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Old 11th June 2020, 10:58
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Mister Towed Mister Towed is offline
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Time for an update on progress, I feel.

My dash mould is now almost ready to use. It should've been ready to use about a fortnight ago but I had a bit of a setback to sort out...

As you may recall, my dash plug was finished, painted and in the process of being given a dozen coats of release wax -

I then added flanges and laid up five or six pretty heavy layers of CSM reinforced in places that might flex. I've never made a split-mould before, so I included recommended features like wedges built into the dividing flange and applied a pva release agent (on top of the wax) on one 'half' of the buck to see if there was any difference in ease of release -

After a suitable curing period I broke the buck out of the mould. This took a great deal of force, far more than I expected, and what a mess it revealed -

Okay, so it appears that the gel-coat on the inside of the mould had reacted with something and caused a few issues. All of the gel-coat had tiny bubbles in it and it had stuck to the paint on the face of the dash where I had only used release wax, tearing the paint and high-build primer from the plug when I separated it from the mould. At least the paint didn't stick where I used the PVA release agent, so I'll definitely be using that again.

The gel-coat looked fine when I applied it, but it was a part-used tin that had been sitting in my garage for about 30 months, so I guess it had either gone off or maybe I didn't leave the paint to cure for long enough on the plug before glassing over it.

I thought about scrapping it and starting again, but decided to have a go at making it good with lots of filling and sanding, which I've got to say is much harder on the 'negative' impression of the dash rather than the actual dash itself -

Anyway, after loads of effort and half a dozen coats of white cellulose it looks like this -

It's now sitting at the back of the garage for a week or so to allow the paint to fully cure and I have a nice, new tin of gel-coat ready to use when I lay up my 356/550 Spyder hybrid dash.

More later.

Last edited by Mister Towed; 11th June 2020 at 11:01..
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