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PACE Technologies Metallographic Preparation CLASS Chart icon

Graphite Composite
Specimen Preparation (Class 1 Procedures)
Metallographic Class 1 sample preparation  

Glass reinforced composites are very useful materials, however microstructural preparation can be tricky. The best approach is to minimize the amount of cracking and chipping in the fibers as early in the preparation stage as is practical. This is accomplished by starting with 320 grit SiC or finer. For rough and final polishing, the use of a resilient polishing pad such as Black Chem, in combination with polycrystalline diamond and SIMAT colloidal silica produce a damage free surface ready for examination.

SECTIONING

Diamond Wafering blade - medium grit / low concentration

MOUNTING

Castable Mounting with Epoxy or Acrylic resins

POLISHING
Abrasive/surface Lubricant Force/ sample Speed
(Head/base)
Time Individual
Force mode
Central Force
mode
120 grit SiC paper
240 grit SiC paper*
Water
5-10 lbs 200/200 rpm Planar
1 min
  Metallographic central polishing force
360 grit SiC paper
600 grit SiC paper
800 grit SiC paper
1200 grit SiC paper
Water
5-10 lbs 200/200 rpm 1 min
1 min
1 min
1 min
Metallographic individual polishing force Metallographic central polishing force
6 um DIAMAT diamond on
TEXPAN polishing pad
DIALUBE Purple
Extender
5-10 lbs 200/200 rpm 2 min Metallographic individual polishing force Metallographic central polishing force
1 um DIAMAT diamond
on GOLDPAD or
ATLANTIS polishing pad
DIALUBE Purple
Extender
10 lbs 200/200 rpm 2 min Metallographic individual polishing force Metallographic central polishing force
0.05 um Nanometer alumina
on NAPPAD polishing pad
  5-10 lbs 100/100 rpm 1 min Metallographic individual polishing force Metallographic central polishing force

*Required for central polishing force. Click here for more information on central vs. individual polishing force polishing.

Metallographic micrograph of longitudial glass fibers
Longitudinal glass fiber orientation, 100X
Metallographic micrograph of cross section glass fibers
Transverse glass fiber orientation, 500X

ETCHING

Common Etchants
PACE Technologies Recommended Etchants

PACE Technologies Etchant Database

CAUTION:Safety is very important when etching. Be sure to wear the appropriate protective clothing and observe all WARNINGS on chemical manufacuters SDS (Safety Data Sheets). Also review the COMMENTS and CONDITIONS Section for each etchant.


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