Florida native Corey Glasgow works on what he dubs “unique” projects, such as the fastest yachts, the lightest skiffs or the fastest racing boat. Three years ago, he and his friend Jessy Johnson started Compofab, an advanced epoxy composite marine manufacturer company based in Rockledge, Fla., with a group of close friends. Since then, they’ve traveled around the world, sharing their composites expertise with the boatbuilding industry.
“I got into composites ten years ago as a fluke,” he explains. “I was building houses with SIPs (structurally insulated panels) in Virginia, when Jessy told me about a 136-foot (41-meter) superyacht based on aircraft technology, called the Adler Project, which a German industrialist was building with some guys from New Zealand, based on aircraft technology. The group had been in Titusville, Fla., for a year working on the project and was ready to recruit more help. So, I moved back to my home state and jumped in with both feet.”
Bilge Rat to Novice
After two years of learning the ropes as an apprentice in the advanced composites marine industry, the project was finished and Glasgow branched out to learn more about composites manufacturing. “We had built the complete yacht structure with composites to keep it light. We made bulkheads from a nomex honeycomb core and carbon fiber, which at the time it was very unique, but has since become more mainstream,” he says. “But I wanted to refine the processes I’d learned, like multistep vacuum bagging to create lighter, stronger boats.”
Once the project was complete, Glasgow, Johnson and a few others from the project started building race boats for Callan Marine out of Brevard, Fla. “It was an amazingly innovative environment,” says Glasgow. “We built our own custom resin impregnators, solid-carbon floating pedestal molds for curing and the Miss Longlite—arguably the fastest prop driven catamaran ever.” After three years working on the Ms. Longlite speed boat, Glasgow ready to move on. Johnson moved to Texas to work on aircraft parts, and Glasgow went to Sea Ray Yachts engineering department in Merritt Island, Fla.
From Novice to Owner
After two years working in separate locations, gaining more experience, the friends decided to start Compofab. Soon, the budding company was approached by Florida-based Vectorworks Marine, who they worked with on the Adler project. Vectorworks had been hired by J Franke Crane (JFCI), a composite contractor for Abu Dhabi Mar, based in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates (UAE), to help retrofit a 462-foot (141-meter) Dutch war frigate into what he describes as a space-age private yacht for the ruler of Dubai, who would present it as gift for his son. “They got a deal on the boat, but it was all metal and they wanted the top to have breathtaking curves and shapes, which would have been difficult to do with aluminum or steel.”