Originally Posted by therivermonster
I can see how vacuum bagging could be expensive for a small production shop, or even the hobbiest, and I can see how it could have its own learning curve - but, could you elaborate on why you feel that it could be or is difficult?
One aspect of bagging that is attractive to me is that it helps reduce BUBBLES!!!
Vacuum bagging offers several benefits......but also several drawbacks. Lets start with the good. Biggest benefit.... It holds the new layup in place, following even the craziest if sharp angles. Second....It squeezes excess resin out and makes for a strong layup, in the process most bubbles are evacuated as well. Those are two important factors, but the latter can almost be replicated with experience. Bad..... Makes a mess.........Costly.......as vacuum are applied.....it can disturb the natural position of the fabric.
In theory all bubbles should evacuate..... but they don't. I have seen them trapped. So in my opinion that is a variable.
Run the cost of a few bags, and you will see.... Dont forget the pump, fittings,and chamber, unless you want to run the pump for several hrs.
I am not here to tell you that vacuum bagging is a bad idea. When you get into the aerospace industry or any structural member..... it is almost always needed. But they don;t have to worry about cost....have a shop...... I am an advocate of what you can do in your garage.....with average skills.....with average tools...... and stay married.....
. There are ways around some of the benefits of bagging. A two sided mould will mechanically hold the matrix....
I will try to sculpt a new front part of this beak, and have a look. I think I can do this without vacuum bagging, as the angles are less crazy.