I finished my first board and have started my next one. Using the Solarez UV resin was super easy but I am thinking about trying the RR epoxy. How much would I need to do a 5'6" mini log...lam. and hotcoat? All I know is the ratio is 2:1 and additive F is a must. Do you mix a surfacing agent for the RR hotcoat or is it different? Any tips are welcome!!! Thanks!
You don't need as much epoxy as you do poly, which is good, because the stuff is expensive. You have time to work, so there's no need to pour a "resin curtain" down your lap. Simply spread the stuff out, let it soak into the cloth, then start pulling and lapping. I can get by with about 12oz for a single 4oz bottom, and about 15oz. for a double 4oz deck. That's total mixed material at a 2:1 ratio. Laminations get 1cc of Add F per oz. of hardener; double that for hotcoats. Hotcoats are a little more than an oz per board foot of mixed material. So for a 6'0, I'll mix about 9oz and get some on the floor. Letting it flow out will get you a nice, even hotcoat. There's lots of tricks to help minimize waste that you'll figure out as you go.
The resin hardener mix for the lam and hotcoat is the same the only difference is that you use twice the amount of additive F on the hotcoat. There is no surfacing agent used other than additive F which I think has wax in it, I have seen it coagulate when I left it in the cold. Epoxy drys non tacky at every coat and is able to bond to itself that way, unlike polyester resin that needs to be tacky for the hotcoat to stick. You will need about 2 quarts of resin and one quart of hardener. There will be leftover if you skip the gloss coat. I never do a gloss coat anymore, seems like a waste of money and adds a ton of weight, I would just sand finish and seal after the hotcoat. Epoxy is back breaking to bring to a shine anyhow. Lets see the first board!
As a beginning shaper/glasser you should count on having to put on a gloss coat (really a second hot coat) because most likely you will have a lot of burn-throughs to the weave when sanding your hot coat. You need to seal these burn-throughs or else they will wick water. The best way to do it is with another thin hot coat (or gloss coat, same thing). You don't have to go all the way polishing the gloss coat, but at least sand it to 220-400grit or so.
Get your resin from Greenlight. Brian is the best. Get the new Quick Kick Resin Research. Same price, cures faster, stronger.
To add to the good info that's already been given, Add F has wax, and is a surface agent. But, it also addresses other issues older epoxy systems had... namely amine blush. while the epoxy without Add F might cure tack free, it may blush, which can compromise the bond with your next layer. Add F also increases barcol hardness, which helps resist dings and denting. I use it in every batch I shoot because of the cooler temps and higher humidities we have here in Jerz. It also helps make the resin a bit less viscus, which helps wetout.
Every board I have made is surfable and yours will be also. It's really cool to see what different rail shapes, fins etc do to the way it rides. Even the boards I have made that were terrible could still be ridable if I wanted to take the time to get to know them. It's just too much fun to start a new one and try to get it just right. I love that krylon H20 and have used it on a couple of boards.