Fiberglass Pools, How They're Made Part 2: Gelcoat
Updated: Mar 16
Today we're going to be giving you the answers to 3 big questions. What is the Gelcoat, What is Polymerization, and last but not least What is the River Pools Way of Manufacturing?
1: What is Gelcoat: Gelcoat is dyed resin and the first coat of your pool or the interior color of your pool you will be looking at while you swim. It is the first layer applied to the pool mold we covered in the first article in this series. Gelcoat is applied to the pool mold using a gel/paint gun that introduces gel coat, air and catalyst simultaneously a the point that it comes out of the
gun and is applied to the mold.
2: What is polymerization: Polymerizationis the cross-linking of many molecules or monomers to create a chain of molecules aka a polymer.
3: What is The River Pools Way: The River Pools Way of manufacturing is a set of best practices that can be broken down into 3 critical items for the Gelcoat. Removal of water, Air Temperature, and Catalyst Ratio.
1: Removal of Water: Why does this matter you may ask, well water and Gelcoat don't mix to remove the water from the air compressor system, River Pools has 4 levels of redundancy. The first is the water separator, next is the air drier, the third is the condensation separator, and the last is the water trap and desiccant filter.
2: Air Temperature: The ideal temperature is between 70 and 80 degrees in the plant with a perfect temperature of 77 degrees.
3: Catalyst Ratio: The Catalyst Ratio should be from 1 1/4-2% of the Gelcoat as a ratio. There is a variance depending on the time of year and outside temperature.
For an up-close view of this process follow Cristian on a quick tour of the River Pools' new plant in the video below.