Discovery Yachts Switches To Vacuum Infusion for Discovery 57 hull

july 30 2012

Discovery Yachts' new Discovery 57 reportedly will feature the largest fibreglass sailing yacht hull produced by resin infusion in the UK to date. Discovery Yachts, located at Marchwood, near Southampton, UK, switched from traditional wet lay-up to infusion for the Discovery 57 to improve the quality and performance of the yacht, to reduce styrene emissions and improve shop floor working conditions.
To develop the production skills required to confidently infuse sandwich laminate parts as big as a hull, the Discovery Yachts composites team undertook several months of trials. It worked in close collaboration with its suppliers: Scott Bader, for the resins and gel-coat; Gurit for the core material; and Composite Integration Ltd for the vacuum infusion pumps, mixing and dispensing equipment.

Hull production: The Discovery 57 hull is 57.3 ft (17.4 m) long, with a beam of 16.67 ft (5.1 m) and a 7.67 ft (2.35 m) draft. It was infused using vacuum bagging in one complete section to precise dimensions and a ‘pre calculated’ 500 kg lower composite hull weight. The infusion process has produced a better consolidated laminate, making a stronger yet significantly lighter hull for improved speed; the 500 kg saving is a 20% weight reduction.

The hull is manufactured using Scott Bader’s Crystic VE 679-03 vinyl ester resin in combination with a ‘matched’ marine system using Crystic VE 679PA skincoat and Crystic Permabright D-Iso/NPG high performance gel-coat. The Discovery 57 will debut at the Southampton Boat Show in September 2012.

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