Vacuum Bagging and Infusion

With the fibreglass and foam laid-up, we start preparing for the vacuum and infusion. Below we attached channel medium to peel-ply to keep it from sticking to the top layer of fibreglass in the boat.

Prepping the enka flow to be sure it doesn't stick to the boat!

Preparing the enka flow to be sure it doesn’t stick to the boat!

Here the flow channels are in place. You can see small tears near the center, this is where the plastic T-fittings will be placed to attach the resin flow tubing.

Three channels are created to allow the resin to flow through-out the tool

Three channels are created to allow the resin to flow through-out the tool

The T’s are in place in the channel flow. Also, you can see how much peel-ply was used. We could have put peel-ply all over the bottom (between the top fibreglass and the channel flow/vacuum bag but we’re trying to minimize on our disposable materials).

Tee-fittings are inserted into the flow material which will then be attached to the plastic tubing to suck in the resin

Tee-fittings are inserted into the flow material which will then be attached to the plastic tubing to suck in the resin

Now the vacuum bag is laid over boat. The yellow material is bag tape to stick the bag to the mold flange as well as the seam down the middle of the bag. Also notice the T-fitting at the bottom of the image, it is attached to split tubing wrapped in peel-ply and this is where the vacuum tubing is attached.

The bagging material is then laid over the tool and sealed to the flange.

The bagging material is then laid over the tool and sealed to the flange

Also, to create a vacuum, the tape is used to create pleats. This is a common place to look for air leaks!

Pleats then need to be created and sealed with bagging tape to create a vacuum.

Pleats then need to be created and sealed with bagging tape to create a vacuum

Finally the vacuum tubing is installed and more bag tape is used to see all joints.

The tubing to suck the air from the bag as well as inject the resign is added with all joints sealed with bag tape.

The tubing to suck the air from the bag as well as inject the resign is added with all joints sealed with bag tape

Now when ready, we fire-up the vacuum pump. Below is the top of the vacuum tank with the vacuum gauge. The tube running from the top is pulling air from the boat crating the vacuum. Also, any resin that is pulled out of the boat down the tube is trapped in the vacuum tank and not into the vacuum pump!

Vacuum gauge attached to vacuum bucket.

Vacuum gauge attached to vacuum bucket

Here you can see a short video clip of the resin being infused into the channel flow and out into the top layer of the fibreglass. You may notice the foam has thin grooves – this is used allow the fusion to easily flow over the foam.