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Thread: Fiberglass work

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    raucousimages's Avatar
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    Fiberglass work

    I am posting under "Darkroom" because the same info would apply to a fiberglass sink. I have built fiberglass over wood sinks in the past with no problems but I just built several water/dust proof boxes to take film holders to the field with a fiberglass lining. The problem is that after 4 days to cure I still have some spots with a sticky film. I don't think the resin and hardener were mixed well. The bulk of the resin is solid just sticky on the surface.

    Can I clean up the uncured resin with acetone with damageing the hard resin or is there a better solution?

    Thanks John
    DIGITAL IS FOR THOSE AFRAID OF THE DARK.

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    JLP
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    John,

    Having some fibreglass experience from the past i would suggest some local heat to those spots. Eventually it should harden but a hairdryer or other heatsource for an hour should speed up the hardening process.
    (Don't set anything on fire though)


    jan

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    A heat lamp and 4 days in the hot sun have not worked. I still have a few sticky spots. I will try the hair dryer or even the oven. I have cured epoxy in an oven. Just pre heat to 200f, turn off and place parts inside for a couple of hours. The acetone is tempting but too much time went into the boxes to ruin them with chemicals and it was the last of my oak.
    DIGITAL IS FOR THOSE AFRAID OF THE DARK.

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    I had a couple spots on my old sink. They stayed tacky for almost a year. What has happened is that the resin was too thin to harden. It needs critical mass of about a millimeter to harden. (sure the chems may also have not been mixed well either.) I would get out the acetone and wipe it down, then get out some 120 grit and give it a good sanding (with a mask on) wipe them off and give it another coat that is a little heavier. I had to do it on level surfaces for the sinks, as you will see when you stop by, and rotate the sinks to do each side while flat. A pain, for sure. After 24' of sink, I think I got it down. At least I think I do. I do hope never to have to do that again.
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    From my experience in a body shop, I would say acetone or lacquer thinner would either be OK. I have removed lots of paint from Corvettes using acetone, and often wiped down raw fiberglass with lacquer thinner to remove any oils (seems I was the one who got the least itchy working fiberglass, and was then by default the 'glass expert). If you are hesitant, I suggest you try a small spot on the inside where it can't be easily seen.

    Put your smokes out first, acetone has a low flash point.

    rexp
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    raucousimages's Avatar
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    A quick wipe with acetone and an hour in a warm oven did it.

    Thanks, John
    DIGITAL IS FOR THOSE AFRAID OF THE DARK.

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    Quote Originally Posted by raucousimages
    I am posting under "Darkroom" because the same info would apply to a fiberglass sink. I have built fiberglass over wood sinks in the past with no problems but I just built several water/dust proof boxes to take film holders to the field with a fiberglass lining. The problem is that after 4 days to cure I still have some spots with a sticky film. I don't think the resin and hardener were mixed well. The bulk of the resin is solid just sticky on the surface.

    Can I clean up the uncured resin with acetone with damageing the hard resin or is there a better solution?

    Thanks John
    I would have to ask why go to all the trouble and expense to build a fiberglass box for film holders to reduce dust and water when you can purchase soft insulated lunch pouches for practically nothing. Just put your holders in sealable poly bags used for freezing foods and put that in the lunch pouch.

    Be sure to wipe the face of the darkslide off with an anti-static cloth before loading it into the camera. Keep your bellows clean.
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    I had some holders damaged when my toolbox shifted in the back of the truck and smashed the soft lunch box I had them in. And I had some strips of oak ply in the garage so I thought I would make some hard boxes for the holders. My gear takes a real beating on the roads I travel so I do every thing I can to protect it. My cameras are in Pelican cases and every thing rides on a futon mattress in the truck to absorb shock. It really sucked to lose some old Lisco wood holders to a tool box. Never leave nice wood around an old carpenter, something is going to get built.
    DIGITAL IS FOR THOSE AFRAID OF THE DARK.

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    I used to spend weekends working with a friend who had a composite business specialising in carbon fibre parts for racing cars and bikes. Only once did we have a resin problem and that was when the mix ratio was incorrect. In that case the part took six days to harden. There are three types of resin; polyester, epoxy and phenolic. The epoxy is particularly sensitive to mix ratios and temperature. If the temperature was too low an accelerator had to used to restore the curing time to normal. In commercial applications a vacuum autoclave is used to effect consistent curing and forming,usually in conjunction with preimpregnated composite sheets.

    For uses such as darkroom sinks the cheaper phenolic resin is a good choice. It's the standard in aircraft for items such as overhead bins as it doesn't produce toxin fumes if burnt and it's pretty resistant to chemicals.
    Last edited by leeturner; 09-02-2006 at 10:11 AM. Click to view previous post history.
    So many drummers, so little time.

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    John,

    I have used West System epoxy for many small projects, and know others who use it for much larger ones. They have a great web site with a user manual and problem solver guide containing information that may be helpful.

    http://www.westsystem.com/frames/tier1/usingepoxy.htm
    http://www.westsystem.com/frames/tie...olverguide.htm

    A canoe builder friend in Maine told me people would overlook his canoes at outdoor sports shows to check out his fiberglassed pack boxes!

    http://gilgilpatrick.com/outdoor-gear.html

    Phil

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