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Diy Micarta

Discussion in 'Steel, Hardware, & Handle Material' started by dancom, Mar 3, 2014.

  1. dancom

    dancom Dust Maker Best Shop Tool

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    I recently watched a video on YouTube on how to make your own Micarta, perhaps I'll brand it My-Carta. The idea is to stack resin soaked layers of fabric, then press them a plastic bag. Once cured it looked just like the real deal. It sparked my imagination with the different fabric colours etc. Ahhh, actually, I now have a reason to go with the wife into the fabric store.

    All the stinkiness and stickiness aside, the question is about the resin. I've only seen Rust-Check and Bondo brands. Would either of these do the trick?

    Also, if anyone has tried this; was it worth the mess?

    Thanks,

    Dan
     
  2. Grayzer86

    Grayzer86 Active Member

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    What I can offer about typical fiberglass resins is that they are virtually all colored or tinted. This means the material will always have a pink or amber tint to it. Most people I have spoken to or heard that have tried it were not happy with the results that the typical resins gave them. There are truly clear resins out there but I'm not sure what those would be, or where you would track them down. Check out Guycarta on YouTube, as he makes a ton of it himself. Another guy to look for info from would the guy that runs shadetree laminates. Both make some pretty good looking stuff.
     
  3. dancom

    dancom Dust Maker Best Shop Tool

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    For anyone wanting to try making their own custom "mycarta" scales. I found some clear polyester resin. It's casting resin with hardener. You've seen this in gift shops...where there's a fly, flower or a coin encapsulated in a clear plastic block. They offer compatible transparent dyes as well. The company is called Kidder and they are in Thornhill Ontario.

    I emailed asking some shipping information and got a quick reply. The resin is not classed as dangerous goods for transport. For me in Alberta, the shipping on a quart (946 ml) is $13.00. Postal code based shipping rates so your mileage may vary.

    OK, it's almost twice the price of garden variety 'automotive' polyester resins from CanTire or Walmart, but it you wanted to do white linen scales, you'll want perfectly colourless resin.

    http://kidder.ca/casting-epoxy-resin/clear-polyester-casting-resin.html

    Dan
     
  4. Rob W

    Rob W Active Member

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    good post Dan ,
    from all the reading and research I've done in the past and I'm about to cutup some burlap for scales , this is another go-to for homemade brew, its expensive but suppose to be at the top of the list for guys that have used it...........



    [​IMG]
     
  5. Alexander13

    Alexander13 Member

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    There's a place called Noah's Marine supply, in Toronto, that specializes in wooden boats/canoe/kayaks. They have a great selection of really good epoxies. They also have a good selection fiber glass cloth, kevlar and carbon fiber cloth. www.noahsmarine.com
    I don't work for them, but I have a 67 Chestnut cedar strip canoe in the process of being restored (slowly) which is why I know of them.
    Cheers
    Joel
     
  6. Rob W

    Rob W Active Member

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    WHO-AAHHHHH !!! any canoe pics Joel , sounds awesome !!
     
  7. stevebates

    stevebates Active Member

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    I wonder if Alumilite resin would work? I have a couple jugs I bought but haven't yet tried.
     
  8. Jackson

    Jackson New Member

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    Another option if anyone lives in the Fraser Valley is Stevestons Marine. They sell a number of sizes and brands. One I will be getting is a easy mix 1/1 clear table top high gloss clear makes a quart for $45 I think they may ship for free on orders over $100
     
  9. BigUglyMan

    BigUglyMan Active Member

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    We made a set of scales from used denim a few years ago. Dad made a knife with the scales and I think they look pretty good. It was made with plain-old G2 epoxy from Lee Valley.
     
  10. Jackson

    Jackson New Member

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    My order from steveston marine got cancelled. Apparently its not sold in Canada. They do sell System Three self levelling Mirror Coat finish for $58 for 1 1/2 pints. I have tried making micrarta twice now with regular old bondo resin. Both times I was having problems with the " Fuzzies" I don't know if I haven't sanded enough with finer sandpaper or maybe a danish oil or something would help. Sometimes things on TV look differently than in your hand. I'm leaning towards wood. PS. I picked up some zebrawood the other day. Any tips on working it ??? I know it is slightly toxic and has a tendency to tear out iirc
     
  11. Rob W

    Rob W Active Member

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    Knife in the background is a home-brew burlap Micarta.......pretty tuff , couldnt break my test piece over the anvil edge

    [​IMG]
     
  12. dancom

    dancom Dust Maker Best Shop Tool

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    I sand DIY scales up to wet 600 and buff. The only issue I had was the polyester tends to melt from the heat of hard buffing.

    Dan
     
  13. Rob W

    Rob W Active Member

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    dont buff burlap , you'll be pickin compound out of the handle for years.......sand and oil ;)
     
  14. Jackson

    Jackson New Member

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    You could probably buff micarta with a new pad and polish. How did you finish it ? Wax, danish oil, poly ???
     
  15. Shadnuke

    Shadnuke Disabled dreamer...

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    I was out and about today, looking for clear resins. I know they are out there, because I have seen them. But, my little find today was actually something that I am going to consider. As Dan mentioned above, casting resin is crystal clear, but it does tend to be a bit pricey. I was at Artists Emporium here in Winnipeg, and found a handful of kits with clear casting resin, but the kits have a handful of other colours available, from yellow, to jade green to a gorgeous crystal red. I have a few ideas floating around in my head that require a clear resin of some sort, and these kits just might be the way to go for a one or two off handle scale set. I should also mention that Walter Sorrells has a video in which he makes some micarta, and he does a "camo" pattern with rags. He used it on one of the knives on display somewhere on his website, and it looks pretty sweet too!
     
    Last edited: Mar 14, 2015
  16. dancom

    dancom Dust Maker Best Shop Tool

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  17. PeterP

    PeterP Active Member

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    Hi Dan, If you visit the site Smooth-on, they have all types of casting resin. one of them is called Cristal clear, it a two part resin that I have personally used for another application and the final result was like holding a class globe. Once its totally cured you can buff it on a wheel. I saw a video of a gentlemen that makes pens, and was using this product to make the body of the pen.
    Its more expensive, but gives out great results. waiting for my order this week, creative juice are bubbling:D
     
  18. snailgixxer

    snailgixxer Golf season is here:)!!!!

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    I bought some clear polyester casting resin from Michaels. They have a 40% off 1 item everyday, if you can get the code. Most of the times they have the scan code at the till. It's 50-60$ for the jug, but at 40% it's reasonable. I haven't tried it making micarta yet, but it is crystal clear
     
  19. PeterP

    PeterP Active Member

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    Yeah I've have seen that to, but I was a little concerned about the cured hardness, there is no data or spec sheet with that product.
    Let us know once you try it.
     
  20. IamSteve-O

    IamSteve-O New Member

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    Old post but I thought I'd throw my 2 cents in. I have used crystal clear resin from michaels crafts and as the name says it's crystal clear. No yellowing on my projects yet but they are also not handled much or out in the sun. The problem of price can be helped with the fact michaels always has a 25 to 50 percent off coupon on their website. Just like canadian tire, if you don't need it today wait till it's half off.
     
    dancom likes this.

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