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Old 18-04-2021, 18:03   #1
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Other Ways to Remove edges from glass/foam/glass panels?

So in building my boat, one of my favorite tools was my variable speed buffer/polisher with 80-120 grit discs on it. I was an artist with that thing.

It’s also part of the reason I have health issue from epoxy exposure

So in the spirit of creating a more healthy work environment when doing laminations, I’m wondering if anyone has better ideas on how to remove the rough, overhanging edges from newly built glass/foam/glass panels?

These are [8oz cloth and polyester]/foam/[8oz cloth and polyester ] to be specific. Very thin stuff. But I need to be sure not to peel the edges back, delaminating the panel when trying to trim off the overhanging glass.

How might you do it in a cleaner way than grinding?
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Old 18-04-2021, 18:22   #2
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Re: Other Ways to Remove edges from glass/foam/glass panels?

Make sure you wear a mask! I would us an orbital type tool.


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Old 18-04-2021, 18:25   #3
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Re: Other Ways to Remove edges from glass/foam/glass panels?

Use a router - same way laminates are trimmed. Clamp a board across your panels inward the distance from the edge your boards that the edge of the router base is to the cutting edge of a straight bit and run the router along the board. Youíll have dead straight clean cut panels. The corners will still be very sharp, of course, as they are a straight 90 degrees, but a single angled pass with a file or sanding block will break the edge, just like working with any milled material.
Plenty of routers have vacuum ports available, so you end up with all the dust in the vacuum

https://www.homedepot.com/p/Makita-6...59-1/312665202

As a bonus, as long as you can make a template, you can use a pilot bit (one with a bearing on it) to match any curve you need - clamp the template to the panel and run the bearing along the template. and you can plunge to make cutouts internal to the panel

In the attached photo, the straight bit on the left is a typical template-on-top-of-work bit, then a top trim and slight relief, both designed to run along a finished edge (might not work so well with soft foam). the right will is designed for template on bottom, or router table (upside down, template on top) Lots of other configurations available - 45 with a pilot bit, you can clean cut, then adjust so the pilot runs along one laminate skin, making 45 degree edges......lots of options

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Old 18-04-2021, 18:43   #4
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Re: Other Ways to Remove edges from glass/foam/glass panels?

This sounds like just the alternative technique I was looking for.

Shavings instead of dust.

Sounds like this will go through router bits very quickly, but definitely will help make a more dust free environment.

Ever successfully sharpen router bits with a file? Or should I just plan on buying a few?


I’ve been trimming plenty of laminate with my straight bit router so I’m in good practice here.


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Originally Posted by mlydon View Post
Use a router - same way laminates are trimmed. Clamp a board across your panels inward the distance from the edge your boards that the edge of the router base is to the cutting edge of a straight bit and run the router along the board. You’ll have dead straight clean cut panels. The corners will still be very sharp, of course, as they are a straight 90 degrees, but a single angled pass with a file or sanding block will break the edge, just like working with any milled material.
Plenty of routers have vacuum ports available, so you end up with all the dust in the vacuum

https://www.homedepot.com/p/Makita-6...59-1/312665202

As a bonus, as long as you can make a template, you can use a pilot bit (one with a bearing on it) to match any curve you need - clamp the template to the panel and run the bearing along the template. and you can plunge to make cutouts internal to the panel

Matt
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Old 18-04-2021, 18:54   #5
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Re: Other Ways to Remove edges from glass/foam/glass panels?

I don’t bother sharpening them - too much trouble - they’re cheap enough. They’ll last a while - fiberglass isn’t that hard - and if you use a typical 3/4 board for the straightedge, you can vary the height quite a bit to have a fresh cutting edge on the fiberglass parts, depending on the bit length.
Carbide ones are a possibility, as well

Cheers,
Matt
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Old 18-04-2021, 19:00   #6
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Re: Other Ways to Remove edges from glass/foam/glass panels?

Router is the way to go. There will still be dust, but less of it, and the vacuum attachments for routers are more effective than those for sanders.


I have a Milwaukee battery powered router and Milwaukee battery powered vacuum. They are not perfect, I have to tape the hose to the port to get it to stay, and the hose isn't as along or flexible as I would like. But there are no cords so the hose is the only thing that has to be managed. I find it workable, and less messy, in many cases.



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Ever successfully sharpen router bits with a file? Or should I just plan on buying a few?

Router bits are almost always carbide. File won't work. I have diamond sharpening paddles that I use occasionally to touch up a bit when necessary. They barely work. There are places that will sharpen carbide bits but it's expensive and a hassle. I would buy a bunch of bits, and save them as they get dull, after you have 10 dull ones in the bucket maybe see about finding a place that will grind them. You can only grind them a few times before they're shot.
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Old 18-04-2021, 19:07   #7
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Re: Other Ways to Remove edges from glass/foam/glass panels?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chotu View Post
This sounds like just the alternative technique I was looking for.



Ever successfully sharpen router bits with a file? Or should I just plan on buying a few?


Iíve been trimming plenty of laminate with my straight bit router so Iím in good practice here.
Hi, search google re sharpening router bits, found a couple of sites complete with youtube footage.
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Old 18-04-2021, 20:42   #8
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Re: Other Ways to Remove edges from glass/foam/glass panels?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chotu View Post

So in the spirit of creating a more healthy work environment when doing laminations, I’m wondering if anyone has better ideas on how to remove the rough, overhanging edges from newly built glass/foam/glass panels?

These are [8oz cloth and polyester]/foam/[8oz cloth and polyester ] to be specific. Very thin stuff. But I need to be sure not to peel the edges back, delaminating the panel when trying to trim off the overhanging glass.

How might you do it in a cleaner way than grinding?
I had assumed a router would peel the edges back.

Maybe without a photo of the panel it is pretty hard to express an opinion?
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Old 18-04-2021, 21:20   #9
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Re: Other Ways to Remove edges from glass/foam/glass panels?

Dont know if this helps in this particular application but I find that oscillating tools are better than sanders or angle grinders for cutting and grinding fb: they don't spread as much dust and arent nearly as dangerous to use esp in tight, enclosed spaces but really any tool should have dedicated dust extraction as part of a "healthy work environment" more important than the specific tool you go with.

If I was to do this refitting thing all over again I would have bought a portable Festool package from the get go with the dust extractor ( as advised by a real life master shipwright, but I didnt listen) or better yet with air powered tools with built in extractors.
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Old 18-04-2021, 21:56   #10
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Re: Other Ways to Remove edges from glass/foam/glass panels?

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Originally Posted by Cyrus Safdari View Post
Dont know if this helps in this particular application but I find that oscillating tools are better than sanders or angle grinders for cutting and grinding fb: they don't spread as much dust and arent nearly as dangerous to use esp in tight, enclosed spaces but really any tool should have dedicated dust extraction as part of a "healthy work environment" more important than the specific tool you go with.

If I was to do this refitting thing all over again I would have bought a portable Festool package from the get go with the dust extractor ( as advised by a real life master shipwright, but I didnt listen) or better yet with air powered tools with built in extractors.

+1
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Old 19-04-2021, 03:30   #11
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Re: Other Ways to Remove edges from glass/foam/glass panels?

If you're only trimming the stuff that hangs over the edge of the panel, you can "green trim" fiberglass when it's partially cured: that is, enough to stick tightly, but the overhanging daggers are still flexible. Just cut with a sharp razor. If the glass is in danger of being peeled back, it's too green. There's a sweet spot for this, you just have to find it.
I agree with Cyrus that Festool is awesome, but right now my dealer tells me they're back-ordered 20 weeks. 20 Weeks! It seems that anything shipping from Germany is delayed till Doomsday.
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Old 19-04-2021, 07:19   #12
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Re: Other Ways to Remove edges from glass/foam/glass panels?

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If you're only trimming the stuff that hangs over the edge of the panel, you can "green trim" fiberglass when it's partially cured

Using peel ply, and using woven tape with a selvedge where appropriate (rather than cutting your own from whole cloth), will also reduce the amount of dust you have to make.


The more fiberglass work I do, the more I plan the whole project around minimizing the amount of sanding that will be required.
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Old 19-04-2021, 07:21   #13
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Re: Other Ways to Remove edges from glass/foam/glass panels?

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Originally Posted by Chotu View Post
These are [8oz cloth and polyester]/foam/[8oz cloth and polyester ] to be specific. Very thin stuff. But I need to be sure not to peel the edges back, delaminating the panel when trying to trim off the overhanging glass.

How might you do it in a cleaner way than grinding?

Also, really good scissors, either right after the resin has lit off, or after full cure.
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Old 19-04-2021, 10:19   #14
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Re: Other Ways to Remove edges from glass/foam/glass panels?

Get a router with dust collection if going that route. And a good shop vac with a HEPA filter in it. Bosch and Makita both make good dust collection hoods for their routers. Green trimming the laminate is also an option.

After the laminate is dry consider wet sanding with a DA sander or other sander to hold the dust down to zero.
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Old 19-04-2021, 10:45   #15
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Re: Other Ways to Remove edges from glass/foam/glass panels?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chotu View Post
So in building my boat, one of my favorite tools was my variable speed buffer/polisher with 80-120 grit discs on it. I was an artist with that thing.

Itís also part of the reason I have health issue from epoxy exposure

So in the spirit of creating a more healthy work environment when doing laminations, Iím wondering if anyone has better ideas on how to remove the rough, overhanging edges from newly built glass/foam/glass panels?

These are [8oz cloth and polyester]/foam/[8oz cloth and polyester ] to be specific. Very thin stuff. But I need to be sure not to peel the edges back, delaminating the panel when trying to trim off the overhanging glass.

How might you do it in a cleaner way than grinding?
If health problems are an issue I would not use any of the machinery recommended. A sharp stanley knife will easily cut through a thin laminate and if a heavy laminate requires trimming careful use of a heat gun will facilitate the process. The secret is to hold the life at an angle of about 45% to the surface and to slice .away from the surface towards the foam. As long as the edges of the laminate are thoroughly wet out this will work treat but I am assuming the panel is at the finished dimension. If you need to cut the layup to shape a slow speed jigsaw and a shop vac is the way to go
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