Tips & Tricks
1.Be Mindful of Water
Secure Set is formulated to be used in dry soil *conditions. If a post hole has standing water in it or if the soil is highly saturated or muddy, take appropriate measures to remove the water and dry the post hole. One method is to extract the water with a “ShopVac”, then reverse the hose and use it as a blower to dry out the soil. Another method is to use a weed burner or propane torch. If Secure Set is combined with standing water, it will hyperactivate and the resultant foam will overflow the hole and its strength will be diminished.
* sandy soil: Secure Set seeps into the soil before expansion and does not latch on well to sandy soil or wet soil. You can use concrete form tubes to pour into, if tightly back filled.
2. Be Mindful of Proportions and Proper Hole Size
When mixing Secure Set, ensure the amounts of each component are of equal volume. For example, if you need 26 fluid oz. per hole, mix 13oz. of component “A” and 13oz. of component “B”. For best results, it is very important to be accurate on the dimensions of your post hole. For example, if you planned to set your post in a hole 8 inches wide and 24 inches deep, but you end up digging a 10″ diameter hole, that post hole will have 62% more volume. With this increase in volume per hole, you most likely will run out of Secure Set before you finish your project. *Tip Of The Day* If you plan to use a powered auger to dig your post holes, select an auger that is 2″ smaller than the diameter of the hole you require. For example, if your project requires a hole that is 8″ wide, select a 6″ auger. Normally a power auger will extract approximately 1.5″ to 2″ more soil than the actual size of the auger. Remember, you can always make the post hole slightly larger if needed, you cannot make it smaller. Do not rent an 8″ auger to dig an 8″ hole, you will probably end up with a 10″ diameter hole and you will run short of Secure Set before you finish your project.
3. THIS ITEM IS IMPORTANT! PROPER MIXING
Mix Secure Set with the high speed mixer that is supplied in the kit. Attach the mixer to a cordless drill. Insert the mixer into a cup and mix Secure Set until you have a nice cream colored mixture with no streaks, swirls or marbling. Normally this will take between 15 to 30 seconds depending on ambient temperature. Do not over mix Secure Set. Over mixing will result in Secure Set expanding up and out of the cup. It is necessary to pour Secure Set down into the post hole as a liquid in order to have time for the product to seep into the soil before expanding. Do not pour Secure Set into the hole as a foam, this might compromise Secure Set’s ability to adhere to the soil and the post. During cold temperatures, mix Secure Set longer in the cup or pail. This will allow the reaction temperature to rise and help compensate for the colder ambient temperatures of your working environment. During Winter months, it is important to keep Secure Set at room temperature prior to mixing and pouring into the hole. In below freezing applications, warm the post hole with a weed burner or some other method to raise the temperature of the soil in the hole. Do not put Secure Set into a post hole that is frozen.
Mix “A” and “B” in equal portions, until you achieve a cream color, it is ready to pour into the post hole.
Pour Secure Set as a liquid into the post hole.
4. Pour It Right
After pouring Secure Set evenly around the post into the hole, the blended mixture should sit on the bottom of the hole in liquid form for approximately 15 to 20 seconds before the expansion phase starts. This will ensure that it has time to “level out” around the post and “soak” into the soil. This soaking will allow the Secure Set to adhere very well to the soil and the leveling will ensure a more uniform rise and expansion up the hole. If you have a post that is not centered in the hole, pour Secure Set into the narrow gap or the side of the post that is closest to the soil. The expansion phase of the reaction should take between 2 to 5 minutes depending on outside temperature.
5. Set the Post Straight
Make sure the post you are setting is plumb and steady. Support the post (see below on how to make support sticks), so that it does not move at all during the curing process of Secure Set. Do not wiggle or attempt to reset the post while Secure Set is expanding in the hole.
Moving the post during the expansion phase could cause the post to wobble in the hole after Secure Set has cured. Allow at least 5 to 6 minutes after Secure Set has stopped expanding before removing any supports from the post.
Leveling and stabilizing a wood post on the job site using stabilizing sticks and a two-sided post level.
Always use equal parts of “A” and “B”
6. Measure Twice, Pour Once
Measuring cups are provided with all kits sold by the gallon. We suggest you purchase some inexpensive disposable foam, paper or plastic 32, 44 or 64oz. cups to mix the Secure Set. You can use them once or twice and then throw them away. This will ensure your measuring cups stay clean and accurate and your measurements won’t be off ratio by using cups that have a residue built up in them.
If you do happen to use the measuring cups that are supplied with the kits to mix Secure Set, after setting 3 or 4 posts it will be difficult to read the measurement lines on the sides of the mixing cups . Do not throw them away. Allow the residue in the cup to firm up, and in approximately 20 to 25 minutes you can remove the “stiff” residue from inside the cup by flexing the sides of the plastic cup, then remove or “pull out” the hardened residue. You then have a cleaner cup to measure with.
7. Cap Your Jugs
After you have poured equal portions of Secure Set into your measuring cups, and before you start to mix the two components together, take 5 seconds to put the caps back on the 1 gal jugs. Many customers have called saying they need just 1 gallon of either “A” or “B” component because they knocked a 1 gallon jug over with their knee or foot while they were setting the post.
8. Safety Measures
It is important to stay clean while you are using Secure Set. If you get any blended Secure Set on you during the process of setting your posts, you will find that Secure Set is very very sticky. We recommend using latex or nitrile exam gloves which will facilitate ease of use and a simpler clean up.
If any unmixed or mixed Secure Set spills and you need to remove the residue, use acetone to clean up the mess.
If mixed Secure Set gets on your clothes, don’t try to wipe it off when it is wet, it will turn out to be a sticky mess, allow the Secure Set to harden, then you can pick it off with your fingernails or some type of small tool.
9. Beware of Warm or Hot Temperatures
In HOT WEATHER, Secure Set will react very quickly, do not over mix, be mindful of quick expansion of Secure Set in the mixing cup or shaker bottle. Pour Secure Set into the hole as soon as possible after mixing.
10. Support Sticks and Post Levelers
Making the Support Sticks: Go to your nearest Home Depot or Lowe’s and proceed to the lumber department. There you will find pre-cut sticks that measure 8 feet long by 2″x1″. Buy at least two of these sticks. Cut the sticks in half so you now have 4 – 48″ sticks that measure 48″x2″x1″. Then proceed to the aisle named “Home or Closet Organization”. The hooks are “U” shaped with a 1.5″ threaded tail. Purchase 8 of these hooks. Before you screw the hooks into the ends of the sticks, it is wise to pre-drill a small pilot hole for the threaded screw. This will prevent the hook from splitting out the end of the stick. Attach a vinyl coated hook to each end of the stick.
Two Sided Post Levelers: You can find these in the “Tool” section of the store with all the industrial levels. Buy two or three of these levels.
With the support sticks and the post levelers you can pre-level several posts in a row prior to mixing and using Secure Set, making your fence project easier and faster.
Vinyl post ready for Secure Set using support sticks and levels
If you have any more questions about Secure Set, please feel free to call 405-672-8885. Thank you for using Secure Set!!