"I hate resin !"
"I'll never do that again!"
These are the exact words I said to my husband when I first started working with resin. But it took me exactly 12 hours when I stood in my pouring room again and dared the 2nd try.
At the time (2017), I so wished I had a resin professional by my side to explain everything step-by-step. What do I need to keep in mind? What mistakes can happen?
And this very blog is about the 5 most common mistakes I made back then and the questions we keep getting on social media or by mail.
Yes, resin casting projects are becoming more and more popular as they offer a fascinating way to make artwork and decorative pieces. Although dealing with resin may seem easy at first (quick reels on Instagram, snippets of casting on YouTube, etc...), a few mistakes can lead to great disappointment, so much so that, much like me at the beginning of my journey, you simply hate this medium.
In this blog post, we'll look at the five most common mistakes when casting DIY resin projects and show you how to avoid them.
Mistake No. 1
A common mistake is making inadequate preparations before you start casting. Make sure you have all the materials you need, including high-quality resin, hardener, pigments, molds or canvas, and appropriate tools.
Prepare your work surface by covering it (with silicone mat or plastic wrap). Careful preparation will save time and help you avoid potential problems. Because once the resin is mixed, everything should be ready for the casting itself beforehand, so you don't waste unnecessary time.
Mistake No. 2
Lack of knowledge of instructions:
Yes, I know, you always prefer to deal with the nice things, like casting itself, but believe me that the theoretical knowledge of the resin you are using is simply essential.
Before you begin pouring, it's essential to carefully read and understand the resin manufacturer's instructions. Mix ratios, curing time and recommended working temperatures can vary depending on the product. Do not ignore this information as it can have a major impact on the final result. Strictly follow the instructions to achieve optimal results.
Let me give you a small example here:
If the resin manufacturer develops an epoxy resin on the optimal curing with weight proportions, then you should not mix by volume of this resin ( milliliters vs. weight)!
Mistake No. 3
Streaks in the resin
Streaks in the cast resin can affect the final result and it just doesn't look nice. A common mistake is to mix the resin too quickly - that is, to be very impatient about the whole thing. Stir the resin slowly and thoroughly to ensure even distribution of the components.
Using an electric mixing stick to mix your resin can create unnecessary air bubbles ( depending on the viscosity of the resin) and a mixer will never, ever get to all the spots in your mixing cup. So please take your time with a stir stick and try to include all edges and bottom surfaces again in the stirring process.
Your resin in the cup should be crystal clear after about 3 min and no longer show any dull threads.
Mistake No. 4
Choosing the right mold is critical to the success of your DIY resin project. Avoid thin-walled or flexible molds, as they can deform or crack during casting. Instead, choose high-quality silicone or plastic molds that are durable and heat-resistant. Also check that the molds have a smooth surface to ensure easy removal of the cured resin. Silicone molds that have a matte surface will also produce a matte result. The resin will always mold 1 to 1 where you pour it. Even small scratches and dents in the silicone mold are immediately visible in your cured casting.
Also note that the molds always rest on a straight and clean surface, because even a small bump in your tabletop, can give an excellent imprint in your artwork.
Mistake No. 5
Impatience in removing the resin:
Another common mistake is removing the resin from the mold too soon. The resin needs its full curing time to reach its optimum strength. This curing time can also be found in the resin manufacturer's instructions.
If you remove the resin from the mold too soon, it may deform or even break. Be sure to follow the recommended cure time and allow the resin to fully cure before removing it from the mold.
However - and now a little tip on the side - an uncured resin is necessary to mold it. That means you'll be taking it out of the silicone mold early on, then shaping it into a shell.
When casting DIY resin projects, it is important to avoid the most common mistakes to achieve impressive results. Thorough preparation, following instructions carefully, removing bubbles, choosing appropriate molds, and being patient while the resin hardens are all crucial steps to a successful project. By avoiding these mistakes, you can ensure that your DIY resin creations are beautiful and long-lasting.
We hope this blog post has been helpful to you and hope you enjoy casting your own resin projects!