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1/2 Gallon Cactus Juice

Discussion in 'Canadian Suppliers' started by John Noon, Jul 25, 2018.

  1. John Noon

    John Noon Well-Known Member

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  2. dancom

    dancom Dust Maker Best Shop Tool

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    I am going to pick up a jug in the first week of August. Got some vacation days coming to me. :)
     
  3. John Noon

    John Noon Well-Known Member

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    I will put a jug in a box for you and have it waiting for you
     
  4. John Noon

    John Noon Well-Known Member

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    Dan the shipment is coming in this Tuesday 7 August 2018 so if you want to place your order you can anytime.
     
  5. John Noon

    John Noon Well-Known Member

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    In stock and there are four left in 1/2 gallon containers.

    Also have 1 gallon in stock as well
    Cactus Juice
     
  6. dancom

    dancom Dust Maker Best Shop Tool

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    Minus one. :)
     
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  7. John Noon

    John Noon Well-Known Member

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    It is in the box for tomorrow morning shipment.
     
  8. dancom

    dancom Dust Maker Best Shop Tool

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  9. dancom

    dancom Dust Maker Best Shop Tool

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    John,

    This is my first batch. 10 blocks and 4 sets of maple burl scales.
    [​IMG]

    After this I put the remaining resin in back in the jug. Still quite a bit left.
    [​IMG]

    I have some more wood to process and will easily be able to do another batch this size.

    Hint: Put all of your wood in the oven at about 50°C for a while to get the moisture content as low as possible before going into the vacuum chamber.

    Dan
     
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  10. John Noon

    John Noon Well-Known Member

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    I measure the woods weight before cooking at 100C or 250F up to 28 hours depending on moisture content 5% 24 hours max and 10% plus can be 28 hours

    Cooking for four hours then measure the weight every couple of hours until you have no weight change for four hours. Or do it like the ASTM document where you cook 24 hours then start recording the weight.

    I have started writing the blocks dry weight on the block in pencil so I get an idea of weight gain after going through the vacuum cycle.

    It is fun getting the blocks done then seeing what they look like. I have a large block to try and really hoping for something impressive when finished
     
  11. dancom

    dancom Dust Maker Best Shop Tool

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    Ya, you can definitely see the level of the resin go down in the chamber after the vacuum has pulled the air out of the wood. I did a vacuum release and topped up with a bit more resin and continued with more vacuum. Most all of the woods took the resin well, maple, elm, and buckeye were good. The two blocks of walnut burl are a bit greasy after curing. This will probably sand off.

    Smells exactly like Stick-Fast stabilizing resin. Same weird unique pine-like smell.

    Happy camper. Thanks John.

    Dan
     
    Last edited: Aug 17, 2018 at 1:03 PM
  12. John Noon

    John Noon Well-Known Member

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    Stickfast only made a very small change to the formula before going to the market much like gator juice
     
  13. dancom

    dancom Dust Maker Best Shop Tool

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    One thing I noticed about Stick-Fast is that there is a wee pink-purple-blue hue to it. You can see this in residue on the walls of the vacuum chamber. It also buffs with a slight "soapy" or whitening appearance. (Sorry that's the only way I can explain it.) Nothing wrong with its stabilization aspect, only a minor cosmetic thing and not a huge deal.

    I am off the garage to sand these blocks and scales on the disc. I'll let you know how it goes.

    Thanks again,

    Dan
     
  14. dancom

    dancom Dust Maker Best Shop Tool

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    Pics after sanding...and some spittle added for shine.

    First maple burl pair:
    [​IMG]
    Second maple burl pair:
    [​IMG]
    Amazing! Instant groovy natural love pattern in the wood.
    [​IMG]
    Truly awesome Canadian pieces of wood.

    Dan
     
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  15. John Noon

    John Noon Well-Known Member

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    Those are very nice
     
  16. FORGE

    FORGE Maker of the Year Best Knife

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    Just a quick note from my experience with stabilizing wood.
    We used (MMA) methylmethacrylate and benzoil peroxide as the catalyst and added another cross linking monomer that really made the wood hard as a rock. When we first started we did scales but found some of them would really warped at 176 deg F (the temp that this brew catalyzed at). Anyway we found that blocks 1 x 11/2 x 5 were the best way to do the wood . If you wanted scales just cut them in half.
    I don't know what this cactus juice is like once it is catalyzed but the MMA was extremely dangerous when it got a few months old and the temperature outside got hot. I had some of it go off one time on a hot summer day and it just turns into a thermal runaway reaction. Much like fiberglass resin if you add to much catalyst, except this stuff was 10 times as bad.
     
  17. John Noon

    John Noon Well-Known Member

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    Cactus juice and the copies use a slightly different composition of methacrylate ester monomers which is derived from methylmethacrylate. I was in touch with DOW and they had been getting lots of emails and calls from people trying to buy in bulk and save money. Their standard answer was no and went as far to request photos of my shop, they wanted proof of commercial grade ventilation and the shop had to be separate from any other structure. Now that is some seriously nasty stuff

    I also talked with Curtis about the product some and he worked with a chemist to make the product less hazardous so it could be used in small workshops.

    Cactus Juice and others are temperature stable until you mix in the Catalyst then the Storage temperatures should be maintained below 29ºC (85ºF). Storage in a refrigerator is recommended. In the activated condition it can activate and turn your vacuum chamber into a solid block but no fires have been reported that I am aware of at least not yet.

    Curing Cactus Juice, it is heat cured at temperatures between 80ºC -96ºC, (177º F -205º F ) and at that temperature if there is any moisture present it will do its best to get out but the cured resin will block its path.

    For myself I always run the slabs thicker and sand flat after curing. I have had a couple cup on me and they still sit on the shelf to see if they remain stable after flattening.

    Learned something new about the product tonight-
    There are five main causes of unintended polymerization of methacrylate esters: overheating and photo-initiation, contamination, corrosion, inhibitor depletion, and inhibitor deactivation (via oxygen depletion). Guess this is why storing in a sealed glass container is bad and the addition of metal ions such as iron and copper can initiate polymerization.

    Spent some time reading up on the safe handling of the commercial stabilizing liquid MMA and it is interesting stuff and uncontrolled polymerization would make the family jewels tighten right up
     

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