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  1. #1
    Join Date
    8th January 2013
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    NE Pa
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    908

    West system epoxy

    I have been doing some research about west system and I must say this is very exspencive, I bought my first high power fiberglass rocket, Super DX3 and I will more then likely not buy another FG rocket and I don't build many rockets, is it worth buying the west system for just one rocket and what is the shelf life of west system? Are there others that are cheaper?


  2. #2
    Join Date
    20th February 2009
    Location
    Cayuga, Indiana
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    12,882
    You could build your Super DX3 with "plunger" type two part epoxy found at Home Depot and you would be just fine. In the long run though, buying epoxy in bulk gets you better quality and is cheaper per ounce. There are alternatives to West System. I use US Composites 635 resin with medium hardener found on this page. Epoxy stored in a dry, cool environment will last years.

    L3, TRA #11847
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  3. #3
    Join Date
    22nd December 2012
    Location
    Mississippi
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    I've used this stuff for the first time and I like it very much, mixes 1-1
    and has a long pot life and very strong. 4 oz bottles should do many rockets.
    http://www.aircraftspruce.com/catalo...ges/gflex3.php
    I would never use Bob S industries again when this epoxy is available.
    Check out my build thread under SCALE, AGM 12D Bullpup.

    JP

  4. #4
    Join Date
    9th November 2012
    Posts
    281
    West 105 is a laminating epoxy. I use Bob Smith 30 minute for most construction. It's in all the hobby stores, comes in small quantities, and is reasonably priced.

    I did find that West System is often carried at building supply stores. If I pay cash at one local store, I get a quart of 105 and a can of hardener for $48. When I say building supply stores don't mean Lowe's or Home Depot. I've only found it at the local stores. One carries it all the time, one will order it.

    Kevin

  5. #5
    Join Date
    18th June 2011
    Location
    Meredith, NH
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    1,518
    If you are looking for West Systems you can also find it at West Marine (or any other boating-supply store).
    -- Jason
    NAR 93283 L2 KB1YOD The opposite of success is not failure but apathy.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    12th November 2012
    Posts
    456
    A cheaper alternative to West Systems is from Raka, Inc. You can get it in small quantities, or a 12oz sample pack with 2 different hardeners for $18.00

    http://store.raka.com/epoxy.aspx

  7. #7
    Join Date
    22nd December 2012
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    Mississippi
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    Quote Originally Posted by ckreef View Post
    A cheaper alternative to West Systems is from Raka, Inc. You can get it in small quantities, or a 12oz sample pack with 2 different hardeners for $18.00

    http://store.raka.com/epoxy.aspx
    That's got the be the BEST idea right there!

    JP

  8. #8
    Join Date
    22nd July 2011
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    Where ever the the boss sends me...
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    2,807
    Quote Originally Posted by ckreef View Post
    A cheaper alternative to West Systems is from Raka, Inc. You can get it in small quantities, or a 12oz sample pack with 2 different hardeners for $18.00

    http://store.raka.com/epoxy.aspx
    Thanx ckreef! I knew of Raka brand from tfish's videos, but had never visited their page. I think my next 'large' epoxy order will come from them!
    Terry

    NAR L1
    L2 is on hold, maybe never

  9. #9
    Join Date
    19th January 2009
    Location
    NE Illinois
    Posts
    908
    West Systems epoxy is a laminating epoxy, as mentioned above, and you'd need to use additives in order to make it thicker for typical gluing purposes. I use the typical hobby store brand of epoxies in the small bottles for construction purposes because it's cheaper, and use the WS for laminating purposes.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    8th January 2013
    Location
    NE Pa
    Posts
    908
    I found that Giant Leap Rocketry sells aeropoxy at a reasonable price, I ordered the aeropoxy pint cans and the adhesive kit which comes with 4 mixing cups 4 mixing sticks 4 pairs of gloves and a few brushes for around $7
    L1 Madcow Patriot
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  11. #11
    Join Date
    17th January 2011
    Location
    Spring Green WI
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    2,793
    I just got some West systems 5 min. expoy form Wildman, I like it very well, also for my long cure West I purchased some black carbon powder from West it works very well to make the expoy black for the colored tubes.
    GP

  12. #12
    Join Date
    18th March 2012
    Location
    Huntsville, AL
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    I got the Aeropoxy Pint kit for $23 from GLR. If I had known about that, I would never have used those plungers. $10 bucks for a plunger, or $20 for a heck of a lot more?

    You know what I do.
    Matt, Tripoli #14257
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  13. #13
    Join Date
    18th January 2009
    Location
    Covina, Ca
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    715
    I've been using some Proline I got from Wildman Rocketry and it works just fine, Tim includes it in his warranties along with West Systems.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    19th January 2009
    Location
    Pine Mountain, Ga
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    2,132
    US Composites....
    Christopher Short
    TRA #10247 L3 TAP
    NAR #83000 L3CC
    Prefect #38
    Chris' Rocket Supplies, LLC
    www.csrocketry.com
    sales@csrocketry.com
    850-554-6531

  15. #15
    Join Date
    29th July 2012
    Posts
    870
    West System wasn't just developed for boatbuilding, in particular it was intended to bring wood boatbuilding into the modern age. Wood saturated and sealed with it is not affected by water liquid or even vapor and thus becomes an "engineering material" with predictable characteristics. That it can be used for almost everything in that kind of construction, including laminating carbon fiber, is a plus. I doubt even the Gougeons imagined whole boats made of pre-preg epoxy and baked in a big oven to cure. They built scows for racing on the great lakes, fast lightweight boats for calm water.

    While West may have been improved on, it is a standard but I would be most biased towards it still for wood and it is great for it. Too bad it doesn't come in a Bob Smith sized pack! (maybe even a little silica thrown in for $20 ?!) .. Googling west system I did come up with Total Boat 5:1 epoxy kit for $32 humm, still silly big.
    :dark:

  16. #16
    Join Date
    26th August 2014
    Location
    Hanna City, Il
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    152
    Quote Originally Posted by Nessalco View Post
    West 105 is a laminating epoxy. I use Bob Smith 30 minute for most construction. It's in all the hobby stores, comes in small quantities, and is reasonably priced.

    I did find that West System is often carried at building supply stores. If I pay cash at one local store, I get a quart of 105 and a can of hardener for $48. When I say building supply stores don't mean Lowe's or Home Depot. I've only found it at the local stores. One carries it all the time, one will order it.

    Kevin
    West Systems also has G-Flex, a high strength construction epoxy that comes in two plastic bottles... as with BSI and many others. They also have a 5 minute version.
    Joe Rice
    TRA 16467
    URRG / QCRS
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  17. #17
    Join Date
    3rd August 2014
    Posts
    495
    I use G-Flex quite a lot for internals and things like that. Self levels very nicely, a bit flexible bond so it's not brittle. Messy though and has a long cure time.
    Fillets are a bit trickier as it very slowly oozes for a few hours.

    The "Total Boat" brand has a similar (same?) epoxy called "Flex-Epox". I can't tell any difference except the price.

    -Hans
    NAR # 99851 / Tripoli # 15833
    NAR Chapter 785 - The South Dakota Rocket Jockeys - SDRocketJockeys.com

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  18. #18
    Join Date
    13th April 2013
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    San Francisco
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    West System is good stuff, and it's nice that you use the same for laminating and bonding. (I used the 404 filler for most bonding.) It's also quite easy to dispense with the pumps. I switched to Aeropoxy a while back (because it's stronger), but West is a great system and beats Bob Smith epoxy.

    I did some testing and came to the conclusion that it was better to use separate systems for laminating and bonding:
    jcrocket.com/adhesives.shtml
    AERO-PAC, ROC, LUNAR (TRA & NAR)
    jcrocket.com thrustcurve.org

  19. #19
    Join Date
    13th October 2014
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    SouthEastern, WA
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    US Composites yet again...
    Rich

    NAR# 99154

    L3-4x upscale Estes Cherokee-D- AT M1297W 5/28/2016 http://www.rocketryforum.com/showthr...r-rharshberger

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  20. #20
    Join Date
    19th January 2009
    Location
    Pine Mountain, Ga
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    Quote Originally Posted by rharshberger View Post
    US Composites yet again...
    I know, why pay 2 times the price for the same thing.

    Sent from my Pixel XL using Rocketry Forum mobile app

    Christopher Short
    TRA #10247 L3 TAP
    NAR #83000 L3CC
    Prefect #38
    Chris' Rocket Supplies, LLC
    www.csrocketry.com
    sales@csrocketry.com
    850-554-6531

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