Epoxy resins have had a revolutionary effect on wooden boat building. In its various applications, epoxy produces a boat that is stronger and more resistant to rot. These pages will discuss POXY-SHIELD epoxy resins and their applications in the boat building process.

EPOXY as a glue. The GLEN-L Epoxy System is a versatile boat building technique based upon GLEN-L's POXY-SHIELD® Epoxy Resin and POXY-GRIP® Structural Adhesive. In a simple gluing test, gluing two "flat" pieces of wood together, all of the various marine glues presently available make a bond stronger than the wood itself. Unfortunately in wood working, and boat building in particular, joints are not always perfect. Epoxy glue will make a strong bond even when the joint is not perfect. We are not saying that epoxy will make up for sloppy workmanship but epoxy is more forgiving. In a case where there is a "gap" in a joint, any glue will "fill" the space. The difference between epoxy and other marine glues is one of strength. Other types of marine glues shrink as they cure and are usually brittle. Epoxy is a non-shrink, non-brittle glue that is strong within itself. For most gluing applications, fillers are added to POXY-SHIELD®; the most common being silica, sold under various brand names, Cab-O-Sil and our Silica #1 being two.

FIBERGLASS/EPOXY covering. Why fiberglass? In wood boat construction fiberglass is not normally added to "make the boat stronger". Fiberglass does add additional strength at planking junctions but its primary purpose is to protect the wood against abrasion and to prevent plywood from checking. Epoxy is superior to standard polyester resin because of its water barrier, adhesive and flexibility characteristics.

EPOXY as a coating. Epoxies have caused us to change the way we look at wood. What we know: If we can eliminate moisture being absorbed into wood, we can eliminate dry rot and improve its structural qualities. Epoxy is the best moisture barrier we know of. The waterproofing ability of epoxy has been used to advantage on fiberglass hulls to prevent "blistering". POXY-SHIELD® stabilizes moisture content of wood, which in turn allows its structural qualities to remain constant.

EPOXY as a putty. With the addition of various fillers it is possible to thicken POXY-SHIELD® to make a resin/putty which can be used in many boat building applications. In Stitch-N-Glue construction, POXY-SHIELD® resin/putty fillets are a crucial component of the building method. In the past some builders have used polyester resin to make resin/putty fillets, however, the Stitch-N-Glue method did not become popular until epoxies became readily available. Epoxy resin/putty can also be used as a fairing compound (see heading, Fillers).

ENCAPSULATION. The GLEN-L Epoxy Encapsulation System takes advantage of the ability of epoxy to form a barrier that is virtually impenetrable by moisture. The structural characteristics of wood varies with its moisture content. Epoxy can thus insure that the strength of the wood used in construction will not be degraded by the absorption of moisture. Any "gaps" between wood members that are filled with POXY-SHIELD® during encapsulation will "glue" those members together which in turn can make your boat solid. Whether you choose to encapsulate or not will depend upon your budget, the use your boat will receive, and how badly you want to avoid future maintenance.

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