Category Archives: Health & Safety

health and safety

Avoiding Respiratory Irritation

By Glenn House – GBI Health and Safety

When our team of experts select the raw ingredients for WEST SYSTEM® Epoxy products, we strive to achieve excellent physical properties with the lowest possible risk to human and environmental health. There is a safe exposure level for most substances. The more toxic the substance, the lower that level will be. Overexposure occurs when the safe exposure level is exceeded. When this happens, the substance can impact your health. Continue reading

Recycling & Disposing

By Glenn House

Over the course of the last couple years Gougeon Brothers Inc. has partnered with Waste Management Inc. to implement a comprehensive recycling program that has been both simple and effective. We are now recycling emptied plastic and metal containers, shrink wrap from bulk packaged items, dispensed adhesive cartridges, cardboard boxes, miscellaneous soft and rigid plastic items, office paper, magazines, etc.

Our customers may also recycle many of the containers and related packaging items Continue reading

Protective skin creams-do they affect adhesion to the surfaces we touch?

By Tom Pawlak

We recently completed adhesion testing for a boatbuilder who was concerned about surfaces being contaminated by workers who use protective skin creams. The builder wanted to be sure that residue from the protective creams did not contaminate objects touched by workers throughout the day. We tested five products: Derma Shield™, Gloves in a Bottle™, Unique Skin™, SBS 46 Protective Cream™ and SBS 40 Medicated Skin Cream™. Continue reading

Epoxy safety

Free Safety Guide for Epoxy Users

By Glenn House

Gougeon Brothers has composed a definitive safety guide for WEST SYSTEM epoxy users, called EPOXY SAFETY. The 12-page booklet contains general health, safety and environmental information, and explains basic precautionary measures for the typical epoxy user. It also covers some specific health problems that may result if these measures are ignored. Continue reading

Relief from Fiberglass Irritation

By Tom Pawlak

Working with fiberglass fabrics can cause skin irritations ranging from minor itching to a serious rash. It’s caused by microscopic, needle-like fiberglass spindles of that prick your skin. It helps to protect your skin with gloves and long or disposable protective sleeves, but here is what to do if you’re faced with a fiberglass-induced itch. Continue reading

vinegar is for salads

Vinegar: Save it for Salads

By Glenn House

Vinegar is a mild solvent and is sometimes promoted as a “harmless” solution for cleaning epoxy from skin. At first blush, this seems to makes sense. Vinegar is a common food ingredient. It has been used medicinally as an anti-fungal agent and as an old time sun burn remedy. Italian dressing, sauerkraut and pickles could not exist without it. Continue reading

Air Quality

VOC Testing, epoxies, and your shop

By Tim Atkinson and Glenn House

Many materials used in large manufacturing processes and even small do-it-yourself jobs, emit volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and other air pollutants. Paints and other coatings, adhesives, resins and cleaning solvents are all sources of air pollution. Each product emits different types and varying amounts of air pollutants. Federal, state and local governments have passed legislation (e.g., the federal Clean Air Act) to reduce air pollution and prevent the depletion of the ozone layer by regulating the emission of air pollutants. Continue reading

Proper Disposal of Leftover Resin & Hardener

by Glenn House &  Tim Atkinson

The technical staff of Gougeon Brothers, Inc. has recently received inquiries about proper disposal of left over resin and hardener. The increase in customer concern results from more stringent environmental regulations and heightened awareness of the need to protect the environment. We are happy to receive these inquiries because it lets us know that epoxy users are taking responsibility for proper disposal of these products. We hope this article gives you a better understanding of basic proper disposal procedures. Continue reading

Homemade Hand Soap

This is a formula for homemade resin-removing hand soap that we have used around our shops for the last few years. You can make it in the kitchen blender from common household supplies. The beauty of this stuff is that it’s easy on you, easy to make and easy to clean up. This is a recipe sure to please the whole family. Percentages are provided so you can easily customize batch sizes for a small job or a big work crew. Continue reading