Liquid Diamonds Casting Resin is an amazing high quality casting resin. It is crystal clear and cures within 24 hours (on average) in correct room temperature. Liquid Diamonds was designed for the crafting industry. Customers state it is the best casting, embedding & jewelry resin. Ideal applications are for castings, moulds, jewelry making, pen turning, and a variety of other areas. Because this product has such a low viscosity, it allows for micro-bubbles to dissipate before cure. It is safe to use indoors, no harsh chemicals such as solvents or alcohols, and VOC free. Safe to use on foams and delicate pieces. This resin can be used for coating or encapsulating as well. Excellent for silicone moulds, woods, concrete, pebble floors, tiles and rock.
Low viscosity (moves similar to water)
Slow setting casting resin (cures within 24 hours @ room temperature of 78F/25.6C)
Pieces cured after 24 hours (1/4" sample) will exhibit very hard finish
Cures to demold time in about 16-24 hours, and fully cured/machinable by 24-48 hours.
Appropropriate for small to deep castings.
Pressure Pot/chamber not required for most applications.
Scratch Resistant. Cures very rigid, rock hard. Shore hardness D78.
Once cured, will not go pliable when exposed to warmer temperatures.
Cures crystal clear like glass.
45 - 55 minute work time (pot life) at 150 grams. Low exotherm (heat) applied to your pieces.
High gloss finish
Heat tolerant to 248 degrees fahrenheit (120 celsius)
2:1 ratio by weight or volume (weight is more accurate)
100% Solid Systems Epoxy
6-12 month shelf life (depending on how it is stored). 6 months shelf life once opened.
*Please note: Curing time on all resins can vary based on temperature and humidity. Liquid Diamonds can take several days to fully harden in certain environments & situations.
LIQUID DIAMONDS INSTRUCTIONS:
If you can not find your product brochure with instructions, there is a copy of the brochure in our Blog posts.
In a round mixing cup, mix 2:1 ratio by weight or by volume (for example 10 ml of hardener to 20 ml of resin). Measuring Liquid Diamonds by weight is considered to be more accurate, but volume works well too. A simple kitchen scale will work for weighing purposes.
See Resin Calculator page for estimates of total resin needed for various projects. The first calculator on the page is for topcoating type needs, the 2nd calculator down the page is for casting resin projects.
Always pour resin (part a) into hardener (part b), & stir well but gently, for 3 to 5 mintues, scraping the sides and bottom of cup. Stirring slowly helps to reduce & avoid air bubbles. It is very important that it is properly mixed. (Some people like to pour this mix into a new empty clean cup, then stir mixed resin for another 3 minutes to ensure it's thoroughly mixed. Although we have not found that to be necessary.) Instead of pouring into another cup, alternatively, we suggest you can let it stand in the initial mixed container for up to 5-10 minutes to degas & allow any bubbles to rise to the surface. If there are a few bubbles, a light pass over with a heat source will pop them. Suggested minimum per mix is at least 15 ml. Using plastic or silicone stirring tool also can help prevent bubbles (that a wood stir stick might add).
When pouring your resin into your application, try and pour as close to your pieces as possible. Pour in a linear line, so that resin flows from the front of your piece, to the back. These techniques help to avoid bubble entrapment.
To dome, glaze or make colour swirls in blanks, allow mixture to set several more minutes for a thicker honey-like consistency. This is a slow cure resin and it can take 45 mins to 1 hour to get that consistency. If your piece will be turned on a lathe, please wait 24 to 48 hours to turn.
Please view our various Blog posts for additional helpful information. The one called Resin Info & Tips for ArtWorks & Liquid Diamonds is loaded with many added tips on working with both our resins.
Larger mixes will cure faster, and smaller mixes will cure slower. If your mixed resin starts to get warm in your cup, apply to your application quicker and/or mix smaller batches at one time. Warmer weather & temperature will accelerate cure and colder weather & temperature will slow the cure time.
Be aware cure times will vary depending on mass and temperatures. Large castings will cure very quickly, where as small castings may take longer than normal to fully cure.
Full cure at a 30 gram (2-3oz) mass is roughly 16-24 hours based on room temperature of 77F. For small castings and thin coats, full cure is typically 24 hours. Any sanding or polishing of cured piece should be done after fully cured 24-48 hours.
Always wipe around the bottle opening of the hardener when done so that a powdery substance does not form and drop particles into the bottle when opened again.
Please keep containers tightly sealed when not in use. The hardener (part B) is extremely sensitive to moisture. DO NOT allow hardener to remain open when not in use.
If you experience a sort of "film" on the surface of your cured piece, there could be a few reasons. Too much hardener could cause a film that resembles an oil slick. Make sure you are measuring accurately. Moisture or direct flame on uncured resin can also be the cause of a film.
*Important Note: If you are adding colourants to your resin, the general rule of thumb is to start with about 3% colourant ratio to resin, and only add more if needed, (you can check opacity on your stir stick), but never exceeding 10% colourant to resin ratio. Glitters are the exception to that ratio rule, since they don't colour the resin.
Note, adding anything in to epoxy resin, does effect the pot life (work time) of epoxy resins. However, just keep watch on any & all cups it's mixed in, if it's starting to warm up, it needs to be used ASAP. If it's not used quickly, and an uncontrolled exothermic reaction has begun in the cup, it will overheat and get extremely hot in your cup. When this occurs the resin will quickly yellow from burning, and will no longer be able to be used. Epoxy resin heating out of control can foam, smoke, give off dangerous vapors and generate enough heat to melt it's container or cause nearby items to catch fire. If this occurs, , safely remove the overheating cup on to a fire-proof surface (a metal tray or concrete) outdoors. Once cooled, you can dispose of it. To avoid this issue, it is always advised to get your mixed resin on to the substrate as soon as possible. When it's applied in correct amounts for the circumstances, it does not build heat, so the temperature through the thickness of epoxy stays close to the ambient temperature of the room.
Here are some tips for best results and to help with using Liquid Diamonds Casting Resin.
Changes in weather (temperature and humidity) can affect different results at different times of the year. Often times we see that environmental conditions have caused different results for people.
Make sure the room stays fairly consistent in temperatures. Between 72F and 80F is best. And it should stay this way throughout cure.
Humidity plays an important role. The room should be under 50% humidity ( better if it's under 30%). If it is humid, get a dehumidifier or several containers of Damp Rid to put in the room.
Different customers in different weather belts around the world experience different demould times. Some areas find they can demould around 12 to 14 hours, however item won't be fully hard for about 24 hours. Make sure to keep item on a very flat surface so as not to add wrinkles, marks or fingerprints.
Some customers state they require a full 24 hours, and can check at 18 hours, but prefer to wait the full 24 hours, to have a non bendy piece. Liquid Diamonds does take longer to cure (then ArtWorks resin for example), but the results of allowing it to cure thoroughly are worth the wait.
Bigger pieces like coasters will cure faster than smaller pieces. Higher temperatures will decrease cure time, and colder rooms will make cure take much longer, or if too cold, incomplete.
It's not fun to ruin a piece from demoulding too quickly, so best to wait. It takes time to figure out each persons perfect cure time, due to so many factors. Environment, temperature, humidity, depth of pour, volume of pour, shape of mould, if colourants are used, and adding embellishments, especially organics (flowers, leaves etc). Sphere shaped moulds hold the heat in more, so may need to be poured in shallower layers.
When adding glitters, it's best to wait until Liquid Diamonds gets to a honey like consistency before you add glitter or it will sink to the bottom of the layer your working on. That can mean resin needs to sit about 45 minutes to an hour and a half depending on your environment, before adding the glitter.
Maximum depth, is a very tricky subject. There is not one answer to this question that suits every project. It depends on many factors involved in said project. Again, environment, temperature, humidity, volume of pour, shape of mould, colourants and any embellishments added. This is something that it takes time & experience to learn what is best in your environment. If it's a completely open surface area, you might be able to pour in 2" depths. We have heard people to successfully pour Liquid Diamonds in 6" depths without a pressure pot, however I do NOT recommend this due to chance of overheating and burning the resin. Leave those experiences to very experienced resin users. If there's added embellishments such as organics (flowers, etc), I would recommend starting with 1/2" maxiumum depth in open mould pours. If you're using a mould that is rounded and more sphere shaped (which holds the heat in), and if adding organics, I would pour in 1/4" or so max depth layers. As you gain experience with the resin, you may find you can increase the depth.
Doming, is when you apply a thin layer of clear resin on the surface to restore the shine and smooth things out if needed. Although both Liquid Diamonds or ArtWorks can be used for doming, ArtWorks domes very nicely due to the thicker viscosity.
For buffing and polishing, you can use a wet/dry sandpaper (use it wet with a tiny amount of dish soap) in course grit, down to the finest grit you can get. Then use a polishing compound to buff and shine the resin back to a glassy finish. There are many types of polishing compunds, but one example of a polish compound is called Blue Jewellers polish compound. Also have heard Fabulustre is good. Some people use vehicle headlight polish. Another one mentioned to give a lovely finish is a piano polish. Different users have different preferences.
Liquid Diamonds and ArtWorks resin are both hard curing resins. If you're using a resin that can be dented with a fingernail, or softens with body heat or in a warmer temperature, it is not a hard curing resin. Liquid Diamonds and ArtWorks resin are hard curing resins. You can polish hard curing resins with a buffing wheel and a polishing compound. Use a cotton buff and polishing compound appropriate for resins. Get the buff spinning, and use it to pick up compound, then press onto the resin piece. You can use a dremel tool or flex shaft for small projects like charms, but a large buff makes quick work of polishing something larger like a pyramid or coaster. Keep the piece moving. You don't want to buff any one area more than a couple of seconds at a time. You also do not want to press the piece into the buff. Let the buff do the work; let it run over the resin piece or charm, but don't use too much pressure. Go over the entire piece as needed. When done clean with mild soap and water, to remove any polishing compound residue.
Yellowing of hardener in the bottle can happen for numerous reasons. When unmixed it can be from UV inhibitors that are an added ingredient, as they are yellow in colour. Yellowing of hardener also is caused by oxidation which happens to every brand. The average shelf life is 6 months opened, and 12 months unopened. People do use epoxy past its shelf life, however not recommended with whites or clear. When mixed, a yellowed hardener should go clear or pretty close to it. If it's not as clear as you'd like, some people add a tiny drop of blue or violet tint to the mixed epoxy to trick the eye from seeing the yellow.
Once cured all resins do eventually yellow over time, however some have UV added protection that help to prolong it. Both ArtWorks & Liquid Diamonds have UV protection added. The other factors of course are exposure to sunlight.
Sometimes people see something on top of their finished cured piece like a film, often referred to as amine blush. Without seeing it in person it is difficult for us to be sure. Some of the biggest culprits are using too much additional heat on the resin surface, or theres' too much humidity, or sometimes alcohol or some other contaminant. Try not to torch Liquid Diamonds if possible. Try not to use a heat gun. Liquid Diamonds is so thin if overheated it can film. If necessary, use a barbequie lighter and keep flame elevated above the resin a few inches to degas. Some people will set pieces on a vibrating surface to help rid of bubbles, and ensure room is quite warm as well. Our Canadian climate can be tricky. Watch for fluctuations in ambient temperatures and humidity during seasonal weather changes. Resin studio area may need additional heat to keep temperature consistent and warm throughought cure process.
For High Humidity locations
Liquid Diamonds is a thermoset epoxy, meaning "termperature set/cure". Always cure at temperature above dew point. When temperatures are below, or close to the dew point, condensation occurs and blush will be more frequent. By curing a few degrees above the dew point, you can avoid sticky cures and an unsightly appearance. A common practise is to go up at least +3C above the dew point. If this is not possible, fans and heater lamps might be able to be used to prevent moisture interactions upon the epoxy surface. Not close to but in same room. Damn Rid is a product often used as well. Each person finds different solutions work better for them in their unique environment. It may take some trial and error if your location is effected by it.
Layer Lines: If you're using a mould, and you are trying to avoid potential layer lines, pour the next layer when your previous one is still a bit tacky (before it cures). Each persons timing will be slightly different depending on a variety of factors (same as above - temperature, humidity, mould shape, volume of resin, and any inclusions). You may need to work with it to find the sweet spot for your location and environment. Example: With a 4-5 cm deep mould, you can wait 6-8 hours between layers, before pouring another layer if it's a very warm room. If it's cooler, you may need to wait about 16 hours or so.
Petri effect style using alcohol inks
If you want to achieve the popular petri style effect, with Liquid Diamonds, in my environment (which is dry), and room is about 73-74F, I wait about 1 1/2 hours with Liquid Diamonds in coaster moulds, before dropping the alcohol inks in. Drop the coloured inks in first, then go over top with white ink, then repeat same colours over top each other followed by white about 3 - 4 times. If you put different colours over top of each other, you may end up with mud. If you have a warmer room, you can drop the inks sooner. This technique takes practice, but gives beautiful results.
Not our typical recommendation, however some very experienced resin users, advise Liquid Diamonds can be mixed at a ratio of 65% hardener. This might be something you can try if you're finding a film that other methods to reduce have not worked, some found this worked. We do not recommend this ratio for beginners to casting resin, as it is easier to throw your project off balance when inexperienced. Mixing by weight (100:65 resin/hardener). Your pieces will cure faster, harder, than the 2:1 ratio. This mixing procedure is never recommended on large pieces or those above 2". This type of mix can not stay in the mixing cup, and must be used immediately or it can get very hot and cure right in your cup & turn yellow from premature exotherm.
If a piece seems tacky, it usually means the mix was incorrect or the temperature/humidity is not right.
If you've used Liquid Diamonds a lot, and it all of a sudden is not curing the same as it always had before, check the weather or room temperature. It is often the temperature change, especially winter season, and it may need to cure a few days longer or ideally have room temperature increased. The other thing to check is if you've added anything, there is no moisture in it, or you've not exceeded the colourant to resin ratio, and used correct type of colourants.
When adding inclusions, you can try to prevent bubbles being introduced by dipping your inclusions in the resin first, before adding to the mould. Add it wet to the uncured resin in the mould (or to slightly set up resin). This sometimes helps prevent inclusions from adding bubbles.
If you have never used a 2:1 resin, just remember to use twice the amount of resin as hardener.
Check out our handy resin calculator page (there are 2 calculator options) on the website, to get an estimate of how much total resin is needed for your project. Another way to see how much resin you may need, is to fill your mould with water, then dump it into a measuring cup. Or use a measuring cup to fill your mould to see how much is used. Then dry mould thoroughly as even a tiny bit of moisture will ruin the cure.
If resin appears cloudy, & your mix is corrrect, it is likely too cold. Keep your resin stored in temperature controlled room, and use when it is warm. If your resin bottles are cold, the resin can not perform as well. Some people will set the Part A bottle in warm water to warm resin up, or in front of a heater, or on a heating blanket. If you set in warm water, ensure you fully dry the container off, as any moisture dripping off bottle in to your mix can ruin it.
Please note that bottles are filled by weight, not volume and will not be filled right to the top.
Liquid Diamonds Casting Resin Mixing amount examples:
see also Resin Calculator page (2nd calculator down page for casting projects)
To make: Resin Hardener
15ml (.50oz) 10ml .5ml
30ml (1oz) 20ml 10ml
45ml (1.52oz) 30ml 15ml
60ml (2.02oz) 40ml 20ml
75ml (2.53oz) 50ml 25ml
90ml (3.04oz) 60ml 30ml
105ml (3.55oz) 70ml 35ml
120ml (4.05oz) 80ml 40ml
135ml (4.56oz) 90ml 45ml
150ml (5.07oz) 100ml 50ml
165ml (5.57oz) 110ml 55ml
180ml (6.08oz) 120ml 60ml