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Old 18-06-2008, 00:45   #1
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Differing Composite Build Technologies

I have been researching the build methods of different boat yards in different countries for some time, both well known and less well known designs, and am amazed at the diversity of methods used in construction. For a medium displacement cruising sail boat of around 45 feet, it is hard to find two yards who use the same combination of resin and fibre, constructed in the same way, and who agree on whether the hull should be single skin or sandwich, or single skin below the water line and sandwich above etc. etc etc. It is apparent that the likes of SP Technologies (now Gurit) and other composite engineering and materials companies, appear to be improving composite construction methods but there remains an enormous diversity across the boat yards. My thinking here is that these methods cannot all be equal, some are evidently better than others (vis epoxy beats vinylester which beats polyester). Does anyone have a view on how one can sensibly discriminate the various build methods in this maze without getting completely confused?! It is for example interesting to note that Swan were building in polyester until a couple of years ago (for the 62). Any ideas anyone?
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Old 18-06-2008, 04:48   #2
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The multihull portion of this forum usually has a running discussion on these issues at least once a week... often with builders, engineers and designers offering their insight... you might poke around there...
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Old 18-06-2008, 10:09   #3
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For instance, see:

Kelsall - KSS Build Method
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Old 18-06-2008, 10:27   #4
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Two birds with one stone

Quote:
Originally Posted by RobNicolls View Post
I have been researching the build methods of different boat yards in different countries for some time, both well known and less well known designs, and am amazed at the diversity of methods used in construction. For a medium displacement cruising sail boat of around 45 feet, it is hard to find two yards who use the same combination of resin and fibre, constructed in the same way, and who agree on whether the hull should be single skin or sandwich, or single skin below the water line and sandwich above etc. etc etc
I don't think there are enough data points. From an earlier post:

Quote:
Originally Posted by BigCat
Epoxy has the best adhesion characteristics of the the three classes of resins, and that seems to be needed when dealing with planks of wood. I don't think there are any solidly pinned-down facts that explain this, though one could speculate about, for example, differential thermal or mechanical expansion characteristics.


I agree that builders have been acquiring experience but, in my opinion, it's more like the steel example I gave before. I.e., what has been done is basically accumulating data points (this works, that didn't, that didn't but we aren't sure if was error or materials) rather than detailed knowledge.

I say this because there are so many variables like vacuum times and levels, temperatures, material interactions over time, stress loads, oxidation, osmosis etc.

That thread (the second bird, the first was my opinion) can be found here with a builder's response. Similar ones can be found by searching the forums.

Hope that helps.
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