working with carbon fiber?

Discussion in 'The Garage' started by scorch, Sep 16, 2008.

  1. scorch

    scorch Poser

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    anyone does anything with carbon fiber. Its very dangerous to work with.. But it looks awesome and the bling bling per dollar is incredible.

    I wanted to make an exhaust hanger for my ninja250 which doesn't seem too complicated. But of course i was going to do it in steel or aluminum.. But now that i think of it, carbon fiber is way more BLING
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  2. dagwood

    dagwood Banned

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    aint cheap. buy Pre preg. has to kept cool or it sets off in a warm room.
    actually not dangerous. less so than FRP with kevlar. they have isocyanides and styrenes in the resine. CF can be cured in the oven with very little fumes or oder at low temps..
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  3. FistFullofDirt

    FistFullofDirt whistle whistle whistle

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    I've read about making a curing oven out of a cardboard box, with several layers of that foam panel stuff used to insulate houses. Then you put some sort of heat source in there and stick the thing out side so it doesn't burn the house down. If you were making something big, I would think that it would be tough to get the entire box hot enough though.
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  4. RUNAWAY

    RUNAWAY Adventurer

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    Scorch,

    The company I work for makes flat carbon fiber panels all week long.

    i am not sure what kind of proselityzing I can do here, so PM me if you need more information.
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  5. scorch

    scorch Poser

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    Hey runaway check your pms.


    This is what i am trying to create.. an exhaust hanger that is pretty simple. But needs a little bend to it and some cuts.
    LINK
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  6. dagwood

    dagwood Banned

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    jeez 60 bucks? it'd be cheaper and easier just to buy the damned thing. probably look a hell of allot better anyway.

    you used KLR didn't ya?:rolleyes
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  7. scorch

    scorch Poser

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    i have no idea what you are talking about. Klr?

    The point of this thread was so i can learn a bit about carbon fiber. Or find someone who knows how to build things in it.
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  8. beechum1

    beechum1 Grimace Soup

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    if you're not going to buy the hanger to make the mold, what you'll need are sketches at least to make the "plug." Hopefully you've done work with fiberglass and some bondo and sandpaper before, this will easily facilitate your project. I would suggest, you make the measurements of what you need the part to do, Make a plug out of bondo, make a a mold of the plug, make a mold of the mold so now you have two facing molds for a compression mold, layup, wet out, compress and you shake it all about.

    that's the 5 second version.
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  9. P B G

    P B G Long timer

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    You can make curing ovens using heating elements, styrofoam, and that silver reflective tape.

    As mentioned it doesn't need to get super hot.

    But nothing I've ever made out of CF has come near the beautiful finish I would hope for, that shiny look is easier to get with a sticker....
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  10. aardschok

    aardschok Fallout Rider

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    um, ... I 've never worked with carbon fiber but, doesn't what ever you make in carbon fiber need to be in a vacuum autoclave
    [​IMG]
    to form correctly to the mold? I think thats the way the Elan Motorsports described it in a tour of their facility.

    http://www.elanmotorsports.com/?action=page.servicescomp
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  11. Anorak

    Anorak Woolf Barnato

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    An autoclave is pressurized. Why not use fiberglas and paint it black. You can wet lay up cfrp but it doesn't wet out like fiberglas which is why industry uses prepreg , vacuum bags or autoclaves. You can lay it up wet with a vacuum bag .
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  12. Inane Cathode

    Inane Cathode Cheated Anion

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    All the cool kids use carbon fiber donchaknow.
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  13. Anorak

    Anorak Woolf Barnato

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    I wouldn't use it because it didn't come stock on the bike. It will ruin the collectibility.
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  14. dagwood

    dagwood Banned

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    sorry bout that. but if it's a one off part or you want to try and make a few. it's gonna cost Way more than just buying it from someone who already set up in production.
    if you really want to learn about it and make more than that one part cool. but it aint cheap or easy. actually it's pretty easy. but not simple.

    you can order prepreg CF or CF/K wovens in many different lays from places like Composite one. there is gauges, weave style, thickness, non woven, and on and on and on.

    the good. no autoclave, no resins to mix, easy to handle, no molds.

    the bad, it aint cheap, limited what you can do, a bitch to cut but doable green, can't be sanded( what you get needs a clear coat or you're back to messing with resins.) machines like shit so it's a Precut, form, press, cure process. limited shelf life green. keep it in the fridge or freezer.
    you'll make a dozen that look like shit before you get the one you want. and then it gets worse.
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  15. Inane Cathode

    Inane Cathode Cheated Anion

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    Depends on if you actually ride a collectible bike in the first place :norton
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  16. K2ride

    K2ride Single track mind!

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    Wisdom from experience, I see!

    For many years now,
    I've been of opinion that this sticker should be placed on every composite material package:

    ------------------
    ---WARNING---

    ''Murphy's law'' turf!
    ------------------

    :lol3
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  17. underkill

    underkill Horsepower Junkie

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    I used to make carbon fiber wings for race cars, and the stuff we used didn't have to be baked, and we only vacuum bagged it for a nice surface finish, it wasn't really required...

    That said, it was really a pain in the ass... :lol3 You might as well give it a shot though if you just really want to... but try it in fiberglass or something first. be a lot cheaper to mess up... and if you get the procedure figured out, it'll be easy to recreate it in carbon...
    #17
  18. psychsurf

    psychsurf Been here awhile

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    I've played with carbon on my surfboards:
    [​IMG]

    I've never fooled with the pre-preg stuff, seems like waaaaay too much trouble. I've just used dry cloth and epoxy resin, treat it much like fiberglass. I've done it under vacuum bag before, and that does give the best resin-to-cloth ratio, but for a fairly simple curve (like the surfboard rail shown above), here's my formula..

    Pre-tension the cloth by pulling it tight over the substrate (your mold or whatever) and taping it down with masking tape. Apply your epoxy with a brush, making sure it is well wetted-out throughout the whole surface. Cover the surface with a layer of saran wrap and use your fingers to smooth it all out. Let it harden, peel the saran wrap, trim your edges and you're done. If done carefully, the saran wrap will leave a mirror finish.

    For building a part (say a flyscreen), the way I would do it is to make most of the thickness from fiberglass cloth, then just add a single layer of carbon fiber for cosmetics.

    I get all my stuff at www.fiberglasssupply.com Great company, great customer support, best prices around.

    Hope that helps!
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  19. Trickyrick

    Trickyrick Adventurer

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    Take a look at this guys work and explanations as he makes a carbon fiber gas tank. In the last few pages he makes the brackets to mount the tank, which would be close to what you need.

    http://www.bayarearidersforum.com/fo.../kevlar+tank

    He makes it look very easy.

    Rick
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  20. Trickyrick

    Trickyrick Adventurer

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