- What is the Mix Ratio for MAS Epoxies?
MAS has simplifed the process for using and mixing our basic epoxies by creating a highly flexible system of two resins and three hardeners. The mix ratio is 2:1 Resin to Hardener. That ratio stay the same when the hardeners are custom blended. When blending hardeners, blend in separate containers from the resin, then mix with the resin. Be sure to maintain the 2:1 ratio, resin: hardener.
Please note that larger quantites will harden faster and smaller quantities will harden more slowly. We also offer specialized epozies including the MAS INFURES system and Rapid Cure fast hardening epoxy for quick fixes that require different mix ratios.
- How much mixing is required?
Mixing is the key to a thorough cure, good films and strong bonds. One and a half to two miutes of agressive mixing, swiping the sides and bottom is recommended. Be sure mix ratio is two parts resin to one part hardener (2:1). Use clean plastic or uncoated paper cups or buckets and a clean mix stick. We also recommend taking the mixed batch and putting it into a clean container, scraping the sides and bottom and then mix again. This assures a complete mix.
- What is the recoat time?
Since epoxies from MAS are 100% solid (no solvents), recoat time can be as short as it takes to achieve surface tack. If more than 12 hours passes between coats, do a light scuff sand. Use a cotton ball to test if a light scuff sand is needed. If the epoxy holds the hair of the cotton ball, you can recoat without sanding. If it doesn't, a light scuff sand will help adhesion between coats.
- Can I speed up the mix by adding more Hardener?
ABSOLUTELY NOT! Adding more hardener throws off the ratio and you will end up with a gooey mess that never cures.
- How does temperature variation affect epoxy?
For clear coating, we like to see the resin remain over 55 to 60F. For bonding, anything over 45F is adequate.
For every 18F, the temperature falls below 77F, the pot life will double for the mix. The thin film set will come close to a 1.3 increase in time. The exact opposite will occur as temperatures increase above 77F. Applications which are allowed to cool below the freezing point must be warmed to achieve a full through Cure. In the case of freezing, the solid or film must be checked for hardness to insure full strength has been achieved.
- What surface preparation is needed prior to application of epoxy?
All surfaces should be cleaned of any contaminates, such as oil, grease and pooled water. Bio-Solv is great for surface clean-up. Light sanding is recommended. A clean cloth moistened with Bio-Solv isopropyl alchohol or plain water may be used to clean surfaces and to remove dust. DO NOT USE ACETONE or a TACK CLOTH to clean the surface.
- What tools are used to apply the epoxy?
For coating and fiberglass, a short nap 1/8" nylon bristle roller, plastic squeegee, or disposable brushes. For bond ing, a glue brush or a squeegee with notches cut into the edge.
- Tips and techniques for filler use and selection (filtering and fairing)?
It is no longer necessary to have many different resin systems around for laminating, filling, filleting, fairing and adhesive bonding. One simple MAS Resin and two hardeners, MAS Slow and MAS Fast, will provide you all the flexibility required to make different thickened putties for standard build and repair operations. Please see the Application Recommendations chart at the front of the catalogue and visit masepoxies.com for more information.
- How to protect the epoxy?
Epoxy surfaces should be protected from sun exposure. Clear coats may be protected by a good quality varnish or urethane with UVA protection additives. Paint is always considered a 100% filter. Indoor pieces do not need varnish over epoxy.
- Can a stain be used on the project?
To use a stain on an epoxy project, use a waterbased stain under the epoxy clear oat. Be sure stain is fully dry before coating work with epoxy. Always test first using the cross hatch test: Apply the stain on a scrap piece of wood. Let it dry. Apply the epoxy over the stain and let it sit overnight NExt day cut a tic-tac-toe
- How do I clean up?
Gloves and other personal protection should always be used. If you should get any epoxy on your skin, it should be cleaned off with a waterless soap immediately, then thoroughly washed with soap and water. Tools can be washed with Bio-Solv, white vinegar or isopropyl alcohol. Semi-gelled epoxy can be removed with Bio-Solv.
- What protection is needed when using epoxy?
Disposable gloves should always be used and eye protection is omportant if any splashing may occur. A respiratory mask (like 3-M Easy Air) should be used. Epoxy may cause irritation of the skin, especially fair skin.
- Avoid all direct skin contact with resin, hardeners and mixed epoxy by wearing gloves and other clothing. Clean any uncured epoxy off the skin with waterless soap immediately after contact. NEVER use solvents to remove epoxy from the skin. Always wash thoroughly with soap and water immediately after contact.
- Protect your eyes by wearing protective eye wear. If contact should occur, flush eyes immediately with running water for 15 minutes. If discomfort continues, seek medical attention.
- Avoid breathing vapors, Use epoxy only in areas with good ventilation. In small areas, always have a supply of fresh air and exhaust any fumes. Wear a respirator with an organic vapor cartridge. Wear a dust mask when you sand the epoxy. If it has cured for less than a week, use a repirator with the organic vapor cartridge in combination with a dust pre-filter.
- Avoid ingestion. Wash thoroughly after each use and especially before eating of drinking.
- Clean up spills with a squeegee and paper towels. Scrape up as much material as possible with the squeegee before using the paper towels. Sand, clay or other materials may be used to contain or soak up a spill. Clean residue with Bio-Solv, white vinegar or isopropyl alcohol. Always wear protective gloves when cleaning up spills or at the end of a job.
- Dispose of resin, hardener and empty containers safely. Do not dispose of resin or hardener in a liquid state. Before disposing of resin and hardener containers, puncture the corners of can and drain residue into clean, sealable containers for re-use. Small quantities of resin and hardener can be mixed and cured completely to a non-hazardous soil. Place pots of curing resin and hardeners outside on the gfround to avoid the danger of excessive heat and vapors. Dispose of after the reaction if complete and the mass has cooled. Then follow your local, state and federal regulations for proper disposal.
- What are the major pitfalls that most users fall into?
When intructions and temperature adjustments are properly followed, projects go well. Some common problems include:
- Bad mixing practices cause 99% of all problems. MIX,MIX,MIX, and then mix some more.
- During coating, the temperature falls below dewpoint. Even a small temperature decrease can cause changes in cure times and bonding. A little temperature goes a long way toward good coating.
- Weak bond is a result of too much clamp pressure. The key to a strong bond is light pressure and adding the correct filler. Allow maxiumum clamp time and warming the piece can reduce this time (a light works well).
- What is the shelf life of these products?
Basic epoxy resin and hardener has a shelf life of at least one year in a closed container. Specialty resins and hardeners, such as High Temp INFUCURE Hardener, may have shorter life spans as noted on the container.