Deep Pour Epoxy Resin Full Instructional Guide
- We strongly recommend that all of these instructions are thoroughly read BEFORE working with epoxy resin.
- This product is not intended to be used with or over any oil-based products.
- Not intended to be poured in layers of less than 1″
- This product is not intended for permanent outdoor use or direct UV exposure. It does contain UV inhibitors to help resist yellowing, but all epoxy products will eventually begin to yellow. This includes base resin, current agent, as well as the finished products.
- All epoxy has natural variations in color/tint, which may be accented by the color of the surface to which the epoxy is applied. White surfaces, for instance, are always the most challenging in terms of highlighting epoxy hue variations.
- Damming ~ because this is such a thin material, you must have a watertight frame. Any cracks/crevices/holes may need to be sealed before pouring to prevent leaking and ultimately losing product.
- Measuring & Pouring
- Pro Tips
- Step-by-Step Instructions
- Optimal Working Conditions
- Surface Preparation
- Application & Curing Tips
- Edges & Drips
- Removing Air Bubbles
- Heat Resistance
- Measuring & Pouring – Tips & Steps
- How Deep Can I Pour? – If you are new to using epoxy, we recommend small test projects on scrap material as a great way to familiarize yourself with the product. We recommend a climate-controlled work environment temperature of between 65°F–75°F and using fans on your project to help dissipate heat. A temperature closer to the lower end of the recommended temperature range is recommended the greater the pour volume. Deep Pour is a casting resin/deep pour epoxy that can be poured up to 2” thick in small quantities. Larger pours (3–5 gallons) may be poured in layers of 1.5” or less. When pouring more than 5 gallons at one time, layers of 1” or less may be necessary to prevent excessive heat generation. The pour depths suggested here are guidelines. The epoxy-curing reaction is a dynamic process. Shallower pours may be necessary and deeper pours may be possible depending upon conditions. The process is an exothermic reaction (gives off heat). If you need to mix several batches, be sure to use a clean, dry container for each batch. Using the same container may lead to curing issues.
- Factors that may cause epoxy resin premature curing are:
- Over-vigorous mixing – mix by hand (don’t whip)
- Mixing for too long
- Allowing epoxy to sit in the mixing vessel too long after mixing
- Pouring too deep a layer – casting resin is designed for up to 2″ thick flood coats
- Multiple thinner pours may be necessary when pouring larger quantities
Why is this happening? As soon as the two parts of epoxy and resin are combined, the exothermic reaction that leads to eventual curing, begins. The process of pouring the mixture onto a surface – spreads out the epoxy – so it may undergo its reaction as expected. When the mixture is confined – as in a mixing vessel – the reaction is intensified and will occur in a much faster and concentrated manner. This leads to excessive heat and possibly smoking. This also occurs during a deep pour over the recommended depth.
Seal coat(s) if needed: A thin seal coat may be necessary when working with a porous surface or object. Some surfaces may contain both air and moisture that can contaminate the finish. We suggest applying a thin coat of Table Top Epoxy as a seal coat.
Step 1: Prepare 2 parts Resin (Part A) and 1-part Curing Agent (Part B) by liquid volume. Pour the Curing Agent first and then the Base Resin into a clean, smooth-sided container large enough to hold all of the liquid, allowing room for mixing without spillage. Using graduated mixing containers help to ensure properly measured amounts of Part A and B. Any variance in this mix ratio may result in curing issues.
Step 2: The material must be mixed thoroughly for at least 5 full minutes. Be sure to scrape the sides, corners, and bottom of the container as you mix. Be careful not to whip excessive air into the mixture. We recommend hand mixing with a stirrer stick or silicon spatula. If you chose to use a power mixer set to “hand speed.” Do not mix more than 3 gallons at one time. If you need to mix several batches, be sure to use a clean, dry container for each batch. Using the same container may lead to curing issues.
Step 3: Pour the mixed resin into the mold or frame of your project. DO NOT scrape out the last of the resin onto your project as unmixed epoxy on the sides or bottom of the container could contaminate your project, leading to curing issues. Multiple thinner pours of may be necessary when pouring large quantities.
Step 4: To remove air bubbles that have risen to the surface of the poured resin, use a heat gun or torch in a sweeping motion across the surface, holding the heat source approximately 6″–10″ away from the surface until no bubbles remain. Avoid heating any one spot for too long to prevent any distortions in the finish.
Step 5: Curing times can vary greatly by project, depending on mass and temperature. Gel time ranges between 18–24 hours, and cure time may range between 36–72 hours. Full cure and maximum hardness can require up to 7 days. Do not use or place any items on your project during this time.
Step 6 (optional): If you are going to make a second pour, the first pour should be firm but tacky to the touch (roughly 48 hours). If you wait until the surface is well cured, a light sanding is suggested before the re-coat to ensure proper adhesion. We suggest scuffing the surface with 320-grit. Once sanded, clean the surface thoroughly with Isopropyl Alcohol 99% to remove any dust and debris.
Working Conditions/Temperature – Optimal product working temperature is 65°F–75°F. The product must be stored, mixed, applied, and cured for 24-36 hours at 65-75°F—with a full cure for deep pours taking 48 hours or more. THIS IS A REQUIREMENT to achieve desired results. If the product has been exposed to cold temperatures, acclimate by placing jugs in a warm water bath. Climate controlled conditions are required to properly work with epoxy to control both temperature and humidity levels, affecting both working time and proper curing.
Safety – This product has no Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs); however, we recommend working with epoxy resin in a well-ventilated area. We also recommend protective eyewear and gloves when working with the product. NOTE: Some people may be more sensitive to epoxy than others – and may wish to wear a ventilator when using the product. For skin contact, wash with soap and warm water. If the epoxy comes in contact with eyes – do not rub – and flush with water for 15 minutes repeatedly. If irritation persists, seek medical attention immediately. Please contact us for a Materials Safety Data Sheet.
Surface Preparation – The work surface should be free of any dirt, dust, oils, or grease. Denatured alcohol or acetone can be used to clean the surface with a lint-free rag. Your surface should be level so the epoxy can self-level. The room you are working in should be clean, dry, dust and insect-free. Settling dust can cause imperfections on the surface of the epoxy as it is curing.
- Application & Curing Tips
Edges & Drips – The casting resin pour can be allowed to run over the sides (when making a river table, for instance), which will create a coating on the vertical edges. These vertical edge coat will not be as thick as the top surface coating; so, manipulation with a brush to keep the layer even is suggested. Drips will form underneath the bar-rail or edge; these drips can be sanded off once the epoxy has cured. Or, if you catch the epoxy when still soft during the curing process, drips may be cut or scraped off.
Air Bubbles – Once the entire surface has been covered with an epoxy resin coat, the process of releasing/removing air bubbles may begin. The best tool for removing bubbles is a small propane torch. (A heat gun may also be used but takes a bit more practice to manipulate as easily and effectively as a torch.) Hold the flame approximately 6–10 inches away from the tabletop and quickly sweep across the entire surface using a waving motion. The heat from the torch/gun will allow for the release of the air bubbles.
NOTE: it is best to intermittently check the surface for bubbles for up to an hour using a torch (or heat gun) as needed.
Curing – Curing times can vary greatly by project, depending on the masks and temperature. The gel time range is between 18–24 hours, and cure time may range between 36–72 hours. Full cure and maximum hardness can require up to 7 days. Do not use or replace any items on your project during this time.
Heat Resistance – The heat resistance, once fully cured, is approximately 120°F. The use of coasters and place mats is recommended to protect tabletop surfaces and reduce heat transfer.