Category Archives: Composite Fabrication

Mini Skeeter

by Randy Rogoski

There is only one solution that comes from the ache of seeing iceboats ripping around on Mona Lake all your life: give in and buy one. If the thrill doesn’t quite meet expectations, build one that will be faster.  Pat Filius has lived 20 years on a now-flooded celery flat fed by Black Creek, the main tributary of Mona Lake in Norton, Michigan. In 2014 he bought his first iceboat for $400. Sailing it just once was enough to convince him that he wanted a faster boat. Continue reading

Composite snowshoes by Mark Minter

Composite Snowshoes

By Mark Minter, Maker of Composite Snowshoes

Looking for an entry-level composite project? One that needs a minimum amount of materials and construction space, costs less than a boat, but still lets you travel on water? If you live in snow country, why not build a pair of composite snowshoes?

These snowshoes are made from a rigid foam core between two layers of carbon-fiber cloth, edged with 1″ Kevlar tape. A carbon-fiber wrapped wood spar runs across each snowshoe under the ball of your foot. This provides a solid mounting point for a couple of stainless steel eye-bolts to attach a simple toe-and-heel strap for a binding. Fiberglass tape reinforces the top and bottom edges, and the upper surface of the snowshoes where your winter boots contact them.

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Rachael Geertz, Winona Composites Engineering Grad

Winona State University Composite Materials Engineering Program

By Rachael Geerts – GBI Composites Materials Engineer

Here is an inside snapshot of how the composites materials world is growing at my alma mater, Winona State University. Located in Winona, Minnesota, this university has the only accredited four-year undergraduate program for composite materials engineering in the US. Through this program, students learn the fundamentals of engineering while investigating different materials. This program challenges students both academically and creatively. Students are encouraged to ask questions and strive for a deeper understanding of why things are done the way they are done. From this, they can explore how things can be improved.

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Boyscout Klondike Derby sled.

Boy Scout Composite Klondike Derby Sled

by Tom Dragone, PhD

About the Klondike Derby

The Klondike Derby is an annual winter camping trip held in our district (and many others across the country) for Scouts to hone their scouting skills in a winter environment. During the weekend event, Scout patrols go from station to station around our local Scout Camp, facing challenges that require them to demonstrate their skills in making a fire, navigating with a map and compass, cooking, knot-tying, and applying first aid. The Scouts must bring all their gear with them as they trek from station to station, including ropes, stoves, kindling, and hiking staves. Hence, each patrol is required to have a sled for their gear which they, as a patrol, must haul. The sled must be strong and stiff to hold the patrol gear, yet lightweight because at the end of the weekend there is a race between patrols, and the fastest sled wins.

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G-32 catamaran G-WIZ!

G-Wiz!

Russell Brown’s New Toy

By Russell Brown — Port Townsend Watercraft

G-32 catamaran on the cover of Epoxyworks 46, Spring 2018

Russell Brown’s G-32 catamaran on the cover of Epoxyworks 46, Spring 2018

The work of the Gougeon brothers has been like a guiding light to me starting when I was a young teenager. It wasn’t just the methods and skills they developed that inspired me (and led to my career in boatbuilding), it was the “outside the box” thinking about boat design they employed. While Meade Gougeon led the effort to develop and teach epoxy skills and building methods, it was his brother Jan who had the courage to design, build, develop, and race boats that were very unusual and often counter-intuitive, yet very successful. Jan’s G-32 catamaran is an example of his genius. Continue reading

penguin mailbox epoxy

A Penguin in Iowa?

By Ryan Krafka

I first got the idea for this project driving through a neighborhood in Iowa City where my wife and I live and work. “You have to see this awesome mailbox,” I said to my wife as we drove through a neighborhood one day this past fall. There it was, a dolphin mailbox. Not just a mailbox with dolphins painted on it, but an honest to nature fiberglass dolphin with fins holding a mailbox beneath its head. Continue reading

Lagoon by The Wright Edge

Readers’ Projects, Issue 46

The Wright Edge

Doc Wright is the owner/craftsman of The Wright Edge, an artisan woodworking business in Dallas, Texas. From start to finish, each piece is handled only by Doc or his business partner including sourcing/cutting down, milling, and drying. He uses locally sourced, 100% regionally native wood. Continue reading

Mike Barnard

Michael A. Barnard

1987—2017

The family of Employee Owners at Gougeon Brothers Incorporated lost Technical Advisor Mike Barnard, who passed away on 7/28/2017. Our customers who had the opportunity to work with Mike will know that we lost an incredibly friendly, educated, and patient young man. I had the wonderful opportunity to be Mike’s manager for over 6 years, and hoped to keep him challenged until I retired. But fate took our favorite Eagle Scout well before we should have had to say goodbye. Continue reading

Stayin’ Awake at Daryl’s House

Build an insulated coffee box for when you need a lot of hot beverages

By Bruce Niederer — GBI Technical Advisor

To stay awake at Daryl’s house requires a lot of caffeine—it must if the box o’ coffee idea he came up with is any indication. Epoxyworks readers may recall his riveting article in issue 40 Dirt Bike Loading Ramp. Daryl is talented, imaginative and loves to build stuff with carbon fiber.

The inspiration hits

Inspiration hit him one day after buying a box o’ coffee (Tim’s Take 12™) from Tim Horton’s® on his way to teach a motorcycle safety class to aspiring scootertrash. Disappointed that the Tim Horton’s boxed coffee didn’t stay warm for as long as he would have liked, he salvaged the Mylar® bag with its built-in cap and built his own insulated coffee box. Continue reading

Self Defense Canes

Wood-Epoxy Canes Do Double Duty

By Mark Copeland

Her’es how I got into building self-defense canes: After working for many years as a master plumber, followed by many more at Automotive Concept Studios where I fashioned conceptual car models from clay, I ended up with arthritis and two hip replacements. All the heavy work had caught up with me, leaving me disabled and dependent on a cane. I decided to leave Michigan during the winter months and move to Zephyrhills, Florida. I settled in and started looking for an activity to do, maybe metal detecting, fishing or golf.

Downtown, I happened by a martial arts school and stopped in to watch a class. Afterward, the owner (Master Gary Hernández) and one of the instructors (Ms. Karuna) introduced themselves to me. Both have 4th-degree black belts. I explained my health issues: limited mobility and the need to use a cane. They outlined a class Master Hernández teaches in Cane-Fu®, which is specifically beneficial to someone in my situation. Continue reading