"Great Stuff" - Great mess

Has anyone ever figured out how to use that "Great Stuff" or other brand (foam in a can), without getting it all over everything? The stuff is obnoxious. I got it all over my hands, on my shirt, pants, shoes, in my hair, on the carpeting, and other places. I only wanted to seal around some pipes in the bathroom, then go to the kitchen to do the same (which is when it got all over my clothing and the carpet). Worse yet, was when I went under the house (trailer house), and tried to fill the holes from the underside. Doing it upsidedown is a major mess, and it's very hard to use because the can needs to be inverted (try doing that upsidedown).
Now that it's hard, I can sort of chip it off my clothing with my thumbnail, I dont know how to get it off the carpet though. No matter what, the stuff is just plain terrible to use, and it seems that it needs to be used from the underside of things as much as from the top. The last time I used a can was under the eaves on a house where some critter made a hole. That time I was on a ladder and covered from hear to toe with the stuff.
Plus the tube that comes with the cans are too short for using upsidedown.....
"Great Stuff" is NOT great at all, except for making a GREAT big mess.
I continue to try to peel it off my fingers because it hard to type with my fingers coated.
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We've used cases of it at work with little mess. You do have to go slow, but it is possible to use an entire can and not spill a drop. Do not try to fill a large gap in one step. Lay a small bead and let it expand and get firm before adding another. In your case, step one would be to wear latex gloves to keep it off your hand.
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On Thu, 14 Oct 2010 03:54:04 -0500, snipped-for-privacy@myplace.com wrote:

Sure. Patience, grasshopper. Go slow. Remember that when you stop 'shooting' the foam keeps expanding. Have a container ready to throw the empty in. If you spill a drop *leave it alone* until it hardens, then scrape it off.
I wore disposable gloves for a while, but don't even bother with that any more. -snip-

It used to be that way. I have just gone through 5 cans of it & didn't invert any. They all worked fine.
-snip-

Can you name a replacement that will seal up unreachable holes with an insulating vapor barrier that expands to the size of the hole?
Jim
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I prefer the Dap Tex Plus minimal expansion foam.
In my case, making a mess during the application of the product isn't an issue but something else is:
The instructions say 2 things of note:
9. Slowly dispense foam from can in upright position, filling cavity to 90% to allow for minimal expansion. 10. For best results, tool or shape while wet. Do not trim or remove skin of the cured foam.
I've used it around both window and door installations and the same thing always happens:
I fill the cavity to ~ 90% and it expands to fill the void. Sometimes it expands a little more than I want it too, so I "tool or shape while wet" as per the instructions. I walk away with a nice smooth surface, flush with the wall and wait for it to cure before I put the trim on.
Then I come back 4, 6, sometimes 12 hours later to find numerous small globs of the material sticking out of the gap here and there around the window or door.
That's where the problem occurs. # 10 says "Do not trim or remove skin of the cured foam" so what am I supposed to do? Leave the globs and just mash the trim up against them? Besides having the excess squeeze out from behind the trim, that's still going to break the skin of the cured product.
I end up "breaking the rules" and trim the foam back so that it is flush again.
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-snip-

How come? [You've seen the Great Stuff blue cans, right? ]

The red cans of Great stuff say don't go over 50% - and "5.Foam is tack-free in about 5-10 minutes and cures in eight hours. 6.Cured foam can be trimmed, shaped, sanded, painted or stained."
The blue "Windows ad Doors" Great Stuff doesn't expand as much but the can doesn't specify how much room to give it. [or does it just not push things out of place as readily?] Otherwise it acts like the red cans.
So I apply the first coat sparingly, before lunch. After lunch it doesn't mess anymore & I give it a second coat if it needs it. The next day I trim it up. I always plan to use a whole can and have places that take the extra so I've layered some spots 5-6 times ad it all seems to stick together well.
-snip-

I've always applied the Great stuff so it needs trimming. I'd rather waste some product than end up with a draft. On that point alone I'd never use the Dap unless it has some other really cool thing going for it.
Jim
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wrote:

I prefer the Dap Tex Plus minimal expansion foam.
In my case, making a mess during the application of the product isn't an issue but something else is:
The instructions say 2 things of note:
9. Slowly dispense foam from can in upright position, filling cavity to 90% to allow for minimal expansion. 10. For best results, tool or shape while wet. Do not trim or remove skin of the cured foam.
I've used it around both window and door installations and the same thing always happens:
I fill the cavity to ~ 90% and it expands to fill the void. Sometimes it expands a little more than I want it too, so I "tool or shape while wet" as per the instructions. I walk away with a nice smooth surface, flush with the wall and wait for it to cure before I put the trim on.
Then I come back 4, 6, sometimes 12 hours later to find numerous small globs of the material sticking out of the gap here and there around the window or door.
That's where the problem occurs. # 10 says "Do not trim or remove skin of the cured foam" so what am I supposed to do? Leave the globs and just mash the trim up against them? Besides having the excess squeeze out from behind the trim, that's still going to break the skin of the cured product.
I end up "breaking the rules" and trim the foam back so that it is flush again.
reply:
Someone at my cabin used a few cans in an attempt to chink. It looks horrible, and with lots of effort to trim it down, and make it look good, it still looks like crap where they did it. IMHO, this stuff is GREAT when you're doing the stages before sheetrock, or in places where it won't show, or when there's just no other way to do it. For anyplace where it is visible, my experiences are duplicate of yours.
Steve
Heart surgery pending? Read up and prepare. Learn how to care for a friend. http://cabgbypasssurgery.com
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On 10/14/2010 3:54 AM, snipped-for-privacy@myplace.com wrote:

Practice on your neighbor's trailer. 8-)
TDD
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On Thu, 14 Oct 2010 06:44:02 -0500, The Daring Dufas
I wish I had gotten a picture. In a very old section of town, some guy tried to fixed his roof shingles by spraying the foam under the edges of the shingles. That lifted them up alright!
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On 10/14/2010 3:54 AM, snipped-for-privacy@myplace.com wrote:

LMAO!
--
Steve Barker
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Sounds like you missed the instructions. They are right there on the back, and give a lot of helpful hints.
Steve
Heart surgery pending? Read up and prepare. Learn how to care for a friend. http://cabgbypasssurgery.com
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But isn't reading the instructions grounds for being drummed out of the DIY club?
Harry K
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On Oct 14, 4:54am, snipped-for-privacy@myplace.com wrote:

Just wondering...do you paint without putting down a drop cloth?
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Not sure how you could get the stuff "all over". Must be the first time you've tried Great Stuff?
It takes planning. And, treat it like toxic waste until it's dry. Don't touch it. Put out drop cloths. Have a plastic bag in your pocket, so you can stuff the empty can and tube into a grocery bag when you're done.
As to patching holes up from under, try cardboard and staple gun.
--
Christopher A. Young
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