What is G-10?

G-10/FR-4 is a thermosetting industrial laminate consisting of a continuous filament glass cloth material with an epoxy resin binder. This product, first introduced in the 1950's, has characteristics of high strength, excellent electrical properties and chemical resistance. These properties are maintained not only at room temperature but also under humid or moist conditions. Today what is called G-10 is actually FR-4, the flame retardant version of G-10. Both G-10 and FR-4 are rated at 285 degree F continuous operating temperature. Because they are thermosets, no melting will occur with these grades, however charring will be observed after extended periods above the temperature rating. FR-4 has a flammability rating of 94 V-0. With these outstanding characteristics, it is easy to understand why G-10/FR-4 is such a versatile material and is used in a wide variety of applications.

G-10 is a high-pressure plastic laminate glass epoxy. It has near-zero water absorption, and is not electrically conducive. Its texture makes for a great grip on knife handles. One of its desirable properties is it neither feels cold in cooler temperatures or hot in warmer temperatures. G10 is a Glass-based Epoxy Resin Laminate, which is formed by soaking layers of glass cloth in epoxy resin, and compressing them down and heating them until they set.

G10 is very similar to Micarta and Carbon Fiber Laminate, in that they are all Resin Laminates, only the base material is changed. G10 is the toughest of the Glass Fiber Resin Laminates and consequently the most commonly used. G10 is imperveous to moisture, and has excellent electrical insulating properties making it useful for circuit boards and othe electrical applications. It is also easy to grind and comes in many colors making it an excellent choice for knife handles and parts.

It is often used for tactical knife handles. While production knives using G10 tend to be textured, creating a grippy surface for extra purchase, custom makers tend to either bead blast G10, sand it or polish it.

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