If you’re a hobbyist or a professional, working in resins and polymers enables you to do many amazing things. However, having access to a reliable resin mold release agent is essential.
What is resin mold release? Resin mold release is a chemical agent that helps release resin from metal and plastic molds. While many resins are designed to be easily removable from various metal molds, resin that sticks can damage a mold or the actual resin product. Resin mold release is an essential tool if you work with resin and create your own products. Used correctly, resin mold release agents will enable you to separate your project pieces from your molds safely, ensuring that neither your molds nor your castings become damaged.
In this article, you’ll learn about resin mold release and how it can help you in your hobby and manufacturing work. No matter whether you make jewelry for fun, create artwork or miniatures for your Etsy store, or run a manufacturing business, we’ll show you the technique of DIY resin mold release agents so that you can make your work easily and safely.
What are Epoxy Release Agents?
Epoxy mold release agents are substances that prevent epoxy resins from sticking to molds. They are essential for pulling resin castings from molds. These come in various kinds of spray forms, both aerosol and non-aerosol. Usually, epoxy release agents are composed of substances like polyvinyl alcohol. These are used to coat molds and form a film that will enable a casting to be removed easily.
Normally, a mold is treated with an epoxy release agent before casting the mold. If this is not done, the casting will stick to the mold and be ruined. It’s also important to note that porous materials, such as wood or plaster, should be sealed before being used with epoxy resin. These porous materials will bond with the resin and not be removable without damage.
It’s also imperative that any molds that you use be dry and clean. Debris that gets into resin can not only damage the mold but ruin your project. Before starting a project, it’s smart to inspect and clean any molds you plan to use.
Types of Resin Mold Release Agents
There are two types of epoxy resin mold release agents that are used by hobbyists and in small scale manufacturing: resin mold release wax and resin mold release spray.
Resin release spray is the most common and is usually sold in aerosol form.
Resin mold wax is usually carefully applied by hand and left to dry overnight, forming the seal for the casting. It is best used on large, flat surfaces.
What is the best release agent for epoxy resin? That depends on your project and your preference. Some people prefer working with sprays and others prefer waxes. This will depend on your project and the materials that you plan to use. Test your options and experiment!
Keep in mind, if you’re looking for a resin mold release alternative some common household materials like vegetable oil, mineral oil, and petroleum jelly may work for your project.
How to Use Epoxy Resin Release Spray
Below are steps to properly apply resin mold release spray to a mold. You should use an outdoor workspace if possible and wear a safety mask and eye protection.
1) Clean the mold thoroughly with soap and water. Let dry.
2) Use a resin mold release spray to create a light cloud.
3) Slowly draw the mold through the cloud. You may need to repeat steps 2 and 3 two or three times. Make sure not to spray the epoxy mold release spray onto the mold. This can damage the casting and isn’t necessary.
4) Wait at least 30 minutes for the resin mold release to dry. Waiting to do so overnight is perfectly acceptable.
How to Use Resin Release Wax
The instructions to use resin release wax are identical to the directions above, except that you should be careful when mixing the resin release wax. This product often comes in a liquid form where components are separate and where vigorous shaking is necessary to mix the resin release wax. A brush can be used to apply the wax, gently detailing surfaces that need separation.
What is PVA Release Lacquer?
PVA release lacquer is a product you can use with either resin release spray or wax to initially treat porous surfaces. This is essential if you are working with wood, plaster, or any other porous material that epoxy can possibly bond with. Make sure that any porous material is sealed before you insert it as an inclusion or use it in any resin project.
Success with Your Projects: Plastic Materials Answers Your Questions About Resin Release Products
Let your creativity shine through! Regardless of whether you run a small business or if you just enjoy being creative, Plastic Materials can help you with any questions related to resin mold release products. Contact us today!
When boat owners find that their precious fiberglass boat has been damaged, no doubt one of the first things they think is, “I need to find a fiberglass boat repair near me.“ However, going to a boat repair specialist comes with astronomical fees of up to $3,000.
But here’s the surprising truth most boat experts won’t tell you: most repairs really aren’t that expensive. Patching a fiberglass boat can cost as little as $500 or less if you’re not afraid of some elbow grease.
This article will discuss fiberglass boat repair: how to do it yourself, how much it will cost you, and the materials you’ll need.
Fiberglass Boat Repair Overview
Before we get into the specifics of doing a boat hull repair, let’s briefly discuss the material you’ll need.
In most boats, “fiberglass” is a combination of fiberglass strands and epoxy resin, finished with a thin layer of pigmented resin called the gel coat. That outer coating gives fiberglass its sheen.
The depth of the damage will dictate how you’ll approach the repair. Is just the outer layer damaged or does the inner fiberglass core need repairs too? If it’s just the gel coating, you should be able to sand it down and apply a fresh coat. However, if the core has been damaged, it will need to be filled. You’ll know that the fiberglass core has been breached if you see fiber strands.
Fortunately, fiberglass is straightforward to repair. You can fix even the gravest of damage with relative ease and minimal expense.
Preparing for a Fiberglass Gouge Repair
If you want to achieve the best results, you should prepare the affected area for repair.
First, remove any decals or stickers on your boat using a heat gun set at the lowest setting. Gently run the heat gun over the decal and peel carefully. Use an adhesive remover to clear off any residue as needed.
You should also check the surrounding areas for delamination. If you find any it’s best to remove these spots altogether. Use a screwdriver and tap the affected fiberglass – any dull sound is a sign of delamination. These areas can cause issues down the road, so you should cut them out. Repeat this process, checking the edges of the hole and enlarging each as needed.
Fiberglass Boat Repair Cost and Materials
One question that will pop up when you start any hull touch-up project is, “how much does fiberglass repair cost?”
Fortunately, it’s relatively inexpensive to do a fiberglass repair. Boat scratches, deep gouges, and even holes can cost less than $500 in materials. If you have the required tools, then the cost might be even lower.
It’s essential that you buy and prepare everything ahead of time so the repair session goes smoothly. Here’s the equipment you’ll need to perform the repair:
- Heat gun
- Rotary tool
- Disposable spray gun
- Variable speed buffer
- Wool buffing pad
- Burr nose grinder bit
- Sanding block
- Paper cups
- Stir stick
Then, you’ll need materials. Most of the materials are available at any hardware store. Or, you can contact Plastic Materials Incorporated to buy everything in one convenient place.
- Gel coat (try contacting the manufacturer to match the exact color to your boat model)
- Gel coat reducer
- Buffing compound
- Powdered fiberglass filler
Lastly, don’t forget your safety gear:
- Safety glasses
- Chemical resistant gloves
How to Fix a Fiberglass Boat: Step-by-Step Solutions
This guide will show you how to repair deep gouges that have penetrated the fiberglass core.
- Use a V-shaped grinder bit to cut grooves into the gouged area. Smooth the edges of the gel coating to eliminate any sharp areas.
- For lighter scratches, you can use sandpaper to sand it down. Start with 80-grit sandpaper, then move a 150-grit, before finally finishing with a 240-grit.
- Prepare a gel coat filler in small batches. Gradually mix gel coat and powdered fiberglass together until they form a paste resembling peanut butter. Add the hardener last and mix thoroughly for a full minute to remove any resin patches.
- Apply the gel coat filler on the gouged areas. It’s perfectly okay, and in fact recommended, to overfill, as you will sand these spots later on.
- Allow the filler to cure for 1 – 2 hours. You can touch it to tell if it’s ready.. The filler should be fully hardened without a sticky texture.
- Prepare a batch of gel coat mixture, which consists of a gel coat, gel coat reducer, and hardener. Place it in a disposable spray gun and use short bursts to apply it over the affected area.
- Wait for the gel coating to cure.
- Finish the repair areas with sandpaper. Start with 600-grit, then move on to 800-grit. Finally, end with 1,200-grit before buffing.
- Re-apply any decals you want, and then wax.
A Fiberglass Boat Repair Is Easy with the Right Materials
The quality of your repair work is only as good as the materials you use, so make sure you only get the best. For everything you need, give Plastic Materials Incorporated a call. We have everything you need, from fillers to gel coatings to epoxy and polyester resins.
Epoxy resin is a terrifically versatile material. Many hobbyists and crafters all over the world work with various epoxy resins. However, when not mixed correctly, epoxy can remain liquid and ruin your project. So, how long does it take for epoxy to dry? Here, we share the information you need for successful epoxy curing.
In this piece, we’ll be talking about mixing and drying (or “curing”) epoxy for the best results. There are many reasons why your epoxy may not be curing correctly, and we want to show you some tips that can help your project be a success!
How Long Does It Take for Epoxy to Dry?
Answering the question “how long does it takes for epoxy to dry?” depends on a number of factors:
- The nature of the project you are carrying out and the number of pieces you are curing
- Which brand and type of epoxy resin you are using
- Whether or not you are using a slow-curing epoxy
How long does epoxy take to dry? Generally, it takes 24 hours for most types of resin to cure. Slow-curing epoxy types take up to 72 hours to cure. This presumes that you’re conducting your work in a well-ventilated place with a temperature of 72 degrees Fahrenheit or below.
How Can I Minimize My Epoxy Dry Time?
So, you’re asking “how long does it take for resin to dry?” Most factors that keep epoxy from setting have to do with incorrect mixing and other mistakes. We’ll list below some common reasons why epoxy may be slow to dry, and what you can do to speed up your epoxy cure time:
If your resin is past the expiration date on the bottle, then it’s most likely not usable and should be replaced.
If you have kept your resin mix in an environment that is not climate controlled or dry, moisture may have collected inside the resin mix container and contaminated the product. This is important to know if you’re asking how long does resin take to cure.
Improper Mixing and Measuring
Did you mix your resin properly? Different brands of resin have different mixing instructions. They’re not all the same! If you didn’t mix your resin thoroughly or measure it correctly, it might not cure.
Dirty Mixing Cups and Inclusions
Did you make sure your inclusions were dry and sealed before inserting them into molds? Did you make sure that your mixing cups were dry and clean before mixing? These can both have a big impact on how quickly it takes for your epoxy to dry. “How long does resin take to dry?” is a question that won’t be useful if your mixing equipment isn’t clean and ready.
Are Your Molds Dry and Clean? Are Your Molds Made Out of Latex?
You should only work with molds that are completely clean and dry – epoxy won’t cure in bad molds. Likewise, certain mixes of epoxy react badly to latex. Be especially careful when working with latex molds. This can be a big factor in figuring out how long it takes resin to dry.
Too Much Hardener
This is a big mistake. Adding more hardener will not decrease cure time. Follow the listed directions on your product.
Tips on How To Cure Resin
Here are some tips and tricks on how to cure resin effectively for successful epoxy projects.
Use More Heat
The use of heating lamps and working in a room that is at least 80 degrees Fahrenheit can help your resin cure more quickly. Make sure to abide by safety precautions and ventilation, but applying more heat can help your castings cure faster.
Try Out UV Resin
The innovation of UV resin enables you to mix a resin that dries with exposure to UV light. This kind of epoxy needs to be applied in thinner layers and with some care, but the ability to instantly dry your resin is worth it.
Don’t Over Color
Mixing in too much of various color agents can prevent your resin from curing properly, therefore, m
easure your colors carefully and only use the recommended amount.
Make Sure Your Measurements are Correct
One of the biggest mistakes beginners make is not following directions and not mixing your epoxy according to the recommended directions. This can cause your casting to cure slowly, be cloudy, or otherwise come out wrong.
Compare Different Resin Products
Different epoxy products are intended for different styles of end products. Compare different products, check out online reviews, and speak to fellow artisans. Cure times should be listed on the packaging for epoxy products, in the meantime check out our products and pick the one that best matches your project.
Let Plastic Materials Answer Your Questions About Epoxy Curing
Plastic Materials helps business people, artists, and hobbyists with these products and knows how to succeed when using resins and epoxies. If you’re asking “how long does epoxy take to cure?”, we can help you. Contact us today!