We choose autoclave composites over OOA composites to deliver perfection
Traditional high pressure autoclaves have always been popular for manufacturing carbon fiber composites, as widely used in the aerospace industry. Out Of Autoclave (OOA) has been around for some time as an alternative process but a drawback is that it does not deliver the same curing quality as an autoclave.
We, at Dexcraft, always recommend autoclave composites over OOA composites because they are capable of providing ultra-light weight carbon fiber components that offer excellent aesthetics with zero air voids, which can only be achieved using the autoclave manufacturing method. Many companies try to manufacture carbon fiber prepreg parts but do not possess an autoclave, which is a very expensive device that can cost as much as even 500 000 EURO.
An autoclave delivers perfect surface quality of carbon fiber parts because of high (up to 8 bar) pressure that compresses the part and prevents air voids from forming. Some companies try a workaround and instead of curing prepreg parts with 6-8 bar pressure (autoclave curing) they simply put the parts in 1 bar vacuum in the oven. Obviously, if you apply just 1 bar instead of 6 or 8, then it is 6-8 times lower pressure and you will always have air voids, especially if the product has curvatures and is not simply flat.
These producers that don’t have an autoclave then go on to fill those voids with lacquer, and paint it with as many layers as needed to hide the imperfections. But that just adds to the weight and the imperfections cannot be completely concealed from visual inspection. That is far from ideal when your product demands the highest carbon fiber quality. Importantly, the internal flaws cannot be concealed and inevitably result in parts of inferior strength that are liable to crack or suffer damage under high load / tension.
Understand prepreg composites and the benefits of using carbon fiber autoclave composites
Prepreg carbon fiber composites, which are widely used in the aerospace industry, are basically made of reinforced carbon fibers. These fibers are pre-impregnated with a thermoset resin matrix in a certain ratio which gives them their unique properties.
The benefits of carbon fiber composites curred in autoclave are:
- Easy to use even with complex curvature of the product
- Zero voids.
- Perfect appearance of the carbon fiber fabric.
- Excellent fatigue resistance.
- Laminate thickness keeped under control.
- The process is clean.
- The process offers better quality as well as conformity.
How we achieve your product goal
To achieve the goal of manufacturing prepreg composites through our autoclave, we follow a well-proven process.
- It begins with understanding the objectives of your requirement.
- We put our best efforts into shaping your idea into a 3D design and each model is given special attention.
- We will never take the process forward until you approve the prototype.
- We use a proven manufacturing process (autoclave processing) because it provides superior laminate consolidation.
Why we recommend autoclave composites over OOA composites
Various companies propose OOA carbon fiber composites but we don’t. The reason is because autoclave composite manufacturing not only creates a 1 bar vacuum around the product but also it creates high pressure (6-8 bar) that extracts every bit of air. This results in a product that is incredibly strong as well as light weight with perfect appearance. Only an autoclave can assure that there is no air whatsoever left behind in the product which, could lead to creating a weak spot. A weak spot can lead to disastrous consequences.
Do you need a manufacturer of prepreg carbon fiber composites / parts?
Contact us firstname.lastname@example.org or +48 22 226-86-70 and we will take care of your process!
Find more about DEXCRAFT – supplier of comprehensive carbon fiber solutions.