Looking at what it takes to make a mould to produce a bodyshell

A short post about mould making, as not much time to spend on design work, we are setting up a new development workshop at the moment.

Methods to manufacture one off and low volume body-shells…….making moulds from composites

If you want to produce any form of low volume production body-shell, composites are the answer. This is because the tooling costs are low. The tooling cost:- the costs of producing a master buck (the shape and style you want) and the tooling (a mould) to produce the parts required from it.

In the case of composites, the most common- Glass Reinforced Plastic (Fiber Glass or Glass Fibre dependent on where you live). The cheapest form of this is chopped stand mat wetted out by hand using Polyester resins. Using this method we have produced 10 different sets of body-shell moulds in the past.

Using Polyester resins in wet lay, the main advantage is it’s the cheapest system to use. Be aware that not all polyester resins are of the same quality. Reprocessed resins tend to shrink up to 8% and should be avoided as the shrinkage will cause assembly problems as you complete your project.

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This is a section of a bodyshell mould modification laid up using Dsm tooling gel and anti shrink resin using the wet lay process. Very messy system but with a little practice anyone can do this.