Polyurethane or water based polycrylic?

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Polyurethane or water based polycrylic?

Postby Staygold » Sun Jul 18, 2021 2:05 pm

Hi I am going to build my bearded dragon a hide and pool for outside in the summer. I found some instructions that include styrofoam grout foam sealer and either polyurethane or water based polycrylic.

I am wondering which one is better to use, polyurethane or water based polycrylic?
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Re: Polyurethane or water based polycrylic?

Postby resamille » Wed Jul 21, 2021 5:59 am

When I was DIY'ing my viv, I used polycrylic to seal some of miscellaneous bits. I haven't used polyurethane to compare, but in researching around supposedly polyurethane was more likely to break down under long-term exposure to UVB/heat, but nothing I ever saw was a particularly detailed or rigorous explanation for how long it takes or how dangerous it is, so I don't know that it actually makes a difference vs. polycrylic. Honestly as long as it's not going to sit directly under your basking spot, I feel like it won't matter anyway.

I will say from personal experience that the polycrylic was much thinner than I had anticipated, and even with two full coats, the wood I was covering still had rough patches and the general wood texture, so if you're going to seal anything close to porous, be prepared for a lot of coats. Might take a while, but afterward just give it some time to ventilate, sniff test to make sure you can't smell it, and then it should be good to go in your beardie's viv.
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Re: Polyurethane or water based polycrylic?

Postby Gormagon » Wed Jul 21, 2021 6:42 pm

To stop the rough texture you encountered in the wood, in the future you need to use a sealer first. it raises the fines so it can be sanded smooth, then apply the W/B polycrylic topcoat. Water based Polycrylic has a low VOC level and is safer to use with dragons. Oil based polyurethane has a much higher VOC level and is toxic until completely cured (about a month). If you can smell it it's not safe.
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