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Topic Review (Newest First)
09-20-2010 08:07 AM
533y4 So basically, I take my hood, fix all the little imperfections, wax the crap out of it, then put a release agent. Take a bunch of fiberglass (which I can do VERY easily) and put it over the top of the hood and let it sit till hard. Making sure there are no cracks, bubbles, unsightly things. Spray some release agent. Then lay the carbon fiber the same way as the FG making sure to use minimum epoxy and maximum layers? Then let harden and pull. Sand and clear coat?

Sounds easy. I won't need the underside, because of the "uniqueness" of this situation.
09-20-2010 12:11 AM
millercustomfab For a quality part you will need to make sure the hood is ultra smooth, as in a polished surface. Basically you will use the hood as a plug to build the mold. Apply several coats of mold release wax, and a release agent on the hood. You will then spray a tooling gel coat on the hood, followed by a layer of surfacing veil (to keep the fiberglass weave from showing through) and several layer of fiberglass cloth. Take your time and read up on how to properly hand lay glass. After this part is cured pop it out and you will have your mold. The mold surface must be very smooth, and fix any defects with gelcoat at this time. You will then lay your carbon up using epoxy the same way you did making the mold. You will want to tape the edges of the cloth on both side wherever you cut it to keep the weave from coming undone at the edges. After you have done several layers, you will let the part cure, and pop out of the mold. Then you will have to sand the outside surface, and have it clear coated to give it that glass like finish. Of course there is a lot more to this, and you will still have to build the inside structure seperately and laminate them together. Factory made parts are cured in an autoclave which supplies vaccum and heat, so there is no extra resin, and no air bubbles. You hand laid part will not be as strong as a factory part, and will be very expensive to pull off yourdelf. You can do it given the right budget, and time needed however. I routinely make flat panels using a sheet of thick glass waxed several times, and cut them down for flat panels in interior jobs, but even those are a ton of work and dont always come out nice. Good luck and be creative. Using the hood as a reverse mold will work, but the outside finish will have to be painted, as the surface will never look good enough to be bare.
09-19-2010 07:01 PM
533y4 How would i go about making a female mold? A **** ton of plaster/bondo? Wax the hood so it dont stick? Any advice converting male to female would be really great. Thanks for all the help so far.
09-19-2010 05:04 PM
Originally Posted by OneMoreTime
Moving to body exterior..Basically molding Carbon fiber is based on fiberglass techniques..I kinda doubt that you will get real carbon fiber though as that stuff is cured in an autoclave..Just the stuff that looks like carbon fiber..

Actually, you only need to use an autoclave to get the highest structural properties. I had a small company that built aerospace composite parts and we used an oven and a vacuum bag to cure graphite prepreg and built flight quality parts this way. The problem with using the hood as a male mold is that the outer surface of the graphite will be rough and will look like crap. You really need to pull a fiberglass female mold off the hood and then use it to make the actual graphite parts.
09-19-2010 02:14 PM
533y4 Im just looking to a new hood without the damage and the weight savings of carbon fiber. I just want the hood to be made of all carbon fiber not fiberglass in the middle like all the cheap honda hoods.And they dont make anything carbon fiber for the tbird.
09-19-2010 12:29 PM
OneMoreTime Moving to body exterior..Basically molding Carbon fiber is based on fiberglass techniques..I kinda doubt that you will get real carbon fiber though as that stuff is cured in an autoclave..Just the stuff that looks like carbon fiber..

09-19-2010 11:08 AM
Carbon Fiber Body Panel How To?

Hi. My name is Brandon. I ran across this site on google when trying to research how to make carbon fiber replica car parts. Basically I have a custom made 1995 Thunderbird remade into a 2000 Cobra R. I built it to be a drag car. It has all the interior already removed, and almost the whole engine and drivetrain built. Now the body needs work. The hood became damaged and needs to be remade (originally out of fibergalss). I was able to repair the hood for now, but would like to remake it out of carbon fiber before the shape is no longer any good.

I want to take the hood and lay some sheets of carbon fiber on both sides, apply the epoxy, and remove of the hood (use the hood as a mold). Then join the under side piece and the top side together to create a "true" carbon fiber only hood.

After that I want to tackle the fenders and trunk but hood first.

Basically, can anyone just give me a how to guide on how to take a body part (hood), use it has a mold, cast the carbon fiber, and then remove and join the two pieces together. Also, the different types of "glue", which is good, bad, etc. And different types of raw fabrics. I already found a few different colored ones I like, but more is always better.

Thanks to anyone that can help me at all.

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