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Troubleshooting Resin 101

What we Discuss

1. Crystallized Resin
2. Reasons why your resin is not curing
3. Resin turning yellow
4a. Dealing with bubbles 4b. Dealing with pinholes 
5. What to do if your resin Flash-cured / Cracked
6. Shifting Wood can effect your resin Pour
7. Multiple Pours in 1 Project

Buying quality resin is important.
 These brands are ones we stand behind and complete all our projects with:
- EcoPoxy
- Super Clear

Watch this video for an in-depth answer to solve this problem

1. Crystallized Resin:

It is important to know that crystallization is not an indication of defective material. 
If your resin looks like this photo example, it's essential not to use the product - if you do, this could lead to further issues. You must first re-heat the epoxy until it turns back to a liquid state and let it cool to room temperature before mixing and using it. 

The most common reason for epoxy to crystallize is because it has been improperly stored / sealed. Make sure to keep your resin in a dark room in a temperature controlled climate when not in use, always out of direct sunlight and tightly sealed.

2. Resin Not Curing?
Read below why this may have happened and what you can do

Reasons this could be occuring

If your resin hasn't cured properly,  it means the chemical reaction between Part A (Resin) and Part B (Hardener) was not able to properly take place.

Common reasons for this to happen:

- Improper Resin to Hardener ratio (It is best practice to measure by volume not weight)

- Not mixing the Part A and Part B together enough

- Resin has gone bad

- Resin has expired

How to Fix these issues

Unfortunately there is not any easy way to fix this. If you have already poured and waited beyond the recommended cure time you have a few options:

- Pick out all the uncured resin, clean the area and re-pour 
- If it has hardened about 80% then use 80g sandpaper to scratch up the surface and re-pour new resin on top. This will allow the new resin to bond to your original pour. To successfully do this you must make sure your new pour won't penetrate the original uncured pour.

A company once pitched their resin for us to test. We poured it with no pigment and after a few years, it’s gone completely yellow. Check out a video here to better see how yellow it has gone.

3. Why your Resin maybe Yellow

UV Light rays cause polymer molecules found in resin to break down resulting in epoxy to turn yellow overtime. To avoid this, keep your projects and Resin containers away from being in direct sunlight.

Before you pour:
- If you notice one of the containers has gone yellow it could have been because of Exposure to UV light or improper sealing. If you still choose to use the resin, add a generous amount of pigment to take help hide the yellow colour. 

An example of Pin holes bubbles that have developed if air bubbles do not burst on their own. 

4a. Dealing with bubbles in your Resin

Most reputable brands are manufactured to have a slower cure giving the bubbles enough time to come to the surface and burst on their own. If you would like to pop the bubbles in your resin use a heat gun or torch and do a quick pass over the area. Do not stay concentrated in one spot. If you do, you run the risk of speeding up the exothermic reaction that is occurring and could cause the resin to flash cure and potentially cause bigger issues. 

4b. Dealing with Pin Holes

Watch this video to see how we deal with pin holes.

Purchase this fast adhesive here to deal with your pin holes.

This photo shows a project that has flash cured and cracked as a result.

5. Flash-curing / Cracked Resin

If your resin has flash cured and cracked the only way to save this is to fill these cracks with more epoxy. If the crack is not large enough to allow you to sand inside, mix more resin (if coloured, add the appropriate amount of pigment to your smaller ratio or resin you will use) and use some popsicle sticks to guide it into the cracked area. 
We suggest taping the underside using Tuck Tape so the resin doesn't leak through.

This wood was maple that was not properly kiln dried

6. How Shifting wood can effect your resin

If you are working with Resin and combining it with wood elements, it is essential to make sure your wood has properly been kiln (or air) dried before adding an epoxy feature. If the wood has not properly been treated it will continue to expand and contract until it finds its equilibrium resulting in it separating from the resin.

Watch Video Here

7. Multiple Pours in 1 Project

Q: What should I do if I run out of resin in the middle of a pour?
A: If you are able to get more resin quick enough, you can add to your first pour if it is still gummy on top and the new batch of resin won't penetrate the first pour. Alternatively if it has fully cured, scuff up the surface of your first layer with sandpaper and pour your second batch on top.

Q: You are pouring a thickness which is to too deep for your resin and need to break it up into multiple pours
A: Let the first pour fully cure and scuff up the surface before doing your second layer. The key is you don't want the resin to overheat when pouring at larger volumes. Some Resin's recommend a max volume you can pour to a certain thickness before issues could begin to develop. (IE. Ecopoxy Flow Cast recommends a maximum of 20L to be poured at a time for 2" thick projects)

Where to Buy Reputable Resin / /