Frequently Asked Questions epoxy

Below we answer frequently asked questions. Epoxy is a great material with great potential. Our customers have many questions though in daily practice. We try to give some more clarity here. Do you have a question that is not listed here? Please let us know.
General
Problems and solutions
Applications and processing
Tips & Trics

Can I make a fuel tank of epoxy?

Our standard Mr.Boat epoxy is less suitable for this. We do supply a special epoxy with a high chemical persistence. If you want more information about this, please contact us.

Casting electric components

Epoxy does not conduct and can be used to cast electric components like for example LED's. You can use the standard Mr.Boat epoxy for this project. Do not cast more than 3 - 4 cm per time because of the heat release.

Creative applications with epoxy

Mr.Boat Epoxy is widely used by artists for many applications. A few examples are ennobling of pictures and paintings, creating (watertight) garden objects, art objects, case modding, jewelry and much more.

Check out our gallery for projects of our customers.

What customers do with our epoxy

- Building and repairing boats
- Building aquaria and terraria
- Making back walls yourself
- Modelling
- Making Art objects or ennobling
- Repairing wood rot
- Making adjusted wheel chairs
- Building or rebuilding campers
- Car repairs
- Car tuning (make your own carbon parts)
- Casemoding
- Building (Kite)surfboards
- Building Longboards and skateboards
- Repairing fishing rods
- Repairing carbon window cleaning stem
- Epoxy floors
- Building wooden bathroom
- Making and ennobling lures for fishing
- Repairing (carbon)rods
- Mr.Boat epoxy is used in testing the Marsrover (really;)

What's the difference between standard epoxy and epoxy castng resin?

Cast/photo epoxy is mainly used for decorative use. Think of casting objects, pictures ennobling, casting tabletops, making jewelry etc. This epoxy is crystal clear and UV resistant. Through its low heat generation during curing, is the cure time upto 24 hours at room temperature. The definite cure time kan take upto 5 days.

Cast/photo epoxy is not suitable for wood building/repairs. Ik could be used for aquarium back walls but the standard Mr.Boat epoxy works better (faster cure time, stronger).

For all applications where optimal strength is needed, standard Mr.Boat epoxy is used.

Can I dilute epoxy?

Never dilute epoxy yourself. Use if desired Mr.Boat injection epoxy. This epoxy is diluted with special epoxy thinner, is waterthin and penetrates deep in porous surfaces. Note that strength and water resistance of injection epoxy is less than the standard epoxy. We recommend to apply an extra layer standard epoxy over the injection epoxy layer.

Another way to dilute the epoxy without corroding the mechanical qualities is to heat the epoxy (for example in warm but not hot water). The epoxy will become more fluid but watch out: the cure time will then be shorter as well.

Preparation of different underlays

Cured epoxy:
When amine blush has arised (white, greasy layer) rinse it first with water and a scouring pad. Then clean the underlay and decrease it. Sand it with grain 80.

Polyester:
Clean the underlay and decrease it. Sand it with grain 80.

(Hard)wood:
Clean the underlay and decrease it. Sand it with grain 80.

Teak or "greasy" wood:
Clean with acetone for about 15 minutes before applying the epoxy in order for the grease to disappear and the epoxy to penetrate well in the wood. Make sure the acetone is evaporated before applying epoxy.

Porous wood:
Clean the underlay and decrease it. Sand it with grain 80. Possibly apply a layer of Mr.Boat injection first.

Steel:
Clean the underlay and decrease it. Sand or sandblast untill the steel is as clean as possible. Apply directly after that a thin first layer epoxy to prevent flash rust.

Aluminum:
Decrease and sand. Possible to pretreat with special aluminum primer.

Plastic:
Depending on the type of plastic. In most cases decrease and sand first. Epoxy does not stick to polyethylene, polypropylene, nylon, perspex and poly carbonate.

Suture on hard plastic types like ABS, PVC en styrene is possible provided that the underlay is well prepaired and enough surface to suture. After sanding you can shortly go over the surface with a gas burner to improve the suture. Watch out: do not melt the plastic!

When you are not sure about the origin of the underlay, work with a sample first to make sure it works out well for the rest of your project.

How can I apply best more layers of epoxy?

The most efficient way is to work "wet in wet". In this way you don't have to sand and decrease between the layers.

The next layer is being applied when the former layer isn't sticky anymore but still soft. You should still see a fingerprint. This demands some planning but safes time.

What do I use fillers for?

Epoxy is rather fluid and therefore runs throught the cracks. To make a thicker mass, fillers are being added. This can be saw dust, cotton or chopped glass strands.

There are also "high tech" fillers like stewathix, aerosil, and microballoons. These fillers provide a diehard result after curing and are super light whereby the weight stays low.

Can I paint/varnish over epoxy?

Ja. That is recommendable. Epoxy is reasonably resistant to UV light but remains better when treated with a UV resistant (boat)varnish. This doesn't necessary have to be a 2-components paint system.

Mr.Boat casting/photo epoxy is UV resistant.

It is freezing outside. Can I work with epoxy?

Don't. The ideal temperature to work with epoxy is around 18 degrees Celsius. At lower temperatures upto 10 degrees Celsius you can work barely with epoxy but cure time is much longer then. Besides that it's no fun to work in the freezing cold...

How can I apply epoxy best?

With a disposable brush or roller. Redundant epoxy can be removed with a squeegee (rubber spatula). Don't use expensive tools because after curing you can throw it away. Wrapped in aluminum foil, put in the freezer, no curing will take place. But do not place the tools next to your steak for tonight.

With a steel or teflon roller you can press any air bubbles out of the laminate. The squeegee works well for this too.

How much epoxy do I mix at a time?

Dependant on what you want to do, but not more than you can process in 30 minutes.

If you mix little quantities (less than 100 grams), resin and hardener should be weighed on a (kitchen) scale. Above 100 grams you can mix on volume in the mixing cup.

Epoxy for aquarium and terraria

Mr.Boat epoxy is well known among lovers of tanks, terraria and palludaria. It is suitable to glue and coat (usually wooden) boxes, make boxes and back walls watertight and maintenance-free.

Mr.Boat epoxy is after curing completely safe for man, animals and plants.

There is a lot of information available on the internet, especially on different forums. Check for example aquafora.nl, Malawifreaks.nl or
cichlidenkwekers.nl.

Can you repair polyester with epoxy?

Epoxy is excellently suited to repair polyester.

How do I measure resin and hardener?

The easiest way is by mixing in a mixing cup. This is included with all our epoxy and can be used more than once.

Epoxy should officially be weighed. Because of the density of Mr.Boat epoxy you can also measure in volume by using the mixing cup when measured more than 100 grams. When less than 100 grams is needed, use a (kitchen)scale.

Make sure to mix resin and hardener very well. Don't forget the edges. Better to stir longer than too short.

If you don't have a mixing cup, it is easy to make a mixing cup yourself:

Use transparant plastic cups. Fill one of the cups with water, 3 cm. of 5 cm., it doesn't matter. Mark the water level on the cup and mark "H" for hardener. This is the cup for hardener. Take another cup and fill this one twice the amount of the other cup. Mark that water level with "R" for resin. That is the resin cup. Dry both cups before using. Epoxy doesn't like to be mixed with water.

Don't mix the epoxy in foam cups. During curing the epoxy turns hot and the cups could melt! Also do not use glass jars. These can burst through the released heat.

What do I use (glass)fabrics for?

Glass fabrics are used to make construction reinforcements. In combination with epoxy a wooden boat can be made much stronger and stiffer. Corner joints can be reinforced with glass tape (strips glass fabrics).

With fabrics you can make form pieces in a mold.

Glass fabrics are available in different weights. The lightest fabric we sell is 25 gram/m2. This is a very fine fabric which is used for modelling for example or model airplane builders. Our heaviest fabric is a 450 grams biaxial glass fabric that is used for heavy duty applications.

Furthermore glass fabrics can be woven in different ways. There is a difference between vierkant woven and keper woven where the last has an angled weft thread. In general keper fabric is easier to fold. But this only applies to somewhat heavier weights.

Besides glass fabrics there are other fabrics with different qualities. For example carbon fabrics (light) or aramid fabrics (also known as Kevlar; resistant to point load). A combination of both is also possible.

Mr.Boat also sells different types of design fabrics for decorative use.

Do I have to use a prime before painting/varnishing over epoxy?

In most cases it is not necessary to use a primer before using a paint system over the epoxy. However there are paint systems that do need a primer. Always follow the instructions of the manufacturer.

Zelfetsende? primers work reasonably because of the high resistance against chemicals.

What is laminating?

Laminating is impregnating glass fabrics with epoxy. That way a very strong "hull" is being formed after curing around wood for example.

With 1.5 kg. epoxy you can laminate about 4-6 m2 glass fabrics, dependant on the used weight.

The total weight and resin absorbtion of the laminate can be found at the details of the different kinds of glass fabrics.

What is coating?

To protect wood (or other materials) against external influences, a layer of epoxy is applied with a roller or brush. Don't forget the head end of the wood.

With 1.5 kg. epoxy you can coat about 6-7 m2.

What is a fillet?

Een fillet is a (epoxy glue) connection between wood parts with thickened epoxy. This thickening takes place by adding fillers to obtain a thicker paste. The ideal thickness looks like pinut butter. Then a "caterpillar" epoxy is applied to the parts to be glued. These are wiped away half round with a tongue depressor.

You can apply the "epoxy caterpillar" easily by putting the thickened epoxy in a plastic bag where you cut off the point. This way you have a cheap pastry bag.

Apply a thin layer of epoxy on the surface to be treated before making the fillet.

Suitable fillers for making epox glue or fillets are aerosil, stewathix or cotton.

Connections with epoxy fillets are even stronger than the individual parts.

How do I make an epoxy glue?

Epoxy glue is made by adding a filler to the epoxy to make it thicker. Thicken the epoxy untill the mass looks like ketchup. Apply to the parts to be glued and press lightly. Epoxy needs space to suture well. This unlike traditional wood glue which needs long heavy pressure in order to suture.

Suitable fillers for making epoxy glue of fillets are: aerosil, stewathix or cotton.

How do I make epoxy putty?

Epoxy putty can be made easily yourself. Choose a filler, for example microballoons and mix this with epoxy untill the desired thickness. Voila. Epoxy putty at a low cost.

Apply a thin layer of epoxy on the underlay before applying epoxy putty in order to improve the suture.

Don't feel like mixing yourself? We also sell handy ready to go epoxy putty in 400 and 1000 grams packagings.

Gelcoat repair with epoxy

Epoxy is excellently suitable to repair damage in the gelcoat. Epoxy is stronger than gelcoat and doesn't shrink.

Roadmap for small damage to the gelcoat
1. Mill the damage with a Dremel met bolkopfreesje. No loose parts should be left and make sure to mill the edges slanting upto the undamaged gelcoat. Try to leave the underlying polyester with glass fabric undamaged.

2. Sand the edges with a fine grain untill they are nice and smooth.

3. Clean the repairing part and make it dust free with acetone. Acetone also expels any present moist. Watch out: acetone is flammable and dissolves alsmost anything (except polyester). Wear suitable protection.

4. Tape the rapairing part tightly so that epoxy only covers the part to be repaired.

5. Mix some epoxy putty first and add small amounts of pigment (colour) untill you have the right colour. Preferrably a little less than too much. You can always make it darker, not lighter.

6. Spread the repairing part as tight as possible with the coloured epoxy putty. Use a putty knife or squeegee.

7. Remove the tape and let it cure (cure time dependant on the surrounding temperature).

8. Sand smooth with an even finer grain. Next the spot can be polished or, if the colour isn't quite right, you can use a paint system as finish.
This can be a 1-component or 2-components paint (or UV resistant varnish).

Above roadmap is meant for small repairs, cracks and stars. Other technics are required to repair bigger damage or holes.

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