5 tips on how to battle the Florida heat

heat

One of the biggest problems customers face in the dead of summer is the heat. Gelcoat and resin are very sensitive to heat. The hotter the work environment, the quicker the work time, and conversely, the cooler the work environment, the longer the work time, so with that being said, we have a few tips to beat the heat!

  1. Cool down the gelcoat or resin. By refrigerating the product, down to about 65 degrees, you can get up to 15 minutes of working time with the product. It’s not hours, but it’s way better than 2 or 3 minutes.
  2. Cool the mold down by having fans on the mold, especially the back-side, to get a bit more working time.
  3. Epoxies are very sensitive to temperature changes. By cooling down epoxy systems, they become thicker, but as they heat up, they become thinner and if you are laminating, especially vertically, then thinner is not your friend. By keeping the product the same temperature, you will get a consistent flow.
  4. If you are able to cool down your work area, be mindful of the humidity. Remember, humidity is not your friend, so make sure the mold and the surrounding area is nice and dry before spraying.
  5. Make small batches of gelcoat or resin at a time and catalyze at 1-1/2 percent on gelcoats and polyester resins (still 2% on Vinylesters) to avoid the material getting any hotter than it already is.

 

 

An interview with Chip Davis

Chip Davis VW Bug

What are you currently working on?

Right now, I just finished the VW Bus and I’m trying to figure out what else to do after that.

What made you decide to work on that?

I always look to make something weird and make people look and say “What the Hell?!”

What different products did you use to make that?

I started off with sheets of Styrofoam and glued them together and carved it with a hot wire or even a serrated steak knife. I coat it with PVA, then gelcoat, and finally, I used your Boatyard Resin to apply the coating.

How did you start this kind of work?

I started with Autobody work and started doing props for my church, I actually made a baby grand-piano completely out of foam, and one day, my neighbor fixed up my jet-ski, so I made him a jet-ski mailbox and I had so much fun with it, I kept going, ya know, just playing around with it and trying stuff and if it doesn’t work, trying something else.

I started with covering the foam in wax, to keep the gelcoat from melting it, and then I moved on to different coatings from there, just trying different things to see how they work.  I learned that you can learn anything from YouTube.

chip davis jetski

How often do you come to Fiberglass Coatings?

Every week or two, depending on the project; I come in and talk to Pat and everyone is more than happy to answer any questions I have.

Do you have any tips for someone who wants to do this?

Don’t be shy, just go try something and see if it works, and if it doesn’t, try something else. I also learned that too thin of gelcoat wrinkles up like bacon, so be sure to load it up pretty good; same thing with the PVA, I learned that you can apply it pretty thick and wait for it to dry and you’ll be good to go.

Lastly, how did you make the VW emblem?

It is leather, actually! I got some pieces of leather and cut them to the right pattern and painted it.

Check out Chip Davis on Facebook and see some of the really cool pictures he has of some of his amazing products.

3 Tips for Cleaning Fiberglass Rollers

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1. We recommend cleaning rollers immediately after use.
2. Clean rollers with Acetone solvent, when using them with polyesters.
3. Clean rollers with T-12 solvent, when using them with epoxies.
4. Rolling the roller on the bottom of the solvent bucket is recommended, as that will clean the inside of the roller.