Gradient glass??

What about multi weight glass. Sort of like a gradient or blend of weight with in a single sheet? Like a blend of lighter to heavier or vice versa from nose to tail? Rail to rail? Maybe for flex options with non stringer boards? What would be the pros/cons. Is it pointless? What are the flex and strenght questions that this brings up? Thought of before? Could use with different resin schedules? (2000 vs 2020). DISCUSS…

p.s. Obviously the options are wide open, this pix is just kind of what first came to mind.

Potential issues:

  1. Convincing a company that there is enough market share to produce this type of glass. Biggest hurdle and most likely reason for not seeing it unless it has some sort of application in boating/aerospace (which may already have something similar)

  2. Not a true gradient. The fibers won’t go from 2, 2.1, 2.2, 2.3 etc. as the blend. There will be a cut-off where the 2 oz. weave stops and the 4 oz. weave starts. This is a potential stress riser and problem area for failures.

Those are just the first two that popped into my head.

You could do the same thing by just layering 2 oz. glass. Run a thinner strip of 2oz. down the center of a solid 2oz. layer for your 2-4-2 blend. You’d have the benefit of being able to cut the center strip as a slight oval and distrubute some of the stresses along that blend line.


I DID mean a continouus gradient, or as close as you could get with traditional fiberglassing manufacturing techniques, not a 2/3/4 oz step or something like that. Would it even be possible? I’m not sure how exactly they manufacture fiberglass, must be some sort of weaving technique. Of course this is a theoretical situation, and of course it would be difficult to make/market…but as far as an application for surfboards (or in any other industry)…do you think there would be any kind of situation where this would be beneficial? Or is the way we glass (layers, laps) even worth messing with. Do we sacrifice any sort of characteristics/qualities of flex, strength, etc. by glassing the way that we do? Could there be anything gained by thinking outside the box in this specific area…Just thinking outloud hear.

Thanks in advance.


You could get a continuous (nearly) gradient simply by allowing the thread count/density to vary across the width of the cloth, along the length would be more challenging/expensive. The observations about cost for a custom weave are dead-on and probably cost prohibitive. I am skeptical that when all is said and done layering light cloth isn’t better. Smart cuts along the length of the board can drive down the gradients there, and stresses along the other axis shouldn’t be an issue: I’ve never seen a board break parallel to the stringer.