Sale of Epoxy Resin for Boat

If you are looking for special marine epoxy resin, your search is over: in this section of the topRik marketplace you can choose and buy multi-component systems, paints and impregnations based on epoxy resins. We offer products from the world's leading manufacturers - Cecchi, Veneziani Yachting, etc., as well as supplies from FNI, a well-known distributor of marine accessories and products for yachts.

If you have questions about choosing and using epoxy resin, ask the experts at topRik. They are all experienced yachtsmen and will give you professional advice free of charge right now if you use the online feedback form or call the telephone number provided. You will also receive a detailed answer if you send your questions to [email protected].

Epoxy resins are liquid, viscous or solid, transparent thermoplastic products ranging in color from light to dark brown. They easily dissolve in aromatic solvents, esters, acetone, but do not form films, since they do not harden in a thin layer. The film remains plastic, which is important when used on ships that are constantly in a state of vibration when moving. Plasticity is an important, but not the only advantage of epoxy resins.

Benefits of Epoxy Resin

When epoxy resins are exposed to compounds containing a mobile hydrogen atom, they are capable of curing to form three-dimensional infusible and insoluble products with high physical and technical properties. Thus, it is not the epoxy resins themselves that are thermosetting, but their mixtures with hardeners and catalysts.

Various substances are used as hardeners for epoxy resins: diamines, carboxylic acids or their anhydrides. Epoxy resins mixed with the above hardeners form thermosetting compositions with valuable properties:

  • high adhesion to the surface of the material on which they harden;
  • high dielectric properties;
  • high mechanical strength;
  • good chemical resistance and water resistance;
  • no release of volatile products during hardening;
  • slight curing shrinkage (2–2.5%).

These and other advantages of epoxy resin have made it a sought-after component in shipbuilding. These resins practically do not react to the action of halogens and are destroyed only by the influence of strong acids. Most alkalis are also unable to break molecular bonds. The product has the highest adhesion to metals, but glue based on it is used to join many other materials: wood, earthenware, ceramics, rubber, polymers, leather, fabric, etc.

Waterproof epoxy resin is actively used in the manufacture of fiberglass hulls for mass-produced yachts. It is its high adhesion that is used there to impregnate various layers that make up sandwiches for the hulls and decks of motor and sailing boats. This same property explains the high strength of the adhesive joint made using epoxy compounds.

Many serial shipyards (Beneteau, Bavaria, etc.) still use the simplest and most reliable technology for creating yachts. Its essence is to create a matrix (mold) into which fiberglass with an interlayer is laid layer by layer. They, in turn, are impregnated with epoxy resin. The hulls are extremely durable and reliable.

Durable epoxy resin is very resistant to mechanical stress and abrasive substances. This significantly reduces the wear rate of surfaces impregnated with these compounds, including epoxy resin paints. Therefore, systems, paints and impregnations based on epoxy resins are actively used in yacht building and boat repair. They impregnate and/or cover the surfaces of hulls and decks, as well as the bottoms of ships.

Types of Epoxy Resin

In the European the uniform standards for produced epoxy resins do not exist. Only methods for basic types of quality control and product testing conditions are subject to standardization. The most well-known American (ASTM) or European (DIN) standards usually correlate with each other. Most manufacturers develop individual methods, specific to certain brands or product groups, independently and independently of others.

Epoxy resins are made up of two components that, when mixed, react and polymerize. The component that causes polymerization is usually called a hardener. The types of epoxy resin also depend on the composition of this component.

Depending on the components that make up epoxy resins, they are divided into cold- and hot-curing resins. The latter type of curing will be required if the end products are to be used in harsh environments, high temperatures or chemicals.

According to the physical state of epoxy resins are divided into liquid, semi-solid and solid, and according to molecular weight - into low molecular weight, medium molecular weight and high molecular weight.

Yachtsmen should know that epoxy resin for yachts is created using special formulas that take into account the operating conditions of the vessels. Most of these conditions are quite aggressive: regular exposure to vibration, sea salt, constant exposure to an aquatic environment, the destructive effects of ultraviolet radiation, sea and river flora and fauna, etc.

That’s why epoxy resin for repairing household furniture or floors is definitely not suitable for marine practice, much less compositions for decorative crafts.

How to Use Epoxy Resin

Having several packages or jars with components for preparing an epoxy coating on hand, you will have to very carefully study the instructions for using epoxy resin, which are necessarily included with such a kit. It also details how to use epoxy resin to repair or build a boat.

In order for the resulting mixture to have the required properties, it is necessary to properly mix the epoxy resin with the hardener. The process itself is carried out in certain proportions and at a certain temperature.

As a rule, the relevant information is contained in the product instructions, on the packages of the hardener and epoxy resin. Since different polymers can be used as a basis, the mixing temperature and proportions may differ. The difference should not be significant. If a product has significantly different mixing proportions and temperatures, you should prefer a more familiar analogue.

FAQ

What is Epoxy Resin and What Is It Used For in Yachting and Boating?

Like most synthetic resins, epoxy resins are oligomers. Their complex molecule consists of a limited number of monomer units. Unlike polymers, in which the number of units is theoretically unlimited.

In yacht and boat construction and repair, epoxy resins are used as reliable coatings, impregnations and adhesives.

What are the Main Benefits of Using Epoxy Resin for Yacht and Boat Repairs?

The high performance properties of epoxy resin make it an ideal component in yacht repair and shipbuilding:

  • high density;
  • high level of adhesion with various materials;
  • low curing shrinkage;
  • resistant to salt water, air moisture, ultraviolet radiation, alkalis, acids, salt solutions, oils, petroleum products;
  • does not change its qualities over a wide temperature range;
  • creates an even, smooth, glossy coating that is especially resistant to abrasion, cracks, chips, warping and other defects;
  • allows you to effectively, quickly and without complex auxiliary devices restore the functionality of worn out elements;
  • forms effective protection of ship structures from erosion, cavitation, bimetallic and pitting corrosion.

How to Properly Mix Epoxy Resin and Hardener?

Each composition containing epoxy resins intended for shipboard work is accompanied by instructions indicating the proportions of mixing the resin and hardener – make sure to follow them closely.

What is the Difference Between Epoxy Resin and Polyester Resin?

Since the properties of epoxy resins have already been described above, let's compare them with the same characteristics of polyester resins.

  • Mechanical properties. Polyester resins are significantly inferior to epoxides in this parameter.
  • Adhesive properties. Polyesters have weak adhesion and therefore do not work well as an adhesive.
  • Shrinkage. Polyester resin s can shrink up to 7-10%. However, the shrinkage process may take time, and delamination will not be immediately obvious.
  • Water resistance. After curing, the surface has weak waterproofing properties and is permeable to water.
  • Best before date. Polyesters have a short shelf life: on average 6 months - 1 year.
  • Polymerization. The curing speed is significantly faster than epoxides, usually within a few hours. The drying process can be accelerated using an MEKP catalyst.
  • Smell. During hardening, the components emit a strong odor.
  • Boiling. Not prone to boiling.
  • Durability. Polyesters form a durable coating, but are prone to the formation of microcracks, are less resistant to impact, and less durable than coatings made from epoxy resins.
  • Environmental friendliness and safety. Polyesters contain carcinogenic styrene, which produces a strong unpleasant odor. Resin components are flammable liquids, catalysts are flammable and explosive. But there are resins on the market without styrene and with a reduced content.

Reasons why polyester resins are popular in shipbuilding and yacht repair:

  • UV resistance. Polyesters surfaces are UV resistant and do not require a topcoat to prevent yellowing or deterioration from sunlight.
  • Ease of use. The material is quite easy to use and does not require special knowledge and experience.
  • Areas of application. Polyesters are used in cases where low cost and ease of operation are more important than strength and durability.
  • Price. Polyester resin costs 2-3 times less than epoxy.

Can Epoxy Resin Be Used to Repair the Underwater Part of a Boat?

Modern marine chemistry offers technologies using epoxy resin, which make it possible to successfully repair the underwater part of boats.

For example, gelcoat combined with fiberglass. Gelcoat is a coating of the underwater part of the hull made on the basis of epoxy or polyester resin. It performs the protective function of the bottom of the yacht, but can also be used on other surfaces of the vessel. After drying, the formed layer is quite durable and cannot be easily damaged by mechanical action, much less washed off.

In repair work, a resin-based mixture with the addition of a filler can be used, which can be glass mats (used for general strengthening of the hull of boats) or fiberglass - applied if the surface of the vessel is not severely damaged. This composition is also used if it is necessary to strengthen the hull of the boat.

What Is the Shelf Life of Epoxy Resin and How Should It Be Stored?

The shelf life and optimal temperature conditions are indicated by the manufacturer on the product packaging. As a rule, this is 1-2 years, at 15-20°C. It should be noted that the conditions apply when storing epoxy resin in its original container and sealed. The hardener retains its qualities for a much shorter period. Resin mixed with hardener must be used immediately.

If the storage condition unopened in factory packaging is not feasible, then for storage you should choose a container made of material that does not contain impurities that can interact with the resin, causing its destruction. The container must be tightly closed. When using repeatedly, it is important not to allow even a small amount of hardener to get into the container with the resin.

Protect from exposure to ultraviolet radiation. Direct sunlight is destructive even to hardened resin. Maintaining temperature conditions. It is also important to avoid sudden changes in temperature - cooling and heating.

Can A Surface Treated with Epoxy Resin Be Painted?

Once cured and dry, the epoxy resin layer can be coated with any type of acid-free paint, including polyester resin-based compounds. Of course, you should follow the general rules of painting work if we are talking about an outdated layer: cleaning, degreasing, sanding.

What Tools and Materials Are Needed to Work with Epoxy Resin?

The main difficulty in working with epoxy resins arises from its higher viscosity compared to polyester compounds. As when working with polyester resin, it is important to follow the technology. For repairs and when using the manual molding method, the following tools are required: scales, brushes, rollers, spatulas, mixing containers.

If the work is carried out with the most durable composition, it may be necessary to carry out a post-polymerization (hardening) process with heating to 50–60°C for 2–3 hours, which can be done using electric or gas heating devices. After post-polymerization, such a part will become 2–3 times stronger.

What Are Some Recommendations for Eliminating Air Bubbles in Epoxy Resin After Application?

During the application of epoxy resins, “air pockets” can occur between the fiberglass and interlayer layers. These cavities are air bubbles that can become potentially dangerous to the structure in the event of unexpected loads.

In order to avoid problems, the cases are glued with resin with a reserve. So, the hull, even in the presence of these bubbles, will remain strong, but at the same time, of course, the mass of the hull increases.

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