Instructables

Dissolving Epoxy

I have a project where I have an antique electronic part that is sealed with epoxy. Is there any way of dissolving the epoxy in order to view the original parts? This is so I can construct a replacement part.?

kelseymh4 years ago
It would help if you could attach a picture to the question text. If the "part" is what I'm thinking of, it's not epoxy adhesive but rather thermosetting plastic resin. Alternatively, it could be high-voltage potting compound. You would need different solvents depending on what the material actually is, which probably means knowing what the original antique component is.
Foxtrot70 (author)  kelseymh4 years ago
The part I am working with is the High Voltage Tripler used in an Advent Video Beam 1000A. Yes I think that the compound is high-voltage potting compound.
And for some things, which were potted specifically to prevent tampering, there may be circuitry which will cause 'em to self-destruct if that potting compound isn't present. For others... Last time I had to remove potting compound, I wound up doing so with a hammer and chisel. Luckily I knew exactly where the component I needed to replace was, and knew it was behind a heat sink which would protect the rest of the circuit from being damaged by this abuse. Even so, I couldn't unsolder it from the circuit board -- instead, I wound up breaking it off its leads, and then soldering the new one to the stubs of those leads.
Prfesser4 years ago
Epoxy may soften enough to be removed by using methylene chloride. Might be available at home supply stores under paint solvents and similar. Test a chip of the material first. However...there is nothing that dissolves epoxy in the conventional sense. Epoxy is pretty tough stuff. Prfesser
Sulfuric acid?
No, don't do that
lemonie4 years ago
Epoxy (set) can't be dissolved very easily. Kelsey is about right on this (given limited knowledge) You pick it off physically, then 'clean' with whaterver works - need more information as Kelsey.

L
Formic acid ?