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Pinholes in epoxy inlay

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Forum topic by JReed3 posted 10-08-2014 09:27 PM 1084 views 0 times favorited 8 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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JReed3

81 posts in 1836 days


10-08-2014 09:27 PM

I made a sign and used epoxy for the inlay. I had several bubbles that came up and worked those out. However, after I started sanding, there were quite a few bubbles that were were below the surface that never came up. There are a lot of inlays on the sign, but I only have the issue in a couple of places. What is the best way to fill these in?


8 replies so far

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Woodendeavor

276 posts in 2071 days


#1 posted 10-08-2014 11:00 PM

More of the epoxy. I have had this problem in the past. I now preheat my epoxy resin and hardener before I mix them together. Gives me a thinner viscosity and helps release these bubbles

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Mark Kornell

1061 posts in 1995 days


#2 posted 10-08-2014 11:07 PM

Another way to deal with bubbles is to use a heat gun or hair dryer right after pouring it. Not too much heat, just enough to make it less viscous and let the bubbles pop. Too much heat and you’ll cause it to cure too quickly from the top down, which gives uneven results.

-- Mark Kornell, Kornell Wood Design

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JReed3

81 posts in 1836 days


#3 posted 10-08-2014 11:11 PM



More of the epoxy. I have had this problem in the past. I now preheat my epoxy resin and hardener before I mix them together. Gives me a thinner viscosity and helps release these bubbles

- Woodendeavor

Thats what I tried first. It filled the holes but came out during sanding.

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JReed3

81 posts in 1836 days


#4 posted 10-08-2014 11:13 PM



Another way to deal with bubbles is to use a heat gun or hair dryer right after pouring it. Not too much heat, just enough to make it less viscous and let the bubbles pop. Too much heat and you ll cause it to cure too quickly from the top down, which gives uneven results.

- Mark Kornell

When I see bubbles coming up, I do use a heat gun. However, this time there were only a few that were visible.

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patron

13537 posts in 2806 days


#5 posted 10-08-2014 11:47 PM

two things can happen
the epoxy heats up faster with more hardener
use less hardener
the heat of the epoxy can heat up any air in the pores of the wood
causing it to expand

i always seal the wood first with spray or brush
lacquer or poly to close the grain first
(it also keeps some woods from bleeding the color in the epoxy
back into the pores)

seal the wood good inlay space and board top too

get a book and plan on spending at least an hour
sitting with it waiting for bubbles
either a hair dryer
or a spritzer bottle with lacquer thinner (what i use)
the thinner loosens the surface tension
and lets the epoxy flow better
at least thats what i think

pouring it and getting caught up in other things does not work to well
suddenly you remember
and a half hour has gone by
and the mix is stiffer
harder to get those bubbles to come to the surface
i’ve used a toothpick sometimes to ‘drag’ thru the mix
to be sure it is all down in the groove
and keep the container handy to pour a little more if needed

get it to flow into spaces from one end if possible
not just dump down into a space
that can trap lots or air

make the puddle higher and overflowing the space
let it cure good before sanding
(a thumb nail in it will tell you if it is soft or not)

i’ve had to wait days for some to cure
from humidity or not enough hardener
(once it has hardener of any amount
it will kick)
just a matter of when

-- david - only thru kindness can this world be whole . If we don't succeed we run the risk of failure. Dan Quayle

View Ger21's profile

Ger21

1047 posts in 2596 days


#6 posted 10-08-2014 11:55 PM

Warm the wood with a heat gun before applying the epoxy, and you should see fewer bubbles.
As for filling the bubbles, you need to rough them up before filling them. Try using an awl or something similar. Epoxy needs a rough surface to grab onto.

-- Gerry, http://www.thecncwoodworker.com/index.html http://www.jointcam.com

View generic's profile

generic

83 posts in 812 days


#7 posted 11-04-2014 10:24 PM

I use a product called Acryline from ACS international. It is a liquid acrylic that comes in a ton of colors. I use it for inlays in solid surface countertops and such.
When I mix it, I stir it to get the blend even in the cup, then I hold the cup with the bottom against the side of my random orbit sander and in just a minute or so the bubbles all end up at the surface of the cup. You don’t see the bubbles when you pour the material but the bubbles float up to the surface while it’s curing. Kind of like air pockets in cement. Vibrate it and the bubbles go away in the cup instead of ruining your work.
It works like a charm every time..

-- TMF

View Jim Finn's profile

Jim Finn

2412 posts in 2387 days


#8 posted 11-05-2014 12:00 AM

You might want to try an epoxy called “Z-POXY” It is slow to set and quite thin at room tempature. Few, if any, bubbles.

-- "You may have your PHD but I have my GED and my DD 214"

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