our cockpit floor never drained fast orcompletely enough so we're going to add this big fiberglass and foam wedge tohelp get the water out hello we are Patrick and RebeccaChildress on the Valiant forty sailboat “Brick House” we have been calledhauled out in Richards BaySouth Africa and we are getting our sail boat ready to head down to Tierra del Fuegoonly because we have nowhere else to go and that's a cool sounding name butfirst there is more work we have to do to get this boat ready to cross oceansafter seven months of being hauled out of the water and all the major projectsout of the way now that we're back in the water and at a dock I can take careof some of the smaller but equally important jobs like adding slope.
alittle extra pitch to the cockpit floor so let's go up to Hayden's shop and justjump right into making the foam panel fiberglassed on one side that'll give usthat pitch okay we're going to come in here and see Hayden Hector from KTC Projects – one of thelocal contractors.
okay hi there Hayden how How are you doing? hey so today's the day wemake a panel yeah it's for my floor and it'll be set up on this big glass sheet.
My laminating table I call it.
okay and the first step is going to be what putting a couple of coats ofRam Wax on so it can release from the table So first your man is going to be putting on ram wax onthe glass table and how many coats will he be putting on? He will be putting on threecoats and then he will start the layup so what you've already done is taken two piecesof foam and join them that's right.
And what did you join itwith? I just use hot glue to join the foam together, so I put a hotglue gun uh-huh glue it together just gonna holdit together until the fiberglass cures on the table okay that's quick hot gluethat's it and it doesn't have to be any stronger than that? No, once it's glassed inits as strong as it will ever be.
Thats where it gets its strength.
Yeah The fiberglass is the strength.
All the foam is doing is doing is acting as a former.
Bufan has made hundreds of these fiberglass foam panels and first he defines the areawith blue tape so he knows exactly where to roll out the polyester resin and thenlay down the pre-cut sections of chopped strand mat and roving then it is a quickroll out of a thick layer of polyester resin.
You can see how the resin is pulling away from the wax in some places.
This is because of the viscosity, the thinness of the resin.
it can't hold to itself, where as with gel coat it is much thicker so its bonds to itself and it doesn't allow it to almost fish eye on you.
You would get a very similar thing with spray spray painting on a waxy surface you would get your paint that would have a similar effect Bufan is using 450 gram, that's about16 ounces , chopped strand mat the next layer is woven roving also 450grams or about 16 ounces in imperial measure.
Rather the dumping more resin ontop of this roving Bufan is allowing the resin to soak up from the bottomupwards and that helps to push air and air bubbles out of the cloth and then herolls it out with a thin roller to help spread that resin and only when he needsto then applies more resin to the top of the cloth and then rolls that aroundto help make sure that all of the air bubbles come out and now the final layer of choppedstrand mat often times just called CSM The second layer of CSM is thesame weight as the first layer so now the foamboard gets a good soaking offiberglass resin before it gets turned over on top of the build-up offiberglass lay up to make sure that these cans of weightsdo not get glued to the new work a slick sheet of plastic is used toseparate the can from the fiberglass so it's 8 o'clock in the morning I cancome back about 3 o'clock in the afternoon and pick up my new panelpulling the weights off of the panel we can see how the fiberglass resin hasmigrated all the way up through all all these little perforations which are partof the structure of the panel and so it isn't just a face adhesion it is reallya good bond all the way through the foam panel oh look how smooth that is that isamazing it's also ideally I like to leave itovernight it's not it's like now to take her this looks fine, it's cured, but I justprefer to leave things overnight.
Sure get a good cure on it.
So Hayden what if on my panel if I needed it for something else and Iwanted it good on two sides not just on one side so that's obviously yourlaminates against the gloss, gel coat finish.
other side is your second layup asyou can see with the cross-section it could be your bottom layer with your laminate and then your foam foam core, and then you do your second layup on top of that consolidating with the steel rollerand then a layer of Peel ply on top of that and then everything gives you a grip surfaceokay so you're not worried about squishing everything down and like avacuum bag.
if you wanted to you could vacuum bag it but I don't dovacuum bagging on most of my panels hmm mainly panels I do are for cosmeticpanels I don't really do structural panels so as for structural panels ifyou're worried about strength and you had a spec to meet obviously the idealway to go forward with that would be vacuum bagging to consolidate it 100%.
well it seems like these are pretty darn strong as it isI mean laminating on two sides even without vacuum bagging this gives youyour strength that you need for for the application you're looking at.
okay greatthanks! FaNTASTIC! So if you want to do this at home in your garage and youdon't want to have to go through the big expense of a thick glass table a pieceof plastic laminate like Formica or wilsonart each not shiny piece would bethe best just lay it out on a good solid strong flat table and be sure to wax thesurface with at least four coats of car wax if not something better and do yourlay up and then put the foam on top of that and weight it down the way that wedid but if you want two good sides and nice and shiny you can go ahead and dolay up on top of that and then take another piece of plastic laminate lay iton top of course after shining it up with a about four or five coats ofautomotive wax then put a thick piece of flat plywood on top of that Formica tohelp distribute the load evenly and then weight it down and I think that willhelp to squish out any excess resin and make for a stronger product and alsogive you a nice finish on top if you're gonna be doing some laminating on thatupper surface of course just like what Hayden showed us you just put peel plyon top and that'll make it nice and flat and you can also still take a piece ofFormica on top then put a thick piece of flat plywood on top of that Formica tohelp distribute the load evenly and weight that down on top of the peel plyto get a little squishy effect and squeeze out in the excess resin that wayas well either way I think it's going to come out pretty darn strong and it's anice way to do it at home I think these homemade foam core panelsare very good for cosmetics and partitions but as far as using in a veryhigh stress high strength application you're on your own to figure out thatsuitability now I have to make a template of the floor to transfer on tothe panel I used some corrugated plastic easy to cut although the corrugationsbecause they all run parallel sometimes it's hard to cut the proper straightline to the corrugations hold your knife in a direction that you really don'twant to go clean all of this wax from the layup table often here make surethat there's no speck of it even though I'm going to be sanding thisI don't want to be sanding that wax into the rest of the surface so I'm usingacetone to clean off that wax according to Hayden's directions using a finemetal cutting blade this is pretty easy stuff to cut using 36 grit paper on thesix inch disk sander it makes it easy to fine-tune the cuts and also round offthe edges where it needs it but even 24 grit in this big heavy sander hardlymade a dent in this incredibly strong foam panel that was a big surprise so Ihad to get out the angle grinder with 16 grit paper and finally attacked it with I had to stop every once in a while and check with a straight piece ofaluminum for high spots and then I would mark and attack those high spots withthe 24 grit paper on the heavy disk sander once things we're looking pretty goodthen the big random orbit sander pretty well smoothed things out and gave thebevel that we were looking for the panel has a very nice taper a little more thanan inch a little more than 24 millimeters at its thickest end down toa knife edge at its bottom and then to prepare this panel for installation andtabbing in all that beautiful nice glass smooth shine had to be sanded off 60grit paper was used around the edges where the fiberglass tabbing will go and then 80grit inside the field where it's going to be painted nothing ever seems to fitright the first time so with a little marking and then sanding with a disksander and marking some more and sanding some more about four or five times itwas finally fitting the way it should so then it could be glued and tabbed in butnow we have to sand the floor and sand the sides of this cockpit and geteverything ready for the permanent installation first a good vacuuming andthen a good wipe down with acetone and clean paper towels don't worry aboutwhat the rest of this cockpit looks like all of this work is in anticipation ofpainting the entire cockpit a little later on so then I mixed up a big batchof epoxy resin thicken it up with cabosil and then spread it around likebutter all over the cockpit floor where this new panel is going to sit andespecially around the edges to help seal that up and get that ready for thetabbing this was just the start of the weights placed on this floor to helphold it down overnight bricks concrete all kinds of things were set in here togive it a lot of pressure so the next step was to thicken up some epoxy withsome easiest to sand filler make a fillit and then sand it so it'll be a nicecurved section for the fiberglass cloth we'll easily fold in around these edgesand then it has to be sanded and fared and then on and on and on.
These drum Sanders in the drillmade it a lot easier to get that curved surface all the way around the perimeterof the floor finally after a lot of sanding and fairing and cleaning I couldlay in two layers of lightweight cloth the first one was two and a half incheswide and the second layer would be four inches wide to fold in nicely around allof these curved surfaces and of course using epoxy resin so I mixed up 300grams of resin with slow hardener and that's a lot of resin but I worked justas quickly as I could I got the two layers of glass downstarted getting the peel ply in place and I could see oh no I'm losing thewar because the resin just went off on me and so I didn't get the peel plyas saturated as I really felt I needed to but what else can you do so we'll seewhat happens when we pull it up certainly there's going to be somefairing after all this is done oh how nice it's going to take some sanding andsome fairing but still not nearly as much work as like in the old days whenwe had to do a lot of sanding and a lot of fairing this peel ply is amazingstuff and saves a lot of work and out here in the middle it's so much betternow to have everything already completed that was done in the shop and havingthis panel pre-made for me rather than me fiberglassing all this Center areaand sanding and fairing it has saved me days of work and a lot of valuablelabour time with two-part primer and then two-part white paint oh it's sohard not to keep going with that white paint roller on the rest of thecockpit but it's day we'll be coming for the final coat on the walking surfacesof this cockpit floor I mixed up a little fine sand in the paint and thenrolled that around so I think we're in pretty good shape now certainly our feetare going to say a lot drier on that forward end of the cockpit If you like the video give us a thumbs up, a comment down below, leave a tip in the tip jar, and share this with all your friends!.