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Alternatives to epoxy

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  • Alternatives to epoxy

    I carved bird feet using two-part epoxy, quickwood. It worked great for that purpose, but I got some of the dust in my eyes and they got red, itched, and swelled up for several days. I've been more careful since, but even handling it now will give me the same reaction.

    Are there less toxic (to me at least) options for epoxy-based fillers?

  • #2
    Re: Alternatives to epoxy

    Good. Lesson learned. Epoxy-based materials are wonderful but you have to pay attention to the dust and fumes.
    I started working with epoxy materials in the early 1970's when nobody cared. I can't use them any more due to allergic reactions. No amount of air and dust control will help.
    You just get your buns out of that mess. Be fastidious about fumes and dust and you might just outlive the stuff.
    Brian T

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    • #3
      Re: Alternatives to epoxy

      Hi Garrys try useing gorilla super glue its great works for me just fine------------Jack

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      • #4
        Re: Alternatives to epoxy

        I have made bird feet from many different materials. My favorite and strongest was twisted cooper wire and solder. Solder is not lead any more and files and shapes easy. Body putty like bondo was my second choice.
        Goody

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        • #5
          Re: Alternatives to epoxy

          I see in the Sept 2011 catalog that Lee Valley sells a bunch of different sizes of bird legs/feet.

          Thanks Goody, for the copper wire idea. I need to make some for hummingbirds. The beaks will be hammered out of 1/4" copper rod.
          Brian T

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          • #6
            Re: Alternatives to epoxy

            Garry,
            I make my bird legs/feet out of copper wire, soldered, then wrapped in the epoxy that comes in blue/yellow ribbon. You "mash" it together until it makes green. Then I roll it out into a tiny thread of material and wrap it around the copper legs and feet, leaving the tips unwrapped for the toenails. I dampen my fingers and work the material smooth--keeping it as thin as possible to make realistic legs/feet. I texture it to resemble actual legs and feet--showing knuckles and bends.

            One of the reasons I like the material is that it still allows the leg/feet to be bent slightly so I can reposition them, if necessary. I have never carved on them after they are finished--just keep working them to get the size and shape I want.

            Donna
            From Missouri

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            • #7
              Re: Alternatives to epoxy

              Thanks for the suggestions. I'll try the Gorilla for general filling/eye setting, and the soldering approach in future. Although the blue/yellow ribbon epoxy is different from the one I used, it likely has the same properties that I've become allergic to, so I'll leave that as a last resort, or summer, where I can work with better ventilation, or outside. I live in Yellowknife, so fresh air at the moment is a bit too "fresh" for carving in my unheated garage with the door open.

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