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I still can't get a good clear coat. I need some help!

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Some pictures of the issues I am having.

http://imgur.com/a/iBDcz7Y

 

All these baits have only been handled with gloves during the painting and clear coating process.

I use Devcon 2 ton epoxy and made sure the baits got fully coated before putting them on the lure turner. I am constantly having this issue of empty spots on the clear coat but the spider webbing on the one bait is something that has only happened once. I really want to get some baits in the water but I keep screwing up this process.

What process do you use from start to finish to make sure you get a solid clear coat?

Any idea on what is causing these issues?

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Here’s how I use Devcon 2T.  Measure the epoxy with syringes and mix it vigorously on aluminum foil with a plastic strip for 1 1/2 or 2 minutes. Mix in 3-4 drops of denatured alcohol to dispel bubbles and increase the brush time by a couple of minutes.  Use a flat (cheap) 1/4” nylon bristle artist’s brush to apply the epoxy.  Fill the brush and apply it thickly, keeping the brush wet at all times and never letting it drag on a dry surface.  Maintain a wet surface as you work around the lure methodically.  Clean the brush with lacquer thinner for reuse.

I looked at your pics and can’t tell for sure whether the voids are fisheyes caused by oil contamination or voids caused by missed or too lightly applied finish, but I suspect the latter due to their irregularity.  Basically, you develop a routine that works for you and stick with it.  My routine has worked 20 years for me.  Your mileage may vary.

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9 hours ago, 21xdc said:

Ditch the epoxy and try KBS diamond clear... 

I am about to. I'm just nervous by the steep price and the stories of it going bad.

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How long have you been using these gloves and what kind of gloves are they? Is it possible the gloves have seen too much use and have become contaminated with some type of oil or residue?

Ben

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With the problems your having either the paint is not dry or there is contaminant on the baits.

Another big deal with any finish is the temperature....is the temp below 70? 

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I can't see the pic, but everyone using epoxy struggles when starting out it seems.  Stick with it, I love the finish and toughness of epoxy!

Lots of great tips here..

 

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If you want to make sure you are not missing spots, hold the lure toward a light and let the light reflect off the surface. When you are at the right angle you won't be able to see color of the lure just the shine of the epoxy. It is very easy to rotate the lure and tell if you have missed any spots by the reflection of the light. I use epoxy and mix it on a flat piece of paper by making two puddles of resin and hardner of equal sizes. I just eyeball the sizes and it doesn't seem to make any difference if off a little in size. I stir the two puddles together with the same brush I am going to apply it with. My thought of your problem is that it might have something to do with the type of paint or maybe a sealer you are using. Epoxy is usually rather forgiving. Good luck. Musky Glenn

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I too had this issue when starting out. It is extremely frustrating and can make hours of work seem like they were all for nothing. @21xdc mentioned KBS Diamond Clear and although I have no experience with that I have heard good things about it. What worked for me was to spray my baits with an aerosol based clear coat and then apply epoxy. That seems to seal off any contaminants and then allowed the epoxy to go on smoothly. I haven't had any issues since. Another thing I noticed on an earlier bait that had the "fish eye" issue was that after waiting for the epoxy to dry I just added another coat of epoxy and it covered the fish eyes and dried smoothly. Also, as @eastman03 said epoxy helps keep your bait protected. That comes in super handy when fishing rocky areas or for species such as pike that will shred the absolute crap out of a bait. Keep at It man! Epoxy looks great and once you get it down and you'll be glad you stuck with it!

Edited by fishordie79
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As an aside here, I wonder if maybe some paint brushes contain some contaminants that propagate this issue? I did one build where I used a fresh set of non-powdered latex gloves and never once touched the bait without them on. The only foreign surfaces the bait came in contact with were a clean (fresh off of the roll) shop towel and the paintbrush itself. I still got the fish eye problem.  

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As far as a finish goes, I've heard it is a good idea to use a 'mid coat' before doing the final epoxy job ( or other finish for that matter).  Has anyone tried this.  It seem like a great idea, it would eliminate any contamination issues I think.

I keep sharing videos from this guys page (not mine btw), but he explains the idea of a mid coat starting at 9 minutes.  I'm going to try it on an upcoming batch of lures i'm working on.

 

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