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Why doesn't my resin harden?

Working with ArtResin is easy.

Measure, mix, pour, wait and be rewarded with a stunning, hard, glass-like finish to your work.

Learn how to measure, pour and mix resin!  

Prevent Bendy Resin - resin bends

Every now and then you may find that your resin is not as firm as you had planned. In effect, the resin bends. Prevent Bendable Resin - resin bends

Why doesn't the resin harden and what can I do about it?

Let's talk about WHY. There are several reasons and factors why the resin bends.

1. Short curing time

In most cases, the reason your resin does not harden to a hard form is because the resin takes longer to harden. After 24 hours ArtResin will have a solidity of 95%. If you try to bend or move the resin before the 24 hour mark, the resin will likely bend. For a full cure, we recommend waiting 3 - 5 days to ensure the resin is 100% solid.

Read how to make the resin harden faster. Prevent Bendy Resin - ensure that the resin is 100% firm

2. Too thin

Many artistic creations require a thin layer of resin. Although ArtResin cures in thin layers, you can expect your resin to be pliable if it is no thicker than 1/2 inch.

Prevent Bendy Resin - thin layer of resin

3. Incorrect measurement

ArtResin is a simple. Mix 1:1 mixing ratio by volume, not weight. This delicate balance is absolutely necessary for a happy outcome. Adding too much of either resin or hardener will alter the chemical reaction and the mixture will not cure properly due to incorrect mixing conditions. Although the mixture can turn from a liquid to a solid, the end result causes the resin to bend.  

Prevent Bendy Resin - ArtResin is a simple 1:1 mixing ratio by volume

4. Not thoroughly mixed

It is important to mix both the resin and hardener thoroughly, otherwise it cannot catalyze properly. Your resin must be fully mixed for at least 3 minutes. Improperly mixed resin can again make the mixture a solid, but it will not harden to 100%, resulting in pliable resin.  

Prevent Bendy Resin - important to mix both the resin and hardener thoroughly

5. Too much dye

Adding too much of a liquid or powdered dye and pigment can also throw off the delicate balance of the resin mix. Coloring resin can have a beautiful effect, but more than 6% of the total combined volume of the resin mixture can soften the final cure of the resin.

Prevent Bendy Resin - Adding too much of a liquid or powdered colorant

Now, how can you fix bendy resin?

The good news is that this can be a very simple solution; it just requires patience. Allow the resin to sit for an additional 2 to 7 days to allow it to fully cure. Allowing the resin to harden a little longer will harden your piece and prevent the resin from bending.

Prevent Bendy Resin - Allowing the resin to cure

If your piece is thin, a slight bend may be unavoidable as the recommended thickness is ⅓ of an inch or more. However, using a substrate such as a frame or a canvas to enhance the strength of the resin is always a good option.

Prevent Bendy Resin - substrate such as a bezel or a canvas

Unfortunately, in the case of incorrect measurement and mixing of resin or dyes, it cannot harden harder. However, one possible solution is to carefully measure and mix another batch of ArtResin to pour on the bendy piece to provide strength and support.

Prevent Bendy Resin - pour on the bendy piece to add strength and support

So fear not! ArtResin Epoxy Resin products are very forgiving. There is always a reason, and in most cases a solution. In fact, many artists use the 24 hour curing time to their advantage to shape and reshape their resin mixtures into a unique design before it fully hardens.

Prevent Bendy Resin - to shape and mold their resin mixtures into a unique design

Here's a checklist of things to keep in mind to prevent pliable resin from happening again.

6 Steps to Prevent Bendable Resin

Our instructions:

  1. Be sure to measure the correct amount of resin and hardener.
  2. Mix thoroughly for at least 3 minutes.
  3. Pour in layers of ⅓ of an inch or more.
  4. Use a substrate for thin pours.
  5. Be sure to keep the amount of added dyes and pigments below 6% of the total combined volume of the resin mixture.
  6. Allow your artwork to cure completely (at least 3 - 5 days).

And that's all! Please check out our YouTube channel for tips. If you have any questions about the recommended solutions to fix any mistakes with bent resins, please write your questions in the comments.

As always, be creative and have fun!

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