System Three Epoxy Products for Aquariums
Q: Can you make an aquarium out of System Three products?
A: Yes. Here's a suggestion:
Design and build the parts out of wood and/or fiberglass using Silvertip™ or General Purpose™ Resin systems. Then bond the parts together with one of our adhesives like Gel Magic or T-88.
Finally, for finishing, because our products have not been tested for aquatic leaching potential, you cannot assume they will be safe for contact with your fish. You'll need to apply a coating to the completed unit that has been tested for its safety with fish.
System Three Epoxy products and food contact.
Q: Can you make wooden goblets, cups or dishes out of System Three products?
A: Yes. Here's a suggestion: Turn or carve them using the wood of your choice, then brush 2-3 coats of Silvertip™ or General Purpose™ Resin on the sanded surfaces. This will make them waterproof and even dishwasher safe.
But for a final finish, because our products have not been tested for direct food contact, you must then apply a to the completed unit that has been tested safe for food contact.
Can I use TransTint dyes with System Three epoxies?
While we have received positive feedback from customers who have used small amounts of TransTint liquid dyes, we have not tested it in our lab to guarantee it will work well. The majority of our epoxies are solvent free, 100% solids epoxies so care should be taken when introducing these solvent based colorants. The user should test the TransTint dye to ensure it cures to their satisfaction.
Can I use the hardener from one of your epoxy systems with the resin from another?
No. Epoxy resin systems are two-part products where each part is designed to go with the other in the specified proportions.
Can I coat urethane (poly iso) foam with epoxy?
Silvertip, General Purpose, or Cold Cure epoxy resin will coat the foam without attacking it.
Painting and finishing System Three epoxies.
We have found that most two-part or water-based paints will work well over System Three epoxies. This includes house paint. Solvent-based lacquers are also compatible. One-part alkyd-based(aka oil-based) paints contain drier compounds that can be incompatible with epoxy hardeners, so the paint or varnish must be tested for compatibility before use. If the paint isn't dry in the time it states on the can, it's incompatible.
Surface Preparation: Allow the epoxy to reach full cure before priming or painting, then follow the manufacturer's instructions for surface preparation on the can.
Can I use a stain under or over System Three epoxies?
System Three epoxies do not accept stains well and should be applied before the epoxy. In general, oil-based wiping stains can be used so long as they are completely cured before applying mixed epoxy resin. However, it is prudent to do a test by staining some scrap and then applying epoxy. Check for appearance and bonding.
Can polyester or gel coats be applied over epoxy?
The general rule is that epoxies will bond over cured polyester but polyesters do not bond over epoxies. To get around this problem, we developed a resin system that can be used as a "tie-coat" barrier and is unique in allowing polyester resins and gel coats to be bonded directly over it. This epoxy is called the SB-112 and is available on our website here.
Can System Three epoxies be used in direct contact with food?
Our products are marine or industrial, and not intended for use in applications involving food contact. To claim that a product is food-safe, it must be tested by an independent lab, which we do not do. On the other hand, when some of our two-part epoxy products are properly measured and mixed, then properly cured, they are theoretically inert and would be no more of a problem than many other plastics. But since the accuracy of those processes is beyond our control, we can’t make those claims.