Composite Basics

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This manual explains the theory, working techniques, and details of various types of glass, carbon and kevlar fibers, resins, adhesives, foams, and honeycombs for light airplane construction and repair. Further sections include the basics of manufacturing and design methods and are extremely relevant for those employed by component manufacturers and those involved in aircraft design projects. Tooling and manufacturing methods, designing, stress, loads and load testing, vacuum bagging, autoclaves, and more are discussed in a technical, yet understandable manner.

This is more than a simple "how to" manual. It contains the information to give confidence to the builder or technician tasked in the design and construction of parts for simple and complex aircraft.

Primary emphasis is placed on structures used in amateur built aircraft, high performance boats and race cars. Materials addressed are E-glass, S-glass, carbons, the several Kevlars. Commonly used resins and the fiber-resin interfaces are also covered. The application of these materials to both solid laminates and sandwich structures is explained with examples of actual structures in current use.
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WARNING: Cancer and Reproductive Harm -

Table of Contents

  • 1] The Structural Fibers
  • 2] Fabrics
  • 3] Core Materials
  • 4] Honeycomb Cores
  • 5] Carving & Forming Core Materials
  • 6] The Resin Matrix
  • 7] Molding Methods & Tooling
  • 8] Wet Resin & Honeycomb Cores
  • 9] Designing Composite Structures
  • 10] Calculating Stresses and Loads
  • 11] Adhesives & Bonding
  • 12] Load Testing Your Structure
  • Appendix
    • A-1] Sources of Materials & Information
    • A-2] Glass Weave Styles Cross Reference
    • A-3] List of Kevlar Weave Styles
    • A-4] No More Rivets
    • A-5] Properties Of Carbon Fibers & Fabrics


  • Publishers: Aircraft Technical Book Co. & FAA
  • ISBN-13: 9780977489664
  • Copyright Date: 2007
  • Edition: 7th
  • Pages: 202
  • Binding: Paperback
  • Dimensions: 11.0" x 8.5"
  • eBook
  • File Type: standard pdf ebook
  • Print: unlimited
  • Copy/Paste: unlimited
  • Offline Access: yes
  • Search: always
  • Bookmarks: always
  • System Reqs: Windows, Macintosh, iPad, and more

Version Types

Softcover Book - Printed book with heavyweight cover stock.

eBook EB - A protected document designed for reflowable content. Also referred to as an ePub or "Electronic Publication" format. Easily viewed on both small and large screens. Text, images, and pages will adapt or reflow to fit the screen size of the device, so zooming is not necessary to read. Text size can be adjusted in an ebook reader app. Visit AC Technical Books -eBooks for more details on how to setup your device.

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April 22, 2022


Please note, Aircraft Spruce's personnel are not certified aircraft mechanics and can only provide general support and ideas, which should not be relied upon or implemented in lieu of consulting an A&P or other qualified technician. Aircraft Spruce assumes no responsibility or liability for any issue or problem which may arise from any repair, modification or other work done from this knowledge base. Any product eligibility information provided here is based on general application guides and we recommend always referring to your specific aircraft parts manual, the parts manufacturer or consulting with a qualified mechanic.

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