What Duratec product should I use?

This answer varies based on project, application, and desired results. Check out our Right Choice Brochure and if you still have questions, give our team a call!

Does Duratec require catalyst?

Yes!  Duratec products require catalyst.  We recommend full strength MEKP.  We do all our R&D with Norox 925 for polyesters and Norox 925H for vinyl esters.  (Catalyst ratio is 2% by weight.)  Our VE Mold Repair Putty comes with BPO creme hardener.  See your product’s Tech Data Sheet for more details.

How much material do I need?

For most products, we note our coverage as 80 sq. feet per gallon at a 20 mil thickness, or 160 sq. feet at a 10 mil thickness. If your thickness requirements are different, you’ll need to adjust.
Material losses during mixing and application will vary and should be taken into consideration when planning.

How long will Duratec last on the shelf?

Most Duratec products will last six months from date of manufacture under standard conditions (77°F/ 25°C ).   DOM is noted on can/pail/label.  Lower temperatures often extend the shelf life, higher temperatures can dramatically reduce shelf life. Please see our Shelf Life Statement for details.

Will hot temperature shorten pot life?

Yes! If temperature exceeds 82° F / 28° C we suggest cooling the Duratec.  It is common to make a slight reduction of catalyst – in order to achieve the best results with our products we advocate catalyzing at 2% by weight.   Do not catalyze at less than 1.5% by weight.  If you’re dealing with extreme heat, talk with our Technical Sales Team on ways to adjust for best material performance.  

Will cool/cold temperature extend gel or cure time?

Ambient temperature is always a factor for both gel and total cure time.    We suggest warming work area to at least 65°F,  ensuring Duratec is room temperature (~68°F) and as needed, gently warming the substrate.  We do not advocate increasing the catalyst in an attempt to speed up the cure. 

What is the proper tip size to use with Duratec products?

Tip size is dependent on viscosity of product.  A 2.0 tip is often a good all-purpose size.  Sealers may require 1.4 to 1.8, primers 2.0 to 2.4, and topcoats 1.8 to 2.4.  We often advocate a larger tip size instead of thinning material.  

Does film depth affect cure?

Yes! Our air-cure technology allows our products to cure well in a thin film.  Keep in mind, the mass of product you have in a cup gun or mix cup will gel faster due to the exotherm properties of the mass while the thin build on your substrate may still be curing.  Gel times listed on Technical Data Sheets are based on 100g mass.

Can I thin my Duratec product?

Duratec products come ready to use.  Ensure you are using the correct tip size.  If your product requires thinning, we recommend using our Duratec Reducer or MEK solvent.  For most products/applications we do not recommend acetone.

Will Duratec work with epoxy?

Most of our products are epoxy compatible in the right process and with surface prep.  Our vinyl esters should be considered in applications where cure temps over 200°F will be experienced.  See the Technical Data Sheets or contact our team for details on your process. 

Should I lower catalyst ratio or raise it depending on ambient temps?

Our products are designed to work using a straight 2% regardless of season.   While it is common, especially when using gel coat, to adjust between 1.5-2.5%, we recommend 2% all year long.  

When mixing 904-001 in with gel coat, how much catalyst should I use?

2% by weight of the combined total of the two products.  Both the gel coat and the Duratec High Gloss Additive require catalyst.

Can I pigment Duratec?

Some of our products, like Untinted Quick Leveling Topcoat, are designed to be tinted.  We have many customers who tint our other clears using polyester compatible pigments with success.  Note: adding pigment can shift gel/cure times.  Testing your blend is a must!

Should I be concerned if there is a crusty layer when I open the can?

It is not uncommon, especially in our hi-build primers and Styroshield, for separation to occur in the can.  Verify the product is still within shelf life.  If so, thoroughly stir using drill-mixer or paint shaker to reconstitute it.  If the material has been previously opened, stir thoroughly, and test to ensure product is performing within specs.


Do I need to use water with Aqua-Buff?

Our Aqua-Buff 1000F, 1000W, and 2000 are designed to be used with water in order to provide lubrication and coolness to the surface.  See the application guides in the Technical Data Sheets for details. 

Which buffing pad should I use?

Buffing pad choice should be tied to product.  For compounding with AB1000F or AB1000W, a wool pad is recommended.  For polishing with AB2000 or Glossmaster, a foam or cotton pad is recommended.  

Can I hand buff with Aqua-Buff?

Aqua-Buff is designed to work with a commercial buffer (2400 RPM).  Wiping by hand will not create the necessary speed and energy to buff. Compound at full speed, polish at half speed.

What is the difference between Aqua-Buff 1000F and Aqua-Buff 1000W?

Aqua-Buff 1000F is a fast-cut compound with our most aggressive abrasive for compounding out deeper oxidation or severe scratches. Aqua-Buff 1000W is less aggressive.   Products are two different colors with 1000F a cookies & cream color while 1000W is a blue-green color.  

How much Aqua-Buff will I need?

In general, you can expect to use one gallon per 400 sq. feet depending on condition of the surface (scratches, oxidation, etc)

Can you use Aqua-Buff 2000 to compound minor scratches or light oxidation and also use to polish?

Yes, use a wool pad to compound and switch to a cotton or foam pad to polish

Why can't I remove the Aqua-Buff?

You may have used too much product.  With Aqua-Buff, a little bit goes a long way. You only need to dab about a quarter size amount of product to cover 1 square foot.  Add additional water to your surface using a spray bottle and work the material off your part.  


What is the difference between Styroshield & Styrosafe?

Styrosafe 30P-106A is a laminating resin. Styroshield 707-019 is a primer.  Both are designed to work over EPS.

What type of catalyst should I use, and how much?

We recommend using a full strength MEKP catalyst at a ratio of 2% by weight.  All of our testing and trials are done with Norox 925.  

What tip size should I use for Styroshield?

A 2.5 tip is recommended.


Will this product work with XPS?

StyroSafe was designed for best results with the cell structure of EPS foam – the functionality and cell structure of XPS foam is functionally different. If you are working with XPS foam, we advocate testing to your process to determine compatibility.

Will it work over other surfaces?

Styrosafe (30P-106A) is designed to be used over EPS.  Styroshield Primer (707-019) will adhere to other substrates, but a different primer might be a better choice depending on project!  

What is the timing before I can spray on top of Styroshield?

As the Styroshield is your protective barrier between EPS foam and next coating, you want the cure to be complete. Depending on temperature and conditions, this is usually within 2 hours. 


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