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Old 01-04-2011, 08:27   #1
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Minimum Temp To Use Epoxy

Launch Day at the marina is this Saturday. I'm definately not going to make that. Spring here in Ohio has not been kind to those of us that have work to do on our boats. Besides bottom paint, I need to drill and epoxy-fill holes for numerous deck fittings (bow rail bases, t-tracks, stanchion bases, etc.).

High temps for the last week have been below 50deg. This coming week could see temps in the mid 50's, but thats late in the afternoon. Morning temps will be in the 30's.

My question is this: What is the minumum temperature I can reasonably fill the holes with epoxy and have it cure?
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Old 01-04-2011, 08:33   #2
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Re: Minimum Temp To Use Epoxy

WEST has a formulation good down to 40 deg.
WEST SYSTEM | The 105 System - 205 Fast Hardener
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Old 01-04-2011, 08:45   #3
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Re: Minimum Temp To Use Epoxy

Read the label on the specific product.

Each hardener has an ideal temperature cure range. At any given temperature, each resin/hardener combination will go through the same cure stages, but at different rates. Select the hardener that gives you adequate working time for the job you are doing at the temperature and conditions you are working under. The product guide and container labels describe hardener pot lives and cure times.
In cool conditions use a faster hardener, or use supplemental heat to raise the epoxy temperature above the hardener's minimum recommended application temperature. Use a hot air gun, heat lamp or other heat source to warm the resin and hardener before mixing or after the epoxy is applied. At room temperature, supplemental heat is useful when a quicker cure is desired.

For detailed information on working with epoxy at low temperatures, refer to West Systems’ "Cold Temperature Bonding and Coating with Epoxy" (002-915).

Here ➥ http://www.westsystem.com/ss/use-guides/

Specifically ➥ http://www.westsystem.com/ss/cold-temperature-bonding/
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Old 01-04-2011, 16:33   #4
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Re: Minimum Temp To Use Epoxy

I will be using West System Six 10 which is pre-packaged in a tube and mixes within the nozzel. A friend suggested I put a ligh bulb inside a cardboard box to bring the heat up. The only temperature info on the label refers to cure time at 72 deg. I plan to try that tomorrow.

Geez, I wish it would warm up soon!
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Old 01-04-2011, 16:39   #5
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Re: Minimum Temp To Use Epoxy

I've had great results with EpoxyUSA - Solvent free epoxy and supplies for home, garage, marine, boat, and office.

They have a lot of specialty products, including low temp epoxy. All are amine free which is a very good thing. Good support. Much less expensive too!
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Old 01-04-2011, 16:43   #6
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Re: Minimum Temp To Use Epoxy

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Originally Posted by gettinthere View Post
I've had great results with EpoxyUSA - Solvent free epoxy and supplies for home, garage, marine, boat, and office.

They have a lot of specialty products, including low temp epoxy. All are amine free which is a very good thing. Good support. Much less expensive too!
Thanks for the link. A bit pricey for me and my $850 20 footer, tho.
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Old 01-04-2011, 17:22   #7
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Re: Minimum Temp To Use Epoxy

I frequently use epoxy in the 30s F. Mix well, more than usual. It may take several days to solidify, and may never completely cure until it warms up, so don't remove clamps for a week. If you are filling holes with epoxy, you should have no problem, just don't sand it down until it has completely hardened.
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Old 01-04-2011, 17:23   #8
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Re: Minimum Temp To Use Epoxy

Quote:
Originally Posted by GorillaToast View Post
Thanks for the link. A bit pricey for me and my $850 20 footer, tho.
Actually those are good prices for epoxy. We can't get it that cheap here.
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Old 01-04-2011, 19:43   #9
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15 Degrees Celsius...

I've found (through extensive trial and error) that the minimum temperature for the 5:1 generic epoxy that I use is 15 degrees Celsius. Warmer is better...
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Old 01-04-2011, 20:40   #10
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Re: Minimum Temp To Use Epoxy

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Originally Posted by GordMay View Post
Read the label on the specific product.

Each hardener has an ideal temperature cure range. At any given temperature, each resin/hardener combination will go through the same cure stages, but at different rates. Select the hardener that gives you adequate working time for the job you are doing at the temperature and conditions you are working under. The product guide and container labels describe hardener pot lives and cure times.
In cool conditions use a faster hardener, or use supplemental heat to raise the epoxy temperature above the hardener's minimum recommended application temperature. Use a hot air gun, heat lamp or other heat source to warm the resin and hardener before mixing or after the epoxy is applied. At room temperature, supplemental heat is useful when a quicker cure is desired.

For detailed information on working with epoxy at low temperatures, refer to West Systemsí "Cold Temperature Bonding and Coating with Epoxy" (002-915).

Here ➥ WEST SYSTEM | Use Guides

Specifically ➥ Cold Temperature Bonding
Gord, thanks for the links. The cold-temperature one was especially helpful. I've got some of the new G/Flex from West Sytems. It says on the label it will cure down to 40 deg. I'll wait until early afternoon when it's above mid-40s and heat the part before I fill the holes. Or, maybe I'll just remove the thing from the boat and take it inside to do it. The holes for stanchion bases and other fittings will just have to wait a week or so 'til spring really comes.
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Old 02-04-2011, 15:38   #11
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Re: Minimum Temp To Use Epoxy

Why not get your bottom paint on and do your deck work later in the water?
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Old 02-04-2011, 20:07   #12
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Re: Minimum Temp To Use Epoxy

The way the current weather situation is here in Ohio it will be a week-and-a-half to 2wks before I can paint - water or ice falling from the sky almost every day lately. I thought I could at least get the hardware on while I wait for warmer temps, but I guess not.
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Old 05-04-2011, 17:55   #13
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Re: Minimum Temp To Use Epoxy

A warm air source (hair dryer, or small fan heater) directed at the epoxy in the container (bottle / tube) for a while before use will help slightly. Directing warm air at the job once the epoxy is applied can also help.
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