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CedarLakeMusky

Epoxy Topcoat?

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Hi, I am new to tackleunderground and new to lure making. I am experimenting with epoxy for a topcoat. I am building musky lures and thought that would be best because of their teeth? How many lures on the average should you get out of a 1 ounce pack. My average lure size is about 8 inches. I tried my first topcoat yesterday and it went ok. I suppose with time it will go smoother. One other question. When should you put your lip in the lure or does in not matter? Any info would be great.

Thank you,

Scott

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On 8 inch lures you would only be able to top coat 3 maybe 4 with a 1 ounce pack. Remember that it is very crucial to mix your epoxy accurately. Once mixed you have to stir really well too. Someone wrote on a post somewhere I can't remember who it was, something very useful. To mix your epoxy just take a piece of wire and make a loop on one end and use a drill to mix it.also when brushing it on you do not want a ton of epoxy, you want a thin even coat and hold it up to the light to make sure there is no missed spots.devcon has little working time so get it on pretty quick.a lure Turner of some kind is really a necessity with epoxy. It depends what bait I'm making as to when I put the lip in, if its a bait with the line tie in the lip I usually put it in before paint then tape it off otherwise I usually paint, then epoxy the lip in, then topcoat.

Hope this helps,

Andy

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Scott, you didn't say what brand of epoxy you are using so it's hard to estimate how far it will go. Devcon Two Ton epoxy makes a thick coating while rod epoxies like Flexcoat or table top epoxies like Envirotex Lite (aka ETEX) contain solvents and make a much thinner coating.

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On 8 inch lures you would only be able to top coat 3 maybe 4 with a 1 ounce pack. Remember that it is very crucial to mix your epoxy accurately. Once mixed you have to stir really well too. Someone wrote on a post somewhere I can't remember who it was, something very useful. To mix your epoxy just take a piece of wire and make a loop on one end and use a drill to mix it.also when brushing it on you do not want a ton of epoxy, you want a thin even coat and hold it up to the light to make sure there is no missed spots.devcon has little working time so get it on pretty quick.a lure Turner of some kind is really a necessity with epoxy. It depends what bait I'm making as to when I put the lip in, if its a bait with the line tie in the lip I usually put it in before paint then tape it off otherwise I usually paint, then epoxy the lip in, then topcoat.

Hope this helps,

Andy

Thank you for the info Andy. Do you prefer one epoxy over another? Is there an epoxy that is harder than another for fish with sharp teeth?

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Scott, you didn't say what brand of epoxy you are using so it's hard to estimate how far it will go. Devcon Two Ton epoxy makes a thick coating while rod epoxies like Flexcoat or table top epoxies like Envirotex Lite (aka ETEX) contain solvents and make a much thinner coating.

I was looking all over town for devcon two ton and only found 5 min devcon so I didn't buy it. I finally just settled for a hardware store brand epoxy to try epoxy for my first time. I want to try devcon two ton. Do you know if one epoxy is harder than another for fish with sharp teeth? Do you prefer one over the other?

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As mentioned earlier etex and flexcoat are thin and will take multiple coats. I prefer devcon 2 ton and yes it is hard to find, best source is the internet. I mainly build bass baits so I don't know about how many coats you will need but with bass baits I never use more than one coat.

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Every brand of epoxy is different. You have to try different brands and compare.D2T has a good reputation for lure building, as does etex, even though they are very different animals. You were right to stay away from the five minute epoxies. They yellow very quickly and are not completely water proof. OKey for gluing hardware, but no good for top coats.

If you do try a different brand, then post your findings here, we would all like to learn.

Dave

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Just to add to the different brand thing I have found a 30 minute epoxy made by Bob smith industries that I like very much. It has a little longer working time then 2 ton and flows out better. Its very tough as well, you can buy it from hobbytown USA and a few select sources online. Its probably my favorite topcoat so far. It might not be quite as hard as devcon but pretty close, and for sure tough enough for any bass bait.

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Does the solvent brand epoxy like flexcoat and etex have an effect on water based paints when you coat over them? Thank you all for the info. Hope too chat more with you soon!

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I personally have never used flexcoat, but i have used etex some. I always make sure my paint is good and dry and i have never had problems with etex and water based paints. One thing that i did have a problem with when i started was when i was signing baits with a sharpie. etex solvents do not go good with a Sharpie so beware of that.

Andy

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One nice thing about epoxies is they generally don't react chemically with underlying coatings so there's seldom a problem with wrinkled paint or bubbles. When cured, they are almost inert so are also good for waterproofing/undercoating raw wood. Envirotex Lite (aka ETEX) and Devcon Two Ton are good standard epoxies used by lure builders. It's worth noting that epoxies with longer cure times are usually rated as stronger than ones with shorter cure times. Whether that means they are less prone to hook rash, impact damage, etc, is a different question. In the end, I think there is more variation caused by application missteps than anything else. If you want hard non-yellowing epoxy, the important thing is to measure the 2 parts accurately and mix them very thoroughly (some don't realize what thorough really means!). I think there has been a tendency for musky builders to use ETEX in multiple coats (3-5) and for bass builders to use a single coat of Devcon 2T. ETEX contains solvent, is thinner, and has a much longer brush and hardening time than Devcon. You can do a search here on the respective epoxies to get hundreds of comments, application tips, pros/cons, etc.

Edited by BobP

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One nice thing about epoxies is they generally don't react chemically with underlying coatings so there's seldom a problem with wrinkled paint or bubbles. When cured, they are almost inert so are also good for waterproofing/undercoating raw wood. Envirotex Lite (aka ETEX) and Devcon Two Ton are good standard epoxies used by lure builders. It's worth noting that epoxies with longer cure times are usually rated as stronger than ones with short cure times. Whether that means they are less prone to hook rash, impact damage, etc, is a different question. In the end, I think there is more variation caused by application missteps than anything else. If you want hard non-yellowing epoxy, the important thing is to measure the 2 parts accurately and mix them very thoroughly (some don't realize what thorough really means!). I think there has been a tendency for musky builders to use ETEX in multiple coats (3-5) and for bass builders to use a single coat of Devcon 2T. ETEX contains solvent, is thinner, and has a much longer brush and hardening time than Devcon. You can do a search here on the respective epoxies to get hundreds of comments, application tips, pros/cons, etc.

I mentioned this before on TU. I found that adding a bit of D2T to Etex helps the Etex to set up noticeably quicker and adds a bit more viscosity with no negative issues. Try starting with appx 5-1 Etex to D2T.

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I mentioned this before on TU. I found that adding a bit of D2T to Etex helps the Etex to set up noticeably quicker and adds a bit more viscosity with no negative issues. Try starting with appx 5-1 Etex to D2T.

Now you tell me! :lol::lol::lol:

I find it's helpful for me to remember that there are two basic types of epoxies, glue and decoupage.

I have used both as top coats for my wood lures, and here's what I've learned.

Glue type epoxies are hard, strong, and brittle when spread thin, like as a top coat over a large area. They have no give, which would be a disaster for a glue, so they can't expand and contract with a wood lure when it get hot or cold.

But they go on thicker, set up faster, and are hard.

Decoupage epoxies, like Etex, NuLustre 55, and even Flexcoat, are softer, and more flexible, since they're designed to cover large wood surfaces, like table tops and and bar tops. In the case of Flexcoat, it needs to bend with the rod without cracking. They can move with the wood, but, because they are designed to flow out and self level over large surfaces, they have more solvent, and they are thinner than glue epoxies. They take much longer to set up, typically 12 to 18 hours, so the lures have to be constantly rotated to avoid sagging and drips.

For wood lures, they require multiple coats, three in my experience, to reach the same level of tooth protection as one coat of a glue epoxy.

Most builders I know and have spoken with wind up building dedicated lure turners so they can use epoxy as a top coat.

Of course, if I had know about Husky's 5 to 1 ratio mixing tip, I might have had better luck with my epoxy top coats. :lol:

D2T is a glue. I've used it over wood lures, and had it crack and flake off when I um, er, ah, encounter a hard surface, like rocks. :lol:

I still use D2T to attach hardware.

When I used D2T for a top coat, I found I still had to rotate it as well, but only for 20-30 minutes, because it is thicker, and sets up fast.

For fish with teeth, like pike and muskie, I would probably use it when coating a wood lure. Of course, I've never fished for, or even seen, a pike or muskie in real life. But I've fished for barracuda in the salt, and they have teeth.

Some guys use really hard woods, like teak, for toothy critter lures.

But heavier woods have their own challenges, like lack of buoyancy.

So that's how I make my decision which epoxy to use.

Just remember, no lure finish is totally tooth proof. I've had barracudas scratch metal spoons, so I imagine pike and muskie can do the same.

Edited by mark poulson

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