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How Do I Become a Fiberglass Laminator?

Lori Kilchermann
Lori Kilchermann

If you would like to become a fiberglass laminator, you will need to apply to a company that uses fiberglass to build different components. The actual procedure to become a fiberglass laminator is straightforward: it is commonly an entry-level position and one of the least desired on the production floor. You often must be able to work long periods in a bent-over position while applying the fiberglass materials into a mold. You also may be required to roll the air bubbles out of the lamination before the resin sets up completely. Another trait that may be required in order for you to become a fiberglass laminator is the ability to read mechanical drawings or blueprints so that you can decipher how many layers of fiberglass go into each specific area of the component you are creating.

There are typically two distinct methods of laminating fiberglass: the hand-layered method and the chopper gun method. If your goal is to become a fiberglass laminator, you may need to be able to use both methods. Typically, the hand-layered method is more labor-intensive with each layer of fiberglass requiring the applicator to apply resin to the mat, place the mat into the mold and roll the bubbles out of the matting before the resin begins to set or firm up. This can be repeated several times between layers as some components have multiple laminated layers in the makeup of a single part.

Fiberglass laminators often have to wear protective suits.
Fiberglass laminators often have to wear protective suits.

If you happen to fill a fiberglass laminator position using a chopper gun, you will use an air-powered spray gun that spits small pieces of fiberglass matting that is mixed with a light spray of resin out of the nozzle. The chopper gun is a point-and-shoot type of applicator, and the desired skill is being able to build up a consistent coating of fiberglass without building up high spots or leaving low areas. Typically, you must also be willing and able to wear a protective suit, gloves and respirator should you want to become a fiberglass laminator.

Fiberglass is a very irritating material and it can be overwhelming to some people. Itching is the common response to the material once contact with the skin has been made. Before you become a fiberglass laminator, you may wish to test your ability to withstand the itching by testing your skin with a small amount of the fiberglass insulation material. This is very similar to the material that you will be using once you become a fiberglass laminator. Even with the protective clothing, you will likely experience some contact with the materials on your skin.

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    • Fiberglass laminators often have to wear protective suits.
      By: haveseen
      Fiberglass laminators often have to wear protective suits.