007 Thunderball resin diorama disaster

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Pauleysolo

Sr Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
All I have a general question. I tried doing an underwater resin diorama for the fist time and it turned out badly. When the resin cured I ended up with a foamy bubbly mess-(see pictures below) I carefully measured it out as instructed in the right ration of 2:1 resin to catalyst/hardener .

See the before and after pictures below. Any ideas what might have gone wrong here? I used AK Resin Water.
007 dio 1.jpg
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007 dio 4.jpg
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JNordgren42

Active Member
Is there any sand left in the bottom? From the pictures, it looks like it may have floated to the top. If that's what happened I'd start with a small pour of just enough to set the base and then do the rest. If you're careful with your timing, you can probably also do the pour in stages to prevent your figures from moving (it looks like they may have also floated up). If you pour in stages you can also use a torch to release any surface bubbles. I'd experiment with some small test pours to make sure you can work out any issues.
 

TazMan2000

Master Member
I've never tried resin water, but from what I've read, and seen, is that it is poured in stages, just like JNordgren42 stated.
I'm not a chemical expert, but when the catalyst causes the resin to solidify it probably changes the density and while the figures were initially heavier than the surrounding resin, once the resin cured it lifted both the sand and the figures. I'm not certain about the foam though although water may have contaminated something.
But it was a neat idea doing and underwater scene.

TazMan2000
 

Pauleysolo

Sr Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
Yes- the sand was glued to a styrene base and I did the pour all at once as I wanted to the color I tinted the water to match---should have done it in layers it looks like.
 

Michael Bergeron

Legendary Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
Yes, resin will lift pretty much anything relatively light as it hardens. I've had this issue doing mosquitoes in amber. For your next attempt I would do a very small pour that basically just coats the sand simply to seal it and ensure no rising of loose particles. Then with the figures you could either find a way to "anchor" them, or you could try to place them as the resin is setting using a cocktail stick. Basically you want to wait until the resin is dense enough that it will keep them in place, but not hard enough to trap your cocktail stick. It's a tricky process.

For my mosquitoes I pour half, place the mosquito, let it set for a while, then pour the other half. That may not work for your purpose since the placement of your characters it more specific. If you do it this way just be exact with your tint to resin ratio and you should be okay with the water matching.
 

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cloudborn

Well-Known Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
I was there with Pauleysolo when he poured the resin. I'm not completely convinced this issue happened because of the resin pour. As you can tell in the 2nd pic above, the figures and the sand stayed in place after pouring the resin. The foamy top looked more like a chemical reaction between things in the resin, we speculated the heat separated the objects and they floated to the top within the foam.

Pauleysolo was concerned about the shifts in color as he poured individual layers, he wanted one single color in the water since the scene occurs is the semi-shallow clear Bahama waters. We watched other modelers pour resin in deeper single layers on YouTube videos with no issues so we decided to do the same.

Everything looked great at first. We did the resin pour outside to avoid the fumes so we covered the top with aluminum foil to keep debris out while we waited. We came back to check on it after about an hour and that's when we discovered things went terribly wrong.

We were wondering if there was a reaction between the resin and white glue used to hold the sand in place, or maybe a reaction between the resin and Tamiya acrylic/lacquer paints. He also used some super glue to repair the speargun.

Would any of those things create an overheating chemical reaction?
 

Michael Bergeron

Legendary Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
Well the resin heats when hardening, much more so if it's in large volumes. It's entirely possible that when curing, the heat softened the PVA glue, causing it to foam and release sand into your mixture.
 

TazMan2000

Master Member
If the glue for the sand was water based, you probably had a reaction from that. To test it out, you could try a small amount in a cup and test out that glue plus paints and several other things before your next major pour.

TazMan2000
 

Pauleysolo

Sr Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
I actually did do a test with the sand glued to a piece of styrene in resin and it all went well— see picture
 

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TazMan2000

Master Member
Very odd. Perhaps the resin was contaminated somehow or the exothermic reaction was just generated too much heat. In either case, smaller pours would probably be the solution as others have suggested.

TazMan2000
 

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