Q&A – Using Snap-Lock Plastic Bags for Epoxy Filleting and Gluing – less mess, less waste

The two methods here save a lot of mess when building boats with epoxy.

They also allow accurate and fast placement of mixed epoxy glue.

Most supermarkets have varieties of “snap lock” bags. They have a seal across the opening of the bag that can be pressed together with finger pressure. They make it a lot easier to keep epoxy glue away from areas on the boat where you don’t want to put it. And also areas on yourself where you don’t want to put it!

Make up some epoxy, thicken it to the consistency of peanut butter. Put a “snap lock” Glad plastic bag into a tin and fold the top of bag over lip of tin (like a garbage bag in a garbage bin   trashcan). Scrape epoxy into the bag.

Take bag out of tin, seal opening and cut one corner out of bag to make a hole a few mm (approx 1/4″) across   size will need to vary with consistency of mix.

By gently squeezing the bag a bead of epoxy will ooze out of hole in controlled way from the hole.

An epoxy filleting tool for wooden boatbuilding.

An epoxy filleting tool for wooden boatbuilding.

Pipe a bead of epoxy down the angle where you want the fillet Then use a shaped piece of timber as shown right to shape the epoxy.

Use a filleting stick of a radius three times the lesser ply thickness to smooth down the fillet. Practice getting it smooth and even.
Remove excess from either side of fillet with a stirring stick that has been sharpened to a chisel point. It is possible to lay masking tape down either side of the join in the first place so that the excess can be removed with the tape.

Duck Flat in Adelaide use the bags differently and perhaps more efficiently.

They pump the resin and hardener directly into the bag – seal the bag and massage the resin till it is mixed – they pay special attention to squeezing the epoxy out of the corners.

Then they open the bag and add the gluing or filleting mix – they know how much to add for different consistencies – then massage it into a smooth paste.

They cut a corner out the same way and proceed as above.

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