Central

Envirotex Lite Learning Curve

10 posts in this topic

I just applied my second coat of Envirotex Lite on oak lure blanks in order to seal them for painting. So far I've encountered:

Curing in a cold garage

First attempt it was a high of 5 celsius (41 Fahrenheit). I took my time setting up my lure turner and the bottles of etex cooled down a bit and I was able to squeak out 5 baits. The coatings went on thick but took a long time to harden, after 30hrs I took them inside and allowed them to hang dry. It took about 3 days to harden but they did.

Problems:

The finish was not completely even, the extex seemed to absorb into the end grains and the coating was patchy a few spots leaving an uneven coating. I assume this is due to the low heat causing the etex to be ticker and preventing the self-levelling.

I had one bait that ended up having a lump of etex build up on the backside of it... I noticed that my lure turning sticks occasionally and I think I solved that problem (it was also my first bait I coated).

Curing in a cool garage

Today it was 8 celsius (46.4) but I plugged in a heater next the wheel before I started to set up (increased temp to 60-70 - guessing). I also left the Etex inside until I was ready for it. I also applied ticker coating on the end grain locations on the raw wood, the recoats I just applied evenly

Good news:

I was able to coat 9 baits and probably could have coated more if I was set up to do so. The recoating of my first 5 seems do go flawless, they don't seem to have any of the below problems

Problems:

I had 2-3 baits with lumps on them at 3 hours out, I was able to spread these out and I think the coating will level as it was still fairly liquid.

Bubbles, these damn things appeared on a bunch of the fresh oak lures. These clusters didn't appear right away it took some time for them to form. Blowing on them did nothing, I noticed bubbles form on one of the lures immediately after I was done but there wasn't anything I could do other than scrape of the extex. Heat plus a thick coating of etex on oak = escaping gasses.

What I've learnt:

Heating helps but causes bubble to form.

Two seal coats on oak seems to be a necessity, you'll either get bubble or your end grains will be exposed if it goes on thin.

My lure turner is a bit to slow at 1rpm.

My solutions is to apply two thin coats. To check my lures for bubbles or lumps 30 minutes and 1 hours after I finish coating them.

Questions:

Once they are sealed and ready to have their buoyancy adjusted what do you use to to seal the counterweight holes?

Perhaps I could add weight to the lures after my first coat. While not perfectly sealed its not like I'm soaking them in water?

Edited by Central

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Here is another solution: put it in the garbage and use 2-ton. I never could get etex to work for me. And I had nearly every one of those problems you mentioned. I honestly don't know how some guys get it to work.

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One thing that might be causing a problem is as your heating the lures your causing the air trapped in the wood to expand and be forced out into the Etex. You could try heating the wood before you apply the Etex. This should do two things. As the wood cools it will try to pull the Etex into the grain of the wood and the heated lure blank should thin the epoxy to make it go on smoother and easier. As far as the lumps of Etex it is extremely easy to put on too thick of a coat when applying it. Too thick of a coat and a slow turner speed can lead to disaster. While I don't use Etex anymore it is what I first started using and it can be a bit tricky. I found things worked much better when applying several thin coats instead of trying to do a couple of thicker coats. I never tried using it in the temperature ranges you described and that could be contributing to your problems as well.

Ben

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There are much easier and quicker ways to seal your baits, I don't think I would have the patience for using Etex as a sealer.

In my opinion, the object of a sealier is to:

Raise the grain, so that it can be sanded flat and provide a glass smooth, faultless surface to paint on, giving professional paint jobs with no visible grain or hint of what is underneath. After sanding, a second sealer coat may be required, depending on how much you sanded off the first time.

Seal the wood, so air cannot get out and water cannot get in. This prevents bubbles occuring later, when top coating. Also, if or when teeth breach the top coat, water does not enter the wood and allows you to continue using the lure.

Harden the surface. This helps prevent the tooth problem, if the surface is hard, resisting penetration.

To achieve all of the above, the sealer must have the ability to penetrate the wood fibres, it must soak in and cause the grain to raise. It must be hard and not rubbery and it must be quick, so that I can get on with the job. Currently, I am using CA glue. It achieves all my requirements, including speed.

If you insist on using an epoxy, I suggest that you do it indoors, in temperatures that the epoxy is designed for, around 70F. Like Ben explained, it is always a good idea if the baits are a little warmer, so that the air inside does not expand. I would apply a thin coat of the epoxy, rub it in with my covered finger, wipe excess off and hang. After a few hours, repeat, then leave to harden. Sand and repeat if necessary. No need for rotating using this method.

I suggest that you save the etex for the top coat and try the CA glue.

Dave

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I use a bunch of different Topcoats. Etex is a great TC because it gets super hard, smooth and glossy. Please note I do not use it as a sealer though... It just takes too long to dry. Thus, on most of my softer lures(balsa, and PVC) I use D2T thinned with DA as a sealer and then topcoat with Etex.

When using Etex I have found it is important to follow the below. If I dont then i start having issues....

1. After the lure is sealed Clean it really good with soap and water and try to handle as little as possible while painting

2. It is really important to measure exact amounts with Etex... I use 3ml syringes... Box of 100 off ebay for like $10 shipped to my door

3. Mix for a min of 2-3 mins... I usually mix for about 3 mins or so and then let it sit for a couple more mins and then mix a bit more. If you just mix it until it looks all mixed(30 seconds or so) it just doesnt start that reaction between the 2 parts and issues seem to arise

4. Apply evenly and I take a heat gun on low and go over the whole bait to pop the bubles in turn making the Etex even runnier... dont get too close or do to much!

5. Turn as slow as you can go(5rpm or so) for a minimum of 12hrs. But on cold days I let mine go for 18-24hrs some times. I have a turner that I can add and take baits off while turning so this isnt a problem for me

6. Before you handle them hang dry for another day or so. Again the colder it is the longer it takes. I live in California and really cold for us is 30 at night and 45-50 in the day.... I let the etex take a really long time on these days and never had any issues...

hope this helps

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One thing that might be causing a problem is as your heating the lures your causing the air trapped in the wood to expand and be forced out into the Etex. You could try heating the wood before you apply the Etex.

Ben

This is why they are bubbling, I just realized that I left my raw oak blanks out over night on my second try while the first try I brought them in. I won't be overlooking that again.

I suggest that you save the etex for the top coat and try the CA glue.

Dave

I would like to use CA Glue but I just don't know how to do so economically. All of my baits are pike/musky sized so I would require a bulk supply or a lot of those little packages. Then comes in the problem of CA glue being activated by oxygen which makes a bulk supply moot. I'll pick up a sample of the little one shot tubes and see what type of mileage I get. The idea of waterproofing and balancing them the same day is very appealing.

I use a bunch of different Topcoats. Etex is a great TC because it gets super hard, smooth and glossy. Please note I do not use it as a sealer though... It just takes too long to dry. Thus, on most of my softer lures(balsa, and PVC) I use D2T thinned with DA as a sealer and then topcoat with Etex.

I'll have to try D2T as a sealer as well, it wasn't my first choice as my supply is across the city and I liked the self-leveling property of Etex.

Anyone know if you can thin Etex with DA? I wouldn't mind it a bit thinner for using it on as a sealer.

Edited by Central

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would like to use CA Glue but I just don't know how to do so economically. All of my baits are pike/musky sized so I would require a bulk supply or a lot of those little packages. Then comes in the problem of CA glue being activated by oxygen which makes a bulk supply moot. I'll pick up a sample of the little one shot tubes and see what type of mileage I get. The idea of waterproofing and balancing them the same day is very appealing.

I take your point on the cost issue. I can get three 7" swimbaits out of one 1/2oz bottle. At first, this was way too expensive at $4 per bottle, but I have found a local supplier of a Chinese CA glue for less than a dollar per bottle. At 30c per lure, I think is acceptable, given the advantages.

Another sealer to consider is propionate. Very cheap and fairly fast. It will need about 6 dips, but the time between dips is a few hours for the first dip and 10 minutes between the rest. Hope you find a solution that works for you.

Dave

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There are much easier and quicker ways to seal your baits, I don't think I would have the patience for using Etex as a sealer.

In my opinion, the object of a sealier is to:

Raise the grain, so that it can be sanded flat and provide a glass smooth, faultless surface to paint on, giving professional paint jobs with no visible grain or hint of what is underneath. After sanding, a second sealer coat may be required, depending on how much you sanded off the first time.

Seal the wood, so air cannot get out and water cannot get in. This prevents bubbles occuring later, when top coating. Also, if or when teeth breach the top coat, water does not enter the wood and allows you to continue using the lure.

Harden the surface. This helps prevent the tooth problem, if the surface is hard, resisting penetration.

To achieve all of the above, the sealer must have the ability to penetrate the wood fibres, it must soak in and cause the grain to raise. It must be hard and not rubbery and it must be quick, so that I can get on with the job. Currently, I am using CA glue. It achieves all my requirements, including speed.

If you insist on using an epoxy, I suggest that you do it indoors, in temperatures that the epoxy is designed for, around 70F. Like Ben explained, it is always a good idea if the baits are a little warmer, so that the air inside does not expand. I would apply a thin coat of the epoxy, rub it in with my covered finger, wipe excess off and hang. After a few hours, repeat, then leave to harden. Sand and repeat if necessary. No need for rotating using this method.

I suggest that you save the etex for the top coat and try the CA glue.

Dave

Hey Dave what is CA glue ? and where do you get it ? Norm Thank you

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Hey Dave what is CA glue ? and where do you get it ? Norm Thank you

CA glue is CyanoAcrilate glue. Superglue. Used as glue, filler, sealer. It is sold under various names like superglue and many different companies have their own brand. It is that glue that welds your fingers together instantaneously. Now you know what it is, I am sure you will have no trouble finding it.

Incidently, when you see blue text underlined, if you click the text, you will get help on that text.

Dave

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I used to use sealer (BLO) Boiled Linseed Oil, but found that if you sand your lures really well I didn't need a sealer. I sand my lures while they are still on the lathe so they get really smooth. I also use eastern red cedar for the wood type. After I've predrilled all holes needed, then I'll dip in a primer, I use white, sometimes I may dip it twice (depends on how grainy the wood is) but the eastern red cedar is usually very smooth after sanding. After primer is dry then I airbrush. Etex is the last step for me and I guess I must be lucky or something, but other than the bubbles, I've had no problems with Etex. I have posted this before, but I use denatured alcohol to clean the painted lures and allow to dry. Then apply the Etex with a cheapo bristle brush from HF. Put on the spinner with a light bulb or sometimes two bulbs in place. For the first 4-5 minutes on the spinner I blow air from a heat gun on the lowest setting on the lures, then let them spin until dry(usually overnight). Sometimes the lures may take 24 hours to cure. I did do an oak lure once and found that it should have been sealed because the wood was so grainy.

Benji

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