the stretches both ways.....north-south , west-east. This will help with compound curves. Another reason I dont particularly like fleec is that as stated above it does take ALOT of resin,and when you go to sand is smooth it takes alot more sanding to get it even close to the unsanded spandexy stuff.

ogre 12-31-2009 02:01 PM

i highly recomend doing your fiberglass research on fiberglassforums.com, everything you can possibly ask has been asked hundreds of times over there. it is recomended that you do not use fleece. your base fabric adds nothing to the strength of the fiberglass, it is merely the shell to build your fg project on. fleece is very thick and takes a lot of resin to saturate it. several members of the fgf have experimented with various fabrics, one that stands out is ponte', you can use t-shirt fabric but it tends to sag more than the ponte'. any fabric that is stetchy both ways is good to use. spandex works. ponte' is what i used, it holds staples well, doesn't sag too much and doesn't suck up the resin like fleece. color doesn't matter since you will fg over it and paint or upholster your new dash.

NEW INTERIORS 12-31-2009 02:10 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ogre
i highly recomend doing your fiberglass research on fiberglassforums.com, everything you can possibly ask has been asked hundreds of times over there. it is recomended that you do not use fleece. your base fabric adds nothing to the strength of the fiberglass, it is merely the shell to build your fg project on. fleece is very thick and takes a lot of resin to saturate it. several members of the fgf have experimented with various fabrics, one that stands out is ponte', you can use t-shirt fabric but it tends to sag more than the ponte'. any fabric that is stetchy both ways is good to use. spandex works. ponte' is what i used, it holds staples well, doesn't sag too much and doesn't suck up the resin like fleece. color doesn't matter since you will fg over it and paint or upholster your new dash.

Using the fleece..Is only to make the buck. To work off of..It does work well and there nothing wrong with using it for that..Then use it too lay glass over..Don't depend just on the fleece you wet out.. ;)


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