Which is stronger, glass or acrylic sheet?

A .125″ thickness of acrylic is 2 to 3 times more impact resistant than double strength window glass, 4 to 5 times more impact resistant than wire glass or other glasses. A .250″ thickness of acrylic is 9 to 10 times more impact resistant than wire or other glasses.

Which scratches more easy, polycarbonate (Lexan) or acrylic (Plexiglas)?

Acrylic sheet is harder and more rigid than polycarbonate, and therefore it is less likely to scratch than the softer more flexible polycarbonate.

Which is more UV (sun) resistant, acrylic (Plexiglas) or polycarbonate (Lexan)?

By nature, acrylic resin has a high level of UV resistance. In fact when blended with other plastic materials in the manufacturing process, the amount of acrylic resin added to the blend determines the UV resistance of the end product. Polycarbonate on the other hand tends to optically degrade with exposure to UV light and gradually takes on a slightly purple cast.

Most acrylic sheet manufacturers guarantee that their sheets will show no visible yellowing for 30 years. They also guarantee that their sheets will retain a high level of light transmission for 30 years. On the other hand, polycarbonate manufacturers offer only a 10 year guarantee.

What kind of blade do I need to cut acrylic sheet?

A 10″ carbide-tipped circular saw with 80 teeth.

Do I need a special drill bit for acrylic sheet?

Yes, they are designed to bore rather than cut, and they are available at Industrial Plastics & Paint stores.

What in store services do you offer?

Our stores offer Custom Fabrication, Cut To Size, CNC & Laser Cutting, and Poly Welding

Are in store services offered at all stores?

Not all services are available at all stores. Please call your local store to see if they offer the service you are looking for.

What is the best adhesive for polyethylene?

Over the years there have been many products that claim to glue ALL PLASTICS. Up to the writing of this FAQ we have not found one that works well. It is however possible to achieve reasonable adhesion if you have a large surface area and do not need to rely on peel strength. 3M Spray 90 works well in this situation but nothing we have found will glue two edges together with any measure of success. Polyethylene, polypropylene and UHMW all fall into this "NON GLUE-ABLE" category. 

What is the best adhesive for acrylic (Plexiglas)?

The best answer to this question is "that depends on the intended use". Methylene chloride is a good solvent cement for an interior application, but it is not good in wet or exterior applications. Weld On 16 is a thickened cement that is an improvement over MC, however it is very difficult to achieve the invisible joint that you get with MC, so no good for display work. The very best adhesion is achieved with a 2 part thickened cement but once again requires a deft hand to product a clean joint.

Do you have a silicone that is aquarium safe?

NuFlex® 333 Aquarium Silicone Sealant is a one-part, moisture curing, 100% silicone sealant that has been specially formulated for the construction of aquariums. It will never shrink, dry out or crack; remains permanently flexible and is harmless to fish and plants.

How do I calculate the number of feet of Lay-Flat tubing in a 100 lb roll?

The formula is Width x 12 / 15 x mil thickness = Feet per 1000 lbs

Example 20" wide, 4 mil

Calulation: 20 x 12 = 240
240 / 15 = 16
16 x 4 mil = 64 lb per 1000 ft

So a 100 lb roll would contain 100 / 64 = 1.562 x 1000 = 1,562 ft

How can I determine how big a diameter a width of layflat will fit when opened?

To determine the approximate diameter of the lay-flat tube will be when opened . . . . multiply 2 x the width then divide by 3.14
example ( 18" x 2 = 36") , (36" / 3.14 = 11.46" Dia)

I was painting and made a mess, what can I do?

EZ Strip All Purpose Remover will remove spills, splatters, and paint from surfaces, including carpet and upholstery. EZ Strip  is a no-mess spray gel and will cling right to the surface and also works as a great paint brush cleaner when you are done with the job!

I just bought a used boat and want to change the name. How do I remove the old name?

EZ Strip All Purpose Removerwill remove the painted lettering from your boat without damaging the gelcoat.

I want to remove the "Popcorn" finish from the ceilings in my house, how can I safely do this?

EZ-Strip Texture Coating Remover is specifically designed to remove painted textures like popcorn ceiling stipple without damaged to the surface. We recommend using a mud spatula to scrape softened textures from drywall.

I have a really bad smell in my car, how do I get rid of it?

First you need to get rid of the cause of the odor, then get Clearoma: the ultimate odor control and odor removal product. With a secret, scientifically designed blend of natural odor control organics, essential oils, natural aldehydes, esters and ketones with vapour reducing properties, Clearoma will remove everything obnoxious including pet odors, skunk odors, household odors,  and more!

I have a surface on my house that keeps peeling, what can I do to prevent this?

Apply Super Deck'sPeeling Paint Primer  . . .100% acrylic exterior elastomeric stabilizing primer with advanced adhesive technology specifically designed to lock down old peeling paint.

What is the catalyst for polyester resin?

The catalyst for promoted polyester resin is methyl ethyl ketone peroxide (MEKP).

How much MEKP catalyst do I add to polyester resin?

All polyester resins must be mixed with MEKP. (methy ethyl ketone peroxide) catalyst (unless otherwise specified) to induce the cure. The proportion of catalyst required is dependent on the ambient temperature ( ½ to 2% by volume). 

  • Blend thoroughly in a clean polyethylene container. 
  • Only mix enough product to be used in approximately 10 minutes.
  • Do not work in temperatures below 60ºF / 15ºC
  • Do not deviate from instructions on the label.
  • WORK SAFE. Have all necessary tools and solvents readily available, and be organized.
  • Clean all spillage as soon as possible.
What is the difference between waxed and unwaxed resin?

Polyester resins are "air inhibited", which means they cannot fully cure if exposed to air. This is desirable if you are building up layers of resin & fabric as the resin will stay tacky between layers. This tackiness provides a good bond between coats. 

To counter the tackiness you are required to add "air dry wax" to the final coat. This wax floats to the surface of the application while the resin is still liquid and then forms a barrier to the air, allowing the resin to full cure to a non-tacky finish.

So unwaxed resin if used in the final layup requires the addition of air dry wax at a rat of 2 oz per gallon of polyester resin.

While waxed resin already has the air dry wax added, note that you can use waxed resin for all layers if you are doing only a couple of layers and the layup is completed within 24 hours of the first application. This is because the wax remains soft and will re-liquefy and permeate through the top layer along with the wax in the wet layer. If you don't complete your lay up within the 24 hour period you will need to sand between coats and wipe with alcohol. 

What filler should I use?

ANTI-SAG (Cabosil):A light weight, low density fumed silica powder additive for use in all types of resins and gelcoats. When used to thicken Polyester or Vinyl Ester, creates an excellent medium sanding, non-slumping compound. This filler is compatible with epoxy, polyester, and vinyl ester resin systems. Add filler after adding catalyst to resin. Mix ratio is 1:2 (filler to resin by volume) for general use, 1:3 (filler to resin by volume) to reduce runs/sagging.

PRO-FIL (Micro-balloons): A hollow silicone dioxide powder. It is a non-absorbent additive used to extend all types of resins and gelcoats. It can be used in resins alone, however, its main use is to be used in conjunction with other fillers to create easy to sand compounds. Start with a Mix ratio of 3:1 (filler to resin by volume) and adjust to your specific use,

INTERFIBER: Interfiber is a treated cellulose fiber and its the replacement filler for asbestos. It is an economical additive for all types of resins and gelcoats to create a very strong hard to sand, gap filling, bedding and/or filleting compound.

ECONO-FIL (Industrial Talc): A magnesium hydroxide powder and is the most economical filler. It is an additive used to thicken all types of resins and gelcoats and is easily applied and sanded.

MINI FIBERS: Mini Fibers are dense, ground polyethylene fibers. It is an additive for all types of resins and gel coats, although when mixed with epoxy resins creates an excellent medium sanding, non-slumping compound.

CHOPPED STRAND: Chopped strand is actual strands of fiberglass chopped into 1/4" lengths. It can be added to any type of resin or gelcoat alone or in combination with other fillers where strength is required.

MILLED FIBERS: Milled Fibers are ground fiberglass fibers. They will add moderate strength to any type of resin or gelcoat alone, or in combination with other fillers.

NON-SLIP ADDITIVE: Non-slip Additive is a medium grade sandblasting sand (crushed walnut shells) that can be added to any type of resin, gelcoat or paint to make any area a slip-proof surface.

How do I mix fillers into resin?

Mix the filler(s) in small quantities at a time until the desired constancy is achieved. It is the same process with either Epoxy or Polyester type resins. However, with Epoxy Resin mix the resin and hardener before you add the filler. The opposite is true with polyester resin, you catalyze after mixing the fillers into the resin. 

What are isophthalic ( iso ) resins?

Isophthalic ( iso ) resins are higher grade resins than orthophthalic resins in that the molecular structure is denser. It is a special raw material utilized in corrosion resistant and/or premium grade polyester resins. These resins will exhibit a higher heat distortion temperature, higher strength, greater flexibility and are more waterproof than orthophthalicresins.

What is fibreglass cloth?

Cloth is a woven fabric with strands of fibreglass woven in vertical and horizontal directions at 90 degrees to each other. It offers strength in bilateral directions with the stands. Cloth is often used in conjunction with other materials like Mat to augment the strength in multilateral directions. It is ideal for small projects like waterproofing, covering a canoe and lightweight moldings & repairs. It dries transparent and can be used with epoxy or polyester resins.

What is fibreglass mat?

Mat is the most popular forms of reinforcement for many non-structural applications. It is easy to use and easy on the pocket book. You can quickly add thickness into molds, repairs and even parts. The glass strands randomly form the material that will effectively hide print-through of heavier fabrics and augment the strength and stiffness of parts when combined with other reinforcements.

NOTE: Mat is NOT COMPATIBLE with EPOXY RESINS due to the binding starch that keeps the glass strand together.

How much polyester colour paste do I add to achieve my desired color?

Custom colouring gelcoat is an art rather than a science. Achieving colour matches in small batches is not something that can be formulated. Proceed slowly, adding a little at a time until you achieve your desired colour. However, colour paste should not be added in excess of a ratio of 6-8% by weight or 60 ml paste to 1 liter of gelcoat. This colour mixing will need to be done BEFORE you add catalyst to the gelcoat.

Why is my resin still sticky after 24 hours?

There are several reason why Polyester resin would be still sticky even after 60 minutes. They are . . .

  1. Too little catalyst for the conditions
  2. Ambient Temperature is below 60º F or 15º C
  3. The surface that you applied the resin to is too cold
  4. The catalyst was not disbursed completely.
  5. The humidity was too high. 
Is there an easy way to repair nicks, holes and scratches in gelcoat?

Yes there is . . .MagicEzy 9 Second Chip Fix™ is a revolutionary "nano" filler that repairs and colours cavities… FAST. Its one-part formula and built-in leveler make it super easy to use. Available in 11 colours. Repairs guaranteed for 3 years. Size: 12.9mL / 0.43 fl OZ resealable tube.

How do I install Polygal multiwall sheet?

Polygal produced a great video to show you how . . . Click Here to view

What is amine blush?

A sticky or greasy film which forms on the top of some amine or poly-amide-cured epoxy resins. It is removable by scrubbing with soap and water.

The Part A resin has hardened and turned white. Can I still use it?

Yes, however the white solid or haziness is a mass of resin crystals, and crystallized resin will not cure properly. Therefore you will need to melt them by heating the resin to 120°F. The resin will clear up and be as good as new.

The Part B hardener is darker in colour than when I bought it. Can I still use it?

Probably. Hardeners yellow and darken over time due to contact with air and sunlight. This does not affect their performance. To satisfy yourself do a small test and make sure it cures properly.

What is the shelf life of your epoxy resin products?

All solvent-free epoxies have essentially unlimited shelf lives so long as they are stored in sealed containers. The resin may crystallize or the hardener may darken, but this does not affect their performance. If the material is more than a year old, do a test to satisfy yourself that it cures properly.

Can I put polyester resin or gelcoat over cured epoxy resin?

In general, polyester resins will not adhere well to epoxy resin products without a "tie-coat" barrier resin in between. System Three SB-112 resin system can be used as a tie coat in between epoxy laminating or coating resins, and polyester laminating or gelcoat resins. Using this resin allows you to gelcoat an epoxy-built or epoxy-repaired boat.

Can I colour System Three® epoxy products?

Yes. The preferred method is with System Three paste pigments. You can add these up to 10% by weight of the Part A resin. You can also use universal paint colorants from the paint or hardware store, but only up to 2% by weight of the resin.

My epoxy resin is taking too long to cure. How can I speed it up?

The only way to speed the cure of our epoxy resin products, once they've been applied, is to heat the room or the area that your project is in. Every 18°F increase in temperature cuts the time it takes for the resin to cure in half.

Will the ultimate strength of an epoxy coating be affected if it gets cold while it's curing?

No. As long as the epoxy is completely cured, the physical properties will not be affected.

What solvent can I use to clean up cured epoxy resin products?

Cured epoxy systems are very chemical resistant, and need to be removed with an epoxy-type paint stripper containing methylene chloride, or by a combination of heat for softening followed by scraping. Uncured epoxy resins and hardeners can be cleaned up with ketones, alcohols, or lacquer thinner. White vinegar will clean up unmixed resin components.

Can I stain over cured epoxy resin?

No. Any wood that's been coated with epoxy will be sealed, and when it's cured it won't accept stain. Stain wood first; then apply epoxy resin.

What stains can I use before applying epoxy?

Dye stains are preferable because they leave no surface film. But in general, any stain can be used so long as it is completely cured before applying mixed epoxy resin. However, it is prudent to do a test by staining some scrap and then applying epoxy. Check for appearance and bonding.

Do you have an epoxy that I can fix pinholes in a metal gas tank?

Yes we carry a product called Por15 Tank Sealer that is impervious to gasoline

Do you have an epoxy that will cure at low temperatures?

Yes we sell Cold Cure Epoxy Resin that will cure at 35ºF / 0ºC in 100% humidity. It will even cure underwater!

Can I apply polyester resin/gelcoat over epoxy resin?

Polyester resin will not adhere well to epoxy resin, however you can apply epoxy over polyester resin.

How much clamping pressure do I use for an epoxy glue joint?

Epoxy adhesives, being gap-filling glues, need only enough clamping to close the joint. Unlike other glues epoxy does not require high pressure to make a proper glue joint. In fact too much pressure will cause the epoxy to be squished out of the joint resulting in a starved joint and poor adhesion.

I made a large batch and found a few areas that are still sticky after most of the surface is cured hard. What happened?

The material was probably not thoroughly mixed and unmixed material was scraped from the container onto the surface. When mixing always be sure to mix from the bottom to the top and scrape the sides of the container and the stick. Experienced users dump and scrape the mixed material from the first container into a second and then mix again. This totally avoids the problem described above.

I made a large batch and found a few areas that are still sticky after most of the surface is cured hard. Can I fix it?

Yes. First, scrape off what you can. Then pour or wipe a suitable solvent on the surface. Wear a respirator or provide proper ventilation when working with solvents. Wipe or scrub the resin surface. This will remove residual uncured resin but won't harm any cured resin. Sand the underlying cured resin and apply a fresh coat properly measured and thoroughly mixed. Note: Over bare wood the fresh coat of resin will need to be worked into the wood with a stiff-bristle brush to mix any residual uncured material into the fresh material. This will ensure that the fresh coat will adhere properly to the wood.

How do I remove uncured epoxy resin from a surface?

Uncured epoxy is removed as you would spilled resin. Scrape as much material as you can from the surface using a stiff metal or plastic scraper. Warm the epoxy to lower its viscosity. Clean the residue with lacquer thinner, acetone, or alcohol. Follow safety warnings on solvents, and provide adequate ventilation.

Are FRP doors available?

FRP panels may be used in this application, however we do not manufacture FRP doors.

Can FRP be installed over ceramic tile?

FRP can be installed directly over ceramic tile, however non-porous surfaces require the use of rivets unless the surface of the tile is opened by sanding or use of a chemical abrasive. Adhesive should be used on porous surfaces only. We recommend using Advanced Polymer Adhesive.

Can FRP be installed over concrete block?

FRP can be installed over concrete block. First you need to level uneven surfaces with plaster or concrete compounds. Be sure concrete walls are well cured and completely dry. If concrete or block walls are below grade where moisture can penetrate and interfere with a good adhesive bond, use furring strips and install pre-laminated panels with mechanical fasteners.

Can FRP be installed over existing metal panels?

FRP can be installed with metal fasteners. Pre-drill holes (use 3/8" drill bit) in the FRP panel on 16" centers. Using pre-drilled holes in FRP as a pilot hole, drill, fastener holes in metal with a bit no larger than 9/32". Seal all joints with a silicone sealant.

Can FRP be painted?

Painting FRP is not recommended because the finish is designed to be a non-adherable surface. If painting is necessary, an epoxy or acrylic-based paint is suggested.

Can FRP be used as a bathtub surround?

FRP can be used as a tub surround, although there will be seams as the product is only available in 48" widths. Install the seam to the far end of the tub away from water spray. Silicone caulk well and leave expansion room at the joints.

Can FRP be used in a Clean Room situation?

FRP is commonly specified for food preparation, pharmaceutical, and medical settings where sanitary highly cleanable walls are required.

Can FRP be used behind grills ovens in commercial applications?

FRP panels will discolour when installed behind or near a heat source, such as cookers, ovens, and deep fryers, which radiate temperatures exceeding 130°F (55°C). It is highly recommended to not install FRP near heat sources.

Can FRP be used in indoor swimming pool areas?

FRP is ideal for this setting. FRP is known for its moisture and corrosion resistance in high humidity installation. It won’t rust, pit, dent or peel like a metal grid system.

Will FRP attract and promote the growth of mold?

No, FRP does not support mold or mildew per ASTM D3273 and D3274.

Does FRP have any acoustical value?

No, FRP has no acoustical properties. Acoustical insulation is measured in NRC (noise reduction coefficient) and STC (sounds transmission coefficient).

Is smooth FRP easier to clean than pebbled finish?

No, embossed panels have been tested to be as cleanable as smooth panels and maintain an acceptable appearance longer than smooth panels. Crane Composites suggests embossed panels over smooth for years of cleanability

How does decorative FRP compare to ceramic tile?

FRP meets typically one-half the cost of ceramic tile and is easier to keep clean. For more pricing information please contact your local distributor.

What is the weight of a pallet of FRP?

Panels are packaged 50 on a skid and the 0.09" thick panels weigh .65lb per SF. The skids weigh approximately 1000lbs each

Are Crane Class "A" FRP panels fire retardant? If not at what temperature will they burn?

Crane Composites Class “A” material is rated per ASTM E-84 test method. It has a self-ignition temperature of 750° to 850°F. All FRP will burn.

What adhesive is required for installing FRP?

Water-based FRP Adhesive offers professional-strength and is specifically formulated for the installation of FRP (fiber-reinforced plastic) panels over most porous surfaces. It is ideal for bonding FRP panels to drywall, non-treated plywood, greenboard, concrete, concrete backerboard and most other common porous building materials. It offers quick grab and strength development that requires minimal bracing. Waterborne FRP Adhesive provides permanent flexibility, allowing materials to expand and contract with temperature changes without compromise. In addition, it is easy to trowel and cleans up with water. A safer alternative to solvent-based technologies, this VOC-compliant, nonflammable formula emits no harmful or offensive odors into the environment, promoting healthier living and working conditions.

Solvent based adhesive must be used if the application is on top of a sealled surface or exterior application."

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