Composite Manufacturing

Fast Forward Composites is a full service engineering and manufacturing company specializing in building parts and tools out of advanced composites and metals. We are skilled at supporting custom projects across the marine, defense and transportation industries. FFC is fully capable of building your projects utilizing our large-scale facility, high-precision 5-Axis mills, autoclaves and large curing ovens. Our promise is to efficiently deliver high quality composite products, on time and on budget. 

 
 
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Build Support

Collaborating with your design team is essential to the success of your project. Maintaining flexibility and reacting quickly to developments within your design cycle are important components of this partnership.  We rely heavily on our capability to model, loft and machine components from your master 3D model or one that we create for you. Our capabilities include:

  • 3D modeling – creating tool surfaces, templates, and assembly jigs from the master 3D model.
  • 3-Axis/ 5-Axis CNC Machine Capability
  • Ply lofting
  • Automated ply cutting
  • Drafting and laminate checklists
  • Managing material testing and certificates of compliance
  • Weight control and documentation
  • Third-party non-destructive testing (NDT)
 

Process

Composite materials, processes and cure cycles are based on your specific needs: coefficient of thermal expansion, end item tolerances and accuracy requirements,  strength and durability needs, number of use cycles, surface condition requirements and cost. 

We follow a highly-focused meticulous process:

  • Design: Layups are computer-designed for maximum tensile, compressive and torsional loads
  • Tooling: For complex parts we build our own tooling. This integration brings tighter integration of parts with tools and change capability if revisions are made. Depending on application, we use aluminum, composites, ceramic, MDF or infused monolithic carbon
  • Layup: Most FFC laminates are made with pre-preg materials and proprietary poly resins for infusion. These materials are CNC cut for precision, laid up in the molds, then vacuum-debulked for wrinkle-free layup, regardless of high ply counts.
  • Curing: FFC’s custom modular ovens and autoclaves automatically control and monitor temperature and pressure. 

  • Assembly: Once cured, parts are trimmed and assembled to computer generated design geometries
 

Facility and technology

FFC’s newly renovated 30,000 square foot production facility is located in the heart of “Boat Builders’ Row” in Bristol, Rhode Island.  Our manufacturing space is clean and flexible with the critical infrastructure to support the composite manufacturing process:

  • Modular Composite Curing Oven - 75’L x 30’W (expandable to 90’)
  • Small Parts Composite Curing Oven - 32’L x 15’W
  • Large Autoclave - 150’L, 6’ Diameter
  • Small Autoclave - 60’L, 3’ Diameter
  • ARES CMS 4818 5-Axis Router - X = 4,800mm  Y = 1,800mm Z = 1,200mm, B: +/- 120°, C: +/- 270°
  • ARES CMS 4628 5-Axis Router - X = 4,800mm  Y = 1,800mm Z = 1,200mm, B: +/- 120°, C: +/- 270°
  • Multi Cam 5000 3-Axis Router - bed dimensions: 9m L x 2.4m W x Z=0.4mm
  • Composite Tube Spinner – capable of laminating mandrels up to 40’
  • Machine Shop
  • Large Panel Carbon Laminating Tables - 2 tables 30’L x 10” W
  • Catalytic thermo forming heater for shaping large panels of foam core

Customer Support                                                                                                                                                                            

We stand by our process and our products, and recognize our customers are depending on us to deliver high quality products. We will provide additional support if engineering improvements are needed or if upgrades are required. 

All projects are completed in-house at our facility in Bristol, Rhode Island.