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Old 04-09-2005, 08:53 AM
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HOK UFC35...drying problem, again

I really like the HOK line of products but I been havin a problem lately with hardness/dry time. Just did a Z 28 all black, did tribal ghost flames then cleared with 3 coats of UFC35. The next day after a 30min cure phase the stuff was still somewhat "sticky" to the touch, not immediate but just soft and some stickyness. Did a second cure phase the next morning for 45min (both phases at 135/140deg checked with temp gun on surface), took it out of the booth and ignored it for a day and a half. Still a lil soft, figured to do a light wet sand to "open it up" and help release solvents. Horror of horrors the water even left marks and greyed out the clear. Finished sanding most of the car and turned the heat up in that room to help it out although now it looked like total s#!t. After 1hr all the wetsanded area "re-shined" as solvents worked up to the surface again. Bottom line still wet after 2 full days. Wet. The shiney surface seemed to be drying as we left for the weekend (we work 4 10s so a 3 day weekend ). Every step in the tech manual was followed and temps, reducers, and catalysts as recommended.

Why the hell are we havin this problem? My thought is that while the shop I'm in is mainly a PPG use shop, perhaps the PPG thought of solvent use is not the same as HOK. PPG "school" (2 co-workers attended) says fast dry reducers "skin over" since they dont let it all out before the mat'l is dry. I say bull because of 30yrs with gun in hand, but I can see their point to a small degree. Using HOK products, I think the use of 311 and an additional 25% of 312 on the final coat, as specified caused this problem. I also believe that the slower solvent, when heated by cure phase did indeed "skin over" and cause this lateset grief. 300 and 310 may have been better choices. Any input to this scenario is welcome. The car belongs to one of the company owners and came out great except for this . Thanx in advance.

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Old 04-09-2005, 10:02 AM
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PPG "school" (2 co-workers attended) says fast dry reducers "skin over" since they don't let it all out before the mat'l is dry. I say bull

*************************************************
Ah, you lose!
The ppg statement is more dramatic with the way house of color is made
(Valspar) than ppg itself.

A guess here is you have two problems, one is the reducer selection and along with that by baking the Job you may have hurt yourself further.

Next problem the 35 is no longer the big seller because of downgrade so I would assume you have an activator that was a little old, leaking a little air and has gotten weak, not bad but weak. Could be caused by pinhole in weld on can from factory or out of round and top did not seal good but good enough to stop leaking in a few days.

At this point outside will help you more than baking.
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Old 04-09-2005, 10:27 AM
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Interesting...weak catalyst. The standard way of thinking says too much can hurt big time, not enough, slow cure if at all. "More dramatic with HOK..." meaning the PPG school deal applies even more.

I guess at this point Barry (I respect your inputs by the way) I need to express my disdain for the painting process at large these days. Not that I'm some crusty old bastid that won't grow with change, but I sure do miss good old fashioned consistancy. You say UFC35 is not the big seller these days, so then what is? Past experience has led me to my line of thinking regarding solvent use and I take the PPG statement as use the PROPER solvent for conditions vs slow it down in an attempt for better quality. The latter being the prevailing thinking in the shop. I.E., if say DT870 is a right choice, why use 885 to make it "better". Excess solvents bleed into bodywork and fillers, get trapped in substrates, and attack existing finishes. No chance at times for any of it to get out.

I certainly hope this one will survive. The flames look good, the surfacing was beyond acceptable for a summertime driver, and generally could help the shops image. If it doesn't dry, it's yet another failure by the crew. They've had their share over the last year and just being there chaps my ***, let alone seeing these things and being powerless to stop it.

My wish is to have this group on a par with what I used to do. HAving wins at Meadowbrook and Pebble Beach on a regular basis doesn't seem to carry much weight there. I must also add that while I observed and mixed the 1st batch, I may be getting less than 100% info from the kid pulling the trigger, although I seriously doubt that based on his past performance. Thanx again for your input.
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Old 04-09-2005, 11:59 AM
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"Sticky" to the touch, wow, that is more than just "slow curing". Long before I say any product failure is at fault (a tiny percentage of causes) I say improper mixing and or bombing product on. But honestly, that is more than solvent trap so I vote for improper mixing.

When I did this everyday (trouble shooting) it would blow me away what I would find out AFTER I was told "everything was mixed properly". I would probe and probe like a detective and sure enough, it would finally come out.

Simply looking at the product on the shelf, "You used this can and that can right"? Then looking in the cans to find out that there was too much hardener left in it. I wouldn't say a thing, probe more to find out that indeed that was the hardener used. Not mixed correct, end of story.

Brian
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Old 04-09-2005, 12:18 PM
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Mixing clues...2:1:1, being clear, catalyst, reducer. 2qts clear (UFC35), 1qt KU150, 1qt RU311. 15-20min between coats, "string test" followed through. 30min cure phase at 135/140deg surface temp checked with digital temp gun. Watched 1st coat applied, observed string test, left for 45 min, saw temp gun check and time used on cure phase, advised on addition reducer added for flow-out per tech manual, observed 25% by volume of RU312 missing from the can, 1st batch mixed by me personnaly. Job was done when I returned, cure phase not used until last coat. Additional reducer was used last coat (reported and believed), looked stunning and nearly dirt free. Temp while applied was 75/80deg on surface. If I hadn't observed so much as well as participated in the process (my interest being increased since I layed down the ghost tribals in silver pearl over black), I would have to assume the same that a mistake was made in mixing. But I mixed it. I feel as though the 30min cure time merely skined the top surface and trapped the solvents, and the 2nd cure phase 14hrs later only exagerated the condition.

The old catalyst theory may or may not have merit in this case, but once again I opened the can and it was new/sealed. Sometimes you put tons of extra effort into doing something right and it's too much effort. Just has me scratchin my head. The shelby we did over the xmas holiday did finally get hard like Barry said on one of our old posts.
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Old 04-09-2005, 01:06 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by theHIGHLANDER
I feel as though the 30min cure time merely skined the top surface and trapped the solvents, and the 2nd cure phase 14hrs later only exagerated the condition.
That or the solvent temp choice is about all it can be other than a poor hardener limited to that particular can (a leak of some sort) as Barry pointed out.

All I know is, I have seen solvents causing just as you discribe (the "sticky" part is pushing it though, it usually is just soft). I don't know the products you are using at all so I can't say much. But "hand slick" is a common test between coats to ensure proper flash. "Hand slick" is NOT "stringy". "Stringy" will be quite a bit wetter. "Hand slick" is lightly brushing your hand across the surface and NOT leaving a mark.

Brian
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Old 04-09-2005, 03:02 PM
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I have reread this and if it wet sanded, than its not wet.

It all leads to weak activator, trapped solvents or as martin said miss-mixing of activator.

Has to be one of the three.

?? you did have right activator for the product??
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Old 04-09-2005, 04:58 PM
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Let me start by saying you guys are a great for discussing this, and I appreciate it. Activator recommended for product is KU150. Reducer recommended is their RU line with 300, 310, 311, 312, and 315. Tech manual says 300 for flow coats, 310 is for 65-75deg, 311 is for 70-85deg, and on up to 315 used as a retarder only and they specify use sparingly as retarder only.

As far as wet sanding, it was done with a high level of "touch" to open it for drying. As you both are aware keeping a surface wet and being careful you can sand out of a problem and keep going at times during the paint process. I sometimes believe 1/2 of being a true refinisher is how you get out of trouble as much as not getting into it in the 1st place. Problems exist and we just deal with it I guess. But the fact that the car completely "re-shined" from a sanded surface, on it's own, has me in the old mind set of solvent usage. As you said Martin, it was touch dry but not dry. A finger in contact for 2 or more seconds left a print. I can only hope it's dry come Mon morn, but once again I appreciate the comments.
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Old 04-09-2005, 07:12 PM
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Just curious, did you smell the reducer when you wet sanded the job?
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Old 04-09-2005, 07:19 PM
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Im not familiar with PPG products anymore, but when Sikkens changed their clears awhile back they made all the cans look the same. I painted a truck front end and had the same problem you described, the rep said I put activator in twice and no hardener. If thinner will wipe it off, its probably didn't get hardener.
Ive been painting for 30+ years, thats the first time it ever happened. The good news is it wiped off really easy . The bad news is I had to admit I did it. shortly after they changed the colors of the cans.
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Old 04-09-2005, 07:55 PM
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I use the hok uc35 ive never had a problem with it curing. last fall it was about 60 degrees i sprayed a bmw.. 5 coats because i always get dust(needs plenty of wet sanding) since i dont have a booth. the next day i went back to the shop wet sanded and buffed it with no problem. ive never had a problem.. only thing i can come up with is it wasnt mixed properly.. when i started painting about 7 years ago i started with HOK paint.. first thing i was told was "make sure its mixed properly. HOK is a very tempermental paint". throw it out in the sun wait a day or so and it will harden up.
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Old 04-09-2005, 08:03 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by p8nter
Im not familiar with PPG products anymore, but when Sikkens changed their clears awhile back they made all the cans look the same. I painted a truck front end and had the same problem you described, the rep said I put activator in twice and no hardener. If thinner will wipe it off, its probably didn't get hardener.
Ive been painting for 30+ years, thats the first time it ever happened. The good news is it wiped off really easy . The bad news is I had to admit I did it. shortly after they changed the colors of the cans.

That is actually not that uncommon. I have seen guys do it when the cans are not similar. You get to thinking about stuff, the boss is on your butt, you are worried if the color will match, etc. Next thing you know you are forgetting the hardener or something.

I have had those lapses in consciousness where the cup is sitting there full of clear "RTS" but I can't remember if I mixed it properly, it gets tossed in the garbage. It happens.....

Brian

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Old 04-09-2005, 09:20 PM
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I believe you got some bad catylist for sure whatever the case.
According to their Tech manual you did everything right IF you did measure properly. The KU-150 IS VERY moisture sensative.
The only "issue" is the heat cycle,
Most all of HOK better clears are designed to be air dried and heat cure is not recomended per say. Jon never was big on speeding things up and his products are time comsuming to say the least as he wanted at least 24 hrs natural dry time for anything other than sealers & bases.
If you do bake, It is at 145 for 1 HOUR!!!!! Not 30 min.
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Old 04-10-2005, 08:18 AM
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All of the newer products out seem to be specd for reducers of a much slower dry than the products of years ago. PPG came up with the slower is faster theory and seemed to start pushing it at the schools and through the reps heavy about four years ago. I always liked to spray my products the way I like them to look- never having to rely on the product to flow to the desired smoothness. Spraying with these slower solvents and hardeners sometimes makes for a very tempermental system IMO. The PPG rep has said it's been proven that the slower solvents actually make the clear cure faster because the surface stays open longer which definately makes sense but the interesting thing is--every PPG school I've ever went to we were always spraying at 85+ degrees and really really hammering the product on. I still say that solvent selection still needs to be based on the environment, huidity, temps, and also spray technique. If you're laying down nice thin smooth coats in a temperature of 60-65 it will require a different solvent than if it was 85 degrees and really applying thick coats-just makes sense IMO.

You've got some major solvent trap for sure or some hardener problem. If it does harden up over the weekend then I'd guess it to be solvent related. If it doesn't harden then maybe poor hardener or improper mix ratio.

Did you contact HOK? Maybe the metal temps were cold when the clear was sprayed but the booth air was hot enough to lock up the surface enabeling you to apply the product but with trapped solvents? Hope you get it figured out soon. The good old days of easy to use products like DAU82, 2020, 7500S are gone IMO, now you need to tune the product and spray enviroment and technique to get a system that works for you.
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Old 04-11-2005, 08:24 PM
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Well its mon nite and it still is somewhat soft. This morn we sanded it down w/1500. Yes you could smell reducer and it would stain the existing finish if sanding water with clear in it stayed too long...still wet. So after a sand we popped it into the booth for long cure phase. 145/150 for about 1 1/2 hrs. The whole freakin car was shiney like just sprayed after this. As far as mix goes, I did definately mix it right. No errors there at all. The error was prolly due to a short cure phase the night before, perhaps not enough purge time, the excess 312 added for enhanced flow, or a combination of ALL of the above and a poor batch of hardener. It did harden up some, and it will sand out tomorrow. I called the tech line and finally got to talk to someone and she said that UC35 with KU500 is the best choice for us. The UFC is "still flowing" as she put it and really is intended for projects that need to sit before they get cut and buffed like restorations and such. This is a classic case of trying too hard. When used just like it says to, no real problem. I will switch to the UC line like she recommended, but I never have seen one this wet for this long.

I'm also of a mind to keep to myself and not get invoved with others spraying very much. While it's good to have a team atmosphere, it just seems to be a hinderance more than help lately. I too have been at this s#!t for 30+yrs, and trying to follow, follow up, and groom people less than 1/2 yer age is just pointless. The flames I laid on came out really good lookin. Nice fade, clean lines, super color choice. Perhaps I shoulda stepped up and cleared the friggin thing myself but that was never intended as the ghost flames were an after-thought by the owner. If this thing takes too long to set that too will prolly need a re-do. And the only thing worse than doing this craft in the 1st place is doing the s#!t twice. And yeah...don't I long for some DAU82. I used to love that stuff. I almost completely enjoyed painting back then.
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