Friday, March 27, 2009

Baby steps

Lately I've been busy taking care of other things and putting the carbon fiber parts on the back burner so to speak but I've not stopped thinking about new methods and materials I'd like to try out.
creation of a decent mold has been a challenge but I think I've got a decent grasp on it.. essentially I tried treating the mold creation as the same as the part layup and well, it kinda' works but the mold seems to need a few tweaks to get a decent surface finish, which is pretty hard to achieve when dealing with the wet lay-up method.

One interesting product thats come up lately is Oxeon's line of reinforcements. These are really just a different type of weave it seems, They differ in that they are woven in a much larger tow or "ribbon" if you will. The appearance is more like a checkered flag look rather than a fabric. The idea is to create a clothe with more fibers running straight instead of curving in and out of one another. Seems like a good idea. I would like to try weaving some 1\2 inch wide carbon uni-tape into a cloth and try it in a layup.

It's becoming clear that 29 inches of vacuum is not ideal for bagging parts, I need more pressure than what atmospheric pressure can apply so I'm looking at creating a small pressure chamber that I can at least double the pressure in, say 30psi would be a nice improvement and I would'nt need to make it out of steel, though that would be nice. I think also it might leave the part with smaller voids do to the compressing nature of positive pressure as opposed to vacuum.
So, I think I'll try one more time to create a better mold and layup some parts using a positive pressure environment.

Time and money allowing, I'll be making great progress.