#1. Take off your guitar strings when doing your pour.
I did not take off the strings when I did my pouring, thinking that I could work around them. Well I ended up getting some epoxy on a few strings that hardened. Well the boyfriend informed me that I ruined the sound of the strings with the resin. So he went and bought a pack of guitar strings and replaced all of them. So its something that is repairable of course, but you probably don’t want to have to go out and buy guitar strings if you do happen to get some on yours. They run over $10 I do know.
#2. Make sure that you tape everything thoroughly. I had some of the epoxy drip down into the inside of the guitar that dried. While that did not ruin the sound quality of the guitar, it did not look good at all! So we had to spray paint on the inside to cover some of it up.
We also had some drips that went over on the sides of the guitar. I actually wanted to go with that look in the beginning. It looked actually pretty cool coming down at the ends of the guitar. But I had a few others on the other sides and when I scraped them off with a razor blade it left the guitar needing sanded and restained.
So a word to the wise, do not let any epoxy go and dry where you do not want it to go and dry! Use lots of tape and be very aware of where your epoxy and paint are running to. And make sure everything is taped up very well!
#3. Make sure that you have everything ready in your work area. Have a very large piece of plastic laid under where you will be working. Along with some cups to catch any drips if you end up letting some drip over edges.
Whether it be on purpose or on accident. It is always better to be safe and prepared, than sorry and not aware. Make sure that you have gloves and use them from the time that you open your epoxy to the time you are finished. Epoxy is very sticky and it will stick to everything! Then it will harden to everything. Then you will have to use a razor blade to get it off once it is cured.
If you have longer hair then I would suggest making sure that your hair is pulled back. Maybe even using a hair net to ensure extra protection of your hair. There is nothing worse that hardened epoxy resin in the tips of your hair! And it is easy to do. Especially if you are a space cadet like me.
You will have it on your gloves and sometimes will forget because your not feeling the stickiness of it because of the protection of the gloves. And next thing you know you are taking your hand to scratch an itch, or to move a few strands of your hair out of your face. And there you go. Or if you have extremely long hair you could possibly be bending over doing something with your project and your hair grazes over the not cured epoxy.
So make sure that you are all the way prepared before you go to work with your epoxy resin. Because you have to remember that most of this stuff cures very fast. As opposed to most things you may work with throughout your life. That brings me to #4.
#4. Remember that you will not have much time once you mix your 2 parts of epoxy resin together. You definitely want to be prepared and not have to be running around getting things after your mix is ready. The more of the mixture that you have the longer you will have until it really starts to harden up. The less that you have mixed up the less time you will have to get it onto whatever you are putting it onto.
#5. Mix your 2 parts of epoxy very well! I made the mistake in the beginning and did not mix mine as well as I should have. And I ended up with an epoxy river on a small tabletop that would never dry. It just stayed sticky. Day after day it just never cured. So I finally looked it up on google and figured out what I had done wrong. And the fix for it. Which entailed me having to scrape all of the old sticky epoxy off my surface and doing a complete repour. It was not a fun time!
So I would suggest to use something like a spatula or ladel that has a pretty wide head to it. And use it to stir your 2 parts together. You don’t have to do it like a speed demon either. It is not a cake batter, so you do not have to whip it into shape. You just have to get the 2 parts mixed in with one another and you can accomplish this with very slow stirs and laps. Slow stirring will also decrease the amount of bubbles that you have rising in your mixture.
#6. So now we come to the bubbles. I did not know when I first started working with epoxy that you can use an actual torch on the stuff to get the bubbles out. I had seen someone using a heat gun I think they are called. I used a blow dryer. It was not until the boyfriend came at me one day asking why don’t I use a blow torch on it. I was like well isn’t it flammable? That would be crazy I thought. But he assured me that it would not catch on fire, so long as I didn’t leave the torch in one place for too long.
So I finally tried it out and saw how quickly it took out all of the bubbles as I slowly torched my way across the top of my project I was working on. Leaving it very smooth and flawless looking. So now I like using a blowtorch on my epoxy projects when it comes to getting the bubbles out. Now if I am wanting to move some color around or trying to make the epoxy stretch out and cover a lot of surface, then I like to use the blow dryer.
#7. When using coloring for your epoxy pours you will not be needing much at all. I have used everything from tattoo inks, acrylic paint, food coloring, and laundry dye to get the colors I wanted in my pours. Oh and I forgot to mention spray paint. I have even used that at times when I was lacking a certain color.
Just a few drops of any of these things that I mentioned will give you your color you need. The more you add the darker your color will get. Just experiment around and see what you like to work with. And you will find your color preference with some trial and error.
#8. And to help you out with all of the sticky epoxy resin you are working with make sure that you keep a lot of rags around, and a lot of alcohol. I just used isopropyl alcohol. And it worked very well for me. As long as the epoxy has not cured all of the way, you can get it off about anything with alcohol. It will take the stickiness right off of your hands if you happen to get it on yourself without your gloves on.
So trust me on this one. You will want to make sure and have some alcohol ready when you are doing any type of project with epoxy. Putting it into a spray bottle will definitely make it even easier to use while you are working.
#9. Have patience and make sure to let your epoxy cure all the way before messing with it. I would give most anything that you pour with epoxy a good 24 hours to dry all of the way. If you are doing something really thin with it then you would probably be good after 12 hours. Maybe even less. But you might as well practice some patience and let it go the whole time just to ensure that nothing goes wrong.
So I wish you luck with your epoxy project. Whatever you may choose to try and tackle, just remember that most everything can be fixed. And if it doesn’t turn out right the first time around just try it again. Maybe after watching a couple videos on epoxy resin pouring. But get back in there and try it again. The second one always turns out better than the first.
Same being said with the 3rd, 4th, and 5th one you do. Practice makes perfect. And no one ever got to be an expert at anything without making many mistakes at it!
So good luck and happy projecting!