FINISHING

            The options for finishing your enclosure are almost limitless, however the most popular finish materials are carpet, fabric, vinyl, and paint.

            Carpet and fabric are probably the easiest to accomplish.  They are forgiving of slightly rough areas, and create a durable, good looking finish in a few quick steps.

            Vinyl is a bit tougher, as it does not always stretch as easily over curves, and has a tendency to show most imperfections.

            Paint is probably the most labor-intensive finish to apply.  Just like painting a car, if the surface is not totally smooth, any tiny imperfection will show through the finish. 

           In order to apply paint (and in many cases, vinyl, also), a layer of body filler must be applied over the fiberglass front, followed by hours of laborious sanding and re-layering of body filler to obtain a perfectly smooth surface.

            Is it any wonder why I chose a fabric covering?

            Applying the fabric was simple.  I first lightly sanded any rough spots in the fiberglass surface, including feeling for little “nubs” that would create bumps in the fabric.  Be careful, as sanding fiberglass will make you itch for days, especially if done aggressively.  I sanded  as little as possible.  The surface need not be perfectly smooth, but noticeable bumps should be taken care of.  Then it was an easy process of using the spray adhesive to attach the fabric to the enclosure, in a similar fashion to how the fleece was stretched to form the front earlier.

            For my enclosure, I used two layers of the fabric, because it was rather thin.  Some of the small imperfections in the surface were showing through, and the second layer helped to disguise them.

 

 

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