Carbon fiber and graphite fiber composites offer a reinforcement option

that allows higher strength with less comparative weight, due to the

inherent stiffness of the fibers. The fibers are produced in a process

using one of two precursors derived from either PAN (polyacrylonitrile, a

thermoplastic), or pitch that is derived from either coal or oil

byproducts. These precursors are heated and then spun into thin filaments

using textile-type equipment. It is then oxidized around 260ºC under

tension, allowing the carbon chains to align. This is followed by

carbonization in nitrogen above 1000ºC, to produce carbon fibers. The

fibers are composed of 93 to 95% carbon, and have a stiffness (tensile

modulus) of 20 to 30 msi. These are the carbon fibers that are primarily

found in sporting goods. To achieve fibers where the carbon crystals are

further stretched and aligned, and thus can achieve higher stiffness,

graphitization takes place around 2000ºC, even as high as 3000ºC. These

graphite fibers are over 99% carbon, and have a tensile modulus of 60 msi

to as high as 140 msi. The best of these graphite fibers are used

primarily in aerospace applications.

Carbon and graphite fibers are subsequently sized and either woven as

textiles, or bundled together and spun onto spools in unidirectional form.

Combined with either epoxy or cyanate ester resins, they can be cured with

heat and pressure to form composite structures that are aligned to

optimize their strength in one or more directions. Pre-impregnated

composites have resins combined with the fibers in unidirectional sheets. 

They are spooled and stored frozen until close to the time of use.


Graphite is a polymorph of the element carbon. diamond is another

polymorph. The two share the same chemistry, carbon, but have very

different structures and very different properties. Diamond is the

hardest mineral known to man, Graphite is one of the softest. Diamond is

an excellent electrical insulator, Graphite is a good conductor of

electricity. Diamond is the ultimate abrasive, Graphite is a very good

lubricant. Diamond is usually transparent, Graphite is opaque. Diamond

crystallizes in the Isometric system and graphite crystallizes in the

hexagonal system. Graphite is the stable form of carbon. All diamonds at

or near the surface of the Earth are currently undergoing a transformation

into Graphite. This reaction is extremely slow. All of the differences

between graphite and diamond are the result of the difference in their

respective structures. Graphite has a sheet-like structure where the atoms

all lie in a plane and are only weakly bonded to the graphite sheets above

and below. Diamond has a framework structure where the carbon atoms are

bonded to other carbon atoms in three dimensions as opposed to two in

graphite. The carbon-carbon bonds in both minerals are quite strong, but

it is the application of those bonds that make the difference.

Graphite is one of the softest minerals (a very slippery lubricant) and is

the high-strength component in composites used to build automobiles,

aircraft, and golf club shafts and many other products. It is the weakly

bonded sheets that slide by each other to yield the slipperiness or

softness. Yet when those sheets are rolled up into fibers, and those

fibers twisted into threads, the true strength of the bonds becomes

apparent. The threads are molded into shape, and held in place by a binder

(such as an epoxy resin). The resulting composites have some of the

highest strength-to-weight ratios of any materials (excluding diamond

crystals and carbon nano tubes).

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  • New Moses Carbon Graphite USA neck models: the CS-27, a 24 fret custom guitar neck & MJ-144 A, a slanted fret neck for Fender 4-st basses.
  • Inlays and Finishes

    Paduak wood Block inlay with binding Hardwood stripe fingerboard inlay Steamin' Java 1nt27 full
  • Moses Carbon Graphite USA offers Hipshot, Schaller, Gotoh, ABM and Sperzel hardware. We also offer Bartolini, Lace, EMG and other electronics.

  • Fiber Optic Position Markers

    See examples of awesome fiber optic fret markers in the Inlays & Finishes section!