Know Your Product: The Strength of Patterned Carbon Fiber Fabrics

Know Your Product: Patterned Carbon Fiber

There’s more to Patterned Carbon Fiber Fabrics than just great cosmetics. These First Quality fabrics are as strong if not stronger than standard carbon fiber weaves.

Fabricators choose carbon fiber from among common reinforcements for its unmatched strength- and stiffness-for-weight. Typical fabric styles include plain, twill, and satin weaves. But, what about patterns that aren’t industry defined? Fibre Glast carries two unique carbon fiber patterns, and since these styles aren’t widely used, little is known about their physical properties. To better understand fabric properties, it is important to understand general specifications and terms used to describe composite fabrics.

A Look at the Basics

patterned carbon fiber diagrams

FilamentEqual to a single strand of carbon fiber. Thousands of filaments make up a fiber, or yarn.
Fiber (Figure 1)Made up of thousands of filaments that are grouped together
Tow (Figure 1)A reference term used to denote the amount of continuous filaments per fiber bundle
Warp (Figure 2)The fibers running the length of the woven fabric
Fill (Figure 2)The fibers running the width of a woven fabric
Ends (Figure 3)Refers to the fibers in the warp direction
Picks (Figure 3) Refers to the fibers in the fill direction

Patterned Carbon Fiber Properties

Below, you’ll find some of the properties that fabricators look for when using a patterned fabric. Keep in mind, there can be a wide range of differences between two unqiuely patterend fabrics. Always check the product data sheet to make sure the fabric is the right fit for your project.

  1. →The final properties of the Patterned Carbon Fiber Fabrics are not affected by the pattern itself. They are simply woven in a way that creates a custom look.
  2. →Bi-directional tows are aligned in linear fashion, just like a twill or plain weave.
  3. →There is no twisting or bending of tows out of axis to achieve patterns.
  4. →There is no distortion of tows in warp or fill direction.
  5. →Because these patterns have more “floats” (areas where yarn being woven in one direction floats on top of yarn being woven in another direction), there is less bending in the yarn compared to a typical plain weave pattern.
  6. →Heavier filling density in #3222 Wasp gives higher tensile strength in the fill axis

Product Pages

NameDescriptionProduct Page
Grandmaster 12k, 10x10 Carbon Fiber FabricDesigned to be a bold, hardworking version of a more traditional plain weave fabric, this 19.2 oz, 50" wide fabric provides a high contrast surface that is instantly recognizable and perfect for automotive parts. #3221 Grandmaster
Wasp - 3k, 12x18 Carbon fiber FabricThe unique hexagon pattern of this 7.3 oz, 50" wide fabric will give you a very visually distinct look for any part. Not only does this create a fun and unique design, but it helps maximize the strength properties of the fabric itself. #3222 Wasp

Ready for your next project?

Patterned carbon fiber is not only a fun way to add a bit of spice to your next fabrication, but a great source of strength in stability for your part. Ready to take the dive for your next project?

Other questions? Let us know your thoughts in the comment section below. If you’d like to know more about Vacuuming bagging for composites, check out our blog post on Basic Vacuum Bagging Set-up, or head over to the Fibre Glast Learning Center and check out our white papers on Vacuum Bagging Techniques and Equipment. Be sure to check out our facebook, and follow us on twitter @Fibreglast for more information the composites industry.

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2 comments

1 Roy Mc Daniel { 10.04.12 at 2:57 pm }

These patterned carbon fiber are unique and very cool,just what I am looking for to fabricate the BMW motor cover that Iam working on.How do I find out more?

2 Alan Dinsmoor Contracting { 06.05.16 at 3:04 am }

Some really interesting info, well written and loosely user genial.

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