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Carbon Fiber Hoods: Long Lasting and Benefits Your Car

Aug 26, 2008
Are you looking for information on carbon fiber hoods? It's now clear that sports car enthusiasts are completely in love with carbon fiber while everyone else is only just now learning about this extraordinary material. You may have heard of carbon fiber because of the famous carbon fiber hoods that has swept the feet off of car enthusiasts across the country. Carbon fiber is not being used on multiple interior car parts because it has proven quite effective in those endeavors. Surprisingly though, most people are buying carbon fiber products without really having any idea as to what it is. Well, the mystery is about to be cleared!

50 years ago, carbon fiber was developed and found a place in the aerospace and military worlds. At the time, the material was very expensive so only those 2 industries could afford it. It is only recently that carbon fiber became cheap enough to use it for those amazing carbon fiber hoods. That's why carbon fiber is now more highly utilized in other fields.

There are 2 processes for carbon fiber production. They are the "wet lay-up" and "pre-impregnated lay-up" procedures. Homemade carbon fiber producers prefer the "wet" because it is inexpensive and requires less labor. Dry fibers are first fitted onto the bottom of molds. Then, resin tops of the fibers and spread with a brush to evenly distribute it. The resin is layered on until the thickness goal is reached. If done incorrectly, the fibers will be overly filled with resin which will add too much weight which harms the strength and stiffness of the end product. Sometimes, some pieces of "wet" carbon fiber are deformed because some sections have too much resin whereas others are too thin.

For more consistent results, the "pre-impregnated lay-up" procedure is preferable. People have been working for the last 20 years to perfect it so that good carbon fiber can be consistently made. In the factory, fibers are filled with resin before they are rolled up. Then, action is taken to freeze them so that the curing process is ceased. Usually, the "impregnated" end products are 20% to 30% stronger versus the "wet" carbon fiber. There are 2 options to curing "impregnated" carbon fiber. First, you can put a roll into a vacuum bag compaction and then shove the bag into an oven to bake. The resin will become solid "glass" afterwards. Or, you can seal the roll into a vacuum bag compaction with an autoclave before baking it under a pressure cooker set between 250 to 350 degrees.

Car manufacturers took notice of carbon fiber during the 1970s. In 1977, Ford made a vehicle entirely composed of carbon fiber composites - carbon fiber hoods. During the 1990s, GM constructed a concept car from carbon fiber and guess what? It ran 100 miles for every gallon of fuel. Overall, carbon fiber cars weigh less, more inexpensive, and are highly fuel-efficient. It was only recently that the possibility of carbon fiber cars was attainable because carbon fiber was approximately $100 per pound when it was first invented. Back then, steel only cost 40 cents per pound. Now, the price has been significantly reduced to the $5 to $10 range and many other industries are jumping on board wanting to make use of it. Automobile enthusiasts love the gorgeous finish of carbon fiber hoods, but there are many practical reasons for purchasing carbon fiber products as well.

So in the future when you're perusing carbon fiber hoods or another carbon fiber product, do your research before you finalize a purchase. Check out your online auto parts dealer for more information on the latest styles for your car.
About the Author
Andy's Auto Sport has the hottest and most stylish selections of Carbon Fiber Hoods. Click here for all of the latest styles:

http://www.andysautosport.com/carbon_fiber_hoods.html
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