Self made Bow poles

Done.......now I guess I'll go out and buy myself $8,500 dollars worth of  TV dinners with all the money I saved......maybe I'll even get the kind that has the baked in brownie desert.


pull the tube off the mandrel with my 1955 TO35 Fergusen Tractor  

Carbon over plastic lined PVC

The trick for me to insure that the tube will slide off the mandrel is to tape a thin sheet of plastic in place over the mandrel.

Post cure oven

Dig this custom post cure oven......

Vac Bag Bow pole

I then rolled two raps of 45-45 12 oz DB carbon then six wraps of Uni Carbon, sheathed this with a 12 oz DB braid and vac bagged the lot over the PVC mandrel.

Bow pole

Self reliance has gotten the best of me....  Upon hearing a quote from the local composite tube supplier saying " you're not gonna find anyone who will build the bow tubes for under $10K" ,  I said to my self........"Self" ...I'll build them for free. + materials.

Since Boeing decided to build it's Dreamliner out of carbon, material cost alone for the bow poles comes in at $1400. So..... if I pay myself zero dollars per hour, It makes good business since to build my own tubes. 

First step was to build a nice table that would allow me to roll the carbon onto ready made mandrels.  I built a couple of articulating "L" brackets that I could operate with a foot pedal and would allow me to handle the rolling process by myself.  I trimmed schedule 40 PVC pipe down to the  correct diameter by slicing a segment out and taping the seam back with 3M packing tape.  This allowed me to create a custom mandrel diameter for very little cost.