Pillarpage Materials

In the world of materials

Immerse yourself in the world of materials, their properties and areas of application.

The world of materials

The first step in the design of a component is the selection of the material. Material selection includes all steps in the design process that lead to the selection of a suitable material from which the component is ultimately manufactured. Structural requirements, functionality, visual appearance, corrosion resistance or weight all play a role. The basis for any selection of a material are material standards, such as DIN standards, and material data sheets, which are issued by the manufacturer or acceptance companies and can be further restricted by customer specifications. In addition, the designer is guided by the following criteria, among others: Load-bearing capacity, functional efficiency, safety, service life, cost-effectiveness.

Often, appearance and costs are the most important, as these are necessary for marketing the end product. However, the appearance and consequently the economic efficiency also suffer from the choice of the wrong construction material. To prevent unnecessary costs in the life of a component, acquisition and maintenance costs, also called life-cycle costs, are considered. And the technical components also play a significant role.

The most suitable material from a technical point of view is the one that has the best combination of properties.  There are almost no upper limits to the possible component costs from a technical point of view.

However, the developer's goal must be to design a component of the highest possible quality at the lowest possible cost. This is because the economic aspects, which are often short-term oriented, are usually in the foreground, which means that a lower purchase price is often more important than the service life. Numerous aspects that you also have to consider when choosing materials. Then there is the fact that there is a multitude of materials on the market, all of which offer advantages and disadvantages. It is not easy to keep track of the large selection of materials. Why, for example, is GRP better suited for a bus roof than aluminium? What can wood do better than plastic? What needs to be considered when caring for and repairing materials, and why does the delivery form of the material also play a role? You can find out all this and much more in our clear articles on the subject of "Materials". Immerse yourself in the world of materials. Have fun browsing through the articles!

Aluminium castors

Not all GRP is the same

Many sectors, such as vehicle construction, have already been using the advantages of glass-fibre reinforced plastics for decades. But sectors such as mechanical engineering and other industries also rely on the great potential of GRP. This is because the material has many advantages over conventional materials. These include load-bearing capacity and shapeability. In addition, GRP shines with excellent weight-strength ratios.

But not all GRP is the same because glass-fibre reinforced plastics differ not only in composition or shape, but also in the manufacturing process. We have summarized many differentiations for you in detail. Find out in our article how the composition of GRP can differ, in which forms GRP occurs and what differences there are in the manufacturing process. Enjoy browsing through the article.

Reading time: ca. 10:00 min.

Differences between GRP

Glass fibre-reinforced plastics can differ in terms of their composition, shapes or the manufacturing process. We have summarized the differentiation within GRP for you.

Glass fibre-reinforced plastics (GRP) can differ as much as night and day. The quality and manufacture depend on the form and purpose of GRP. We have summarized the key differences for you.

With this, GRP, steel, aluminium and wood convince

Depending on the area of application, materials have to withstand different influences. It's a good thing that for every application there is a suitable material that offers the optimal solution. You are probably familiar with steel, aluminium and wood, and the fact that these materials are used in a variety of ways is nothing new. For some years now, however, well-known materials such as steel, aluminium and wood have been getting a lot of competition from glass-fibre reinforced plastic.

Are you overwhelmed by the wide range of different materials on the market? Are you wondering which material is best suited for your application, and how the materials compare directly with each other? Then we have the answers! We have summarized all the most important facts about the most common materials, GRP, steel, aluminium and wood, and compared them clearly and directly.

Reading time: ca. 5:00 min.

Material Comparison - An Overview

What are the advantages of which material? We have summarised the top properties of GRP, steel, aluminium and wood for you.

Whether hail, UV and corrosion-resistance or processing, cleaning and painting - materials have different properties. We have summarised the advantages of each material and how GRP performs compared to other materials.

Is GRP better in rolls or in sheets?

Fibre-reinforced plastics are available either as sheets or rolls. This depends on the respective manufacturer. Some manufacturers also offer both delivery forms. An example of this is LAMILUX Composites, which has both sheets and rolls in its repertoire and also adapts the sizes and lengths individually to customer requirements. However, this presents you as a customer with the crucial challenges of knowing exactly what your needs are and whether sheets or rolls are more likely to meet your storage and production requirements.

It is therefore worth taking a close look at the advantages and disadvantages of the delivery forms and weighing up exactly what is the optimal decision in your case. We have collected and clearly summarized the advantages and disadvantages of GRP sheets and GRP rolls for you. We can anticipate that no winner can be determined, but it is much more important that you find the perfect delivery and storage forms for your needs. Have fun reading in!

Reading time: ca. 7:00 min.

GRP Sheets versus GRP Coils

What are the advantages and disadvantages of the forms of delivery and storage for GRP: are composite sheets or composite coils better?

LAMILUX supplies its glass-fibre-reinforced composites in sheets or coils, depending on customer requirements. But what makes most sense for which situation? Here is a comparison.

How do I maintain a gelcoat?

Cleaning, care, polishing: terms that you are certainly familiar with from the care of your own car. But what about a gelcoat? A gelcoat is a protective layer for glass fibre reinforced plastics. It creates a smooth surface and can be coloured as desired. The smooth surface is easy to clean, but also ensures that the surface is chemically resistant. This means that it can withstand the use of industrial cleaners. Another plus point: the gelcoat ensures that the material underneath is protected from UV radiation and weathering.

But this gelcoat also needs to be cared for. Because the right cleaning and care is essential for maintaining its value. This means: no aggressive cleaners, sponges or cleaning cloths made of soft and non-scratching material and the right polish. In this article, we will show you what else you need to pay attention to. Enjoy reading! For even more expert knowledge on GRP care, you can also find a white paper in the article for free download.

Reading time: ca. 8:00 min.

Maintaining Value of Gelcoat

Cleaning, care, polishing: terms that we already know from caring for our cars. But what about gelcoat? That' s what we'll show you in this article. Even more knowledge is available for download in our White Paper.

How do I care for a gelcoat properly? What is a gelcoat anyway - in other words, what makes it special? And should an unsightly scratch be visible on the gelcoat despite all the endurance tests, can it be polished out again, for example? Here you will find all the important information on maintaining the value of a gelcoat. For more in-depth knowledge, you can also download a white paper here for free!

Repair cases for vehicle parts

Regardless of whether steel, aluminium or GRP is used as the base material, you should always consider damage cases in production and their repairs when selecting materials in vehicle construction. Because construction materials can be damaged both in vehicle production and later during the entire life cycle of the vehicle. Then it depends on whether components have to be discarded directly or whether there is a possibility for repair.

In addition, the question arises whether a repair is worthwhile or whether discarding is actually cheaper. When deciding for or against a material, you must therefore consider how it will behave in repair or maintenance cases. Not only the possible costs play a role, but also the effort as well as the complexity that are estimated when using certain materials for repair cases. Read on and learn how to think holistically about material selection in vehicle construction. Have fun!

Reading time: ca. 6:00 min.

Materials in vehicle construction: Consider repair cases!

Whether steel, aluminium or GRP as the base material: When selecting materials in vehicle construction, also consider damage cases in production and their repairs.

Why the use of specific construction materials plays such a central role in vehicle construction is due to the highly complex requirements placed on vehicle parts. Different factors such as costs, weight, functionality or load-bearing capacity play a role here. In addition, the following applies to the selection of materials in vehicle construction: take repair cases into account! And also those that arise during vehicle construction.

Areas of use and application of glass fibre reinforced plastic

GRP combines many properties that positively influence the life cycle of products. Usually, the investment is higher at the beginning than when processing other materials. However, if you consider the entire service life, you not only save yourself money, but also a lot of trouble associated with subsequent repairs. The areas of use and application of glass-fibre reinforced plastics are very diverse, as the material combines a wide range of properties and can be used individually.

The properties include: Durability, lightness, robustness, weather and hail resistance, corrosion resistance, easy cleaning and repair, and producibility in all colours. But in which industries is GRP used? Where exactly is it used and what are the advantages of GRP in your industry? You will find the answers to all these questions in our article. Enjoy reading!

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GRP and aluminium in comparison

Whether for windows, mobile homes or in the commercial vehicle industry: whether aluminium or plastic is the better choice divides opinions. Both materials have advantages and disadvantages, and depending on the application, a disadvantage can also become an advantage. For example, when it comes to conductivity: aluminium is an excellent electrical conductor that is therefore often used in electrical engineering, for example as a conductor material in microchips. GRP, on the other hand, is not a conductor of electricity.

On the contrary, GRP even has insulating properties and is therefore often used along railway lines, for example, to protect workers or pedestrians from the railway current. So it depends entirely on the area of application whether electrical conductivity is an advantage or disadvantage. Metal versus plastic - which material has the better properties? We took a closer look at GRP and aluminium. Read on to find out our clear favourite. Have fun!

Reading time: ca. 6:00 min.

Glass fibre-reinforced plastic vs. aluminium

Metal versus plastic - which material has the better properties? We took a closer look at GRP and aluminium and uncovered the clear favourite.

GRP or aluminium - which is the better material?
But is that the right question? Is one of these two materials really better than the other? The question should actually be: Which material is more suitable for my application? We have examined glass fibre-reinforced plastic (GRP) and aluminium and summarised the advantages and disadvantages for you.

GRP or steel - Which material is the all-rounder?

Steel is a multi-talented material. Not only do we regularly encounter the material in everyday situations, such as in daily cooking, but it also scores points with its properties, especially in the construction industry, in mechanical and plant engineering and in energy technology. But GRP is also very popular as a material and can hardly be limited in its possible applications. Whether in the construction, caravan, bus or commercial vehicle industry - GRP is particularly convincing due to its light weight, high strength and weather resistance.

The question of which of the two materials is better therefore depends entirely on the area of application in which the material is to be used. What distinguishes steel and glass-fibre reinforced plastic? We have taken a close look at the two materials for you. You can find our results in this article. Enjoy reading!

Reading time: ca. 4:00 min.

GRP and steel: Comparison of two materials

What are the properties of steel and glass fibre- reinforced plastic? We have carefully examined the two materials for you.

Unlike glass fibre-reinforced plastic (GRP), almost everyone is familiar with the term steel. We see this material every day, whether at home in the kitchen, at work or in our free time. What are the advantages and disadvantages of the material and how does it compare to plastic? We have compared the materials and summarised the results for you.

What makes wood and glass fibre reinforced plastic interesting as materials?

If you look around you, you will not have to search long for the materials wood and plastic. We come into contact with these materials every day and in almost every situation. Both materials have advantages and disadvantages that should be considered during processing and maintenance. Wood as a building material scores in many respects for visual reasons. The natural material appears homely and creates a certain cosiness. On the other hand, wood is sensitive to moisture and susceptible to pests.

Glass-fibre reinforced plastics, on the other hand, offer the typical advantages of conventional plastics, but also have greater stiffness and strength, which is why they are particularly interesting for load-bearing lightweight constructions, for example. Are you now wondering what similarities and differences GRP and wood have, and which industries are dominated by which material? Our article answers all your questions and also graphically illustrates a direct comparison. 

Reading time: ca. 6:00 min.

Material comparison between wood and glass fibre-reinforced plastic

Every day we come into contact with wood and plastic, but what is the difference between wood and glass-fibre reinforced plastic (GRP)? We have the answers.

Everybody is familiar with wood. Glass fibre-reinforced plastic (GRP), on the other hand, is an unfamiliar term for most people. Although we often encounter both materials in everyday life, the number of people who know exactly what properties wood and GRP have and why these materials are so popular as construction materials. We have summarised everything you need to know about wood and glass fibre-reinforced plastic.

Which material is easy to clean?

Everywhere and at all times, we have contact with surfaces of all kinds. Whether floors, work surfaces, car interiors or the outer skin of vehicles - virtually every surface is cleaned from time to time. This raises the question: Which material can be cleaned well, and what needs to be considered with certain materials? Basically, surfaces to which dirt adheres poorly can be cleaned well. The same applies to all materials and material surfaces: less adhesion also means less cleaning effort.

The following problem occurs with metal materials: these materials have a high roughness that makes cleaning difficult. As a result, the surface has to be refined. In addition, there is a risk of corrosion due to moisture and aggressive cleaning agents, so an additional coating should be used. Plastics, on the other hand, are the ideal materials for areas where hygiene is important in terms of cleanability due to their low surface energy and low surface roughness. Especially in food processing and storage, such as in cold rooms, the material can perform. If you want to learn more about the cleanability of surfaces, then enjoy reading our exciting article.

Reading time: ca. 6:00 min.

Cleanability of surfaces

Floors, kitchen utensils, work surfaces. These are all surfaces that are cleaned regularly. But which material is particularly easy to clean? And why?

Whether dishes, bathtub or the worktop in the kitchen. Regular cleaning is a daily routine for us. But why are some surfaces easier to clean than others? Is this related to the nature of the material?

What actually is GRP?

Glass-fibre reinforced plastic, or GRP for short, is an individually designable material that is used in many different industries. GRP, also known colloquially as fibreglass, comes from English, as the word glass fibre is translated as "glass fibre". GRP consists of two components. Firstly, it is composed of fibres, namely glass fibres, and secondly, a plastic matrix that surrounds the glass fibres. This matrix consists of either a thermosetting plastic or a thermoplastic. The combination of the glass fibres and the plastic matrix makes glass fibre reinforced plastic a lightweight and very robust material.

Depending on the composition of the raw materials, the manufacturing process and the admixture of additives, GRP can have different physical properties. This is why GRP is a versatile material that can be customized to fit any industry and application. But what makes this material so special? Low weight with high mechanical strength, resistance to chemicals, corrosion and UV radiation are just some of its properties. Learn more about this in the white paper:

Reading time: ca. 4:00 min.

Fibreglass reinforced plastic – a definition

Fibreglass reinforced plastic (FRP) is a versatile material that is used in numerous industries. But how exactly is it composed and what are its characteristics?

What is fibreglass reinforced plastic and in which industries is it used? Find out everything about this high-tech material here.

Advantages of GRP in the bus roof

How often are you currently annoyed by the rising fuel and maintenance costs of your vehicles? We can reassure you: With the optimal cladding for your vehicle, such as a fibre-reinforced bus roof, you get better fuel efficiency as well as a longer life for your body, tyres and vehicle parts. But it is crucial which material you use for this. Steel and aluminium are also excellent materials for this application, but these materials have some disadvantages compared to construction materials made of fibre-reinforced plastic, abbreviated as GRP.

GRP has a positive influence on service life, efficient vehicle production, vehicle weight or external influences, such as preventing water ingress. If water enters your bus, it causes many problems. In the worst case, your bus becomes unusable, you lose passengers, have high costs and a lot of effort to repair it. But with the right material installed in the roof, this does not have to be the case. In this article, you will learn about all the advantages of GRP in the bus roof and how you can benefit from it. Enjoy reading!

Reading time: ca. 3:30 min.

GRP in Bus Roofs

Fibre Reinforced Bus Roofs

What materials do you currently use for the cladding of your buses? Steel or aluminium? These are excellent materials, but they have some disadvantages compared to construction materials made of fibre-reinforced plastic (GRP).