Tag Archives: Tom Pawlak

Repair Non-Skid and get Professional Results

By Tom Pawlak — GBI Technical Advisor

If the patterned non-skid on your production-built fiberglass boat needs repair, you may be interested to know that flexible molds are available for making professional-looking repairs. Continue reading

WEST SYSTEM Epoxy vs. Polyester for Fiberglass Boat Repair

By Tom Pawlak — GBI Technical Advisor

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

Woods of the World Adhesion Testing

By Tom Pawlak — GBI Technical Advisor

We recently purchased a 154-piece wood sampler from Eisenbrand Inc., Torrance, California. The 3″ × 6″ × ½” specimens originated from points all around the world. Each specimen was provided with its common name, scientific name, and country of origin. There were several specimens we’ve never heard of.

The PATTI test uses compressed air to pull the stud from the surface. It records the force required to break the bond in pounds per square inch. In all cases tested, the epoxy held and the wood failed. Continue reading

Chopped Strand Mat

Chopped Strand Mat and Epoxy

By Tom Pawlak — GBI Technical Advisor

Chopped strand mat, in fabric form, is sold on the roll and in small folded packages. It is made up of 1″-2″ long fiberglass strands that are randomly oriented and typically held together with a styrene-soluble binder that acts like glue connecting the fibers. The binder is designed to dissolve upon contact with styrene in polyester resin or vinylester resin. Once dissolved, the fabric softens, allowing it to drape around curved shapes. It comes in a variety Continue reading

Epoxy Adhesion Over Stains

By Tom Pawlak — GBI Technical Advisor

We have occasionally reported results of adhesion testing of WEST SYSTEM® epoxy to wood coated with various stains. In Varnish Over Epoxy (Epoxyworks 18), we touched on the topic of wood stains under epoxy and warned that some oil-based stains would cause an adhesion problem for WEST SYSTEM epoxy. Since then, we have done some additional adhesion testing to a number of stains. Continue reading

Preparing a fiberglass laminate

A Better Way to Prepare Laminates

By Tom Pawlak — GBI Technical Advisor

During a recent inspirational hardware store visit, I discovered a rotary wire brush made by Norton™ called the Rapid Strip Brush™. It is used with an electric drill and produces results comparable to bead blasting or a needle scaler. The package says it can be used to abrade metal, masonry and fiberglass. I immediately thought of a fiberglass application that I wanted to try it on. Continue reading

Furniture Repair with G/5

By Tom Pawlak — GBI Technical Advisor

I recently broke the leg off an old workshop table. The tabletop was made of particleboard covered with Formica®. The screws holding the leg in place had pulled out and taken chunks of particleboard with them (The problem).

I was desperate to use the table later in the day so G/5 Five-Minute Adhesive seemed perfect for the repair. This is a good method for repairing inexpensive particleboard or fiberboard furniture: Continue reading

Testing DCPD Blend Laminates

By Tom Pawlak — GBI Technical Advisor

Gougeon Brothers recently did R&D testing for a manufacturer who wanted to know if WEST SYSTEM® epoxy could effectively repair injection-molded parts made with fiberglass and dicyclopentadiene (DCPD) blended polyester resin that included an internal mold release. The hoods and decks for many jet skis and snowmobiles are made with this material.

DCPD blends in polyester cause it to cure rapidly and cross-link thoroughly. This feature helps to reduce emissions from the resin but makes it difficult to repair Continue reading

G/5 Adhesive Tips

By Tom Pawlak — GBI Technical Advisor

Many of us at Gougeon Brothers experiment with WEST SYSTEM® products on personal projects at home as well as at work. We often push products and techniques beyond the limits recommended in our literature. Sometimes the experiment fails, sometimes we discover something very useful. Continue reading