Epoxy resin systems typically comprise of two main parts: a Part A resin and a Part B hardener. These two parts need to have the right ratio for the system to work properly. Typically, a chemist will calculate this ratio chemically to ensure a well-balanced system. With the right ratio of resin to hardener, the chemically reactive portions of the epoxy resin system will link together and cure into a strong, high-quality end product.
Other kinds of non-epoxy polymers will allow for different levels of hardener to either reduce or extend gel time. However, this isn’t the case with epoxy resin systems they require specific ratios. If you add too much hardener to an epoxy resin system, it will decelerate the curing process, leading to an improperly hardened and non-functioning product. This makes it crucial to have the right ratio of resin to hardener if you want to create an epoxy system that truly works.
Why You Should NOT Vary the Ratio
Varying the required ratio of Part A to Part B to any degree will compromise the integrity of the epoxy system, forming a weak product that performs poorly.
Epoxy systems come in different cure rates depending on the process’s specific temperature. Generally, applications with cooler environments will use a system that cures faster, while hotter environments typically implement a slow curing system. The ideal temperature range for epoxy systems normally falls between 65° F and 80° F, or 18° C and 26° C.
Before using the epoxy system for the first time, it’s often best to produce a small batch for testing to gauge how the mixing and curing process works. Doing so is a potentially critical step to take if you want to avoid expensive mistakes and inadequate cures. This is particularly the case when working with new products, working in environments with different temperatures, or if it’s your first time going through the epoxy mixing process.
Epoxy Resin Formulas
The combination of polymerization processes and chemical compounds of the epoxy resin system will influence the resulting characteristics of the formula. There are many types of formulas you may use depending on the desired characteristics.
The following are some of the core properties of epoxy resin formulas:
- Chemical stability
- Strong adhesive bond
- Corrosion resistance
- Heat resistance
- Minimal moisture absorption
- Reduced shrinkage after curing
- Electrical insulation
- Excellent fatigue and flexural strength
- Absence of volatile organic compounds (VOCs)
The manufacturer of the epoxy resin should include instructions disclosing the ideal resin-to-hardener ratio. When mixing the epoxy, this ratio ensures an effective epoxy system that cures properly with optimal strength and performance.
If you’re searching for the best epoxy resin solutions for your application, Copps Industries offers a selection of top-quality products. As a leading supplier of epoxy resins, we carry more than 500 epoxy products and have over 400 international customers. We understand the importance of having the right ratio for each product and can advise you on product development.
For more information about resin to hardener rations, or to get started on you epoxy resin solution, request a quote today.