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Re: [SCA-Archery] painting/finishing wood bows

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  • Neil Bensen
    The fiberglass fabric and resin are not waterproof. The coating on fiberglass boats which makes them waterproof is the gelcoat. That is the final finish
    Message 1 of 12 , Aug 2, 2000
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      The fiberglass fabric and resin are not waterproof. The coating on
      fiberglass boats which makes them waterproof is the gelcoat. That is the final
      finish which makes the boat smooth, gives it color, and makes it shiny. Once
      the gelcoat has been breached, the boat can absorb water and fiberglass can
      "rot". This means it delaminates (freezing often helps this process along) and
      starts to work one layer against another until it destroys itself. This happens
      if there are any void spaces, or there is any of the fiberglass fabric which did
      not completely absorb the resin.
      I've seen many a boat go to the crushers because someone sanded through the
      gelcoat while trying to get all the bottom paint off and then just put new
      bottom paint back on without repairing the gelcoat.
      I would not rely on a semi-rigid coating to keep your bow waterproof over a
      long period of time. Repeated oiling is better because you are replenishing the
      moisture in the wood.

      Calum McKay


      Greg Christensen wrote:

      > >that fiberglass is not waterproof, in fact it is hydro-porous.
      >
      > This is one thing that I have to disagree with I made a cedar strip canoe
      > which has fiber glass on both the exterior and interior. Granted that the
      > fiber glass without the epoxy will let water thru though it won't keep
      > shape. If the bow was not sealed on the edges (not belly or back) then the
      > moisture will gain access to the wood and the fiberglass on the belly and
      > back will help to hold it in. Also if the fiberglass is not coated
      > correclty with epoxy and leaves gaps and void which would also let water in.
      > Just remember that most modern boats are made with fiber glass and they
      > don't normally sink.
      >
      > Fiber glass does break down under UV rays (sunlight) so apply wax with UV
      > protector is recommended.
      >
      > Gregge The Archer
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    • Greg Christensen
      The epoxy resin is waterproof if it was not then my wood strip canoe would be waterlogged which it is not. Yes if there are void spaces as below there will be
      Message 2 of 12 , Aug 2, 2000
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        The epoxy resin is waterproof if it was not then my wood strip canoe would
        be waterlogged which it is not. Yes if there are void spaces as below there
        will be problems....You are right about the gel coat (a special blend of
        epoxy resin) if it is removed the fiber glass breaks downs if it is not
        protected from UV rays or in your case water freezing in the voids. Your
        also referring to boats made with fiberglass mat material which is not the
        standard fabric that has a weave to it, but the strands go in all directions
        like wool felt.

        I don't know if oiling will actually go through the epoxy resin and
        fiberglass, but I do know that if there is moister in the air then the wood
        will pick some up.


        Gregge the Archer

        >
        This happens
        >if there are any void spaces, or there is any of the fiberglass fabric
        >which did
        >not completely absorb the resin.
        > I've seen many a boat go to the crushers because someone sanded
        >through the
        >gelcoat while trying to get all the bottom paint off and then just put new
        >bottom paint back on without repairing the gelcoat.
        > I would not rely on a semi-rigid coating to keep your bow waterproof
        >over a
        >long period of time. Repeated oiling is better because you are
        >replenishing the
        >moisture in the wood.
        >
        >Calum McKay
        >
        >
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      • Neil Bensen
        I have sought the oppinion of a professional. First, my appollogies. Resin IS waterproof. The issue of removing gelcoat is one of exposing void spaces and
        Message 3 of 12 , Aug 2, 2000
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          I have sought the oppinion of a professional.
          First, my appollogies. Resin IS waterproof. The issue of removing gelcoat
          is one of exposing void spaces and creating voids between fiberglass fibers.
          Second, bows may typically have the sides exposed and just have a
          polyurithane or varnish finish which can break down and allow moisture to enter
          and/or leave the wood, requiring maintainance periodically.
          Third, stress fractures in the resin over time and repeated bendings may
          allow moisture acces to the wood.
          Fourth, the matting material used in fiberglass construction makes no
          difference to its abbillity to TRANSPORT water. Fiberglass matting won't absorb
          water into the fibers, but it will allow water between the fibers. I was not
          refering to boats constructed with matting or with roving in particular as they
          bath have the same properties if not fully resinned.
          I think, however, that we are striving for the same point, which is; if
          fiberglass is not aplied correctly or breaks down in some way, the wood
          underneath is at risk. Oiling wood is a good way to restore moisture. If resin
          begins to crack, a repair to the fiberglass is necessary for the strength of the
          bow and for the protection of the wood underneath. You may want to seek the aid
          of a professional in repairing the fiberglass if you are unsure of how to do it
          properly.

          Calum McKay

          Greg Christensen wrote:

          > The epoxy resin is waterproof if it was not then my wood strip canoe would
          > be waterlogged which it is not. Yes if there are void spaces as below there
          > will be problems....You are right about the gel coat (a special blend of
          > epoxy resin) if it is removed the fiber glass breaks downs if it is not
          > protected from UV rays or in your case water freezing in the voids. Your
          > also referring to boats made with fiberglass mat material which is not the
          > standard fabric that has a weave to it, but the strands go in all directions
          > like wool felt.
          >
          > I don't know if oiling will actually go through the epoxy resin and
          > fiberglass, but I do know that if there is moister in the air then the wood
          > will pick some up.
          >
          > Gregge the Archer
          >
          > >
          > This happens
          > >if there are any void spaces, or there is any of the fiberglass fabric
          > >which did
          > >not completely absorb the resin.
          > > I've seen many a boat go to the crushers because someone sanded
          > >through the
          > >gelcoat while trying to get all the bottom paint off and then just put new
          > >bottom paint back on without repairing the gelcoat.
          > > I would not rely on a semi-rigid coating to keep your bow waterproof
          > >over a
          > >long period of time. Repeated oiling is better because you are
          > >replenishing the
          > >moisture in the wood.
          > >
          > >Calum McKay
          > >
          > >
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          >
          >
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          > This list sponsored by House Wyvern Hall, BBM, East Kingdom, SCA
          > [Email to SCA-Archery-unsubscribe@... to leave this list]
        • jrosswebb1@webtv.net
          I think we are all on the same page here essentially about fiberglass and its need to be sealed. The use of fiberglass cloth to make bows stopped about 40
          Message 4 of 12 , Aug 2, 2000
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            I think we are all on the same page here essentially about
            fiberglass and its need to be sealed.
            The use of fiberglass cloth to make bows stopped about 40 years
            ago and I've seen way too many accidents with them at Pennsic where they
            delaminate in a very dramatic way, even after a thorough inspection
            which they passed.They dry out, get old and fatigued, and delamination
            is almost impossible to detect,until it happens then, BOOM!
            The type of fiberglass laminations used on most modern bows is
            where the fibers are laid out it vertical strands(much like the way you
            lay out sinew for a sinew backing) and then adhered to themselves with
            the resin,The bowyers purchase these pre-made laminations. These lammys
            are then adhered to other lammys including the wood ones with a heat
            cured synthetic resin glue. The way it was explained to me by some of
            the bowyers I spoke to about my unfortunate accident with my hunting bow
            in the early 1980's is that microscopically, there are passages between
            the fibers which will eventually allow moisture through the fibers. The
            fiberglass and resin are not absorbent but porous, the wood is absorbent
            and almost acts like a wick.This is why all good bowyers seal all of the
            bow, not just the edges and recommend that the owners continue to oil or
            preferably wax on a regular basis.
            Now before I go out hunting, I thoroughly wax my bows with a
            beeswax paste, or Johnsons paste wax or Butchers wax and I carry some
            with me into the woods.
            On my self bows I use linseed oil.
            But people PLEASE continue to care for your bows! I don't mean to
            burst any bubbles here, but just because your bow is made with
            fiberglass. it is not invulnerable to moisture.
            Respectfully,
            Geoffrei St. Albans of Eastwood
            Canton of Lions End
            East Kingdom
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