BMW M3 Forum (E90 E92)

BMW Garage BMW Meets Register Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read


Go Back   M3Post - BMW M3 Forum > M3 (E90 / E92 / E93) > General M3 Forum (E90 + E92 + E93)
 
BPM
Post Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
      11-20-2016, 12:14 AM   #1
Apex Everything
Banned
Apex Everything's Avatar
United_States
173
Rep
465
Posts

Drives: M3
Join Date: Nov 2015
Location: A place

iTrader: (3)

Help me understand the carbon fiber for our ///M cars

So, carbon fiber arguably the most loved substance on cars, but there is significant confusion/lies/hidden truths about the substance and it makes it hard to know what you got and what you are purchasing.

From what I have seen with the exception of a few companies like Mode Carbon (I could even be wrong about them) only OEM companies like BMW make full carbon fiber parts.

Take the OEM BMW Carbon Fiber mirror caps. They are nice shiny carbon fiber on the outside and sexy raw carbon fiber on the inside. The whole item is legit 100% carbon fiber.

Now there is some other knock off brand selling carbon fiber mirror caps (technosomething?) well the exterior looks like carbon fiber to me, but the interior of the cap is plain plastic black. Are they real carbon fiber at all? Are they 10% layer of glossed carbon fiber and the rest is plain plastic?

What is everyones thoughts on carbon fiber?
Appreciate 1
      11-20-2016, 12:07 PM   #2
Yeru
Second Lieutenant
Yeru's Avatar
United_States
203
Rep
237
Posts

Drives: 2013 IB E92 M3 ZCP
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Texas

iTrader: (0)

As the saying goes, all that glitters is not gold. As you probably know, the CF manufacturing process is still expensive based on current manufacturing processes and technologies.

So just as I wouldn't expect to get a diamond ring from Tiffany's for $300, neither would I expect CF to be cheap; if a new part is cheap, then compromises have been made in the materials and manufacturing stages to bring those costs down.

Those compromises over time can become obviously apparent; e.g. I've seen 10+ year old E46s with so-called CF hoods, scorched and faded by sun damage, making what was once a beautiful car, quite FUGLY.
__________________
'22 G80 CP | Tanzanite Blue II | languishing in the order pipeline black hole
'13 E92 M3 ZCP | Interlagos Blue | 6MT | Speed Cloth | Stripper | 50K miles/80K Km
'07 E90 335i | Sonora Metallic | 6MT | Premium | N54 Perf Power Kit | Perf Suspension | 18" BMW MotorSport Wheels | 90K miles/145K Km
Appreciate 5
UPSROD638.50
Law6161.00
GVIFlyer288.00
      11-20-2016, 01:43 PM   #3
cenix
Captain
cenix's Avatar
United_States
372
Rep
873
Posts

Drives: E90 M3 ZCP
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: SoCal

iTrader: (5)

You also have to realize the economics of it all. CF is a purposeful application but in its proper iteration quite costly. For the masses, it is best to offer something with the "look" without the price.

I can attest that the OE BMW/M Performance CF parts are high quality, thus their high prices...of which many people complain about without regard to quality or manufacture. It's a different demographic, different strokes for different folks.
Appreciate 0
      11-20-2016, 01:59 PM   #4
///M Power-Belgium
General
///M Power-Belgium's Avatar
Belgium
35851
Rep
18,313
Posts

Drives: ///M3-E92-DCT Silverstone II
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Belgium

iTrader: (0)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Apex Everything View Post
So, carbon fiber arguably the most loved substance on cars, but there is significant confusion/lies/hidden truths about the substance and it makes it hard to know what you got and what you are purchasing.

From what I have seen with the exception of a few companies like Mode Carbon (I could even be wrong about them) only OEM companies like BMW make full carbon fiber parts.

Take the OEM BMW Carbon Fiber mirror caps. They are nice shiny carbon fiber on the outside and sexy raw carbon fiber on the inside. The whole item is legit 100% carbon fiber.

Now there is some other knock off brand selling carbon fiber mirror caps (technosomething?) well the exterior looks like carbon fiber to me, but the interior of the cap is plain plastic black. Are they real carbon fiber at all? Are they 10% layer of glossed carbon fiber and the rest is plain plastic?

What is everyones thoughts on carbon fiber?

Watch how BMW manufactures the carbon fiber roof for our ///M3 E92


__________________
BPM DEV-Tune & DCT Software-Tune & Servotronic & coding ///Alpine HID Angeleyes ///Oem.exhaust mod.
Appreciate 0
      11-21-2016, 01:16 PM   #5
Ao1
Captain
Ao1's Avatar
United Kingdom
112
Rep
604
Posts

Drives: E92 M3
Join Date: Dec 2013
Location: England

iTrader: (3)

I think there is a long term durability issue of lacquer on CF. I had an M3 CF roof with a tiny patch that had delaminated. When I got it re-lacquered by a specialist they said the lacquer over the entire roof just peeled off and it was common to see this. The roof was 5 years old. Makes me wonder what we will see on the i3 and i8 in a few years.
Appreciate 0
      11-21-2016, 01:32 PM   #6
CHE///MIST3
Lieutenant
CHE///MIST3's Avatar
United_States
354
Rep
597
Posts

Drives: E92 M3 6MT Space/Black
Join Date: Mar 2015
Location: Houston, TX

iTrader: (6)

Garage List
2009 BMW M3  [0.00]
2007 BMW 328i  [0.00]
I have been producing carbon fiber parts for radio controlled aircraft for several years now, and one of the biggest qualms I have with some eBay carbon parts for cars is that many manufacturers just don't use UV-resistant epoxy in their vacuum process, or laminate. Most automotive clearcoats are UV resistant by nature so this is usually not the problem, unless they use a very cheap, non-urethane clear coat.

Many time you also see the inside of these parts APPEAR to be carbon on the inside, but there IS such a thing as black-tinted fiber fiberglass! This can be used inside and out and give the look of real carbon fiber. Usually an all-carbon part will be very lightweight, especially if it was made through vacuum infusion.

Ultimately, the fit/finish and weight of the part tells you a lot about what you have purchased....with that goes the price.

GM
Appreciate 1
      11-21-2016, 03:39 PM   #7
Ao1
Captain
Ao1's Avatar
United Kingdom
112
Rep
604
Posts

Drives: E92 M3
Join Date: Dec 2013
Location: England

iTrader: (3)

UV would be a prime suspect for de-bonding, but presumably BMW used high quality UV resistant products. On the roof I had re-lacquered there was a small area that had visibly de-bonded due to a chip in the lacquer, however the entire roof was not well bonded. It peeled off easily. I would never have known unless it was the for the stone chip. Is it just UV or could there be other issues? Differential movement between the lacquer and CF? Difficulty in bonding to CF?
Appreciate 0
      11-21-2016, 03:45 PM   #8
dparm
Stop the hate, get a V8
dparm's Avatar
United_States
3732
Rep
8,601
Posts

Drives: C7 Corvette Grand Sport
Join Date: Jun 2013
Location: Frisco, TX

iTrader: (1)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ao1 View Post
UV would be a prime suspect for de-bonding, but presumably BMW used high quality UV resistant products. On the roof I had re-lacquered there was a small area that had visibly de-bonded due to a chip in the lacquer, however the entire roof was not well bonded. It peeled off easily. I would never have known unless it was the for the stone chip. Is it just UV or could there be other issues? Differential movement between the lacquer and CF? Difficulty in bonding to CF?

Large surfaces that are parallel to the road are the most susceptible to UV damage (roof, hood, trunk). They receive direct UV all of the time. This is why you see a lot of poorly-cared for red cars with pink hoods.

Wax or sealant should provide a good barrier. The epoxy is clearcoated AFAIK but obviously it is still susceptible to UV damage.

As far as the other questions in this thread, yes, most of the cheaper aftermarket stuff you see is just a single layer of CF on top of a piece of molded plastic. Those parts are purely cosmetic. You'll get almost no benefit over the raw plastic underneath.
__________________
Now: 2017 Corvette Grand Sport, 2021 C63 S sedan
Past: 2011.5 M3 sedan ZCP
Appreciate 0
      11-21-2016, 04:06 PM   #9
Ao1
Captain
Ao1's Avatar
United Kingdom
112
Rep
604
Posts

Drives: E92 M3
Join Date: Dec 2013
Location: England

iTrader: (3)

Agreed, but taking the example of red paint the pigments used for red are prone to UV damage. The UV passes through the top coat and discolours the paint pigment underneath. It does not cause the top coat to become detached from the paint.
Appreciate 0
      11-21-2016, 05:10 PM   #10
nholmes
Track Whore
nholmes's Avatar
United_States
532
Rep
1,640
Posts

Drives: women wild
Join Date: Oct 2015
Location: Oahu / Los Angeles

iTrader: (15)

CF isn't cheap, so to cut costs but still give people that fancy expensive look companies often do CF overlays into other materials such as plastic or fiberglass. Most of those cheap CF diffusers out there are overlays.

If cost isn't an issue and you want real weight savings (and in some cases, structural integrity) spend the money and get the real deal.

Some people are just shallow and want to be perceived has having higher financial status, so they buy cheap CF (or real CF if they have the money) to project the image of being wealthy.

I think CF looks cool, which is the reason I have a Stilo CF helmet. I also like that it's a bit lighter than my older HJC helmet.

YMMV.
__________________
Quote:
Originally Posted by ridinwide View Post
Even though you answered my PM like you're missing a chromosome or have some other issues I still want these.
Appreciate 0
      11-21-2016, 05:22 PM   #11
burtonsbs5114
Major
burtonsbs5114's Avatar
United_States
355
Rep
1,197
Posts

Drives: 2021 F87 M2c. LBB, 6mt
Join Date: Nov 2014
Location: Fort Lauderdale, FL

iTrader: (0)

Garage List
As stated above, there are basically two types of carbon fiber products:

1) 100% real carbon fiber
2) real carbon fiber top layer with plastic or fiberglass underside.

I guess a 3rd option would be a plastic/fiberglass part painted to look like carbon fiber.
__________________
2021 F87 M2c. Long Beach Blue over black with blue stitching. 6mt, executive package, slick top.
Appreciate 0
      11-21-2016, 09:11 PM   #12
dparm
Stop the hate, get a V8
dparm's Avatar
United_States
3732
Rep
8,601
Posts

Drives: C7 Corvette Grand Sport
Join Date: Jun 2013
Location: Frisco, TX

iTrader: (1)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ao1 View Post
Agreed, but taking the example of red paint the pigments used for red are prone to UV damage. The UV passes through the top coat and discolours the paint pigment underneath. It does not cause the top coat to become detached from the paint.

Depends if it's two-stage or three-stage paint. The reason I cited "pink" is because some shades of red are a cheaper/simpler two-stage. On three stage, the clear will oxidize and turn white, then the pink happens.
__________________
Now: 2017 Corvette Grand Sport, 2021 C63 S sedan
Past: 2011.5 M3 sedan ZCP
Appreciate 0
      07-24-2017, 09:20 PM   #13
2013M3
Second Lieutenant
2013M3's Avatar
64
Rep
236
Posts

Drives: 2013 E93 M3 Jerez Black, 13 x5
Join Date: Aug 2016
Location: PA

iTrader: (0)

Garage List
2013 BMW X5  [0.00]
2013 BMW M3 E93  [0.00]
Quote:
Originally Posted by burtonsbs5114 View Post
As stated above, there are basically two types of carbon fiber products:

1) 100% real carbon fiber
2) real carbon fiber top layer with plastic or fiberglass underside.

I guess a 3rd option would be a plastic/fiberglass part painted to look like carbon fiber.
Ok. So how does one get the 100% real CF? who makes them?
Appreciate 0
      07-25-2017, 10:45 AM   #14
UPSROD
Lieutenant Colonel
639
Rep
1,629
Posts

Drives: 2013 E92 M3
Join Date: Jul 2015
Location: Richland, Wa.

iTrader: (2)

Garage List
2013 BMW M3  [5.00]
Quote:
Originally Posted by 2013M3 View Post
Ok. So how does one get the 100% real CF? who makes them?
BMW M Performance!
Appreciate 0
      07-25-2017, 06:24 PM   #15
Yeru
Second Lieutenant
Yeru's Avatar
United_States
203
Rep
237
Posts

Drives: 2013 IB E92 M3 ZCP
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Texas

iTrader: (0)

Quote:
Originally Posted by UPSROD View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by 2013M3 View Post
Ok. So how does one get the 100% real CF? who makes them?
BMW M Performance!
+1. I once saw an E46 M3 with a so-called CF hood that had terrible UV damage from the Texas heat; it looked almost as if it had been roasted in a bonfire. It turned a once-beautiful car into an ugly "don't give a shit" monstrosity.
__________________
'22 G80 CP | Tanzanite Blue II | languishing in the order pipeline black hole
'13 E92 M3 ZCP | Interlagos Blue | 6MT | Speed Cloth | Stripper | 50K miles/80K Km
'07 E90 335i | Sonora Metallic | 6MT | Premium | N54 Perf Power Kit | Perf Suspension | 18" BMW MotorSport Wheels | 90K miles/145K Km
Appreciate 0
      07-25-2017, 08:00 PM   #16
GRUESOM3
Major
GRUESOM3's Avatar
1043
Rep
1,306
Posts

Drives: 3 NA cars and 1 Turbo car
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Staten Island NY

iTrader: (4)

You can also have parts hydrodipped and they look exactly like carbon fiber as well aside from what was mentioned earlier.
Appreciate 0
      07-26-2017, 10:35 AM   #17
2013M3
Second Lieutenant
2013M3's Avatar
64
Rep
236
Posts

Drives: 2013 E93 M3 Jerez Black, 13 x5
Join Date: Aug 2016
Location: PA

iTrader: (0)

Garage List
2013 BMW X5  [0.00]
2013 BMW M3 E93  [0.00]
Quote:
Originally Posted by Yeru View Post
+1. I once saw an E46 M3 with a so-called CF hood that had terrible UV damage from the Texas heat; it looked almost as if it had been roasted in a bonfire. It turned a once-beautiful car into an ugly "don't give a shit" monstrosity.
They don't make the center console... grrr
Appreciate 0
      07-26-2017, 11:04 AM   #18
dkracing
Banned
dkracing's Avatar
185
Rep
442
Posts

Drives: M3
Join Date: Jun 2017
Location: Over there

iTrader: (1)

Summary from OP and everyone:

There are four types of carbon fiber, in order of their quality:
- OEM Carbon Fiber - the cream of the crop, 100% carbon fiber, raw carbon on the hidden side, potentially OEM stickers on the hidden side
- Aftermarket Real Carbon Fiber - Quality attempts to be on par with OEM, but not made from the OEM mold, so fitment is not always 100%, but it is 100% carbon fiber
- Aftermarket coated carbon fiber - Items are usually 90% plastic, with a 10% carbon fiber real carbon fiber covering
- Carbon fiber stickers/decals - Imitating the object is made out of carbon fiber, but it maybe a regular body panel, plastic, etc.
Appreciate 2
      07-26-2017, 11:30 AM   #19
ilikebmxbikes
Banned
1500
Rep
4,744
Posts

Drives: S65 1M Clone & E92 M3 4.6L
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: San Francisco

iTrader: (42)

Garage List
Quote:
Originally Posted by dkracing View Post
Summary from OP and everyone:

There are four types of carbon fiber, in order of their quality:
- OEM Carbon Fiber - the cream of the crop, 100% carbon fiber, raw carbon on the hidden side, potentially OEM stickers on the hidden side
- Aftermarket Real Carbon Fiber - Quality attempts to be on par with OEM, but not made from the OEM mold, so fitment is not always 100%, but it is 100% carbon fiber
- Aftermarket coated carbon fiber - Items are usually 90% plastic, with a 10% carbon fiber real carbon fiber covering
- Carbon fiber stickers/decals - Imitating the object is made out of carbon fiber, but it maybe a regular body panel, plastic, etc.
Pretty much.

You get what you pay for. There are some aftermarket brands these days who are producing some fantastic parts. 3D scanning and 3D printing have greatly increased the possibilities to make complicated parts with incredible fitment.

So many people on these forums review their carbon parts and claim great fitment only to post a photo of an item which not only doesn't fit well but has terrible weave. Some people just have to see a quality part next to the replica to see the difference but even then most do not care.
Appreciate 1
dkracing185.00
      07-26-2017, 12:25 PM   #20
Yeru
Second Lieutenant
Yeru's Avatar
United_States
203
Rep
237
Posts

Drives: 2013 IB E92 M3 ZCP
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Texas

iTrader: (0)

Quote:
Originally Posted by 2013M3 View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by Yeru View Post
+1. I once saw an E46 M3 with a so-called CF hood that had terrible UV damage from the Texas heat; it looked almost as if it had been roasted in a bonfire. It turned a once-beautiful car into an ugly "don't give a shit" monstrosity.
They don't make the center console... grrr
I may be wrong, but iND had something a few years back for racing applications; not sure though if that would delete the passenger air bag.
__________________
'22 G80 CP | Tanzanite Blue II | languishing in the order pipeline black hole
'13 E92 M3 ZCP | Interlagos Blue | 6MT | Speed Cloth | Stripper | 50K miles/80K Km
'07 E90 335i | Sonora Metallic | 6MT | Premium | N54 Perf Power Kit | Perf Suspension | 18" BMW MotorSport Wheels | 90K miles/145K Km
Appreciate 0
      08-29-2017, 10:47 PM   #21
cvstar9M3
Captain
cvstar9M3's Avatar
United_States
224
Rep
995
Posts

Drives: 2011 MR e90ZCP 6-MT
Join Date: Oct 2016
Location: Boston

iTrader: (1)

Other than oem, any companies making quality cf? I'm particularly interested in interior components. Thanks.
Appreciate 0
Post Reply

Bookmarks

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off



All times are GMT -5. The time now is 12:37 PM.




m3post
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.11
Copyright ©2000 - 2022, vBulletin Solutions Inc.
1Addicts.com, BIMMERPOST.com, E90Post.com, F30Post.com, M3Post.com, ZPost.com, 5Post.com, 6Post.com, 7Post.com, XBimmers.com logo and trademark are properties of BIMMERPOST