Category Archives: Epoxy Products

Six10 Thickened Epoxy Adhesive

Practical Tips for Using Six10

by Captain James R. Watson

The WEST SYSTEM® Six10 epoxy cartridge is comprised of the cartridge body, removable nose plug, and a threaded retaining nut. A 600 static mixer is included with the cartridge. (It’s called a static mixer because it has no moving parts.) The cartridge fits into any standard caulk gun—manual, cordless, or pneumatic—and allows simultaneous dispensing and mixing of the two-part epoxy.

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This joint style in an edge-glued, 1/8" thick HDPE strip holds tight when deflected and is great for gluing plastics.

Gluing Plastics with G/flex Epoxy

by Tom Pawlak — GBI Technical Advisor &  Jeff Wright — Vice President of Technical Services

Above: This joint style in an edge-glued, 1/8″ thick HDPE plastic strip which holds tight when deflected and is a good choice when gluing plastics.

One of our goals for G/flex® was the ability to bond to a variety of plastics. This was an ambitious goal because plastics historically have been used as mold release surfaces for epoxy, allowing the epoxy to release from the plastic when cured. While developing G/flex, we tested adhesion to a number of plastics with a variety of surface prep methods. Continue reading

Mixing G/Flex with Other WEST SYSTEM Epoxies

by Jeff Wright — Vice President of Technical Services

Above: Mixing G/flex with other WEST SYSTEM Epoxies increases the versatility of these epoxy systems.

WEST SYSTEM 105 Resin-based epoxy is a very versatile system. For years, experienced users have been mixing and blending the various product combinations in countless ways. For example, users may blend 205 Fast Hardener and 206 Slow Hardener to make a hardener with a modified cure speed. Different uses of 410 Microlight® Fairing Filler provide a further example. Many customers assume that the only use of 410 is to make a fairing compound—it is added to thicken epoxy to a peanut butter consistency to create a light, easily-sanded filler. Continue reading

WEST SYSTEM Launches G/Flex Epoxy

by Tom Pawlak — GBI Technical Advisor

G/flex Epoxy is a toughened, resilient two-part epoxy engineered for a superior grip to metals, plastics, glass, masonry, fiberglass, and wet and difficult-to-bond woods. Introduced in June 2007, G/flex Epoxy is currently available in two consistencies: G/flex 650 Epoxy, a liquid epoxy, and G/flex 655 Epoxy Adhesive, a pre-thickened epoxy. Both have a 1:1 mix ratio. Continue reading

Positive displacement epoxy pumps

Tools for Measuring Epoxy Quantities

303 and 305 High-Capacity Positive Displacement Pumps

Above: Measuring epoxy is easier with positive displacement pumps.

For measuring epoxy accurately, Gougeon Brothers, Inc. has introduced high-volume epoxy pumps that are extremely robust. These pumps dispense epoxy faster than any pump the company has previously offered.  The 303 and 305 Positive Displacement Pumps work by trapping a fixed amount of resin and hardener, then forcing (displacing) that trapped volume into the discharge pipe or system.  The mechanics of this setup mean that increases in resin viscosity due to temperature changes will not slow dispensing speeds. Positive latching lids help prevent contamination of resins and hardeners.

The 305 Metering Pump is an excellent tool for measuring epoxy.

The 305 Metering Pump is an excellent tool for measuring epoxy.

The new 303 Positive Displacement Pump is calibrated for WEST SYSTEM 3:1 ratio epoxies (105 Resin with 207 Special Clear Hardener or 209 Extra Slow Hardener) and is easily identified with a red base. The new 305 Positive Displacement Pump is calibrated for 5:1 ratio epoxies (105 Resin with 205 Fast Hardener or 206 Slow Hardener) and has a blue base.

Positive Displacement Pumps are also available with drum fittings.  These connect directly to WEST SYSTEM Resin and Hardener drums so there is no need to decant materials.  This setup conveniently streamlines the metering process for high-volume users, saving both time and money.

Several manufacturers offer high-volume pumps that deliver epoxy at upwards of several gallons per minute. Several well-respected pump manufacturers are listed at the end of this article. Their pumps are specially designed to meter epoxy resin and hardener simultaneously at specific ratios. Some of these pumps can meter resin and hardener through a static mixer, so additional mixing isn’t required.

For more information on mixing larqe quantities of epoxy, read Tom Pawlak’s Big Batch Mixing Methods.

 

Accelerated Testing: Hot Soak Moisture Uptake

by Bruce Niederer — GBI Technical Advisor

Above: Batches of epoxy samples awaiting accelerated testing in the hot water bath.

We are constantly testing our products to fully understand and characterize them, and this is important both for ourselves and for our customers. A test method will usually produce results in a timely fashion, but there are times we must use an accelerated testing method so we can get the results before we take that last lonely boat ride across the river Styx. This article describes some of the accelerated testing we do here. Continue reading

decayed wood on a small boat

Borate Salt Treats Decayed Wood

by Tom Pawlak — GBI Technical Advisor

Above: Decayed wood on a small boat. Photo by Chester Ho on Unsplash 

Sodium borate is used in a number of commonly used household products from laundry detergent to hand soap. It is also used to treat wood against insect and fungal attacks. Sodium borate is refined from borax, a natural mineral, which is mined throughout the world. One of the largest deposits is in the Southwestern United States. (Think 20-Mule Team Borax™, Death Valley Days radio and TV shows).
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Comparing Cost and Weight of Flat Panels

How to choose the best materials when building flat panels

by Jeff Wright — Vice President of Technical Services

Above: Jeff Wright, Vice President of GBI Technical Services, poised to take a deep dive into types, materials, costs, weight, and stiffness of flat panels.

Many WEST SYSTEM® customers appreciate the benefits of cored composite construction. They understand that it creates a part that is lightweight, strong, and stiff. We often receive calls from these customers inquiring about using a composite panel when building or repairing something that would normally be made of plywood. Such projects may include a new center console for a fishing boat or the replacement of flying bridge side shields. Determining the best material requires consideration of many aspects of the project, but often comes down to cost versus weight. Continue reading

Epoxy's adhesion to metal is affected by surface treatment

Effects of Surface Treatment

On Epoxy Adhesion to Metals

by Brian Knight—GBI Technical Advisor

Above: Surface treatment can make all the difference in epoxy adhesion to metal. Photo by Manny Becerra on Unsplash 

We have performed tens of thousands of adhesion tests over the years and many of these tests were done on metal surfaces. Below is a summary of tests done on a variety of metal surfaces and done with a variety of surface preparations. As you look at the chart, notice the surface preparation that gives the highest number.

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Epoxy vs. Polyester is an important consideration in fiberglass boat repair.

WEST SYSTEM Epoxy vs. Polyester

for Fiberglass Boat Repair

by Tom Pawlak — GBI Technical Advisor

Above: Epoxy vs. polyester in a typical fiberglass boat repair cross-section. 

Even though we’ve been promoting the use of WEST SYSTEM® Epoxy for repairing fiberglass boats (boats made with polyester resin) in our manuals and Epoxyworks for many years, we continue to receive inquiries asking whether it is appropriate to use epoxy for polyester boat repair. Because of the misinformation still prevalent in marinas, local yacht clubs and on the Internet, we felt it was time to restate the case for epoxy. Continue reading