Price of resins?

Discussion in 'Boat Yard Basics' started by firecat1981, Dec 14, 2014.

  1. firecat1981

    firecat1981 BBA Counselor

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    Starting to think about another project so I was looking into different resins today. I am playing with designs now and I figured maybe I would use a decent polyester or vinylester resin to save some money until I finalize the design. However when looking at price sheets today it seems the price of ester resins, except for cheap boatyard stuff, has gone up quite a bit from when I last looked. In some cases I can even get decent epoxy for the same price, or less.

    Is this a trend you guys are seeing elsewhere? I have mostly used epoxy for my last few projects, and if this is the norm now I will gladly stick to it.
     
  2. DuckNut

    DuckNut Brandon, FL

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    FC, I have not bought resin lately but I can tell you that most epoxies are a byproduct of oil and the price of oil is at decades lows. Esters are not oil byproducts. That could be the reason you are seeing this.
     

  3. firecat1981

    firecat1981 BBA Counselor

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    That makes sense. Except I'm not seeing epoxy drop in price, it's staying static, but the esters are rising rapidly. Maybe manufacturing epoxy has gotten cheaper, but esters remain the same and are keeping pace with inflation?

    It's good and bad news for me I guess. It justifies my using epoxy resin for everything, but eliminates the possibility of doing cheaper test projects.
     
  4. DuckNut

    DuckNut Brandon, FL

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    Greed. Once upon a time they made $2 a gallon now they can make $7. Why would the want to drop the price of epoxy?

    Look at it this way- Price of oil last August was $100 a barrel and gas was $3.70. Today oil is at $55 - is gas at $1.85?

    For cheaper tests - try to find a gallon of resin at the auto parts stores, etc...these types of places have old stuff on the shelf and don't usually reprice stuff already in inventory.

    Boatyard resin at FGCI should still be about $20/gallon, eh?
     
  5. firecat1981

    firecat1981 BBA Counselor

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    Boatyard resin is still like $26 a gallon, but it specifically is noted that it is not to be used below the water line. Normally I wouldn't care, but what if I stumble upon something I really like, plus it is the most temperamental stuff you can get.

    Since I haven't worked much with ester resins in the last few years, I think I will stick to epoxy. It doesn't get pricey until you scale up your projects, so I may reconsider if I decide to make a full sized plug or mold once I'm done designing.
     
  6. DuckNut

    DuckNut Brandon, FL

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    I thought you wanted the boatyard for your tests? Good enough for that.
     
  7. cutrunner

    cutrunner Cert. Yamaha technician

    As it was described to me by a chemical engineer:

    All resins are a byproduct of oil, for every gallon of oil less than a drop of that is viable to make resin of any kind, even then that "less than a drop" gets split several more different ways to make certain glues, and different resins for other industries. Also "supposably" even with the price of oil dropping we are using less oil (dont see how thats possible), which means we are refining less oil, which means even less resin, which means prices go up.
     
  8. firecat1981

    firecat1981 BBA Counselor

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    No I wanted something better then boatyard, like GP, which I used to be able to get for like $30 a gallon, but now it's creeping up to the $45-50 mark with MEKP. I can get the epoxy I like to use for about $50-60 a gallon mixed depending on the quantity I buy. Seems like a no brainer to use the epoxy since it's a better product and wouldn't even add $100 to the total cost of a boat build.
     
  9. cutrunner

    cutrunner Cert. Yamaha technician

    While i actually like working with poly i have to agree with you. For those prices i would probably use epoxy as well on a smaller project. I guess it also matters what your doing with it. If your wetting out alot of glass that will burn through some epoxy quick. But if your using wood i would use epoxy. On the other hand i wouldnt mind watching you do a all foam cored epoxy build either
     
  10. firecat1981

    firecat1981 BBA Counselor

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    I have something in the works, but there will be no core on most of it. You think it's easier to wet out with poly? With the little work I have done with poly I have always found it to be a bit temperamental compared to epoxy, which is damn near idiot proof.
     
  11. cutrunner

    cutrunner Cert. Yamaha technician

    Poly seems thinner to me and flows easier, and soaks in faster. Epoxy is great, and like you said basically idiot proof. Every batch of poly ive ever had have been different. Some needed more mekp to kick than others and not to mention weather and hunidity changes add to the thrill of wondering if your work is going to harden properly. Epoxy is very "set it and forget it". They both have their places. Epoxy is great for repairs, i feel poly is a much better laminating resin when multiple layers of glass are being laid up. I always mean to start using vinylester but it costs sooo close to epoxy its a no brainer to get the epoxy. I know you do alot of work with epoxy, one thing to be careful of is the fumes. People work with epoxy with no p.p.e. because they cant smell fumes like poly, when epoxy is just as bad if not worse for you.
    i have a friend that owns a speargun company. Hes been building teak guns and other woods epoxy coated for most of his life. He had an employee that also did work with epoxy his whole life, building those fancy tables with shells in them and such. He never wore a respirator. His body eventually began rejecting the epoxy fumes and everytime he breathed it in or touched it he would start going into anaphalactic (spelling?) shock. Crazy. Also he tells me the over exposure to teak sawdust is very bad for his health too. Wow im rambling now, be safe
     
  12. firecat1981

    firecat1981 BBA Counselor

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    Actually the fumes are a major turn off for me when it comes to resin, another reason I would rather use epoxy. I on't even like going into glass supply places because of the fumes in there. The epoxy I use is low voc, but still I use plenty of ventilation when working with it. An allergy sensitivity can happen at anytime, but can happen as your friend experienced with prolonged exposure to chemicals.

    I prefer to do my layups one layer at a time, letting it kick in between layers. I'm not doing production work so I can do it this way even though it's more time consuming. I feel I have more room for error and get virtually no air pockets this way. I'm sticking to epoxy, I just don't see a major upside to poly anymore when for a slight upcharge I can have the better product.
     
  13. cutrunner

    cutrunner Cert. Yamaha technician

  14. firecat1981

    firecat1981 BBA Counselor

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    Stay tuned, gonna try something a little different maybe this summer.
     
  15. cutrunner

    cutrunner Cert. Yamaha technician

    Still looking at the tri hulls?
     
  16. firecat1981

    firecat1981 BBA Counselor

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    Yes, if I decide to do a renovation.

    However, I'm leaning towards a totally new build along with it too :)!
     
  17. Backwater

    Backwater Fly Fishing Shaman

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    Wow, lots of comments...

    One thing you might want to look at is an ISO resin. It's a cross between polyester and vinyl ester resin. Basically a blend between the 2 and many boat builders tend to use it to be a notch better than poly built hulls which is considered in the industry to be a cheaper built boat. It's not as expensive than pure vinyl ester. Vinyl ester is a denser resin, thereby achieving a higher tinsel strength, less flex and can get away with less product to achieve the same stiffness. Less resin = lighter boat overall. But cost more. ISO splits cost vs strenght, stiffness and weight. Also, not quite as good as epoxy, vinyl will block water absorption better than poly.

    All 3 of the ester resins smells way worst than epoxy, but be warned, epoxy is more harmful to you and your nervous system. You can get amine poisoning or amine toxicity from the amine hardener they use in it. I knew a boat builder in Fort Myers who rebuilt classic boats using West Systems epoxy resins. He can't even drive by a shop anymore that is using epoxy without it freaking out his entire nervous system and he goes into crazy pain and shock all over his body! He knew others just like him.

    So be very cautious to use in a VERY open area, use a tyvek/chem suit, blue chem gloves, eye googles and a charcoal respirator (not those stupid 99 cent mask that don't do nothing!). Hey, it's your body and read up on it 1st but don't be stupid and say "I didn't know..." after the fact!

    Just sayin.....
     
  18. firecat1981

    firecat1981 BBA Counselor

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    Thanks, and I appreciate your concern, but I think we are getting a bit extreme. Remember most of us are hobbyists. we are not doing years of production work inside of a warehouse, using a chopper gun or spraying epoxy. After checking my references it looks like the biggest issue is not really the vapors, but direct contact with resin, resin components, and partially cured fiberglass (even from sanding glass that has only cured for a few days), which can cause a sensitivity over long exposures. Once cured the danger is from sanding and releasing particulate into the air in which you should be using an N95 mask. A vapor mask would be fairly useless here. Also most of the people who develop sensitivities have been working with multiple hazardous chemicals for many years, all of which are dangerous to the human body. So like most other chemicals in the NIOSH and ERG books it's the amount of exposure, or exposure over time, that leads to the issues seen by some guys who have spent years grinding away.

    I've looked at many types of resins lately, and the prices have risen sharply on all of them, except for epoxy. I just don't see a point to using an ester resin anymore now that the price point has taken away the advantage. For nearly the same price I can use epoxy, have a stronger build that is actually waterproof, and while it does still have health hazards involved they are not nearly as bad, or linger as long as the esters.

    Man this was longwinded ey? :eek:
     
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