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Topic: The random RESIN question thread!  (Read 392975 times)
Tags for this thread: resin , mold , catalyst , resin_problems  Add new tag
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iheartcapnhook
« Reply #1570 on: June 19, 2010 09:00:17 AM »

What kind of vise does everyone use when you drill into resin pendants?  Like the $20 ones at Home Depot?  I was thinking about lining it with a leather shammy to prevent it from sliding or scuffing the resin??? 

OR... is there a jewelry vise I can get somewhere?

I'm so lost right now!  Can you tell?
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ToniOboe
« Reply #1571 on: June 29, 2010 09:25:31 AM »

  Hello, everyone.  This is my second time using epoxy resin.  My first time, I used plastic molds and couldn't break out my castings.  This batch cured fully within 14 hours or so.  This time, I used it to coat some wooden pendants, but it's been 4 days and it's not hard at all.  I measured out equal amounts of the catalyst and resin.  The only mistake I made when mixing was that I didn't add it to a second new cup, which it says to do in the directions.  I also noticed that about 30 minutes into casting that the resin became pretty warm to the touch, and I figured that was the chemical reaction.  I don't think these pendants are ever going to cure, and I would really like my kitchen table back.  Is there anything I can do to seal them so they're usable, like a spray sealer?  I seriously can't touch them as they'll leave marks in the resin.  Thank you for any help you can provide. 
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ToniOboe
« Reply #1572 on: June 29, 2010 11:10:31 AM »

   I'm trying to figure out how to post a photo of what I was trying to do, but uploading is not working for some strange reason.

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crazydoc
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« Reply #1573 on: June 29, 2010 01:12:05 PM »

I wish I knew how to help you resolve your problem, but I've not (YET) delved into the magic that is RESIN!

However, I have read that it can take a VERY long time for resin to cure if it is humid. Is it, by chance, quite humid in your area?

Good luck!
~CD~

p.s. There is a flagged thread above in which you might find some ready answers to your question.
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Diane B.
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« Reply #1574 on: June 30, 2010 09:15:00 AM »

First, you can't post photos at Craftster till you've posted 10 messages.  So skip around to a few boards and post short answers or "that's cute" replies (don't do them all in one board though...very boring for other readers to plow through).  

Once you've done that, you can post pics here which should help.  
It would help even more helpful though perhaps to know exactly which brand (and type) of resin you were using, the temp and humidity at which you applied and cured, and what material you were using the resin on.

Quote
My first time, I used plastic molds and couldn't break out my castings.


"Plastic" comes in various types and not all of them will release resins easily.  There are things you can use as releases in various kinds of molds, but in general you'll want molds for resin that are made from HDPE plastics (and also Rubbermaid-type plastics) or from very smooth silicone (including silicone putties that you make into molds yourself).  There are also ways to help get them out sometimes if stuck (see link below).

When casting resins in molds, it also matters which resin you're using. 
Polyester resins are the ones usually used in molds, and can be cast into "deep" molds as well as shallow ones. 
Nowadays there's a tweaked epoxy resin called Easy Cast which kind of acts like a polyester resin since it can also be cast into deep molds, but it may become soft to the touch if warmed later or flexible if thin. 
Regular epoxy resins are usually used for thick coatings, but can also be put into permanent shallow "cells" (that's often done over images in little metal frames these days, for example) and used in shallow molds.  Epoxy resins are more adhesive than polyester resins though, but are less bad for lungs and less fiddly to use than polyesters. 

Quote
This batch cured fully within 14 hours or so.  This time, I used it to coat some wooden pendants, but it's been 4 days and it's not hard at all.  I measured out equal amounts of the catalyst and resin.  The only mistake I made when mixing was that I didn't add it to a second new cup, which it says to do in the directions.

Few things to mention there. 
First, hopefully your "wooden" pendants were either sealed before using with the resin or bone dry.  If not residual moisture could escape into the resin, usually clouding it or actually forming bubbles in the heat.
Other problems could be insufficient mixing as you mentioned, or things like using waxed cups, high humidity, temp in the room too cold or hot, etc (see link below).

Quote
I also noticed that about 30 minutes into casting that the resin became pretty warm to the touch, and I figured that was the chemical reaction.


Polyester resins heat up more than epoxies, but that was probably normal.

 
Quote
Is there anything I can do to seal them so they're usable, like a spray sealer?

It takes resins up to 3 days to really cure sometimes (especially in cool or humid conditions) so you just may not have waited long enough ...that's different than "hardening" in general btw.

If they're still not "done" after that time, you can reseal with another coat of epoxy or with polyurethane, but you'll want to clean well with acetone or alcohol and/or dig out the uncured parts first.


There's lots of info on using resins, the types and brand names of each, how to seal porous or not-bone dry embedments/inclusions, lessons, etc., on this page of my site if you want to check it out:
http://www.glassattic.com/polymer/other_materials.htm

HTH,
Diane B.



« Last Edit: June 30, 2010 09:40:53 AM by Diane B. » THIS ROCKS   Logged

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ToniOboe
« Reply #1575 on: July 06, 2010 11:59:48 AM »

Thank you, Diane, for your response.  It's been over a week, and they're still not dry.  I tried sealing one of the pendants with a spray Acrylic that I use for my polymer beads, and it got dry on top, but was still a bit squishy underneath.  I ended up throwing them all out. 
     Yes, I had sealed the pendants with Modge Podge.  The resin that I used was "Easy Cast".  I think I must have messed up the mixing, since the first cast I did worked pretty well.  The molds I used the first time were candy molds, about 1 buck a piece.  I'm going to try it again with the wooden pendants and maybe just use an acrylic sealer to make them shiny.  I'm a little resin-shy now, because I thought for sure I was doing it correctly.   Thank you for your help!

Toni
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Diane B.
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« Reply #1576 on: July 07, 2010 09:40:25 AM »

I'm guessing that it was one of these things:

...insufficient mixing --try a full 2 minutes-- (and definitely do pour the first mixture into a second cup since it can be hard to get all the bits lurking inside the bottom rim and along the sides)

...using cups or other implements that had wax on them (many "paper" cups are waxed, e.g.), and wax can keep resins from curing

...getting any of the resin parts A or B into any of the original bottles, etc, or even the mixed A+B (be scrupulous about what touches what when using resins--e.g, not using your stirring stick to wipe away drips on one of the A or B bottles, etc)

...Easy Cast has more problems with hardness than "regular" epoxy resins like Envirotex Lite, e.g., do (or than polyester resins)... what the manufacturers had to do to create an "epoxy" resin that could also be cast deeply (Easy Cast) resulted in it not having as "hard" a surface after curing when exposed later to heat (even body heat) and also actually being flexible if thin

...guess it's not humidity since it's been a whole week...also guess it's not resin that's too old since you used it for something else near the same time

(remember that resins don't technically "dry" since they have no water to evaporate out to make them hard-- instead they "cure" to harden via a chemical reaction)
« Last Edit: July 07, 2010 09:43:40 AM by Diane B. » THIS ROCKS   Logged

POLYMER CLAY "ENCYCLOPEDIA" 
http://glassattic.com/polymer/contents.htm
few of my photos
http://s96.photobucket.com/albums/l163/DianeBB
(had to move them from YahooPhotos, so many now without captions)
hello color!
« Reply #1577 on: July 08, 2010 10:41:57 AM »

About the vises - I think I've seen one sold that had rubber grips, but it wasn't worth the extra money (since you can use that extra money to buy yourself some molding compound and make better grips from that). Usually, a vise is not something worth spending a lot of money on, unless you need special features, like being able to tilt your object to a specified angle. Anyway, I use a regular vise padded with scraps of silicone that I have from moldmaking, so I would recommend looking for some scrap rubber, soft if you can find it. However, if the objects you are drilling are flat, hard(er) rubber and many other things should probably work.

Diane - I wanted to add some information to your library Smiley

What you say about polyester resin not curing if it's in contact with air is not true, at least not always. I've used 2 different formulations (gel coat and bonding resin from Douglas & Sturgess) and neither one ended up with a tacky surface. If anything, the finish was harder than than Easy Cast (on both the mold side and the air side). The only problem I had, if you want to call it that, is that both of them dissolved my polystyrene mixing cups, which I use with epoxy with no problems. (However, it took maybe 15 minutes to eat through them to holes, and by that time, there was only residue left in the cups and I didn't end up with a gigantic spill. Actually, the way the cups melted looked pretty cool.) And, ofc, polyester is not something I'd recommend for jewelry because the unbelievably horrid and persistent smell and the associated health effects are just not worth the cost savings.

Also, I was wondering, does anyone know what would give the least flexible result for very thin casts (a couple of mm or less)? Obviously, Envirotex Lite should be better than Easy Cast, but any thoughts besides that?
« Last Edit: July 08, 2010 10:47:31 AM by hello color! » THIS ROCKS   Logged
hello color!
« Reply #1578 on: July 08, 2010 11:02:57 AM »

I don't play with resin or anything but it's always interested me. However the other day something occured to me and I thought maybe I should pass this on to all you resin lovers.

I was taking out my coloured contacts the other day to replace them with a fresh pair... anyone's ever thought about setting those in resin? Obviously ones that have already been used... I think it'll look pretty cool just hanging in the resin. Dunno if the toxicity would break down what the lens is made of.

Just a thought Smiley If anyone can make it work please send me a link! I'd love to see what you come up with  Cheesy

I've actually thought of that, but it's not as easy as it sounds. Since epoxy is inhibited by water, and saline/contact solution is mostly water, the contact has to be dried first. But when it dries, it doesn't stay cup-shaped, and instead, it curls up like crazy. I've tried using cup-shaped supports, and some of the time it worked ok (not perfect, but close enough), but most of them were fail. I might still one day use the ones that came out ok, but I haven't just because it's not really my style, and I was trying to do it mostly just for the hell of it... Still, even after getting the contacts to dry nicely, things can still go wrong because they are so brittle when dry. Anyway, that's just some thoughts.
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The Magpie Nest
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« Reply #1579 on: July 09, 2010 02:30:07 AM »

Hello everyone.
This thread si great! I've spent hours on here and learnt loads!

I do have a couple of questions though - sorry if these have already been answered, and I've missed them.

I want to make pendants using silver or pewter bezel cups \9so, not a casting mould).  I'll be putting a printed design at the bottom of the bezel cup, and pouring resin over it so it looks like a glass tile set into a silver pendant.

So, my plan of action is to print the design, cut to size, and seal with decoupage glue or something similar.
Once that's dried, glue it to the bottom of the bezel tray, and cover with a 2-3mm layer of 2-part epoxy resin, and leave to dry for a couple of days.

My questions are:
1. is there a specific brand/type of epoxy resin I should be using? I need it to be completely crystal clear like glass, and I need it to stay in the bezel tray and not fall out.
2. Once the resin has set, do i need to polish it, or does it naturally cure to a high gloss finish?  If so, what should I polish it with?

Again, sorry if these questions have been answered elsewhere. 

Thanks!
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