Category Archives: Techniques & Tips

Improve Wooden Paddles with G/flex

By Tom Pawlak — Retired GBI Technical Advisor

Wooden paddles and boat oars are known for getting dented in service. While G/flex 650 is not optimized for use as a coating, we found it was worth the extra effort it takes to apply to wooden canoe paddles and boat oars to deflect impact and prevent cracking the wood beneath.

G/flex epoxies weren’t developed with coating in mind, but early on in applications testing, we discovered they were excellent at dealing with impact. This became evident when we used G/flex 650 (the unthickened version) as a coating and when we used G/flex 655 (the thickened version) as a protective buildup. Continue reading

Small Projects and Repairs

By Jeff Wright — Vice President of Technical Services

Many of our EPOXYWORKS articles feature projects that our customers have spent years building and represent major personal accomplishments. I also believe we have many customers who, like me, use WEST SYSTEM Epoxy simply to keep an older boat in good repair.

The following are examples of repairs and small projects that I have completed on my personal boat over the last ten years. These would apply to many production fiberglass boats. Since WEST SYSTEM Epoxy has a shelf life measured in years, it is easy to keep it on your shelf and tackle these tasks when it’s convenient. Continue reading

Smaller Can Be Better

Tips for mixing small batches of epoxy

By Tom Pawlak — GBI Technical Advisor

My favorite way to mix small batches of WEST SYSTEM® Epoxy, when less than full pump strokes on the mini pumps are required, is by metering resin and hardener into a graduated cylinder made with a plastic syringe. The 807 Plastic Syringes, in our product line, can be modified for this by cutting off the end of the syringe body so it looks like the end of a clear piece of plastic tubing. Continue reading

Time is Everything

A last-minute ski repair

By Grant Hilger

The evening of March 19, 2013 I inspected my 217cm Atomic™ downhill race skis in preparation for race day. Because of the early ending to winter in 2012, these skis have not seen the light of day in almost two years. The only real chance I get to ski with them is at the annual Boyne Highlands Downhill Race in Harbor Springs, Michigan. This late March tradition is usually the grand finale of Michigan’s ski racing season. This year the weather was shaping up perfectly for outstanding conditions, and I was chomping at the bit to ski fast! Much to my surprise, when I picked up one ski I found that a section near the tail was delaminating. On the inside edge of the left Continue reading

Kitchen after remodel

Kitchen Remodel with WEST SYSTEM Epoxy

By Don Gutzmer – GBI Technical Advisor

I told my wife that I planned to remodel the kitchen because we were replacing our appliances. The first thing she said was, “Not another project!” She has learned over the years that I will always be working on something.

Once I started the project, I learned quickly that you should never paint a wood surface that you will eventually want to strip the paint off. Think twice before painting Continue reading

Mother of Invention

Spring-loaded wire cutters

By Tom Pawlak — GBI Technical Advisor

In 2011, our Technical Advisors Bruce Niederer and Don Gutzmer were packing tools for a trip to Mystic Seaport where they would once again provide guidance and instruction to families participating in the WoodenBoat Show’s Family Boatbuilding event. They recalled from the previous summer that spring loaded wire cutters were very helpful for removing the twisted copper wire used to temporarily hold stitch and glue boats together after the joints cured. Unfortunately, none of the spring loaded wire cutters could be found.

We took a pair of conventional wire cutters (no spring attached) that we had on hand Continue reading

New Gougeon Brothers Inc. Technical Building

By Jeff Wright — Vice President of Technical Services & Bruce Niederer — GBI Technical Advisors

January 2013 was a big month for the Gougeon Brothers, Inc. Technical Department. This department is responsible for our technical customer service, product development, and quality control. In January this department moved into a completely new building that adjoins our current facility. Continue reading

Will It Stick?

By Mike Barnard

Many times each day we get questions about sticking to various substrates.  Most questions are on something that we have already tested, so we check our large database and advise on how best adhere to the surface.  Other times the request is unique and we are unsure if WEST SYSTEM® Epoxy will stick to it or not.  In the event we do not have any experience bonding to a material, we recommend testing adhesion.  Many times this means gluing a wood block to the surface, then pulling the Continue reading

Larson Thunderhawk

By Mick Ignatiuk

Built in 1957, my 15′ Larson Thunderhawk Jr. is a fiberglass runabout reborn. I launched her into the waters of Grass Lake, in Fox Lake, Illinois in late August 2010. But before this happened, the boat underwent a major restoration. I purchased this boat in August of 2009, after it sat idle for several years, collecting dirt, rainwater, leaves and snow. All that remained was its shell,

I purchased this boat in August of 2009, after it sat idle for several years, collecting dirt, rainwater, leaves and snow. All that remained was its shell, motor, and a rusted trailer. I found a group of Larsen enthusiasts who helped me locate my boat’s original specs, drawings, and
color charts.

Continue reading

What you can do if you don’t want epoxy to stick

By Bruce Niederer — GBI Technical Advisor

We spend a good amount of time doing everything we can to inform our customers how best to make WEST SYSTEM® epoxy stick to wood, metal, and even plastic, or underwater with the introduction of  G/flex 650 and 655.  Still, there are many instances when you don’t want the epoxy to stick to one surface or another.

Continue reading