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Old 15-11-2018, 08:13   #1
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Bimini material

i have a 38 ft Hunter with the standard canvas Bimini and am tired of the constant leaks, repairs, heat transfer, I would like to replace the canvas with a more structurally sound material, fibreglass would be the obvious choice but I do not have the DIY skills, I was thinking more of a sheet of some 3mm "plastic" placed on top of the SS tubing and using a bunch of self tapping screws to secure in place. My problem is what type of "plastic" would be suitable, i have tested Acrylic (Perspex) which drills easy, bends easy, comes in white but is very brittle and handling a large sheet the chances are very real to shatter the sheet in transporting, erecting, and general twisting.
does anyone know of a suitable material that I can use with my limited DIY experience of large sheets of plastic
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Old 15-11-2018, 08:53   #2
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Re: Bimini material

You may be able to find sheets of fiberglass, such as used for shower surrounds. I works a lot like acrylic but without the brittleness.
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Old 15-11-2018, 09:22   #3
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Re: Bimini material

Try FRP board which is available at all builders stores. They are used in showers like Thinwater said.

https://bedfordreinforced.com/2017/0...cts-about-frp/
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Old 15-11-2018, 09:25   #4
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Re: Bimini material

If you have the space and can get hold of the materials fibreglassing shouldn't be difficult. Core materials such as easycell75 come in sizes up to 1020x2180mm and can be butt joined together (with PU glue) and cut to make the required shape. Then it's just a case of adding a couple of layers of glass on either side.

Plywood would be cheaper though.
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Old 15-11-2018, 09:27   #5
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Re: Bimini material

How about simply fiberglassing your bimini? Brush on some resin, lay some roving or cloth or even mat if strength not required, brush in some more resin, repeat as necessary, Sand and roll n tip some gelcoat with a pigment mixed in if it needs to look purty. Polish with a big buffing wheel and any good car body polish.


I made a "Redneck Bimini" for MR WIGGLES out of PVC pipe, a cheap drop cloth, and salvaged paint, that held up through three named storms.



BRUTE FORCE has an elderly bimini much chafed by boom and sails that needs replacing. I don't have a clue how old it is. Made from what looks like Sunbrella and that is what we will replace it with until I get around to making an enclosed pilothouse. I am sure I will probably just build an internal mold out of cheap paneling, wax it up, and lay up fiberglass on it and destructively remove the mold material. Simple process. You can also lay up over a core of starboard or other plastic or foam or whatever.


Simply adding another layer of canvas or sunbrella or whatever, and applying linseed oil or beeswax or a polyurethane varnish or paint, would give you a leakproof bimini for at least a couple of years, I imagine. And you would still be able to fold it down.
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Old 15-11-2018, 11:51   #6
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Re: Bimini material

FRP sounds like a good bet, will see if i can find a supplier. thanks for the info
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Old 15-11-2018, 12:50   #7
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Re: Bimini material

Have you tried just applying fabric protectant/treatment of the bimini? Mine is 17 years old and only leaks at a small hole I haven't sewn up yet. What's causing damage to your bimini? How is a plastic bimini going to trap less heat?
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Old 15-11-2018, 13:32   #8
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Re: Bimini material

Quote:
Originally Posted by sailorboy1 View Post
Have you tried just applying fabric protectant/treatment of the bimini? Mine is 17 years old and only leaks at a small hole I haven't sewn up yet. What's causing damage to your bimini? How is a plastic bimini going to trap less heat?

Thin plastic, probably not much different, but hard tops made from cored glass are a HUGE difference.


The other problem with most canvas biminis is that they are some dark color, either green or blue. Hard tops are white. I sometimes wonder why you so rarely see the top of a bimini painted white. I have done this and there is a HUGE difference.
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Old 15-11-2018, 15:20   #9
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Re: Bimini material

Fabricating a f/g bimini would not be hard. Maybe the thought is a bit daunting if you haven't used fiberglass before but there are lots of tutorials online these days.

I think this dodger is very smart and could be constructed very easily. It is probably fiberglass cloth (bent to shape) with one coat of resin

https://forums.sailboatowners.com/in...canvas.119611/
[

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Old 15-11-2018, 15:41   #10
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Re: Bimini material

[QUOTE=sailorboy1; Mine is 17 years old and only leaks at a small hole I haven't sewn up yet.


Don't bother sewing up that hole.
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Old 15-11-2018, 15:57   #11
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Re: Bimini material

Quote:
Originally Posted by coopec43 View Post
Fabricating a f/g bimini would not be hard. Maybe the thought is a bit daunting if you haven't used fiberglass before but there are lots of tutorials online these days.

I think this dodger is very smart and could be constructed very easily. It is probably fiberglass cloth (bent to shape) with one coat of resin

https://forums.sailboatowners.com/in...canvas.119611/
[

Clive

Do you happen to know if there is room enough for the winch handle to make a full turn with that dodger? Other than that possible lack of clearance, yes, it does look good.

Ann
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Old 15-11-2018, 16:18   #12
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Re: Bimini material

[QUOTE=Ecos;2762312][QUOTE=sailorboy1; Mine is 17 years old and only leaks at a small hole I haven't sewn up yet.


Don't bother sewing up that hole.[/QUOTE]

Why, its in good condition, isn't torn and doesn't leak. Maybe you think that just because of age it's dead but it's it good condition.
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Old 15-11-2018, 17:36   #13
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Re: Bimini material

Quote:
Originally Posted by JPA Cate View Post
Do you happen to know if there is room enough for the winch handle to make a full turn with that dodger? Other than that possible lack of clearance, yes, it does look good.

Ann

Ann

I tried to pick out the yacht in this gallery (it must be there) but I couldn't do it with a quick look.

The guys who fabricated the dodger are specialists so I bet there is room to swing a winch handle.

My preference if for a hard dodger is the one on the yacht Riada 11
(That is really "cool"
)

https://www.sanjuancoop.com/dillon-f...on-oberholzer/

Clive
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Old 15-11-2018, 21:31   #14
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Re: Bimini material

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I did something similar, removed the old canvass. Made a template out of veneer door skin. Then transferred that onto 4mm Okume plywood. Had to make relief cuts on the underside to make the hard bends. really not that hard
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Old 15-11-2018, 21:47   #15
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Re: Bimini material

Quote:
Originally Posted by coopec43 View Post
Ann

I tried to pick out the yacht in this gallery (it must be there) but I couldn't do it with a quick look.

The guys who fabricated the dodger are specialists so I bet there is room to swing a winch handle.

My preference if for a hard dodger is the one on the yacht Riada 11
(That is really "cool"
)

https://www.sanjuancoop.com/dillon-f...on-oberholzer/

Clive
I can see how you'd like the one on Riada II. I like the lower profile.

Ann
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