Carbon fiber was initially created for the use of aerospace. However, currently, it has become the most used material for the automotive industry. The material has some unique and different properties, which make it apt for the automotive industry. This is the very reason why these have been stated to have been used widely in the automotive industry. Manufactures are rather impressed with such weaves.
Here are some of the broad categories of carbon fiber sheets:
2*2 Twill Weave
This 2*2 Twill Weave is one of the most common carbon fiber sheets used in the automotive industry. It is the kind of material that has a very distinct pattern of designs. Hence, while thinking of a 2*2 carbon weave look, one should look at the models correctly. Some patterns go over the two wraps, which seem to be interesting. It is the exact reason why this fabric called 2*2.
It, in result, makes the fabric looser and more pliable. Basically, in short, this makes the fabric super comfortable. It signifies that this can easily be applied as the fabric can be stretched to curves and even counters with very few complications. One thing to note is that the applicator majorly needs to handle the weaves with full concentration when compared to the handling of a dull or 1*1 weaver as it is super simple to leave the distortions into the weaves.
Plain 1*1 Weave
After the 2*2 Twill Weave, one of the most used type of carbon fiber sheets is the plain 1*1 Weave. In the auto industry, this is a common name and a known material. As the name suggests, the 1*1 looks more of a checkerboard where the pattern of the Weave generally goes up and down, then down and up regularly. Plain Weave is considered a tight-knit fabric. Also, it is super easy to handle without making even the slightest of the distortions. However, there cannot be all positives and no negatives.
The downside of the Plain 1*1 Weave is that due to the tighter weaves it makes, it becomes more challenging to drape the fabrics over the molds. Hence, this is the reason why this is not the first choice of dealers and manufacturers instead becomes the second choice of manufactures.
Majorly many of the products come in the 2*2 Twill weave as it is far easier to use. However, there are many companies out there that even provide 1*1 or 2*2, which helps them with a variety of options to match their carbon roof of fiber.
Less Common Weaves
Although majorly, many of the carbon fiber parts and the accessories are made using the above mentioned two weaves. However, on the other hand, there are some other weaves available in the market, such as Satin weave, harness weave, unidirectional, or fish weave, which are also used but not very common. All of them mentioned are basic patterns of weave used for different fabrics of carbon. In every other application used in the automotive industry of 1*1 and 2*2, the Weave is superior in looking. It is the reason why one hears about the different weave types rarely.
Only on customer requests or unusual fiber carbon requests require such weaves that are unique are rare. The unidirectional weave is the one where every fiber aligned in the same direction. It is the kind of weave that is actually and can be held together by the occasional strands. These strands can be either of polyester or carbon, found running across the fibers at a whopping 90-degree angle. It is the type of carbon fiber mainly used where all of the forces aligned in one single direction, such as arrows or archery bow.
Best Weave Patterns That Make the Most Durable Fabrics
Once an individual does have an understanding of the different types of carbon weaves, then he or she needs the next essential steps. One should know the two major types of carbon fiber cloths. In the auto industry there are two most important types of fiber cloths that consist of prepreg composites, dry and wet prepreg. Let us study them in detail:
Wet Prepreg Cloth
The method of wet prepreg cloth that uses prepreg composites, is one of the most known methods. It is the method commonly used for carbon fiber front lip spoilers, trunks, and rear diffusers. It is one of the easiest materials which is used by the manufactures and hence it is so much in demand. All one needs to get a hold on is an exactly measured amount of resin or epoxy, which, when poured over the fabric, makes the fabric super ‘wet.’ Hence, even the prepreg composites become wet and make it easier to work.
Dry Prepreg Cloth
The method of making dry prepreg cloth or commonly known as ‘Dry Carbon,’ is somewhat very similar to the wet prepreg. It is because of both the methods, Wet Prepreg cloth, and the Dry Prepreg cloth, make use of proxy or resins to adhere and stick to the fabric. However, not so similar to the wet version, the epoxy used for this cloth type has very dry properties that can easily impregnate into the cloth. It is the reason why many of the manufacturers prefer using this method. This step majorly guarantees that there stays no excess sort of epoxy. It eventually helps in giving a ‘Dry’ appearance, which is needed at the end.
But the drawback of the method is that it makes the cloth sticker when the cloth is kept at room temperature. It is the exact reason why the cloth sticker requires additional steps to complete. Hence, this eventually boils down to the fact that the accessories and carbon parts tend to be slightly on a costlier side when compared with wet carbon cloth. Once the parts (aero) molded, then it does require baking for a couple of hours at a room temperature of 250 degrees Fahrenheit (121.11 °C). The reason behind this is simply because it will not cure in the normal room temperature.