Hatteras Yachts Inc. of New Bern is expanding its resin infusion operations to yacht hulls up to 72 feet long using Hydropel vinyl ester resin technology from AOC LLC of Collierville, Tenn.
Hatteras officials said the process has many advantages over fiberglass hand lay-up, producing more consistent part quality, along with stronger, yet lighter parts. Also, the closed-mold process significantly reduces emissions.
Hatteras licenses SCRIMP (Seeman Composites Resin Infusion Molding Process) technology from TPI Technology Inc.
During resin infusion, 29 inches vacuum of mercury is pulled under a polymer film (top photo). Next, primary PVC foam-cored stringers are infused into the hull (right).
Using a clear gel coat allows the finished hull to be inspected (left) after it is pulled from the mold and before an exterior marine coating is applied.
The resulting 72-foot motor yacht is the largest Hatteras yacht makes with a resin-infused hull.
``It took a significant amount of developmental work to identify and qualify our infusion resin,'' said Chris Walker, Hatteras manager of structural and composite engineering.
``We needed optimum viscosity and open times for filling the ... hull in one shot. We also needed to keep the exotherm low for cosmetics, while retaining our required structural properties when the part cured,'' Walker added.