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Fiberglassing Decks

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Fiberglassing Decks

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YOUTUBE VIDEO LINK  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XtCM7B7UENI&feature=related

FIBERGLASSING A PLYWOOD DECK OR DECK ROOF

Fiberglassing A Plywood Deck or Roof by www.FiberglassSite.com

 More and more it is becoming popular to fiberglass plywood decks or roofs, and the good news is that most anyone can do it following our directions.
THESE DIRECTIONS ARE GOOD FOR:
AN OUTDOOR DECK
OUTDOOR DECK ROOF
BOAT DECK
OR ANY  APPLICATION OF CHOPPED STRAND MAT TO PLYWOOD

More and more it is becoming popular to fiberglass plywood decks or roofs, and the good news is that most anyone can do it following our directions.
First you must decide on materials. You will be using Chopped strand mat for your fiberglass and polyester resin for your resin. 2.0 ounce chopped strand mat is adequate for most applications, it will give you a hard waterproof finish, however if you want to go that extra mile, or if the area is going to be subjected to high or commercial traffic or heavy weight usage, we would recommend using two layers of 2 ounce chopped strand mat. Roofs that will
not be walked on can be done with 1.5 ounce chopped strand mat. Most residential decks will be done with one layer of 2.0 Chopped Strand Mat.

Step one is to calculate how much mat you will need. ( IF YOU JUST E-MAIL US THE SQUARE FOOTAGE OF YOUR DECK, WE WILL DO THIS FOR YOU, DO NOT SEND US YOUR MEASUREMENTS, SEND US THE NUMBER OF SQUARE FEET OF MATERIAL IT WILL TAKE TO COVER YOUR DECK, INCLUDE YOUR ZIP CODE SO WE CAN GIVE YOU A PRICE WITH SHIPPING.) E-MAIL  = FIBERGLASSSITE@COMCAST.NET

REMEMBER, JUST SEND US YOUR SQUARE FOOTAGE OF YOUR DECK TO FIBERGLASSSITE@COMCAST.NET,  AND WE WILL ESTIMATE YOUR MAT AND RESIN FOR YOU (INCLUDE YOUR ZIP CODE.)

Now what else will you need before getting started.? You can get the Chopped Strand Mat, and Resin from www.FiberglassSite.com (that’s Us) , you will also need a couple of Laminate rollers. Laminate rollers are not for spreading the resin, they are for pressing the resin down, and popping out the air bubbles. They look like 40 little pizza cutters linked together on a roller. FiberglassSite.com sells these also.  In most cases we provide at least one of these free of charge, for larger decks we supply two or three.

Whenever you are not using laminate rollers, and other tools that come in contact with the resin, keep them soaking in acetone, this will make it so you can use them over and over again. 
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from us you will need:
- polyester resin
- 2.0 chopped strand mat
- laminating rollers
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Here are a list of things you will need to get from your Home Depot, or Lowe’s; 

- mixing bucket
- clear caulk and caulk gun
- wood filer
- scissors electric or manual

- Acetone for clean up

- Rubber gloves

- Eye protection

- Respirator

- 5 quart plastic mixing buckets, marked of in quarts
- Paint stirs

- Paint stir attachment for your drill

- Plastic squeegees, such as disposable mud knives 8’’, and some smaller disposable putty knives. These will be used to spread the resin.

- Mini Disposable paint rollers 4 inch

-Full size disposable paint rollers ..... 
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Now to get started.

SEAL COAT; Before laying down the mat you will need to seal the plywood with resin First. The plywood must be bone dry, any moisture at all will stop the resin from soaking in, and you will have wasted your time and money. Sweep or blow off any dust from the deck.

In this step you will mix the resin with the hardener, and spread a coat of it on the dry raw plywood do this before applying the chopped strand mat (the resin we supply  you is unwaxed leave it that way do not add wax). Mix the resin with the hardener , pour it onto the surface, and spread it around with a plastic straight edge or roller . This is will get the most resin to soak in, and the least wasted resin. As soon as it is dry you can go to the next step.

Now, pre cut your pieces of mat to fit your deck. Once you get going you will not want to stop to do this, so do it ahead of time.

Lay down the first section of mat. Now it must be between 60 and 90 degrees F when you are doing the work. If it is too cold the resin will never set, if it is too hot it will set to quickly. Never work in the direct sunlight when it is hot outside.

For your First batch, mix a small amount of resin, one or two quarts. (You must mix the resin with a power drill attachment for one minute, a complete mixing is very important. Mixing with a power drill and paint mixer is much, much better.) This first batch will give you a feel for the working time of the resin. You will usually have ten to fifteen minutes per batch, so have all your ducks in a row before you add the hardener to the resin. Do not add the wax to the resin because when you are finished you are going to paint the deck with boat deck paint, or seal it with gelcoat, so do not add the wax.

Now lay the mat down like a piece of carpet. Take the resin you have mixed, and pour it directly onto the mat. Gently spread the resin like butter on bread with your thin nap roller. You do not want to move the strands of mat around, just the resin so be gentle . When an area is properly saturated with resin, it will turn from white to clear. Keep moving the resin from the wet areas to the dry areas.

This is a two man job. One person will pour and spread the resin, the other person will follow behind with the laminate roller. The purpose of the laminate roller is to force the resin into the mat, get out any air bubbles, and to make the mat lay flat and as smooth as possible. This first batch will give you an idea of your working time, and how much resin you will need to mix each time.

Before we move on some cautionary notes. Resin builds up heat when it is in the mixing bucket. The more resin, the more heat. The more heat the shorter the working time. So, after you mix the resin, get it out of the bucket ASAP! , or you will end up with a hot bucket of hard resin. Also, Polyester resin is nasty stuff, you must wear all proper safety equipment, you do not want to get it on your skin or in your eyes, or you will end up with an injury. The fumes are also quite strong, so we recommend a proper respirator.

Back to work.

For each section overlap the mat at least one or two inches to ensure a waterproof deck. Keep laying out the mat, and spreading the resin until the entire deck is finished.

Flashings and overhangs; If you want to run the mat 4 to 6 inches up the wall to get a waterproof seal , just fold the mat and rest it against the wall, use a disposable mini roller to roll the resin onto it,( or just use a plastic straight edge to pull it up the wall) and press it down with the laminate roller. The same goes if you want to do a lip around the deck, let the mat hang over the edge, bend it down, roll resin on it with the mini roller, then press it down with the laminate roller.

After a couple of hours, apply your deck paint or gel coat.  The polyester resin will stay tacky for about two days. It is best to get the paint or gelcoat on the deck during this time. Now you are finished, and if you did it right, it can last anywhere from 20 to 25 years. We have taught several home builders, and dozens and dozens of homeowners to lay decks by this method, and they have had a good experience with it. It is not that hard to do. If you need help with any of this please call FiberglassSite.com at 1-800-507-2003  or e-mail fiberglassSite@comcast.net

 


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