By Mark Morrison – Institute for Advanced Composites Manufacturing Innovation
On the surface, the span looks like any of the thousands of small, narrow two-lane bridges across America. This new, high-tech bridge in Morgan County, Tennessee uses G/flex® Epoxy in a fiber-reinforced polymer (FRP) composite material deck embedded with fiber optic sensors. It replaced a damaged, decades-old concrete crossing which, like thousands of low-volume bridges across the nation, was structurally deficient and outdated.
If you’ve ever used Pinterest, then you know that it is filled with projects that give a false sense of confidence in your own artistic abilities. Hence, the wildly entertaining “Pinterest fails”. Mindlessly scrolling one day, when I probably should have been doing something productive, I stumbled across a rustic wood wall art piece. A little epoxy, some scrap wood, and I can build that. No problem.
“Should I use the 105 System or G/flex® Epoxy for my project?” This is a great question. Here’s what a Technical Advisor thinks about when recommending one type of WEST SYSTEM® Epoxy over another. Let’s start by comparing the handling characteristics and mechanical properties of both the 105 System and G/flex. This will show you the advantages of each and when one system is better suited over another for your project. Continue reading →
Why use a WEST SYSTEM specialty epoxy? I will cover the important characteristics of each of our three specialty epoxies. After reading this short article, you may see a use for one of these products in your future. Continue reading →
In the spring of 2016, several US Coast Guard vessel inspection officers from the east coast attended our 2-day Professional Fiberglass Boat Repair Workshop. Afterward, they asked if we would consider creating a document that they could hand out to commercial boat owners, captains and vessel reps that would provide guidelines for proper use of WEST SYSTEM products for repairing and maintaining larger wooden vessels subject to Coast Guard inspections. They were having an increasingly difficult time because a number of commercial boat operators were repairing their own vessels using techniques that caused concern. The reasons given for using these questionable procedures vary from trying to save some money to the short supply of qualified wooden vessel shipwrights who could complete work in a reasonable amount of time. To make their case that their repairs were appropriate, some operators handed the Coast Guard Inspection Officers the WEST SYSTEM Wooden Boat Restoration & Repair manual. Unfortunately, some were cherry picking information and techniques intended for repairing smaller recreational wooden craft, and not following all of the recommended procedures for avoiding problems. Continue reading →
The project was creating a shower pan for an Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) bathroom in the home I’ve been building in Cedar Key. How does one satisfy shower pan requirements of Levy County Florida and meet ADA suggestions, too, when the floor is concrete, twelve feet above ground? Continue reading →
My neighbor Rollie is always coming up with these unbelievable deals along the highway between his home in Bay City, Michigan, and his cabin a couple hours north. The latest super deal was a big red garden tractor that was mechanically in near perfect working order—except the previous owner ran it into something and busted up the grille. He brought it over and asked if it could be fixed. Here’s how we repaired the broken grille on “Big Red.” Continue reading →
I have a 1996 Sea Ray 400 Express Cruiser that I purchased in April 2014. The vinyl is in excellent condition in the cockpit. However, when someone sat in the front passenger seat (45″ wide) the back looked like it wasn’t attached. I went to the Sea Ray Owners Club website to explore the repairs and a fix for the seat. I learned that if I waited until the seatback broke, the vinyl would be damaged, and it would be costly to replace. Continue reading →
Big Jon (BJ) serves as a reel for retrieving and letting line attached to floating planer boards in and out from a boat while trolling. Planer boards are used to get fishing lures off to the side of the hull so the lures aren’t following directly behind the boat while trolling for walleye. The further the planer board is reeled out, the further the lures are from the side of the hull. BJ has served Tom and Lorraine Klinski well but recently developed some cracks in what appears to be a black nylon plastic. Continue reading →