Resin Infused Lamination VS Traditional Lay up

Resin Infusion Explained;

Definition: The use of vacuum to saturate or infuse a dry lay-up of glass fibers with resin, for improved properties.

Resin infusion is a specialized advanced laminating technique that greatly improves the quality and strength of fiberglass parts versus conventional hand lay up. Applying laminate engineering and resin infusion technology simultaneously allows for optimization of a part in terms of strength and weight. The use of resin infusion will likely become the standard in yacht construction and has been in use since the 1960s.

Essentially, this is how it works… Inside of the mold, after the usual mold release wax is applied, the “gel coat”, and “skin coat” of thin fiberglass reinforcement are applied in the conventional manner and allowed to cure. From here on everything differs. Next in the infusion process the parts outer skin of fiber reinforcement fabrics are carefully fitted into the mold over top of the skin coat. These are put in dry and held in place with a spray contact adhesive. Because the technicians are not hurried and concerned with the narrow resin curing period as would be in conventional lay up, attention can be paid to quality and the conscientious cutting, fitting and orientation of the fabrics fibers and core. Next, in the case of a cored part, the structural core materials are cut and fitted, and adhered into place. Then the inner skin of reinforcement fabrics is carefully fitted over the core to form a sandwich. Subsequently in the case of a boat’s hull the longitudinal stringers are cut, fitted, and put into place, with their fiberglass fabrics fitted over top. The installation of these materials may take several days. Next the resin distribution hoses and vacuum lines are laid out atop the fiberglass and the entire inside of the mold is covered with a large sheet of loosely fitting plastic sheeting and sealed onto the mold’s perimeter. With a vacuum pump all the air in this “vacuum bag” is evacuated which compresses or de-bulks the dry stack of reinforcement fabrics. Through the series of feed hoses sealed into the bag, catalyzed resin is then sucked via the vacuum from large mixing containers. Over a couple hours the resin migrates throughout the mold saturating the entire stack of laminate. The vacuum is kept on until the resin has cured several hours later. The vacuum bag and feed hoses are removed, and the part’s lamination is complete.
The bottom line is the quality of an infused part is stronger, lighter and superior to a piece done using conventional hand lay-up because…

Traditional methods of bonding the core to the skin call for a polyester paste that is manually spread onto the cured surface of the fiberglass with the core being bedded into it. Clamping pressure is applied until the bonding material is cured. The integrity with this method relies upon the technician’s skill level, the performance of the bonding paste and its ability to adhere to the cured skin. This process can leave air voids within the bond layer and in the many “contour slits” in the core. This in conjunction with the inherent relative weakness of the bonding material all constitute strength losses.
With resin infusion numerous benefits and significant strength gains are intrinsic due to the method of consolidating the materials within a vacuum all at once. The tremendous clamping pressure of the vacuum (approximately 1 ton / sq.ft.) helps fuse the materials together with any air voids being replaced by resin. Due to the reliability of high quality results with this process, and the elimination of potential errors by the skill of the laminator, the engineer can afford to specify less material in the structure. This along with the vacuums compressing the fiberglass reducing the amount of resin absorption, results in a weight saving of over 30% over traditional cored fiberglass laminate while improving its strength.
In addition emission of vapors and pollutants is greatly reduced, because these stay sealed within in the vacuum bag.

Detailing companies in Annapolis MD

Many customers that call Deans Yacht Services  or surf the internet are looking for a list  of detailing companies in the Annapolis Maryland area.  I wanted  to list some companies that’s Deans Yacht Services comes across on a weekly basis.
Schuman’s detailing:  Bases on the Eastern Shore, Schuman offers detailing services, commercial cleaning services, shrink wrap.  Schuman’s has been around 10 plus years.
Williams Yacht Services:  based in Annapolis, Williams offers, detailing, shrink wrapping and bottom painting.
Prestige detailing:  based in Annapolis as well, this outfit offers detailing, bottom painting, shrink wrapping and mechanical services.
SN Yacht Services:  SN is based on Kent Island and offers detailing, washings, and shrink wrap.
Diversified Marine Services:  diversified offers detailing, bottom painting, mechanical services, as well as shrink wrapping. They are based on Annapolis as well.
Martel yacht services:  New  to the game, Efrain who I have known for a long time and used to work for diversified offers, detailing, bottom painting,  shrink wrap and interior cleaning.
This list is a good pulse on who offers quality yacht Services in the annapolis area.

How much does it cost to Detail my boat?

At Deans Yacht Services we receive many calls from prospects simply asking how much does it cost to detail my boat? The cost can vary depending on the size, length, and style of the vessel. With that said, I can still give you an idea for researching purposes.
To start with, There are two models that companies use in most cases.
1- A per foot model: this is the most popular. Customers, including me like to know exactly what they will be charged for.
2- Hourly amount: this is self explanatory. You usually pay about $80/ hour for a crew. This can be a bit open ended on what it will cost at the end, and most customers (including me!) like to know exactly what it will cost so your not blind sided by a big invoice. We all have seen it. One guy working and the other guys texting their girlfriends or family on your dime. 😜. The cost per hour is very hard to pin down, but in general it should be in line with the per foot charge.
3- Supply fees: boating supplies are very expensive. Just go buy something from West Marine, and you wonder how the heck they get away with the pricing of this stuff! Many companies may have a flat fee of $25-$45 for the supplies they put on your boat. Remember the per foot and hourly rate pays for the labor, insurance, vehicles to get to your boat. Supplies may be extra.
4- Travel: most detailing companies may have a flat fee of $40-$60 for the back and forth from your marina.

So what process does my pride and joy need to make her shine?!?
This is a great question and have heard it over the past 12 years! I will do my best to explain. Be prepared to answer the following questions for the company you are interviewing. IF they don’t ask these questions, be suspicious of them.
What type of vessel do you have? Is this a sailboat? Sport cruiser, sport fish, motor yacht etc.
What year is the vessel? Basically how long has this boat been in the sun!
How long have you owned this vessel?
How often do you detail your vessel every season?
In your opinion, is your gel coat shiny?
In your opinion, is the gel coat dull or chalky?
What are you looking to accomplish at the end of the day when you hire a detailing company?

At this point the detailing company has enough information to give you an estimate. The ideal world is to have the company come look at the vessel so there are no gotchas if you decide to use them.
From your answers if the detailing company feels that your boat is on good shape, they will recommend a 1-step cleaner wax. Maguiers makes a very nice cleaner wax. There is petroleum distillates in cleaner wax that will remove light oxidation from the gel coat. Most companies will apply this by hand and remove with a buffer machine. This will leave a very nice shine and protection that will last about 3 months.
The price range for this service ranges between $25-$28/ foot. This is applying cleaner wax from waterline up. Hull and topsides. This usually also includes the initial wash, final wash, and metal polishing.
If your vessel has a heavier oxidation on her, you may be looking at, what we call a 2-step process. Apply a compound with a machine buffer followed by pure wax. Remember, the compound is gritty and will remove more oxidation than cleaner wax. Compound has no wax in it, so the second step is applying a more wax to fill the pores after the compounding has been done. This process should range between $28 and $35 per foot. The supply fees are more expensive and can range from $65-$125 flat fee.

I hope this helps you break out the calculator and identify what the cost may be before you reach out to potential companies.