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a possible low cost low tech alternative using bamboo or hempfiber materials for ck body making ?

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Speeddemon Avatar
Speeddemon Louis Poleet (Suspended)
Roslindale, MA, USA   USA
1970 CycleKart Custom "Rose"
Has Anyone considering or are using bamboo or hempfiber to skin a ck .?



Edited 4 time(s). Last edit at 2018-04-07 09:24 AM by Speeddemon.

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Albeix Avatar
Albeix Al Beix E
Kaslo, BC, Canada   CAN
I had not considered that but generations of light aircraft have been "Skinned" with light Canvas or Dacron fabric then painted. When done properly the end result is quite durable and looks good. Bamboo and Hemp Fiber are recent developments in terms of availability and I suspect might work as well and perhaps be a lot stronger to boot..

What I am considering for the Alvis Build is to experiment with Roof flashing metal. It is light, Readily available in widths up to 4' and relatively inexpensive. I suspect that once installed and rivet in place it should prove to be quite serviceable in the cyclecart application as well.

As my build progresses I will report my results once I get to that stage.

Speeddemon Avatar
Speeddemon Louis Poleet (Suspended)
Roslindale, MA, USA   USA
1970 CycleKart Custom "Rose"
Hi al thats a good idea on choice of material for your upcoming ck body build I concur both are new materials that can be used to skin a ck body there are a low cost alternative to fiberglass from research on the net there both are just as strong and less weight to fiberglass . old henry ford built a whole ford outa hempfiber in the 1940's im still contemplating using bamboo on my ck build like to get some more information from ppl that have used ether. .cheers



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 2018-04-07 08:39 PM by Speeddemon.

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rctankboy2 Keith G
Leesburg, VA, USA   USA
Recently, I read an Instructable about Poor Man's Fiberglass (PMF) that works on wood and foam. Essentially, it is bed sheets or thin canvas coated with "Oops" exterior paint, much like the skinned aircraft mentioned above. The "Oops" paint is when a wrong color of paint is made that no one wants. You can get these for discounted prices for some of the better quality paints. You would use the "Oops" paint for the under layers, then cover with the color you wanted.
The cloth used was sometimes acquired from hospitals who (wash then) discard bed sheets in large numbers. Sometimes, these are free for the asking. Finally, the covered material was thin plywood or foam insulation.

The claims about durability seem to indicate that, when done properly (of course), they can preserve the covered material for amazing periods of time and can add substantial strength. I haven't verified this personally, but It is in my "ideas" book for consideration for making a CK body.

Just a thought.

CmdBentaxle Avatar
CmdBentaxle Dave D
Federal Way, WA, USA   USA
1950 CycleKart Italian "1950 Ferrari 166 F2"
If the main objective is to cover the structure for a smooth finish, then it works well enough.
But it would be a mistake to expect it to give anything close the the structural result with fiberglass.
Glass fiber is made to be impregnated with resin to form a structural composite. Cotton fibers for instance,
don't interact the same way when saturated with resin. It will definitely stiffen up and create a shell, but it's
no substitute.

Spent many years in model aviation trying everything from newspaper to pantyhose looking for a substitute for glass. Turns out, somebody really new what they were doing when they developed the stuff.

Neto Ernest B
Berlin, OH, USA   USA
In reply to # 34852 by rctankboy2 Recently, I read an Instructable about Poor Man's Fiberglass (PMF) that works on wood and foam. Essentially, it is bed sheets or thin canvas coated with "Oops" exterior paint, much like the skinned aircraft mentioned above. The "Oops" paint is when a wrong color of paint is made that no one wants. You can get these for discounted prices for some of the better quality paints. You would use the "Oops" paint for the under layers, then cover with the color you wanted.
The cloth used was sometimes acquired from hospitals who (wash then) discard bed sheets in large numbers. Sometimes, these are free for the asking. Finally, the covered material was thin plywood or foam insulation.

The claims about durability seem to indicate that, when done properly (of course), they can preserve the covered material for amazing periods of time and can add substantial strength. I haven't verified this personally, but It is in my "ideas" book for consideration for making a CK body.

Just a thought.

Reminds me of how my grandpa repaired rust holes in his granary - he painted over the hole, then spread on a bit of fabric, and painted over it again. Kept both water & rats out.

classical-gas Scot Laughlin
Bellingham, WA, USA   USA
Cars have been done with bodies of fabric over a wood frame, old airplane style...you often can't tell from photographs. Many of the custom bodied limo's of the early 1900's were done that way, it's a carriage builders technique, and that's what many of the auto body builders started out as.

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