• Forum membership has its advantages....

Carbon Fiber Quality (Image Heavy)

#1
I recently bought several carbon fiber parts. These are for a high end daily driver/weekend toy, not a race truck. I do not intend to paint them, just clear coat. Short story, they don't meet my expectations... what I'm hoping to learn here is if my expectations are within reason? Regardless whether they are or not, hopefully this thread will help clarify what the expectations should be for anyone else looking to buy carbon fiber parts.

I tried my best to capture the defects in the pictures below. While most of these are small in size most are really in your face. The hardest thing to capture via pictures is the amount of porosity; some of the pictures show it, but every part is just about completely covered in it.

So, what are your thoughts? Should these defects be acceptable? Would they be for you? Am I just too picky?

20181006_014234931_iOS.jpg
20181006_014252710_iOS.jpg
20181006_014405395_iOS.jpg
20181006_014510385_iOS.jpg
20181006_014620771_iOS.jpg



This one really amazed me. This is a good size fiber strand that was just laying across the top of the carbon fiber mat before it was epoxied. This is dead center fender above the wheel well. It really stands out.
20181006_014647456_iOS.jpg
20181006_014911380_iOS.jpg



Should I be able to see through the parts from the back side? They are all this way.
20181006_014951372_iOS.jpg
20181006_015110580_iOS.jpg
20181006_015121815_iOS.jpg



This area surrounds the tail lights. All around the openings look this way.
20181006_015248660_iOS.jpg
20181006_015302620_iOS.jpg
20181006_015335072_iOS.jpg
20181006_015422481_iOS.jpg




This is the coating sprayed on the back side. It was clearly not masked well, and is severely covering several sections of the finish side.
20181006_015528262_iOS.jpg
20181006_015612222_iOS.jpg



This line is not a scratch. It is an undercut in the epoxy. This happened in several areas. I did not take pictures of any scratches, scuffs, or chips that appear to have occurred after fabrication.
20181006_015630917_iOS.jpg
20181006_015717966_iOS.jpg
20181006_015722661_iOS.jpg
20181006_015754127_iOS.jpg
20181006_015804131_iOS.jpg
20181006_015818240_iOS.jpg
20181006_015822720_iOS.jpg
20181006_015825605_iOS.jpg
20181006_015916860_iOS.jpg
20181006_020018943_iOS.jpg
20181006_020202973_iOS.jpg
20181006_020216688_iOS.jpg
20181006_020229999_iOS.jpg
 

partybarge_pilot

Well-Known Member
#2
Those are pretty sad looking. Looks like they used a single layer of the heaviest cloth they could find. Then backed few areas with glass. Way heavy on the resin too. The inside "coating" is so you don't notice the S-glass backer.......
 

Bert is my name

Well-Known Member
#3
I don't know what you spent but the finish is unacceptable for a part that is supposed to be un-painted. The scratches look like light sanding and buffing would fix it. But the random strand is crap. It seems as though you got about half the cloth you should have too. We're these a custom piece or mass produced?
 
#4
Fiberwerx, $2500 for fenders, bedsides, & valance... I would think mass production, but they took over 3 months to ship which is another story all together. They say they build these to order.
 
Last edited:
#7
LOL, that’s unfortunate... I wish I’d known better. What other options are out there? At this point I’m trying figure out what to do to get the quality I’m after. I don’t expect based on your reaction that I’d get anything better out of them, so maybe I’m out education $, and need to start looking for the better options?
 
#8
Is this the quality I should expect in this price range? I’d happily have paid more if I knew upfront what the quality was going to be. Not trying to be cheap with this project.
 

partybarge_pilot

Well-Known Member
#9
Most off-road glass is pretty poor quality. Glassworks was pretty decent but their business practices drove them out of business. The best currently going would have to be Mcqueen.
 

J Burleson

Well-Known Member
#10
I 2nd McQueen. I am also waiting on some stuff from ADV out of Costa Mesa. It’s the first time using them, but expect it to be good based on other projects they’ve been involved with. That stuff you got looks like the average junk that’s out there!
 
#11
Laminate another layer to the backside . Buff the front and run it. They'll crack soon enough. The epoxy will deteriorate in the sun an they'll look like hell pretty quick. One of the ways you can repair the scratches and protect the finish is to spray them in a high quality clear coat. Endura coatings in el Cajon has some of the most bullet proof paints out there. I sprayed a dump truck with that stuff and some moron caved in the bed with an excavator. Paint held up though. Barely even chipped it and was still glossy. Just dont try to buff endura. It wont cut. Drips and runs are basically permanent. Find a good painter if you arent proficient with a spray gun.
 

baja619

Well-Known Member
#12
If you are building a higher end toy, I would have been hawkish on every part and component that was going into the project. I know not everyone can just go pick up the parts to confirm the quality is there, but in this case I would have done that and I would have declined to accept those panels in that condition.

FiberwerX makes great stuff and I had carbon fiber finished fenders on my truck for almost ten years. They held up great but in the end, after the long life, the resin gel coat began to lose its clear and began to fade.

Carbon Fiber is cool / looks cool but it can be difficult to work with. FiberwerX specializes in off road race quality panels and produce appealing designed flares for the street driven prerunners. I believe their stuff is typical and on par with most everything else in the world of off road. I also consider it a starting point that will require a lot of work to get it looking sharp and ready for car shows.

If I was building a high end luxury prerunner I would consider wrapping the vehicle with carbon or going to a higher end producer that specializes in carbon fiber.

I cam across Andersen Composites at SEMA last year and was very impressed with their quality and attention to detail. Their stuff, up close, exceeded my expectations and is manufactured with the best techniques that come from the aircraft industry and formula 1 . The only issue is that it is all designed as OE Replacement and I do not know if they offer anything with additional flare.

Andersen Composites Gen 2 Raptor Parts


 
#14
Thank you all for your responses.

baja619; I agree with the need to be hawkish in this situation. I suppose I purchased these naively, without enough research. It was not feasible for me to travel to their facility to see parts prior to purchasing however. I just received the parts at the end of the day Friday, and unpacked/inspected them Friday night, so I was unable to "reject" them until yesterday, and frankly was eager to get the opinions of anyone who may have experienced similar parts in this arena.

43mod; I did not, as I stated above I received parts too late to talk to anyone until after the weekend. I have since had a conversation with Fiberwerx about my concerns, and they are working on resolution. They informed me that this is very uncharacteristic, and that they usually make very good quality carbon fiber parts, and they are "going to make it right".

I want to make it clear... I did not post this to bash Fiberwerx, or tarnish their name in any way. I was honestly looking for the opinions, and experiences of others for my education.
 

baja619

Well-Known Member
#15
Fair enough Dude. I didnt take it the other way and seemed clear to be that were looking for public point of view and not a public execution.
 
Top