How To Make Resin River Coasters

 

We know epoxy resin projects can be intimidating for those who haven’t done large, deep pour projects yet. To help get you started on your resin journey, check out this tutorial for DIY “Faux” Resin River Coasters.

Steps

  1. Choose your piece of wood for your project and find the center line. It’s always best to use hardwoods for things like coasters or cutting boards, since they are less porous and more durable! This project is made with walnut.
    Walnut
  2. Use a jig saw to cut a wavy, asymmetrical line down the center of the board. Featured here are jigsaw cuts made with a 30 degree bevel to make the “live edge” look more organic.
    Jigsaw
  3. Next, use your cake molds to trace circles onto the two sides of your new “live edge” pieces.
    Circles
  4. Cut your circles out with a jig saw. This time, make sure your bevel is set to 0 degrees.
    Beveled wood
  5. After cutting your pieces, use a sander to smooth the edges and “live edge”. You’ll want to get as tight of a fit as possible.
    Sanding
  6. Next, clean your resin mold with rubbing alcohol to make sure it’s free of debris and then add your wood pieces.
    Mold
  7. To help stop the pieces of wood from floating in the resin, use clamps to hold them down. If your coaster molds are too tight to fit clamps, use small wood blocks covered in tape and scrap wood with clamps to hold them down (you can see this process in the above video).
  8. Next, mix your epoxy resin and your pigment following the instructions on the back of the bottles. This project features a deep pour epoxy resin. If you are using a tabletop epoxy, you will want to pour these in small sections rather than all at once. Pro Tip: Complete your resin pour in a temperature-controlled room as resin can only properly cure in certain temperatures. Make sure to check the instructions for your particular resin brand before starting your pour.
    Resin mix
  9. Once the resin has been poured, use a Bernzomatic ST2200 Detail Torch to pop all of the bubbles formed by the pour. This is super important because if you don’t pop the bubbles, they will cure in your resin and cause small holes in your hardened pour. To do this, carefully hover the flame above the pour and move it back and forth quickly. If you leave it on one spot too long, it could burn the resin, so be careful here!
    Bernzomatic ST2200T
  10. Optional: Adding rubbing alcohol to resin with metallic pigment causes it to make cool designs and bursts! Use a small stick to swirl the pigments around while it cures.
  11. Since the resin will take a while to cure, it’s important to “babysit” it and check on it. Do this for a few hours and continue to use the Bernzomatic ST2200 Detail Torch to pop any new bubbles as they form.
    Popping bubbles
  12. Once the resin has cured (this will vary based on the type and brand of resin you use), remove the coasters from the molds.
  13. Next, sand them all down to size and shape. Some may not come out of the molds perfectly round, so you can tape them together and sand as one big stack to save time. Start with 80 grit and 120 grit sandpaper and then work your way to 220 grit to make them smooth.
    Sanding
  14. Once sanded to 220 grit, wet the wood to raise the grain. They will feel rough to the touch after they dry, this is normal! After it dries, sand it back down with 400 grit to keep the resin polished.
  15. Spray the coasters with a wood finish like urethane to complete.
    Complete coasters

What You'll Need


ST2200T
ST2200T

Detail Torch for Hobby and Household Use

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BF55
BF55

5.5 oz. Butane Cylinder

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Tools

  • Jig Saw
  • Sander & Sandpaper
  • Silicone Cake Mold
  • Epoxy Resin Mixing Materials
  • Wood Clamps
  • Packaging Tape (Optional)

Materials

  • 1 x 4 Hardwood Lumber
  • Deep Pour Epoxy
  • Metallic Epoxy Pigment
  • Rubbing Alcohol
  • Wood Finish
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