Believe me when I tell you that how well your resin project turns out starts long before you ever open a bottle. You can avoid problems like sticky resin, resin bubbles and wasted supplies with a little bit of planning. These 10 tips for resin success will make sure you get the results you want every time.
1. Prepare your resin crafting area.
Always go into a resin project with the idea that it is going to drip or spill everywhere. Protect your surfaces with something like wax or freezer paper or even a painter’s tarp if you are working on a large project such as pouring a resin painting. Tape off areas where you don’t want resin, like if you are pouring resin on an artboard. Make sure your surface is level and have a dome ready to cover your wet resin when you’re done to keep out dust and pet hair.
2. Gather your supplies, including resin kits, resin colors, glitter, etc. before you ever pour your resin and hardener.
Time will get away from you as it is, and you don’t want to waste any more of it looking for extras and accessories while the pot time on your resin is ticking.
Pro tip: A timer is a great tool to have here. Set it to expire about when the pot time of your resin is almost up. It’s a great reminder to use or lose your mixed resin.
3. Prepare papers and other porous items for your resin projects AND make sure they are fully dry.
Just like gathering supplies, you need to make sure any papers, flowers, natural products, etc. are sealed and dry before putting them in resin. Even if they are sealed, but the sealant is wet, they will wick in moisture and stain.
4. Read the directions for your resin kit. Then re-read them. Be sure you completely understand them before you start mixing. The basics you need to know are:
*How much resin and hardener to mix together. Does it mix 1:1, 2:1 or perhaps drops of hardener per ounce of resin?
*Minimum mixing amount (resin plus hardener) to get the chemical reaction to occur.
*Maximum mixing amount (resin plus hardener) so you don’t mix too much and have the resin cure all at once.
*The mixture’s pot time so you know how long you have to work with it.
*Demold time in case you want to pop the resin out of the mold before it fully cures so you can start a new project.
*Full cure time so you know when it’s fully cured and wearable or usable.
Sometimes all of this information can be a little hard to find in resin mixing instructions. If you have any questions, contact the manufacturer as they should be able to share these details with you.
For the resins sold on Resin Obsession, we have all this information for you. You can find it in a PDF document in this article on resin casting.
5. Get your room to the ideal temperature
Resins do best in a temperature of the low 70’s F. Turn on your heat or air conditioning as necessary to get your resin crafting room to this temperature range. If you are looking for some ideas on how to warm up an area without warming up your entire house, here are some cold weather resin casting tips.
6. Warm the resin and hardener bottles
If your resin kit has been kept in a cool area, warm the bottles up in a water bath for five to ten minutes before use. Believe it or not, even in Florida, resin and hardener bottles get cool. I almost always warm my resin kit bottles before use. By warming the bottles, your resin and hardener will mix easier and with fewer bubbles.
7. Do the math on how much resin you need
This one is important if you are anything like me and hate wasting resin. We have a few articles on figuring out how much resin should you mix.
8. If you are using molds, prep them with mold release and allow to fully dry.
Prepare your molds with a mold release and allow to dry 20 to 30 minutes before use. Otherwise, the mold release may leave a cloudy film on your resin castings.
9. Have clean-up supplies handy
I like to have paper towels and a trashcan available to clean up the spills and drips that invariably happen every time I cast resin. Baby wipes also work well to clean up spilled resin on bezels, molds and even your body.
10. Have appropriate safety gear
Last but not least, while this doesn’t necessarily impact your epoxy resin casting results, it can long term if your health suffers. Please follow resin safety precautions, which includes working in a well-ventilated area and wearing appropriate protective gear such as gloves and safety glasses. The safety data sheet of the epoxy resin kit you are working with will also specify any additional safety measures you should take when using it.
What other things do you like to do preparing for mixing resin? What other tips for resin success do you have?
Unpublished Blog Posts of Resin Obsession, LLC © 2019 Resin Obsession, LLC