Table Top Epoxy Troubleshooting Guide

Entire Surface Is Soft, Wet or Sticky after 48 hours: 1) Product was under-mixed. Unfortunately, as much as we stress this as the most important part of the project, it can still occur and is the most common cause of this problem. If you do not mix long enough or do not scrape the sides and bottom of the container while mixing you will find under-cured epoxy. The Resin component tends to sit on top of the mixture in the bucket. If it is not rigorously pushed down into the mixture with the stir stick during blending, you can end up with areas that are hard/dry with other areas that are sticky or tacky that will not harden. 2) Product was inaccurately measured. You must follow the strict 1 to 1 ratio by volume. Do not guess or eyeball these measurements. Just dumping the product from their original containers is not a proper measurement. The product MUST be measured with fairly precise accuracy using a graduated tub.

Solutions: 1) If the surface is hard but only slightly tacky, a new flood coat can be applied over the entire surface and the new product will dry hard and crystal clear assuming the mixing procedures have been properly followed. No sanding is necessary. 2) If the surface is wet and soft or gooey like jello, then as much of the material as possible must be removed with a paint scraper or knife. Use denatured alcohol or acetone when necessary to help remove the wet epoxy. Remix and apply a new flood coat. The new coat will cover up almost all effects of the previous error. Be certain to follow the proper mixing procedures.

 

Small Sticky or Soft Spots: The most common cause of this is scraping or brushing from the side or bottom of the mixing container while pouring. It is natural to want to use up every last drop you have mixed. However when you pour onto the surface, you should just dump it out and set the container down. If you use a stick or a brush to try and remove every drop you will very likely end up with sticky spots. You may also end up with sticky areas due to the mixture not being completely blended. The Resin component tends to sit on top of the mixture in the bucket. If it is not rigorously pushed down into the mixture with the stir stick during blending, you can end up with areas that are hard/dry with other areas that are sticky or tacky that will not harden.

Solutions: 1) If the sticky spots are hard but only have a slight tackiness on the surface, you can mix up a very small batch of epoxy and paint over those areas with an artist paint brush. Make sure to dip the brush into the center of the container to ensure that you paint on blended epoxy instead of touching it to the sides of the container as you might end up with non mixed material. You may also repour over the entire surface and the new product will dry hard assuming correct pour procedures have been followed. 2) If these spots are soft and wet, you will need to scrape or cut out as much of the soft material as possible using a paint scraper or knife. Use denatured alcohol or acetone when necessary to help remove the wet epoxy. If you are left with deep depressions . As a result, your first re-coat should be used just to fill in the areas in which you scraped. After this pour has set for at least 4 hours, a full re-coat can be completed. This will hide the imperfections and leave you with a hard glass-like surface.

 

Air Bubbles: There are many types and causes of excessive air bubbles. We have listed a few below.

Air bubbles across the entire surface: 1) No bubble removal technique was used as shown in our instructions (heat gun or plumber’s torch). 2) Improperly applied or no seal coat was used. 3) Wood surface below was extremely porous and the seal seal coat was not thick enough to cover. (Very common in aged wood). 4) Product was whipped or stirred excessively putting so many bubbles in the mix that they could not be removed with the flame/ heat technique.

Air bubbles in just one spot: 1) Knots, cracks, or holes in wood were not properly sealed and air bubbles continually rose throughout curing process. 2) Missed a spot during the seal coat.

Solution: Usually the bubbles are not noticeable enough to warrant any further work. If, however, you desire, you may sand or grind the surface to remove as much of the air bubbles as possible and re-coat the entire surface. Spot fixing results in a raised (speed bump) looking area and is much worse looking than the bubbles themselves.

Surface Cures Uneven with Ripples or Waves: 1) Wooden surface had too much warping or imperfections and one coat of epoxy was not enough to cover the imperfections. 2) Applying too thin a flood coat. This product needs to be applied in full 1/8” flood coats in order to properly self-level. 3) Applying too much heat during your bubble removal techniques will cause a ripple effect. The heat or torch should be swept across the surface rapidly without holding it in one place. Solution: Applying another flood coat in sufficient thickness should hide virtually all signs of the waves or ripples from the previous coat.

Surface Appears Cloudy or White In Spots and Streaks After the two components are poured together and stirring begins the mixture will turn a cloudy white color, this represents areas in which the epoxy has not fully combined. You must continue to mix until all signs of cloudiness and tiny white lines have completely disappeared (usually takes 3-4 minutes of thorough mixing). If the mixture is poured onto the surface without thoroughly mixing the batch, the white and cloudy spot will remain in the epoxy and can't potentially create soft and or sticky spots. Solution: Usually the white areas are not noticeable enough to warrant any further work. If, however, you desire, you may sand or grind the surface to remove as much of the undeniable area as possible and re-coat the entire surface.

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