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Topic Review (Newest First)
07-03-2004 06:39 PM
chrisflock As to fibeglassing your roof, the easiest way is to simply flip the cab over, and let gravity do the work for you.
07-02-2004 08:20 PM Only comments I have on LanceM's excellent advice is first, only use wax made for parting agent use such as PartAll. Any other wax may or may not work. I have been burned a couple of times trying to cheap out on this step and it ain't worth it!! I have never had a failure using PartAll.

Second, instead of using coloring agent in standard laminating resin, buy a can of gel coat and use it for the first coat as the surface of the final part. It is designed with UV tolerance, is very easy to sand and finish and fills voids well so there aren't as many divots as with straight resin.

Finally, for not stressed layups (stereo speaker boxes, etc.), 3 layers of 1 .5oz mat will yield a 1/8" thick part that is plenty stable and strong. For parts that are stressed you need more strength so start with a layer of mat (very important - if you use a woven cloth directly on gel coat the weave pattern will 'print' through - you will not be able to get rid of it no matter how much you sand). The mat's random thread construction will not print any pattern through the surface coats of resin. Second layer should be 10oz woven fabric which will give great strength and final 2 layers should be more mat. This recipe will work for all but the highest stressed parts that most rodders won't ever need to worry about.
07-02-2004 05:50 PM
LanceM I had a business a few years ago that made me learn how to make plugs and molds for making fiberglass pieces. Expanded foam makes a great plug, you can buy it cheap at Home Depot, the white stuff, blue or pink works better for smooth detail, glue it into a block big enough to carve your plug from using what ever works best for getting it to shape, using sand paper in the final stage to get it real close (slightly undersize in tough areas). The trick then is to use EPOXY resin, it won't melt the foam, and lay on 2-3 layers of 2 oz cloth. let it cure and sand smooth, fill low spots with bondo and give it several coats of laquer primer sanding it to 400 grit, you want a perfectly smooth plug.

Now to make the mold for your part. Depending upon the part you may want to make a one or mutilple piece mold so that you can get the part out of the mold when you are done so that you don't destroy the mold or the part trying to get them apart. Fiber Glast has a website that sells videos and books on mold making and they decribe it a lot better than I can as to how to make a multiple piece mold.

Anyway to keep the fiberglass of the mold (or anything else, like the roof of a cab) from sticking use PVA parting film, it is a polyvinyl alcohol solution that forms a layer between the mold and the plug, or the part and the mold. You spray it on with a spray gun in a thin coating and let it dry, glass won't stick to it and it washes off with water.

When the plug is coated with PVA and ready start laying on the glass, the larger the mold the thicker the glass will have to be. You don't want the mold flexing, I use typically 6-8 oz crow weave cloth, at least for the first two layers, then go to mat if I need a thick mold. Before laying the first layer of glass you need to paint the mold with a coat of thickend resin, they make thickeners for this purpose, paint on a coat, it will want to run down vertical surfaces so keep rotating the plug or keep pulling it up with the brush untill it starts to set and it quits sagging. Once it won't tear brushing with a dry brush start laying on the glass all in one session. the painted on coat prevents the glass weave from imprinting in the mold and then on the part.

Ok now that that is all cured you should be able to pull the plug from the mold, If you did everything right

Clean the PVA from the mold and make sure that there are no defects, repair as required, and then wax the crap out of it with something like Johnson's floor wax, 6-8 coats, more the better.

At this point you are ready to make a part, clean and assemble the mold, wax it one more time for luck, then spray it with PVA, inside and out. Mix up some resin with thickener in it like you did for the mold and brush it on, you may color it at this time too if you want, coloring agents are available. If your part has areas that will be hard to get glass to lay into you can mix fillers with resin and fill those areas so that they are solid, doing this once the first coat passes the dry brush test. When using the filler work fast as you need to lay glass at the same time really so have your glass cloth or mat precut and resin ready. Start laying the glass all in one session to the thickness you require and then watch it cure. Since glass will extend past the mold, test it as it cures, it will reach a point that it will cut like butter with a razor knive and you will be able to trim it flush with the mold saving you trimming it with a grinder later!

Once it has cured and if you did everything right pop your part from the mold, and wala your part, and a mold that you can make more from!

Before following these steps to make something like a dash I would suggest making something small like a gauge holder or the like to get the idea of the process.

Hope some of these methods help.

07-01-2004 10:48 AM
dartman66gt what you could do is go to a junkyard and get a cab roof like yours, turn it upside down and then build your part. I have done this a few times to make panels, my junkyard guys are pretty helpful getting pieces off ones they are going to crush, so the price is low to nothing if I bring it back,( all they are concerned about on those parts is getting their weight).
Hope this helps
07-01-2004 07:43 AM Fire; I don't have a vision of what your dash will look like but no matter. Regardless of the part yo want to make, the mold can be made of virtually anything. Only requirements are it must be stable and not deflect under the molding process; it should be made from something that is resistant to the chemicals in the resin; and it must be sealed and coated w/ mold release so the 'glass will come off.

Plaster of Paris, wall plaster, wood plastic, bondo, etc. all make good mold material. The absolute best way to proceed is to make a perfected model. take a female mold off that, then make the final part from the mold. This guarantees a perfect reproduction of the model, and results in a mold that can make dozens of the part. The cheapie way that still works but requires a lot more finishing work is to make a rough model, lay the 'glass over that then grind, sand, and bondo it until it has the finish you want.

Best way to reinforce the part is to completely remove the model then fiberglass the wood in critical places for mounting and strengthening. This results in a much lighter piece than to 'glass wood inside the entire part.

Go look in my Journal for photos of a couple if fiberglass parts I have recently made. The Mysterion Cyclopes headlight pod (spread over pages 3-5 of the Journal) is made using a highly finished model made of wood, plaster and 'glass, and the headliner insert (currently the first Journal page that pops up) is made by simply laying 'glass over the top of the pickup cab.
07-01-2004 12:05 AM
Great thread! just in time...

lots of good info. Unfortunatly it spawned a lot of ideas for future projects! I'll never finish.
But the reason I write is..
I am getting ready to build a custom dash in my hearse. I want a coffin shaped dash with a 12" recessed top that will hold a 4' skeleton. My original idea was to actually build the coffin out of stained hardwood and just glass around the edges to make it fit in, but then I thought it would look cooler if I built the whole thing out of fiberglass and painted it the body color (medium opal). the inside of dash/coffin will be lined in dark red velvet.
I was planning on using cardboard, scissors and trial and error to get a template and then transfer it to wood, assemble and cover in glass. Should i use something thicker than 1/4 inch ply or just brace it up with 2x4's? Also how can I get the edges looking good and flush? do I need some cardboard or some base or can i just saran wrap my dash and go at it? Are there some trick hidden fasteners or could i attatch it through the engine bay? Are 3 layers of mat good enough for an entire dash? Could I leave some wood in the fiberglass to screw into?I have never worked with fiberglass (except patching boats and trailers) and I don't want to build this huge thing and have it curl or not fit the back contour or something.

I do plan on removing vents and wires first Thanks...
06-30-2004 07:05 PM
onepot Check out willys 36 project journal he molded his hood liner on the outside of his hood sounds a lot easier than making it on the inside
06-30-2004 12:52 PM
70chevy well that would work except that on my truck, the cab has a interior skin. So the shape is way diffrent. I still have no headliner, and only one door panel. I want to go to plastic, but cannot find a dealer that will help me. I emailed one and they never got back to me. I dont want to pay the ridiculous price that roddoors has. So I am stuck with bare interior for now...

If anyone knows a good retailer let me know!! Thanks
06-29-2004 05:47 PM I did the deed Sunday. See the progress here .

And I ain't no wimp. I take a good old hot shower and wait the two days 'til my skin stops stinging!
06-29-2004 12:59 PM
snod83 Just a little bit of advice on the itch! Take a COLD shower afterwards, the warm water opens your pores and allows the fiberglass to get into you and you itch it out!
06-22-2004 04:11 PM
Neophyte Cool! I'll be looking forward to that. I have seen something like this before but obviously forgot about it. When I saw these pics this mornig I started playing with the same idea for my 53 Chevy that's gone for sandblasting this past Saturday. I'll go and fetch it this coming Saturday due to my working hours and traveling time during the week. That way one can do some nice custom effects.
06-22-2004 04:05 PM
Re: Solution?

Originally posted by Neophyte
I know it's a few months after the last post but have you found a solution for your headliner yet 70Chevy? Here is a page with some pics how these guys did there fibreglass liner. They actually lay the fibreglass on the outside and when removed they section it so it fits inside. Cool hey?
Great minds run together! I have been scratching my anatomy on how to make a headliner for my king cab '53 Chevy project and it dawned on me a couple of days ago that I have a ready made mold in the top of the truck. I will start mine tonight and do a photo essay in my Journal so we have it here on our site.

Incidentally you have too many "http//s' in your link. Here is one that works.
06-22-2004 03:35 PM

I know it's a few months after the last post but have you found a solution for your headliner yet 70Chevy? Here is a page with some pics how these guys did there fibreglass liner. They actually lay the fibreglass on the outside and when removed they section it so it fits inside. Cool hey?
02-26-2004 09:01 AM
Originally posted by 70chevy
What would you suggest for a headliner? I am clueless as what to do. What about filling in the original trim holes and just using the 3m super 77 to glue my vinyl straight to the metal? Is there another option out there? I would like to be able to do a design. Could i make a mold and put just a raised piece and screw it in on top of my glued vinyl-to-metal Headliner?
Don't use 3M 77 for a headliner, it'll be drooping within a couple of weeks. I just finished doing a headliner in Ultrasuede, I used the original headliner board. It was a little busted up so I reinforced it with some fiberglass resin (the board was made out of that yellow pressed fiberglass panelling). I covered the board in 1/8" closed-cell foam and added another layer of that foam in the shape of flames. I used 3M 90 adhesive for all my gluing. You can als buy headliner fabric that already has the foam on it.

Admittedly, it was a pretty small project.

02-23-2004 12:31 PM
70chevy I am sure you have seen many schemes and interiors, from your advice...I need an opinion. I have gray leather seats, and charcoal colored interior paint for all metal surfaces and gauges. Will the grey look funny/standout, in this interior. I was worried since they are solid gray and the rest is black and gray. I was planning on doing the dashpad black because it will blend the best on top of the charcoal. Also Carpet color should be....? Gray? Black? Charcoal? I am leaning towards black because well black is black for the most part matching it would be easy to match it to my panels

The two bowties are raised. I probally will end up with the headliner bowtie level with the rest. THe two charcoal colored things on the door panel are the handle and window crank let me know what you think!
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