VectorFusion™ Reinforcements Utilized with CCP Composites’ OptiPLUS® Resin for Infused Tooling Applications
Traditionally, FRP mold building has been a laborious process that can take up to two weeks, or longer to properly complete. Each layer must be applied and allowed to cure to minimize excessive heat and shrinkage. This is done to avoid fiber print-through and/or warping. With recent advances in CCP Composites’ OptiPLUS® infusion grade, low viscosity, shrink-controlled polyester resin, and the proper selection of Vectorply reinforcements, this time table can be greatly reduced from weeks to only a day or two.
For large scale projects, typical chopped glass fiber reinforcements can not provide the stiffness and strength required to create a robust tool. Continuous fiber layers must be introduced in order to make a tool that is structurally sound, and yet light enough for transporting around the shop floor. Since the vacuum infusion process is employed it is also beneficial to use reinforcements with “built in” permeability, so that use of consumable items such as flow media can be drastically reduced. Core placement and fiber wet-out are significantly enhanced when done under a vacuum enhanced process.
VectorFusion™ reinforcements such as E-BXM 1715-6VC and E-TLYA 3612 provide a great combination of stiffness/strength, drapeability, and low profile (for good cosmetics). Reinforcements such as E-3LTi 10800 provide rapid thickness build up for monolithic laminates, while others such as E-LTi 3600 can be employed with sandwich (cored) laminates for reduced exotherm. Recommended, OptiPLUS® resins are: 040-8079 (fast gel time) or 040-8091 (slow gel time).
Typical Tooling Laminate Conversion
To replace a generic, general purpose hand laminated all chopped fiber mat laminate of approximately 0.325in thickness, the following OptiPLUS® infused laminate is recommended (not including tooling gelcoat or barrier coats):
- Alcan D7760 Finishmat® – Tool Surface
- Vectorply E-BXM 1715-6VC
- Vectorply E-TLYA 3612
- Vectorply E-3LTi 10800 – Tool Backside
The 7760 Finishmat® is an acrylic fiber veil, which provides a resin-rich surface layer behind the gelcoat and/or barrier coat for extremely low profile while the following reinforcement fabrics provide increasingly higher mechanical properties and thickness. This laminate schedule is approximately 19% thinner, 18% lower in weight, and 30% stiffer compared to the generic 7 layer all chopped fiber tool (see below):
Please refer to the CCP website www.ccpcompositesus.com for additional laminate recommendations, as well as options for tooling gel coats, barrier coats and peroxide choices. Infused OptiPLUS® and VectorFusion™ molds can be used in the traditional FRP marketplace or in higher temperature thermoforming and pre-preg processing markets.
VectorFusion™ Products for OptiPLUS® Infused Tooling
|Product Code||Total Weight||0°||90°||±45°/+65°||CSM||Veil/Core|
For a complete listing of Vectorply standard products, please reference the standard product booklet or the Vectorply website at www.vectorply.com.