I’m building my first footy and plan to seal it with a light covering of epoxy resin. The only stuff I’ve found locally is the twin-syringe type, 5 minute superglue. Will this work? I’m not looking for professional results. Or, is it worth just ordering some z-poxy? Other folks have mentioned sealing a ply hull with paint; can anyone recommend a paint brand — preferably something readily available in the UK — that works well and is reasonably priced?
Any advice appreciated; thanks,
The epoxy glue is probably not a good idea, especially the 5 minute type. Too thick, too expensive, and fires off too fast. Epoxy is quite expensive. A cheaper alternative may be to use polyester resin - get it from the auto-body repair section of Halfords or similar shop. Available in a small can along with the catalyst. Smelly - so do it outside.
Other options - spar varnish or an exterior grade polyurethane from a marine supply or DIY shop.
If your building a Footy, I have used a different method of sealing. It works, just have to be quick.
The process is what I named “Flash Sealing”
Thin CA is used for sealing.
A balled up rag to wipe.
Pour on the exterior hull some thin CA, immediately wipe in one direction fast with the rag. Do not stop the wipe, the rag will stick.
The CA wicks into the wood quick. The balled up cloth used for wiping spreads it along, prevents CA build up, wipes off excess.
The CA will cure almost instantly, so practice on some scrap balsa or plywood.
Most paints will stick to a hull coated with CA after sanding smooth.
Epoxy only is absorbed into wood a few mm, excess sits on top. If using plywood, epoxy is only absorbed into the first layer. It can’t penetrate beneath the glue and ply layers beneath.
Thin CA will wick right to the glue layer. Footys are meant to be built lightweight, epoxy tends to add weight. Thin CA weight is negligible. Makes a a balsa hull almost bulletproof.
You won’t have to wait to work on your Footy if using Thin CA vs. epoxy.
So if you want to try something different “Flash Seal”
Flash Sealing works great on exterior of keels and rudders as well.
The main problem, beside the viscosity and quality issues, with the “5 minute” epoxy is that it’s not really water-proof (that’s from my fly rods making experience).
Thin CA is even worse, not only it’s not water-proof but it will, in time, brake down in water.
If you don’t want to use good penetrating marine epoxy your only other options are exterior spar varnish or the clear spray paint sealant.
I used to build custom fishing rods as well and always used Flexcoat.
For restoring and building full size boats always used marine epoxy.
5 minute epoxies are like you said water resistant but, have found Devcon 5 minute to be problem free.
For coating using epoxy, Z-poxy is good, used it in the past for RC boats.
As for thin CA being worse than 5 minute epoxy, have never had a problem Flash Sealing building various RC racing powerboats or sailboats.
I prefer sealing with epoxy but for Footy’s the Flash Sealing works great. It’s worth trying.