Anyone do commercial fiberglassing?

Discussion in 'Tech/Mech General' started by gazznsam, May 28, 2009.

  1. gazznsam

    gazznsam Read Only Funster

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    i've never been happy with the shower cubicle in my van, i had planned to get one of those complete plastic shower enclosures, it's sort of a square tray with a corner missing (deliberately and moulded in)... so has 5 walls,
    on the narrow angled wall goes the shower and controll bits and bobs.

    i'd found one, arranged with my motorhome body builder to have it put in the van as they built the new body... as it's much wider than the entry door, so would have to be places in before the sheeting went on.

    Went to pick it up, and it had been dammaged, last one and no more available, i managed to buy just the tray of the enclosure, and made my own walls out of shower board, (a 3mm ply with waterproof covering on it)
    of course this ment i had 7 vertical seams, plus 5 at the botton and 5 at the top,

    i started out with silicone seams, but they'd split open after a while, so i used some of that bath sealing strip.. the rigid stuff, that came unstuck after a while, so i used the bath and shower seal strip on a roll.

    but they are all designed for use in a house where any movement is very very tiny, not the vast temp swings in a van, not to mentione the vibrations and all that as we drive down the lovely smooth roads in england (not)

    i'm getting fed up of it, every year i have to re-seal, and just went to have a shower in the van (boiler in the house broke down on the 22nd of fed this year, managment company are trying to get out of fittin a new un)

    opened the door... and the darn front seal had come unstuck and curled up, my fault partly for parking the van in front of the house which is south facing, and not opening any vents, was 35 degrees in there.

    I've often thought of fibeglassing the cubicle, but have never done any fiberglassing other than a little blob to fix the motor mount in on a model boat i built once.

    What i'd really like is somewhere that does that industrial glass spraying, where they have the chopper guns and all that, and spray in the rough glass, then lay on the tissue and spray on the top coat and roll it smooth.

    anyone do this as a job?? would my shower cubicle be suitable? i imagine i'd have to remove all traces of silicone sealant?

    i'd also thought about that spray on pick up truck bed liner stuff, but never got any replies when asking the makers of it if i could use it to make a waterproof one piece shower cubicle.
     
  2. Geo

    Geo Trader - Funster

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    I don't think your going down the right route with a spray finish fibre glass type booth
    I don't also understand why your existing shower has so many joints, the whole purpose of shower boards is to minimise this,
    BQ sell 1 peice shower boards made in a flexable plasitic very easy to cut and fit with a special interlocking corner finishing strip 100% waterproof it would glue over your existing walls
    Geo
     
  3. gazznsam

    gazznsam Read Only Funster

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    Not seen them, will have to nip to Been & Queued sometime then and have a looksee, bet my local one dosent do em, but i can go past the big one in nottingham tommorow on me way to fetch the smart and my safari room from my parents.

    the stuff i lined my shower enclosure with was sold as shower board, from magnum motorhomes, is basicaly a 3mm ply with a vinyl patterned covering,

    so it was a case of cut the boards to fit the frame i made around the shower tray, then fix in place,
    5 joints at the edges of each board where they meet, then another 2 joints where the shower door is, giving 7 places that needed sealing...
    then the seal around the bottom where the boards meet the tray, and the seal at the top where i fitted some opaque perspex to finish the roof off...

    got a couple of cold cathode tubes between the actual celing and the perspex celing, so the lights are waterproofed and shine through illuminating the shower cubicle nicely... also have a 40 x 40 roof vent... did have a fiama turbo vent in it, but it shed a blade, but could suck the water off you after a shower in extract mode.
     
  4. The Wallace

    The Wallace Read Only Funster

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    The GRP world would like this system as well Gazz!!!
    Unfortunately it has to be done the other way around.
    Gell coat is sprayed onto a smooth mould, tissue laid on the back of the gell (if required) and then chopped strand matt is laid or sprayed on the back of that. The mould is then removed leaving you with a smooth surface on the moulding.
    Sorry!
     
  5. gazznsam

    gazznsam Read Only Funster

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    oooooh...bugger.

    ahh well, that rules that idea out.

    tho i have found out one of the pick up bed liner companies have realised their spray on liner stuff can do more than just pick up beds, they have done shower trays in motorhomes before.... and wet rooms on barges,

    my problem is the darn silicone sealant, not sure if it'll react with this spray on plastic stuff, but if that can be sorted, then the bed liner spray on stuff looks to do what i'd like, just depends on price, tho after 6 years of faffing about re-sealing the joints, i'm ready to spend some dosh having a one off fix done,
     
  6. Tiderus

    Tiderus Read Only Funster

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    Hi Gaz,
    As you have a serious problem there, I might as well chuck my two penneth in. To make a new plug, mold, and then the cubicle, would be extremly expensive. Plus getting through the door. A couple of ideas, First it would be better if you could glass the back for strength and support. Then fill the front with plastic quadrant. Also failing that if you could clean off 2 or 3 inches at the corners. Maybe just glassfibre the vertical strips. then paint over them with gellcoat plus a little special wax to stop it being sticky. What about a few plastic flat strips that are used to cover UPVC window frame edges. I'm sure they can be vee'd a little with some heat, In a wooden V mould, heat it up, then leave a round metal bar so that it presses and forms it. Someone may supply it preformed at the right angle, This could then be glued with something like Evostiks, Sticks like Sh-t. A bit more expensive than normal glue, but much stronger. Yes I hadn't heard of it either, but its good and iv'e tried it. Even glass the joints, then glue the plastic strips with edges pre-angled to make an eye-able job, plus that will waterproof the joints. Hope all goes well as its a sticky one, please let us know how you get on.
    Rgds Graham.
     
  7. Douglas

    Douglas Read Only Funster

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    Hi Gaz,

    I have not done any commercial fibreglass work, but I have built a few boats with a lot of fibreglass involved.

    So here are a few notes,

    1/ Silicone of any kind is no good for bonding, its main use is in sealing, there is a difference.

    2/ It is very difficult to get anything to bond to a silicone compound or a surface that has had silicone on it.

    3/ the material to use for bonding is polyurethane or polysulfide based, look for sikaflex.

    4/ Spray fibreglass only leaves a smooth surface on the mould face.

    5/ To build a cubical your self would be a big project but not impossible for instance my own Swift has a complicated moulded shower tray that cracked because there was not enough support under it.

    I have had a replacement that cost £800.00 and I have kept the old tray so that when the present tray fails, and it surly will I can use the old one to make a mould and the a copy try in Glass and not 1.5mm plastic.

    Doug...
     
  8. vwalan

    vwalan Funster

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    hi gass ,my neighbour always makes his own shower cubicle n tray . just roll or brush the coloured resin to your walls n tray ,roll on the fine glass mat . keep rolling resin on till you get a bit of thickness . rub the worst bits with coarse emery paper ,then roll some more resin on. seems to work. not the smoothest finish but he,s done two trucks for expedition trips no probs. use the small paint rollers you get a kit for a few quid. another mate has similar with clear resinover flicked on flakes on white resin ,looks nice.
     
  9. dshague

    dshague Funster

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