View Full Version : Experimenting with carbon fiber and carbon/kevlar.

02-04-2013, 04:00 PM
Decided to try my hand at skinning somethings in carbon/kevlar. I will be doing carbon fiber later on other pieces. Here is part of my door panel thats been flocked. I noticed that the red part didn't seem to be as red as it used to be. I took it apart and what do you know, it had faded. As you can see around the edge, it's still as red as it was when I did it 3 years ago. This stuff supposedly isn't supposed to fade.

So I sanded it off with some 40 grit and 100 grit. I didn't want it to be super smooth so that the resin would have something to stick to.

I mixed up some resin and applied a coat. You are suppose to apply a coat and let it get tacky, then lay on the cloth down.

The cloth was actually easier to manipulate than I thought it would be but is still kind of fragile. You really can't stretch it around as it will spread out the weave and cause gaps in it. You have to lay it down and ease it into curves and such.

After all night of curing I checked it out and realized I have a couple of bubbles around where it meets the upper part. I think I can work around them and not make them as noticeable. I applied the second coat and am letting it cure. The bubbles seem bigger in the picture than they actually are. I kept running my fingers over them and the bubbles can barely be felt so I'm wondering if the weave is messing with me. I plan on applying more resin and sanding it down a bit to see if that helps.

There will be more to come!

02-04-2013, 04:38 PM
i read the biggest thing that's needed with carbon is to vacuum mold it in place. i think that's how they get rid of all the bubbles that get built up.

you know if you wanted to go the fake route you could always hydro dip your parts. it'd probably save yourself some good hard earned coin, however it may not look quite as nice as the end product.

02-04-2013, 04:58 PM
I researched alot before attempting this and yes vacuum bagging would be the way to go. Since I'm doing part of a whole part it would be hard to do with the way vacuum bagging is set up. If I was doing the whole part this way then it would be very plausible to vacuum bag it. It is pretty cool how it's done though.

I've also seen hydro dipping, it is neat and all but not for me. I want the real deal. For 1 square yard of each carbon fiber and carbon/kevlar, a quart of epoxy resin with hardener it was around $100 shipped from uscomposites.com. I didn't think that was too bad since I'm doing small parts here and there.

02-04-2013, 05:19 PM
right on, i know from my project how quick resin adds up... why i mentioned the hydro. didn't know what the costs of carbon was sitting at these days. while i think carbon is super neat, i've never had it on my wants list really. 100 bucks isn't terrible though, but it still isn't what i'd call cheap hahahahha.

there are those vacuum table things... i wonder if something like that would work for what you're doing. i remember reading about them for molding abs plastics... i dunno if it's able to do what you've got going on though. i want to say they were fairly cheap to make.

i'm assuming you're going for the "wet look" carbon? guessing that's some wet sanding and polishing for finish?

02-04-2013, 05:47 PM
This resin seems to go along way compared to fiberglass, it's quite thin. I mixed up 3oz at first but barely used half of that. I've only used 1.5oz since then.

Yes going for the "wet" look. I will rough up this last coat, add another, rough that up, and then clear coat it.

02-04-2013, 05:50 PM
it does look like it's sitting on top instead of soaking into the material lol. that may be your saving grace for your pocket ahhahahaha. i had to pick up another two gallons saturday to finish my crap i've got going on ahhahaha.

well man best of luck, i'll be watching... ahhahahah.

02-17-2013, 08:50 PM
Was able to get more done since the weather was nice today. Just have to add another coat or two, then trim, wetsand, and clear.


Black Dragon
02-17-2013, 09:23 PM
looks Awesome!

02-18-2013, 10:36 AM

02-18-2013, 11:47 AM
Can't wait to see the finished product. Looks awesome so far

03-24-2013, 02:25 PM
Finally got them done! Just need to paint the switch panels.

03-24-2013, 02:41 PM
you sir need a better camera lol can't tell what's even carbon there lol.

03-24-2013, 07:44 PM
Yeah, I posted them with my ipad before I left the house. I will take better ones tomorrow

03-24-2013, 08:31 PM
Another sweet DIY from wussman, love it.

03-25-2013, 10:41 AM
These seem to be a little better.


03-25-2013, 11:25 AM
Nice work!

03-25-2013, 06:49 PM
little better... still need a good camera lol.

the red turned out great looking in there. i bet that black bit was a royal pain to wrap lol. turned out sharp though. congrats!

03-25-2013, 06:55 PM
looks good man!

03-25-2013, 07:15 PM
little better... still need a good camera lol.

the red turned out great looking in there. i bet that black bit was a royal pain to wrap lol. turned out sharp though. congrats!

The black part wasn't that bad. The carbon fiber was easier to manuever than the red carbon/kevlar for some odd reason. No surprise the carbon fiber was easier to cut than the carbon/kevlar also. I need to do the other interior parts now that it's going to start being nice out.

turbo sol
03-25-2013, 07:18 PM
what did you trim them with? dremel cut off wheel?

03-25-2013, 07:42 PM
Yep, just a dremel with a cut-off wheel when it's cured. You have to be careful because the edges can be quite sharp after it's trimmed. A good pair of scissors will cut the carbon fiber but it's a pain to cut the carbon/kevlar without the right scissors.

Blue Meanie
03-25-2013, 08:48 PM
Nice job! couldn't see for sure on the first pics but looks great in these