Resin for Hybrid Bowls

Signed-In Members Don't See This Ad

vtgaryw

Member
Joined
Jul 24, 2012
Messages
608
Location
Milton, VT
I've got a couple of ideas for some hyrbid bowls I'd like to make. What's a less expensive alternative to our common casting resins we use for pens? I'm thinking making something that people use for river tables that turn well?

-gary
 
Signed-In Members Don't See This Ad

leehljp

Member Liaison
Joined
Feb 6, 2005
Messages
6,797
Location
Tunica, MS,
Same thoughts here. I have several root balls waiting for a resin to use.

Watching this thread!
 

Snowbeast

Member
Joined
Oct 5, 2010
Messages
144
Location
Killeen, Texas
You may want to take a look at the Bondo fiberglass repair resin at Lowes. It's brown rather than water clear but I have cast pens with it using Pearl-ex and it worked fine.

They want $15/qt or $40/gal. Been so long since I bought casting resin I don't remember how much the good stuff is. But pretty sure it's a bit more than that.
 

Curly

Member
Joined
Nov 20, 2010
Messages
3,466
Location
Saskatoon SK., Canada.
Polyester Resin which is what fiberglass resin is isn’t good for wood hybrid casting. It shrinks away from the wood as it cures. It’s fine for blanks though. Gary is in the epoxy territory for casting with wood or if he has the knack, Alumilite. Gary you’ll need a casting epoxy that can cure thick rather than a laminating or the bar top kind that need to be cast in layers. The epoxies are more money than the polyester resins. If you can find a good cheap one you’ll be loved by all if you divulged the source.
 

JohnU

Member
Joined
Jan 31, 2008
Messages
3,888
Location
Ottawa, Illinois
You have to watch some of those resins. They aren’t made for thick casts. I don’t think any are cheap, just some a little less than others. I have found over the years of experimenting that you can’t always put a price on success. I’ve wasted lots of time, money, and material trying to get something to work because I didn’t want to use what I know would work because of the price. I ended up paying more for it in the long run and ruined some very nice material in the process. Like said above, I think Alumilite is your best chance for a successful cast and finished product. You can conserve resin by finding something to cast your wood in that’s close to the size of your finished product, or start with some small products to sell and build up the funds for the larger one. I hope you find what works for you.
 
Last edited:

vtgaryw

Member
Joined
Jul 24, 2012
Messages
608
Location
Milton, VT
I use Royal Palm and sometimes Alumilite, along with PR, for pen casting. I was hoping to find something less expensive for the larger size castings I want to do. It looks like PR by the gallon, especially if I buy it from someplace like US Composites, is the best deal by far.

Gary
 

dogcatcher

Member
Joined
Jul 4, 2007
Messages
1,824
Location
TX, NM or on the road
Another epoxy resin I have used is Smooth On brand. They have several types, but I only used the one that was clear. If I were you and wanted to try this, I would call them and talk to one of their experts. But keep in mind, their expert may know less than we do.

My reason for using Smooth On was that I could save on shipping when we went to Dallas and I bought at the warehouse.
 

SteveG

Member
Joined
Dec 21, 2009
Messages
2,766
Location
Eugene, Oregon 97404
Suggesting Alumilite

Eugene Soto (ElMostro), long time experienced hybrid 'Mutt' blanks producer uses Alumilite. A while back I ordered a dozen bigger hybrid blocks for turning small vessels. None turned as yet, but I believe with his level of experience, that is a good way to go.
 

JohnU

Member
Joined
Jan 31, 2008
Messages
3,888
Location
Ottawa, Illinois
I use Royal Palm and sometimes Alumilite, along with PR, for pen casting. I was hoping to find something less expensive for the larger size castings I want to do. It looks like PR by the gallon, especially if I buy it from someplace like US Composites, is the best deal by far.

Gary
It’s not ideal for adhering to wood because it shrinks when it cures and it’s more fragile and brittle compared to alumilite. To me alumilite would be the safe way to go, for turning a large object and for a success rate.

All resins are not created equal and meant for every project. They each have their strong and weak points. When selecting the proper one it shouldn’t be about the price. It should be about the resin qualities.
 
Last edited:

SteveG

Member
Joined
Dec 21, 2009
Messages
2,766
Location
Eugene, Oregon 97404
George Watkins is an accomplished small vessel turner (search his posts on IAP and be inspired). He seldom mentions resin type, but did mention cactus juice for some of hybrid vessels appearing on his web site.
 

Curly

Member
Joined
Nov 20, 2010
Messages
3,466
Location
Saskatoon SK., Canada.
PR shrinks as it cures. So a 12 inch long or diameter piece can shrink 1/3 of an inch or more when cured. It will pull away from the wood. Epoxy shrinks less. Use it.
 

vtgaryw

Member
Joined
Jul 24, 2012
Messages
608
Location
Milton, VT
I didn't realize PR shrunk that much. I've only used it in pen-sized molds. I'll stick to epoxy (Royal Palm is my first choice) for hybrids then. I was just doing my diligence to see if there were cheaper viable alternatives out there. I can still selectively use PR for pure resin bowls, or, also, I have a bunch of mini-pine cones I want to use in some resin bowls.

Gary
 

seawolf

Member
Joined
Oct 2, 2007
Messages
436
Location
Tulsa, Ok., USA.
If you are wanting to conserve resin I have watched a few videos where the turner used 2 plastic bowls that nest together. He then hot glues the material he wants to cast to the sides and bottom of the smaller bowl then nests them and uses tape and / or weight in the smaller bowl to prevent float up then pours the resin between the bowls. Hope this helps.
 
Top Bottom