The FRP Advantage

Wood rots. Steel rusts. Aluminum dents. Fiberglass reinforced plastic lasts.

Traditional building materials have their place. But for harsh, corrosive environments, Bedford fiberglass reinforced polymer (FRP) is a smart choice.

Bedford structural fiberglass has the strength of steel at a fraction of the weight. It won’t corrode, rot, attract insect damage or conduct electricity. It can be formed into countless FRP profiles to fit your specs. And decades later when those other materials need to be replaced, it will still have plenty of life.

In short, fiberglass pultrusions give you a different way to solve your design challenges — one that can reduce costs and improve performance in the long run. To maximize these benefits, however, it’s best to design with the properties of FRP in mind from the start. Our engineers and fabricators can help, so contact us with your questions.

 

pultruded fiberglass | bedford reinforced

The Pultrusion Process

Most Bedford fiberglass shapes are manufactured using the pultrusion process. Just as it sounds, the machine grips the raw materials and "pulls" them through a series of steps until the finished profile reaches the cut-off saw.

1. Reinforcement
The process typically starts by pulling in two forms of fiberglass reinforcement. Creels of fiberglass roving provide unidirectional strength along the length of the profile, and rolls of woven fiberglass mat provide multidirectional reinforcement.
2. Wet-Out
The fiberglass reinforcements are pulled through a bath of thermoset resin, typically polyester or vinylester.
3. Surface Veil
Just before all the material is pulled into the heated die, surface veil may be added to enhance the surface appearance of the final product.
4. Curing
Wet-out reinforcements are pulled through the heated die, which causes the resin to "cure" or harden. By the time the part exits the die, a solid, rigid profile in the exact shape of the die cavity has been formed with all the reinforcements laminated inside.
5. Cutting
The finished product is then pulled to the cut-off saw and cut to the desired length.