How Many Ml Of Formula For A 4 Day Old Fibre Glass Yacht Construction

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Fibre Glass Yacht Construction

What is made of glass?

For the purpose of this article it is beneficial to understand some basic facts about how fiberglass boats are constructed, their typical strengths and weaknesses and most importantly what visible signs manifest themselves to the home owner, such as stress cracks, two – lamination. , osmosis and so on.

How does it heal?

Briefly, most polyester resins are composed of glycols, organic acids and reactive diluents (styrene is one). When the catalyst is added, [MEKP usually] a chain reaction is initiated. The mixture forms a series of “cross-linking” reactions, allowing the styrene to create “bridges” that connect all the chemicals together. The chain reactions run faster and faster until the glycol/acid chains begin to freeze into a solid mass.

Eventually, all these bridges “cross-linked” form a solid plastic mass holding the fiberglass (or matrix) firmly in place. Heat is dissipated in this reaction as the chemicals cross together (exothermic reaction). Amazing isn’t it?

Basic construction

Fiberglass boat hulls are generally composed of several laminations (or layers) of fiberglass cloth, impregnated with polyester, vinylester or epoxy resin. This is usually done by building a “female” mold and creating the fiberglass hull in a series of steps that follow:

1. The “female” mold is built in the required hull form.

2. A wax release agent is applied to the surface of the mold.

3. A “gel coat”, containing pigment (color) in polyester resin, is first applied to the mold (10-25 ml thick). This lists the color finish of the hull.

4. The “gel coat” is then backed by a thin fiberglass cloth, then several layers of heavier cloth are added to it to form the basic hull.

The hull is then usually re-reinforced with additional layers of glass and resin over the areas under stress and the entire hull is sealed with a final layer of clear resin. The rest of the internal equipment such as roof, deck, bulkheads and keel are added when the hull is finally released from the mold. (This does not always apply! Different builders vary this).

Wooden components

Often in fiberglass hulls, wooden components are used to strengthen areas, such as galleries and so on. Often, the wood is subject to water exposure and swelling, eventually causing rot and decay.

WE LAMINATED

Many modern boats are built using internal cores as well as resin. These can be polyurethane foam, end grain balsa cores and many lightweight racing hulls are using various lightweight “honeycomb” materials.

These materials reduce the weight of the hull, often with very little loss of strength. Also, the use of “closed cell” foam cores combined with epoxy resins has protected many of these “composite constructions” from early failure, but all must be subject to high quality and standards, especially where the installation of piles and equipment is concerned, due to repeated high load.

UNDER WATER

Just because the hull is under water does not necessarily mean it will degrade any faster but in the case of poor maintenance, hidden factors may be at work. The lack of anti-fouling procedures allows marine growth to proliferate. Barnacles are a sure killer if they are allowed to remain undisturbed at work!

Of course, a weed-covered hull will hide the dreaded “osmosis bulbs” and underwater metal equipment will be subject to damage from electrical galvanic corrosion if the right conditions exist. Rudders and accessories, shafts too, are often overlooked when a hasty slide takes place. , usually for a quick anti-fault.

Monsters are terrifying

A rudder repair I did recently involved the complete decimation of the inner soft core by the dreaded “teredo” worm. They covered his head in fiberglass and the worm entered through a pinprick and chewed the living hell out of the core! Take nothing for granted. !

A word of warning!

If you are considering buying an older yacht, use a qualified surveyor. They, unlike you are fully trained and experienced to spot any areas that are defective or likely to cause problems in the near future.

If you save on those dollars, you’ve only got yourself to blame!

Glass fiber

There are many and varied forms of fiberglass cloth available from the simple “cut wire carpet” to the more exotic (and more expensive) Kevlar Aramid and Carbon Fiber. All these fibers offer different characteristics such as stiffness, strength and can be combined in use. Examples of such fabrics are woven fabrics; cut strand mat (CSM) fabric uni-directional, bi- and tri-axial sewing. E-glass is probably most often used for general repair work.

How does it work?

Most of us are familiar with the basic way fiberglass and resin work. Separately, the glass fabric is soft, pliable and can be formed into almost any shape. The polyester resin (or any other, for that matter) is a clear sticky liquid that once mixed with the catalyst, (oxygenated catalyst, usually MEKP) creates heat (an exothermic reaction) and eventually sets solid. Individually, the use of these towing components is limited but when used together they form a formidable alliance and produce a fiber reinforced plastic (FRP).

How does it do this?

This incredible physical partnership allows high stresses and loads to be transferred to the “cured” plastic and allows shells with immense load-carrying capacity to be built, i.e. ship hulls.

Limitation

Unfortunately, there is no such thing as a free lunch and although “glass boats” heralded a great revolution in long-lasting boat construction, time has shown that fiberglass boats are not absolutely maintenance free. With years of use, boat hulls undergo a lot of wear and tear in the form of bending, flexing, fatigue, sudden impact etc. The fatigue cycle can cause breakdown of the “construction chains” crossed in the hull which causes weakness, cracks and splits. -lamination of the glass impregnated fabrics from the internal elements.

The chemical equation

In addition to the physical deterioration of the glass/resin bond due to those mentioned, there are also some interesting chemical reactions, which contrive to cause the breakdown of the once solid “chain of strength”. Often, a hull made in adverse conditions such as high humidity, and if the fiberglass cloth was subject to excessive wetness, the water contained in it will react in the polyester/glass resin mixture to create a third “partner” desired.

This takes the form of a yellow, highly acidic mixture that then attacks its own environment and seriously weakens the chemical “building blocks” of the resin and glass. This causes a downward spiral of destruction that will spell disaster for the Crow Force in time.

How can you tell?

This chemical and physical deterioration manifests itself in many ways. High load stress areas, which are subject to sudden high impact loads such as railings, stanchions, cleats etc., develop fine hairline cracks around the base. These, in turn, allow the entry of external water. Then the pattern of destruction is slowly but surely allowed to increase.

Blisters

Gel coat blisters may take the form of small “bumps” or small bumps. There may be one or two or even dozens. Often, when stung, a yellow acid substance will be found hidden inside. This phenomenon is also called “osmosis”. Caution: Do not let this substance reach your eyes! Wear glasses!

Hardspots

A “hardspot” in the hull due to a stressed bulkhead or poor furniture installation can cause a “hardspot” that is visible in the form of a hard “line” in the hull. Often the gel-coat can be finely cracked (star cracks) around the area.

De-lamination

In my opinion, this is possibly the worst case scenario. Water was freely absorbed by one or more of the previously described methods and the damage was increased by such a substantial amount that the glass fabric completely separated from the resin and the area was totally compromised. This can happen in areas that were originally starved of resin during construction, or even areas that were “broken” by over-tightening the through-deck bolts. These areas will be soft to the touch or will visibly flex when pushed and may swelling.and internal water.

Other areas to look at:

BRIDGE LOCATIONS – These are subject to sudden, cyclic loads. Stress cracking followed by complete failure may occur.

FITTING MAT/BRIDGE – Cracks, warping, discoloration in gel-coat around area (watch for chain plate area).

WINCHES, HAWSE PIPES – check for hairline cracks.

POP RIVETED AREA – check for leaks and breaks.

FADING – Unfortunately, we have in our part of the world, some of the most intense activity Ultra-violet can be found anywhere and pigmentation glass very sensitive to it. Fading, especially in darker colors, is the result and although polishing can help, often the only solution is a complete repaint using two-pack paint systems or polyurethane.

The final word

Are you half scared to death by the previous chapters; common sense must prevail now. What was written may happen only in part or maybe never. A lot depends on the age, location and how your boat was built and maintained. It is absolute madness to never lift a finger as far as maintenance goes and expect your boat to be perfect. Among all the other wonders of modern technology, unfortunately, we have not invented the self-repairing boat!

A regular maintenance schedule is strongly recommended and most, if not all, repairs can be effectively done by the average full-time worker if you have acquired the correct teaching techniques. There is a wealth of information out there, much of it available from your glass and resin supplier. So turn off that phone and pick up that phone! Once again I stress, if you have doubts about the condition of your own boat or one that you intend to buy, do not guess, find yourself a Marine Surveyor and let them do the whole investigation, it is worth it, I can assure you. you!

If you liked this article you can find out a lot more about boat building and building your own boat by visiting the website which can be found in the resource box below.

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