Wet epoxy?

Discussion in 'Rod Building' started by Mikey_Mac, Feb 6, 2012.

  1. Hey guys- I built my first rod last Monday and Tuesday. I put a coat of epoxy on Tuesday morning, let it dry, then put a 2nd coat on wednesday night. My epoxy has been sitting inside (~65-70 deg) since wednesday, and has yet to dry. It varies from tacky (can leave fingerprints) to straight up wet at the tip. Any tips? I am really hoping not to have to do it all over again. Can I mix up some more epoxy, perhaps with a tad more hardener, and put a light coat over the tacky stuff? Do I just leave it sitting out longer? Heat? Cold? Hoping for anything but doing it over again...

  2. I am not a rod builder but from my experience, do not over coat wet epoxy. It will proably dry eventualy, but if you don't want to wait, strip it all off.

    The following are just some of my epoxy work rules;
    Mix the same size batch, 1 oz hardner to 2 oz resin. If its too much I am ok with it. Consistancy counts. Leave the partial container of the mix out till the next day for evaulation. Did it set up correctly?

    Do not use waxed cups. If the mix heats up and melts the wax it will weaken the epoxy. I only use graduated plastic cups. In the sceme of things, this is not where to scrimp and save money.

    After mixing and stirring, let the batch sit for a minute or two. Let the chemical reaction get started before spreading it out.

    Don't play with the ratio. If it wants to be 2:1 so be it. The chemistcs figured this out as the optimim mix. Adding hardner will not make it cook faster, it will leave you with uncured hardner. There are fast, medium and slow setting hardeners for the temp.

    Get organized. Get all your parts and pieces layed out and ready. Wipe it all down.

    My 2c
  3. Actually with rod epoxy you can over coat it with a properly mixed batch of epoxy. You need to mix equal parts by volume not wieght and mix thouroughly for at least 4 minutes(5-6 even better) , reversing direction every 30 seconds. It is best to use syringes for measuring but stainless steel measuring spoons will also work. Mix your epoxy in either a cup lined with aluminum foil or any disposable 2 oz. cup. You should also wipe down stir rod and cup with Denatured Alcohol to make sure you do not get any silicone decontamination. If you do this and apply in a thin coat over your existing wraps it will harden up and life will be good.
  4. I agree with NI. If you got different degrees of hardening from the same batch, you more than likely didn't mix entirely. Meticulous measuring of 1:1, plus thorough mixing for most rod epoxies will give you a great finish.
  5. I agree with the above comments. You may be able to coat over your tacky finish with a properly measured and properly mixed coat and you might be fine after that. However, I can say with almost certainty that your issue was either due to straying from a purely 50/50 mix of the two part epoxy OR failing to adequately mix the two parts thoroughly. You never want to try to "add more hardener" or "subtract hardener".....always do a pure 50/50 mix for your best results. And I literally set a timer for 5 minutes and keep stirring until the timer goes off to ensure that I adequately mixed the two parts.

    However, if it were me, I would strongly consider removing and redoing the wraps as the multiple coats of epoxy will likely create too much build and the finish will be extra bulky. It really just depends on how much time you want to invest and how critical you are about the looks of the final product.

  6. nomlasder: I haven't encountered any epoxy or other polymer finish that called for other than a 50/50 mix ratio. And the mix must be precisely that. By careless eyeballing, I've produced some mixes (of 49/51 %?) that wouldn't dry after weeks. When that happens, I think that it's best to give up, strip the sticky finish, and rewrap. Ordinary paint stripper gel works. Try to avoid getting any stripper on the adjoining blank surface.
  7. iagree Sounds like an incorrect mix ratio and/or insufficient mixing. One trick I have used in the past is to put a floor space heater in the room and get the temp up as high as possible -- that might help kick over the epoxy cross-link.

    If that doesn't work, you'll have to carefully remove, re-clean with acetone, re-wrap and re-coat... yeah, I know... but most of us that have been building rods for any amount of time have likely had to experience this lesson.

    Good luck
  8. NM
    Fully understood regarding mix ratio. As I tried to explain, I am not a rod builder, but I have some practce in epoxying wood together. The System 3 stuctural epoxy I use most often is a 2:1.

  9. Thanks guys- the second coat worked fairly well, except for 3 wraps. What is the best way to get it off? (That's what she said) I was thinking perhaps a razor blade- sharp side up- not scratching the blank?
  10. cut over the top of the guide foot so as not to nick the blank and then peel the rest off. Clean off the rest of the epoxy with DNA. Rewrap, finish, and go fish!
  11. Thanks for all the help guys- after trying to put more epoxy on- it just looked crappy and bulky, so i peeled the epoxy off and started over. After being pissed off for a day- it quickly subsided when I had my finished rod in my hands. I am trying it out on the river today- too bad i didn't get it done by February 15th- when everything closed. Middle Fork Sno here I come!!

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