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In little over eight weeks from receiving the final CAD files from leading UKDinghy manufacturer RS sailing, Composite moulders Norco GRP and CNC specialists mouldCAM Europe have produced temperature stable direct tooling and a prototype dinghy.
According to Norco, the boat weighed in exactly to the strict design weight and exceeded customer expectations on build quality and finish. They say the dinghy, which will be called the RS900, is the latest and most optimised boat so far in the RS range of dinghies & sports boats and will compete with other dinghy manufacturers to become the next generation double handed sailing dinghy in the women’s class.
Norco say the direct tooling from mouldCAM Europe was machined in their brand new state of the art composite tooling facility in Poole, Dorset using their 36m 5 axis CNC machine. In total, mouldCAM produced 12 direct mould tools and patterns for the project which were hand finished to a high gloss finish.
Working closely with their client RS sailing, Norco GRP say they assisted RS in developing the build process and specifying materials, and within a few days of taking delivery of each tool from mouldCAM were producing mouldings ready for assembly of the final boat. Using a mixture of processes suited to each part; Epoxy wet layup vacuum bag, Infusion and Prepreg, Norco Manufactured all the elements of the boat apart from the spars & rigging. Norco also used the latest Scott Bader Epoxy compatible 253PA gelcoat sprayed into the mould to minimise weight and offer an improved bond with the Epoxy laminate.
Norco explain that the boat performed exactly as hoped in the early sea trials which were carried out in windy December gales, and following the trials they are building 2 further boats from the direct tools before the Olympic trials take place in mid March 2012.
Alex Newton-Southon, Technical Director of RS sailing commented on his involvement with with Norco & mouldCAM on the RS900 project “Using the experience and expertise of mouldCAM and the Composite engineering skills of Norco, the entire process from moulds to mouldings have been seamless, I’m utterly delighted with the product and process.”
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