Glassing with Juan

Two weeks ago, on the article Shaping with Juan, we worked on an Evolutiva and a Hypto Krypto. This weekend was about time to head back to the workshop. With the foams already shaped and painted, the next step was glassing. masks on and forward!

Shaping with Juan

 

Basically, the process consists on covering the shaped foam with sheets of fiberglass and impregnate them with a polyester resin solution. There are several glassing techniques that play with different combinations of fiberglass and resins for achieving different ratios of resistance, flexibility, reactivity and weight on the board. The two boards that we have been working on have different glassing processes.

For the evolutiva:

-1 full layer of fiberglass of 6 oz/m2 on the Bottom.

-2 full layers on the deck: 1 of 6 oz/m2 and the other of 4 oz/m2.

For the Hypto Krypto:

-1 full layer of fiberglass of 6 oz/m2 on the Bottom.

-2 full layers of fiberglass on the deck of 4 oz/m2.

-We have reinforced the base of the rails with two carbon fiber patches.

The plan, as you can see, is to be more generous with thicker fiberglass layers on the evolutiva. Thicker fibers implies that more resin will be absorbed, hence we will have a sturdy and more resistant board. On the other hand, it will be heavier as well. We were looking for this result due to the fact that it will be Elías first board, apart of been a big man, it must hold the classic mistreatments of a beginner.

For the Hypto Krypto our objective was to have a light reactive board. Hence we choose thinner layering of fiberglass and we were careful purging all the extra resin. The carbon reinforcements on the base of the rail are meant to protect this area, where it’s easy to make small bumps, while adding rigidity on the base of the turns to achieving greater reactivity and conductivity.

Adopting the light strategy implies as well that the board will be more fragile and will require better technique to be ridden.

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Enough theory; time to get our gloves dirty.

We start from the bottom. We first put three patches of fiberglass where the fins will go for creating a solid base. Then we put on top a full layer of 6oz/m2 fiberglass. We have to cut it in a way that it will cover the whole surface of the bottom, but it must surpass around three fingers on the edges for enveloping the whole rail.

Time for mixing the polystyrene resin with the catalyst.

Now we must be fast! We have around fifteen minutes before the mix starts to change texture.

We must first stick the logos. We need to have them already printed in onion paper. As the logos go under the fiberglass, we need to roll the sheet to let free the areas where the logos will go. Then we apply a thin layer of the resin against the foam and we stick the logos, then we put a thin layer of mix on top.

Once the logos are fixed, we unroll the fiberglass sheet and we start to cover it with the polystyrene solution from the center towards the edges. The idea is to cover all the fibers while been careful to drain all the extra glue so the board does not get unnecessary weight.

The complicated part are the rails. Here it’s easy to mess up. We must soak the extra fabric hanging on the sides for enveloping it around the rails. The theory is quite straightforward; however, as soon as the resin starts to soak in, the hanging fabric tends to fray. Those frayed fabrics tend to gather quite a lot of glue and once folded, it leaves imperfections and small bumps on the sides of the deck.

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It is quite normal to have some imperfections, even some bigger ones. Try to minimize them, but do not get obsessed; you must move on, everything will be better after the final sanding.

The process for the deck is pretty much the same, the main difference is that here we have two layers of fiberglass. Before starting with the deck, we can do a light sanding if we have some bigger imperfections.

We must cut the underlayer so it just covers the deck. No extra fabric for the edges. While for the upper layer we must leave extra fabric to envelop the rails as we did on the bottom.

 

We must impregnate the two layers together and not separately.

 

 

Once the board is dry, we still haven’t reached the final texture. The fibers have dissolved with the resin and the board already has a rigid coating, however we can still feel the netty texture of the fabric.

 

 

Now we must apply the top coat for achieving a smooth surface that will allow us to sand the imperfections without damaging the fibers.

 

This part is much more enjoyable. With the help of a thick brush we apply a thin layer of a solution of polystyrene resin, paraffined styrene and catalyst on both the bottom and deck.

 

Ok, now we have our desired shiny fancy board; well, almost. Next time we must sand it to reduce the irregularities and drill the holes for inserting the fin plugs and leash plugs.

 

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Happy riding for everyone!

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