Carbon Fiber Cloth? Please advise.

Forums Other Parts, Accessories, & Equipment Carbon Fiber Cloth? Please advise.

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    intenseaty22
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     I want to undertake a small project that will involve CF cloth. Preferably red or red/black. I just need 1’x2’ piece. Problem is, I have looked around & I’m pretty confused about what & where to buy. Is kevlar cloth interchangeable with CF? Intend to glass the stuff, so it may matter? May update with further questions, I’m thinking there was something else, but I forget. 

    Thanks y’all!

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    Insanity
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    The two are not interchangeable, I have no info past that to share.

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    Insanity
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    I do know CF and kevlar can be used together.

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    Mattblum
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    The two cloths are very different in their properties. They can be used together. Carbon fiber is a lot prettier though. It's also rather brittle. Both of them will do well with glass, but the kevlar can't be sanded smoothly. It gets fuzzy when you try. It also soaks up a lot more epoxy than carbon fiber.

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    rjdriver
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    I use CF a lot in aircraft layups with vacuum bagging  it all depends what you are trying to achieve here strength wise it's not the best for layups in tight corners or sharp bends,  you may be better with a lightweight Bi Directions fiberglass cloth cut at 30 degree angles to the warp and weft of the weave, you can get good layups without using peel ply or vacuum bagging for small parts  just use a brush and stipple the resin in until it soaks up enough to wet it out. Yes CF looks good but can get rather stiff and tends to get unwoven when using it in small patches. both have there strengths and weaknesses it all depends on how and what you are trying to achieve.

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    kayaker
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    intenseaty22   Get a hold of ( tap plastics ) in Portland Or. or look up there web site. They led me in the right direction when repairing my fiberglass & Kevlar kayaks there are different types of resin that can be used, also do not forget that on your last coat of resin you may need to use a releasing agent .If you don't it will remain sticky, you can also wrap the piece in siran wrap which will do the same thing . Sorry to much to explain but if this is your first time do get ahold of them it will help you out a lot .   Best of luck Darell  forgot to mention they also sell cf.

    • This reply was modified 2 months ago by kayaker.
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    Willie14228
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    Go to any local RC plane and or car hobby shop they will have Carbon Fiber and any other supplies that do with it 

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    Eddie_E
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    What kind of project is this for? Carbon cloth makes a good structural repair, but few people get a factory finish the first five or six times they do a layup. I used to do some really nice airplane wings and I still do a lot of Laser sailboat glass work. It took me 3 tries to get the wings with a perfect finish and that is with a $300 vacuum pump, $100 worth of Mylar sheet, vacuum tubing, specialty bag clips, mold release wax. This doesn't include the cost of the epoxy, carbon and fiberglass cloth.

     If I were wrapping a barrel and airtube for cosmetics, I would buy a sticker sheet and apply it with the Windex water slide method.

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    intenseaty22
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    Thank you all for the great advice. 

    All I wanted to do was to embed a small design/shape onto an airgun stock and hopefully go from Meh, to Wow. 

    I was hoping for cheap & easy, so I may have to go a different route, will see. Will post with results when I finish the project. 

    Thanks again

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    DirtyDovi
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    I've worked with a lot of carbon fiber in the past, 
    as I used to design and build RC aircraft, multirotor frames, 
    as well as worked with it at my more auto related custom shops..

    CF twill / cloth – as mentioned – is more used for repairs [think of it as super strength fiberglass cloth]
    unless you plan on using it on molds, and then vacuum bags / forming comes into play..

    For something basic [I just read that you were thinking of doing a cf inlay]

    You can just order "carbon fiber plate".  Here's a random fleabay auction for an example:

    https://www.ebay.com/itm/US-200-300-2mm-100-Real-Carbon-Fiber-Panel-Plate-Sheet-3K-Plain-Weave-RC-Parts-/192311559093

    I've used plate/sheet like this countless times for building different things over the years, 
    you just have to be careful when working with it.  If cutting / sanding,  I advise wearing gloves and eye protection 
    as well as either watering it down – to keep the dust down – or wear a mask..

    The strands can get into your skin / eyes / etc. and irritate just like fg insulation..
    The dust is the more important thing to worry about if/when it gets airborne..

    You just don't want to breath it in – as it is carbon based..  Once it's breathed in, it's there to stay.
    Carbon doesn't dissolve – so just take a bit of precaution / use common sense.

    Also, if cutting – use a fine / high-tooth-count blade and I found slower to be better..
    Same with dremeling / cutting/sanding – as the material/topcoat tends to like to almost melt..

    The sheets used to be available really cheaply through a few big model / hobby stores:  Hobby King comes to mind..
    eBay / Amazon are both great sources now.

    3K is good stuff, and topcoat / finish wise – the most popular two are either high gloss or matte.

    Hope that helps a bit.

    Sam –

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    intenseaty22
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    @dirtydovi That is great stuff right there, thank you! I’m looking around for red and only find 0.3 mm, which may be ok for my purposes, not sure. Question: Would the 0.3mm be scissors friendly? or would it just shred? 

    I have bunny suits, masks, goggles, etc. if I needed to rip it.

    I’m also considering using the Faux stuff and be done with it. I figure if I can epoxy over it & may look OK. 

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    DirtyDovi
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    @intenseaty22 

    Glad you found that ramble helpful, and you're welcome! 
    0.3mm is pretty much the norm, but 0.2mm used to be around.  Most people use these sheets 
    to cut their own quadcopter frames, arms, etc. so, the thinner stuff phased out over time, and the thicker stuff stayed..

    Scissor friendly – Nope,  the sheets are very rigid and would have to be cut with hand or power tools..
    I have had the best luck with my scroll-saws, or in a pinch, a coping saw.  Then finalize by sanding..

    Good to hear that you've got some protective gear,  that's always a plus – if needed.

    You brought up the 'faux stuff'…

    That's another great option if you can get the 'right' stuff..

    3M makes a fantastic 3D carbon fiber wrap, and I use it all the time!

    There are microscopic holes in it allowing air to release as it is applied, which really helps it contour and/or lay flat.
    I've used it for years on countless different applications/projects, and can highly recommend it!

    Here's an example – https://www.amazon.com/3M-CA-421-BLACK-CARBON-FIBER/dp/B0062A7M2G

    You mentioned "Red"…
    I haven't used this particular brand, but, it popped up on Amazon:
    https://www.amazon.com/VViViD-Carbon-Fiber-Release-Technology/dp/B00FXYDGX6#customerReviews

    Sam – 

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