kerravonsen: Cat staring upwards: OMG iz fulla starz (full-of-stars)
[personal profile] kerravonsen

This morning, knowing that it was going to be a sunny day without rain, I took the dubious UV resin pieces that I hadn't already thrown out (a rose, a starfish, and three teardrops) and put them on the back step so that they would be out in the sun ALL DAY. When I got home, I retrieved them, and they had set solid, no squishes or sticky bits. Yay! So I think that supports my theory that there wasn't enough UV in the sunlight when the sun had reached too close to the horizon. I mean, that's why we have sunsets anyway, why they're red and orange and pink.

Some more pondering on resins...

First, to explain a few of the terms I'm using:

  • casting: the resin is poured into a mould and left to set; the resin needs to be liquid enough to pour, and it works better for this if it is runny rather than viscous. One can still do casting with thicker resin, but it isn't suited for intricate moulds with lots of detail.
  • embedding: putting solid objects into resin which has been poured into a mould; the objects are embedded in the resin, and the resin encases the objects solidly when the resin is cured. This is commonly used to protect delicate objects (such as dried flowers etc etc)
  • doming: resin is poured and spread over the top of an object to make a layer which forms a shallow dome over the object; the resin must be viscous enough and have enough surface tension that it will not pour over the edge, but runny enough that its surface tension will pull it into a smooth dome, rather than being a thick lump. Doming is useful for protecting decorated surfaces which aren't robust in themselves.
  • layering: making a layer of resin, letting it cure, and adding another layer, and so on. Usually each different layer has different colours or pigments or inclusions in it, and the effect is best if each layer has parts which are transparent, so you can see the layer beneath. While it's easier to do multiple layers by casting into a mould, it can also be done with doming, if the doming resin is viscous enough to have some parts transparent and some parts not.
  • swirling: sprinkling a pigment or glitter on poured resin, and mixing it in with a swirling motion, so that the powder forms a swirly pattern. This isn't possible to do if the resin is too runny, because the swirl will smooth out and blend in with the rest of the resin. This can take one by surprise, because the smoothing out won't necessarily happen immediately, but if you come back five minutes later, all your nice swirls could be gone. I love swirling, but it requires a balance of viscosity; too thin and the swirls will vanish, too thick and you can't make the swirls at all.

I'm thinking that the different resins I've used are good for different things.

  • The CraftSmart Liquid Gloss two-part epoxy resin:
    • is good for casting; runny enough to pour into a mould and level itself.
    • is perfect for embedding; because it isn't a UV resin, it will cure evenly around the embedded object(s)
    • is the only one of the four which one can colour black.
    • is absolutely useless for doming, it's too runny
    • while it is possible to do layering with this, you have to be really patient, because it will take days to do even two layers, let alone more. On the other hand, if one wants the last (or first) layer to be black (which is a really good effect) this is the resin to use.
    • can do swirling with this if you catch it at the right time when the resin has set enough to be thicker, but not solid.
  • The Lisa Pavleka Magic-Glos UV resin:
    • is good for doming; a dome is thin and clear enough that the resin cures easily (with enough UV).
    • It does have a tendency to overflow the edge of the piece if one puts too much on, and to pull back away from the edges if one doesn't put enough on; hopefully I'll get better at that with practice.
    • is okay but not good for layering; it was too temperamental in curing when there was pigment in the mix. This may improve when I use a UV lamp.
    • is okay but not good for swirling; when swirling on a dome, the movement of swirling tends to make the resin flow over the edge; and inside a mould, the swirls tend to un-swirl because the resin is not viscous, and because it's UV-cured, it tends to go from liquid to solid pretty quickly once it starts curing, rather than gradually getting thicker.
    • like all UV resins, one cannot colour it black
    • like all UV resins, is no good for embedding, because the embedded objects get in the way of the UV light, so the resin won't cure
  • The Bondic UV resin:
    • is good at layering and swirling, as well as doming. I think it was because it was thicker than the above two, and cured quicker and harder.
    • like all UV resins, one cannot colour it black
    • like all UV resins, is no good for embedding
  • The Loon UV resin:
    • is good for fly-fishing, but not jewellery. When you're making a fly that's going to be mauled by a fish, it probably doesn't matter that the resin is a bit rubbery and not as strong.
    • like all UV resins, one cannot colour it black
    • like all UV resins, is no good for embedding

Date: 2016-11-17 07:28 pm (UTC)
primsong: Danny Kaye and Basil Rathbone (jester get it)
From: [personal profile] primsong
This is pretty cool, I've often thought it would be fun to try playing with resins - my dad made funky paperweights and a mini horse-trough for my toy animals when I was a kid... the trough 'water' had a tiny rubber alligator in it. I never have, but you inspire me that maybe someday I will before I die. These look really nice, and I like your observation on the UV aspect. The inclusions really pep it up, your mica powder and beads ones are especially nice, I think.

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Kathryn A.

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