Due to the loss of our home and workshop we are not able to fill any orders at this time.

Sorry about that!

Working with clear resin for canopies and other sublime forms of torture.

Saturday, February 25, 2017

A number of people have asked about the process of making model canopies with clear  resin recently, so finding myself with a spare hour I have decided to write up a blog post on how I do it.

The initial shape, or plug must be made from a hard material, preferably non-porous.Wood is lovely to carve and finish, but ultimately will cause more trouble than it's worth, so it's best to use a synthetic wood like Ren-Shape, or a block of hardened Bondo or a similar filler. The form must be somewhat undersized, as you're going to smash-mold or vac-form heated plastic over it to get the wall thickness you want. Plan ahead! Make the master longer and deeper than the finishsed part so you can trim the edges perfectly square and clean.If your plug is net to the size of the final part at the ends the plastic will roll over the edges and you're back to square one.

 Any scratches or tool marks that are on the plug will transfer right over to your future master, so be prepared to spend a long time smoothing and finishing the plug.Soothing music and the occasional adult beverage will help. I prefer Blues and a good gin & tonic.

Once you have a clean plastic shell to work with, you must polish it to a very high finish. I use very fine wet sandpaper ( 600 grit ) for the first pass, with a drop of dish soap in the water to prevent loading up of the sandpaper, which will cause nasty scratches and another beverage, perhaps two.

I then work the surfaces of the canopy master to a better  polished finish with varying grits of Micro-Mesh, and then cast a prototype in a silicone rubber mold from which I can make opaque resin castings.There are two reasons for doing this: Firstly, the urethane resin part will be harder than the plastic one in most cases, and will therefore take a higher polish, and secondly because you're going to ruin a few masters scribing lines in them before you get one you're happy with.Trust me on this, it may seem like a pain, but it will pay for itself many times over.

Final polishing is best done with a small felt bob and a Dremel tool.Use fine rubbing compound and then swirl removing compound from the auto pats store.A gentle touch is required here or you will get the part hot and it will deform.

The nifty resin master will need the transparent parts outlined, preferably with fine scribed lines.I use the 3M vinly tape sold in auto parts stores to outline the frames and a sewing needle held in a pin-vise to do the scribing.Black electrical tape is also very good for this.Start out gently, and make a number of passes so as to create a smooth line, then burnish it with a toothpick.These scribed lines are going to be very important later on, so if you muff one, scrap the part and start over.

Once you have a shiny master with good outlines of the transparent bits, you can clean the part with Windex and give it a dip in Future, or Johnson's Klear, Pledge with Future Shine or a similar acrylic floor wax. If all goes well, you will have an extrememly glossy, perfect master from which to make a mold. If you like, you can take Scotch lo-tack painters tape and use that toothpick to burnish it down into the scribed outlines and cut out the frame.This allows you to spray a bit of matte primer onto the frames which will  make them more visible  later on for painting.Remeber to mask off the interior of the master, ask me how I know!


The finished masters are then molded for casting in clear resin.Most clear resins do not cast well in tin-cure RTV rubber, although it can be done.Platinum cure rubber is best as the resin will not react to it and it will not shrink during cure.

In the photo above you can see the primered frames have a different texture than the polished areas that will remain clear.

There are quite a few clear casting resins available today, my weapon of choice is BJB Industries WC-784 which has proven to be fairly reliable.The resin must be cast into the mold after mixing, and then the mold put into a pressure pot  with 35 to 40 pounds pressure piped in to crush any small bubbles.With this resin you must also heat the pressure pot to 120 degrees f and hold it there for three hours or so to get a perfect cure. I do this with an elctric oil heater under the pot, and the whole affair covered with an old blanket to hold in the heat.

As you can see, it's a long, involved process.You can probably find a resin to work with that does not require the heating for a good cure, but either pressure casting or vacuum casting is a must to avoid those pesky bubbles.

It took me a long time to get a reasonbly reliable production technique worked out for this stuff, if you're game to try it I say have at it and good luck! If it was easy, everyone would do it.






thanks for sharing.great

thanks for sharing.great

Great tips. Thanks for

Great tips. Thanks for sharing!

ארגון חתונה

הדעות שלי קצת חלוקות בעניין הזה אבל ללא ספק כתבת מעניין מאוד.

I hope that there will be

I hope that there will be miracles, heal the broken heart is crying and sad. The sky is still divided night light right then we broke up already, so our love circle is like that.
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We have a lot of employees

We have a lot of employees who likes doing this at emondage sherbrooke. They will like this one!

Great tips!

Great tips. Thank you for sharing!

Godly hands...

I appreciate your being a perfectionist, especially on the details of each work.
Why would you not post some of these works in online selling platforms?
My friend works with retaining walls perth models are posting too.

חברת קידום אתרים

Great Post.


Many people use clear resin, such as EasyCast, when trying to encase a product or piece of memorabilia. Clear resin is a type of polyester resin which is perfectly, crystal clear. Clear resin can be dyed to another color in order to have a slight hue, but it will remain see-through.

תמונה על בלוק עץ

אהבתי מאוד את סגנון הכתיבה.

wish you all the best!

Sorry guys about losing your shop. Hope you get to open a new one. Thank for sharing, this is so cool what you do! nyc sidewalk repair


This is totally awesome! We'd love to do some face painting for your celebration! balloon artist denver colorado


Learned a ton reading this fine article. Just wanted to take the time to say thanks! So thanks!


I love creating. I am searching for an idea on how to create something like decorations using wood or plastics. Thankful that I found this site that helps my creativity into reality, like for example my creation of toilet repair tweed heads.


I must say that I'm amazed with your work! Keep it up and check sometimes best datingsitesvergelijken for reviews


its another level of sophistication on your crafts. Truly world class!
Almost like a thomastown electrician with hands of Gold.

רב מחתן

Thanks for sharing.

פוסט מרענן במיוחד. לגמרי

פוסט מרענן במיוחד. לגמרי משתף.


So useful

Thanks for this, it's really useful information. I wonder which Dremel tool you use. I have one but have never managed to use it very successfully.

Sorry to hear about your loss

Sorry to hear you have had to shut, I find this a really useful article and an interesting site. My father is very into model making. I hope you get up and running again soon.

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You know your projects stand out of the herd. There is something special about them. It seems to me all of them are really brilliant! best vape

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Many thanks.Thanks for sharing amazing information !!!!!! Please keep up sharing Orange County Pool Builders

Yay Resin

Gotta love the torture that is resin pouring. Thanks for sharing!
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Nice work!

You sir do some clean work! by time im through i'd have to call in a house cleaning service in santa rosa CA

Thanks for the tips

Learned a few things here, i appreciate the tips!
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Very cool

You obviously have a very steady hand, you should try drywall finishing sometime, you'd be good at it.

I dont know about that

I dont think so,Drywall finishing takes more than a steady hand, lol

Loved it

Was awesome to read this. I guess living and working in the USA has its charms when I have the free time to read posts like this. Loved it!


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Any update on how the project has finished? - Jordan Landscaping Service


Love this project.

Looks Great!

These look fantastic! Thank you for sharing! Damien at North Shore Handyman Services

Full of Love and Reflection

First, I felt sorry for your loss.
SEcond, I admire and appreciate every effort done to make your projects really amazing work of art, I also into styling,
my projects designs and styles gold coast are dioramas of public parks near my town and nearer suburb.

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Pretty cool! Thanks for sharing!

What's the latest update

What's the latest update guys?

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Very great!

I love this website with all my heart and soul. Josie


Very informative blog indeed! I hope you can make another blog like this again!

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I like to read more about this :D

Wow! That's really nice to hear!

This is really good to know! Any update about the project?



Congratulations but I would really like to know if there are any updates now?



Thanks for this article. Good job, by the way!



I must say that you have done it pretty well!


I have loved your performance!

Can I see more of your blog?



You sir do some clean work!


Nice work!

What a nice hands you have there sir!


Great work!!!

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Thank you!

Appreciate the posting, keep up the good work!

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