E glass

When I chose to build from plans I have a friend in the boat repair business.  The plan was to save a buck getting supplies wholesale.  This isn't working out too well.  My West System epoxy I got from him was a deal for West System.   But that stuff is more expensive than the MAS I can get from CLC.  Now the cloth I got is 3 times more expensive that what CLC offers.  I was happy with what I got from CLC.  Is there a reason for the high cost of the other stuff?  Are there higher quality brands that we don't need?


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RE: E glass

Probably not of much help, but I've used West, System Three, including Silver Tip, and MAS.  Only difference I can see between them is the price.  I used MAS on my last stripper kayak and now I'm going to use many, many gallons of it on the PocketShip project which is underway.  Very happy with MAS.  It's cheap(er) and works well.  Good luck. 

RE: E glass

I agree.  I'll get the rest of my supplies from CLC. 

I am not completely turned off yet by plan building.  I do have a source of okoume locally which allows me some choices.  I am learning a few things.  Will play around tonight with making puzzle joints.  My band saw almost can do it.  Maybe a smaller blade.  Hard to get a hull panel in a band saw anyway.  Coping saw tryout next. 


RE: E glass

Silver Tip shows its advantages in extreme conditions - heat, cold & stress. It's the best epoxy I've found for wetting out cloth when the temperatures are above or below normal. It can still completely wet cloth, no white spots, when the cup is starting to feel too hot to hold. It's viscous enough to wet out when the temperature is so low that other epoxies don't want to flow (though it may need a "kickstart" fram a heat lamp to start curing). It is also mechanically stronger when it sets up. That's what you pay the extra for when you buy Silver Tip.

These features are especially valuable for commercial builders who have to get the job done, regardless of the weather, who need to minimize labor by mixing and using large batches in a single go and who build high performance boats with highly stressed parts.

That said, homebuilders working in the "normal" temperature range, mixing smaller batches and not building carbon fiber masts, may not need Silver Tip's high performance features. But it is a joy to work with, if it fits in the budget.




RE: E glass

Hi Kim,

   E-glass is just the most common grade of fiberglass cloth. If you were sold s-glass which is high strength cloth that would explain the cost difference. For some insight on fiberglass try www.wicksaircraft.com or www.aircraftspruce.com . Look under composite supplies. I've found CLC is the best deal for cloth out of all my supplier options but these two have good info. There are several books available on composite construction that could be useful too, just think wood core instead of styrofoam.



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