Epoxy clean up?

I have two questions with regards to clean up of epoxy.  


First, if you get a dab of epoxy on a panel, say while gluing scarfs, or any of a million other times, or during ooze out of a joint, what is the best method of getting it off the panel?  Just wipe it with a rag, and then have to sand out that last little bit later?  Or will it not show up underneath more epoxy?  Or can you use a solvent which won't stain the wood, and get it off completely while still wet (ie. vinegar).


And second, do any of ya'll clean up brushes, or just use disposables?  And what do you clean them with.  I don't mind throwing away brushes, but when you only get to one joint every now and then, it does add up to a lot of brushes.  Thanks in advance,



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RE: Epoxy clean up?


Wipe it so it won't make a bump that needs sanding and then forget about it. As you say, the next coat of epoxy will make it all blend in.

I use disposables. One way to economize on brushes is not to use them. For much of what you need to do (such as precoating the wood in joints), the plastic squeegees work fine. After the epoxy hardens on those, just flex the squeegee to crack the epoxy loose and it just peels right off. You can keep reusing them until they get so scratched up that the epoxy doesn't peel off anymore.

Have fun,



RE: Epoxy clean up?

Spruce, as always, Laszlo's right on the money!

As to disposables, I can't count the number of chip brushes, rollers, plastic measuring cups, spoons, etc., that I threw away during my build; I'm sure it amounted to $100.00+ of my project build.  That said, cleaning epoxy (even with vinegar) is a messy proposition and you'll spend more time than it's worth.  The way I minimized cost was to buy all those disposable items at the "dollar store" (many versions but you get the picture).  Kept my costs down and was easy to resupply.

Good luck,



RE: Epoxy clean up?

As long as the blob youre trying to remove isnt too close to the actual scarf itself, I found that if you hit the epoxy drips with a heat gun (approx 200 deg) for about 30 seconds, you can scrape it right off in one swipe with a normal paint scraper or putty knive.  Just make sure not to heat up the important epoxy thats keeping everything together.  This method though will allow you to scrape it off like butter!

RE: Epoxy clean up?

Awesome, thanks for the info guys!  Epoxy is strange stuff to work with - most woodworking I'm used to, IE using yellow glue or similar, you really need to get every last bit of ooze out cleaned up, or your finishes will be ruined.  But, that's obviously a different ball game - after all, you don't coat an entire coffee table with yellow glue.

 As for the disposable brushes, I'll just keep going through them I guess.  I have been minimizing their use by using shims, which we have at least a million of from offcuts from various products, as spreaders.

 Hull took shape today - way cool!


RE: Epoxy clean up?

I've been through quite a few disposables myself.  I usually grab a handful every time I'm at Walmart, they're $1 a piece.

RE: Epoxy clean up?

Harbor Freight sells a box of 2" disposable chip brushes for $9.99 and they are as good as any. They also sell vinyl/nitrile disposable gloves that outlast any others. Stay away from their foam brushes, though, as they are too flimsy for our purposes. -Wes

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