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Saltheart

Solvents and rod finishes--Tom Kirkman and Al Goldberg please elaborate

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I love getting info from guys like Tom Kirkman and Al Goldberg. Tom and Al just gave some advice about using solvents in the finishing process on another thread that I hope they'll elaborate on.

 

I never use solvent between coats but I do clean the rod balnks and reel seats before working with them. i also use a solvent to clean off the dust after i rough up the area on a blank where the reel seat will be epoxied. Also , I don't use Iso Alchohol which has a lot of water , i use the solvent alchohol from the hardware store.

 

Anyway , I was hoping to get more discussion going on the subject. Also , what do people think about using acetone for cleaning before finishing? What about for thinning? Etc.

 

Any comments or elaborations would be appreciated.

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I used Acetone for the first time installing a grip, a drop here, and a drop there, just to make it slide a bit easier. If this grip holds up, which it will, I'm going to use this technique more often, because I love forcing small diameter Foam over a large diameter blank.

 

I also use Acetone to clean up the mess on the blank after sliding foam down. It just cleans it up better than Denatured and Iso - which is comparable to water after using Acetone. Obviously not good to be breathing this stuff in though.

 

As for using Solvents between coats of finish - it depends. IF there is a fish-eye, or a general epoxy not sticking to one area problem (like I've had with MAdeira metallics), I'll wipe with Denatured on a clean rag. I've tried using all sorts of paper towels, coffee filters, but I guess I'm too abrasive with them becasue they end up falling apart and leaving small particles of either lint, paper, etc on the wrap.

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Gnerally, if you're applying an additional coat of epoxy finish within 72 hours of the first, you should not do anything to the prior application. The two will meld together and form one "coat" once everything has cured.

 

But problems creep in once the initial application has cured and actually become a "coat." At that point, it tends to repel anything you try to apply to it. This is why any additional application applied more than roughly 72 hours past the first tends to "fisheye" when it's applied. The initial application is repeling it - forming what people refer to as fisheyes and often mistaking it for silicone contamination. Wiping it with a solvent will not help, and in fact, may actually hurt. Solvents tend to smear around any contaminants that might be present, sometimes fouling the entire surface you wish to coat.

 

What is needed is a "water break free" surface condition. This is a condition where the surface will not repel water, but rather will readily accept it and allow the surface to fully and completely "wet." This is normally accomplished by scouring or scuffing the surface with 3M Scotchbrite in the fine or extra fine pad (grey). There is no need to clean the surface afterwards and wiping it with a solvent will only hurt your chances of getting that additional application to nicely cover your prepared surface. There should not be anything much in the way of dust or debris, and any truly fine dust raised by the scuffing will neither bother nor show in the final application. You can blow it off or may wish to tack is off with a lint free cloth, but generally the extra fine grey pad won't raise much in the way of dust or debris to begin with.

 

If, for some reason, you suspect that something is on the first coat that could interfere with the second - some type of contaminant, then it's fine to wash/clean it with something like Isopropyl alcohol first, and then follow with the Scotchbrite pad to obtain that water break free condition.

 

Having said this, I'm well aware that people sometimes use a solvent wipe or wash as their final step in surface preparation and still manage to get good results. Fair enough. But it won't happen 100% of the time and in many cases, the solvent wash is the actual culprit when things do go awry.

 

The procedure for optimum finishing (over prior coats) or bonding is always:

 

1. Clean

 

2. Scour/Scuff/Degloss

 

3. Adhere/Finish

 

If you wish to know beforehand how your next application of finish will adhere to a surface, pour some water on it and watch what happens. If it beads or runs off - so will your finish. If it spreads out and wets the entire surface - so will your finish.

 

 

...........

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Tom - any plans to make a Contaminant Magnet. This way all you have to do is pass it by your wraps, and all contaminants, regardless of what they are - just float off and go stick to teh magnet. lol.

 

Interesting on that application of water between coats to check.

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I don't use acetone, as I have read that it can damage the resin of the blank itself. Too strong. I use either denatured alchohol or 91% isopropyl sold for sterilizing skin before injection.

 

I never use any kind of solvent after scuffing. That would be counterproductive. Why have a nice roughened surface for your epoxy to grip to, and then smear it up with solvent?

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In the paint industry, the fish eye condition is called "non wetting". It is caused by the surface tention of the previous coat. The "best way to break the tention is by scouring! period.

nuf said

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