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Old 11-19-2006, 03:39 PM
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fiberglass storage & what to do with gel`d resin...?

What is the best way to store fiberglass resin so it wont gel...?

Also once it does gel what can you do to thin it back to useable form...? I know you can use acetone for thinning to spray gelcoat but can it be used to thin reg resin for both use and futher storage...? Or something else...?


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Old 11-19-2006, 04:03 PM
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Store it in a cool place.
You don't thin it to reactivate it.
Not with polyesters, anyway.

The crosslinking that occurs over time is the resin doing just what it was designed to do, only slower..It is the effect of the inhibitors becoming inactive. Which is what happens when you add catalyst. The catalyst binds with the inhibitors and allow the resin to start its crosslinking. That is my understanding of the chemical process.

Storing it in a refrigerator will extend the life somewhat, but don't freeze it.

Styrene is the solvent that "thins" the resin, but once the hardening starts, it can't be reversed. If you do use a resin that has begun to harden, you could have strength and rigidity issues with your laminate. Also, the clumps of resin that group together make it hard to do a proper lay up.

You can use acetone only in limited amounts, (no more than 10% TOPS)and only in applications that are not subject to stress.

If i have old resin that has begun to go off in the can, I add a bunch of hardener to it a set the whole thing off. Set it outside because the gases and heat, (flames sometimes ),that will eminate from the pot will be very unpleasant.

Put it in the fridge, you will get maybe 3 more months. seal it up tight tho, you don't want any water getting in it.

BTW, use styrene to thin gelcoat to a sprayable consistancy, it elimnates some of the hazyness and porosity that can occur when thinning with acetone. Better yet, use a pressure pot with a big fluid tip. Then you don't need to thin it hardly at all.
Gelcoat was never intended to be sprayed with a suction gun, or sprayed so it would flow out.

hope this helps,

I found a spiffy link that explains the reason for inhibitors and the catalyst reaction.
my signature lines...not really directed at anyone in particular..

BE different....ACT normal.

No one is completely useless..They can always be used as a bad example

Last edited by powerrodsmike; 11-20-2006 at 01:55 AM. Reason: add a link
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Old 12-15-2006, 04:20 PM
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spraying gel coat........

hi,i have been repairing fiberglass boats,and spraying gel coats for almost 40 years. the thinner for gelcoat is styrene. i use a devilbiss 502 touch up gun for most repairs,a large repair will take a larger gun, catalyze the gel coat first then add the styrene, dont use too much. i usually do not mask off the areas im going to be spraying(unless its windy) i spray all repairs minimun of 3 coats make sure you clean the gun GOOD between coats,or throw the gun away if you have more money that brains. ,around the areas that have a crown,i spray the crown an extra 2 to 3 coats. last coat i add wax additive to the gel coat.(put paraffin wax in a glass bottle,add styrene,and set it in the sun) just use a few drops,the wax will cut off the air,allowing the gel coat to get hard. after i spray (between coats) i take a damp paper towel(with acetone) and wipe off the overspray) i dont want the tape line. too hard to sand out. im boatbob2
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