Accellerant for super glues

Discussion in 'Building Questions, Tutorials and Guidebooks' started by ian lanc, Mar 14, 2013.

  1. ian lanc

    ian lanc Member

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    Just what exactly is that stuff in glass bottles that makes super glue cure all most instantly ?

    Ian.
     
  2. meatloaf109

    meatloaf109 Well-Known Member

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    Sugar and spice and,...No, wait, that's something else.
    Gin, lemonade, soda water, ice and a cherry. No, that's a Tom Collins...


    Magic. It's magic.
     
  3. stona

    stona Well-Known Member

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    I don't know what's in those bottles but I know what works,water.......seriously
    Steve
     
  4. ian lanc

    ian lanc Member

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    Have we all been on the drink today [​IMG]
     
  5. stona

    stona Well-Known Member

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    #5 stona, Mar 14, 2013
    Last edited: Mar 14, 2013
    Water will work. Many commercial accelerants have an organic base,often heptane,acetone or an alcohol. From what I know of cyano acrylates I suspect that a slightly alkaline solution in water would work even better than water per se,but I don't know for sure. Maybe a very dilute solution of sodium hydroxide (caustic soda).
    I was once an organic chemist but I'm afraid this isn't something that came within my field.
    Cheers
    Steve
     
  6. ian lanc

    ian lanc Member

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    Just dabbed a bit of glue with water and it did cure! Thanks for that Steve.
     
  7. Crimea_River

    Crimea_River Well-Known Member

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    Well, there's a money saver! Thanks Steve. I have a water softener so might work even better.
     
  8. Airframes

    Airframes Benevolens Magister

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    So, who's going to be first to market the new 'ww2air accellerant' then ....... ? Reminds me, somehow, of 'Only Fools and Horses', and the 'Peckham Water' episode!
     
  9. mikewint

    mikewint Well-Known Member

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    The correct chemical designation for the CA glue is ethyl 2-cyanoacrylate. An acronym ECA is also used in chemistry. The actual composition of most commercial glues is typically: 91% ethyl 2-cyanoacrylate, 9% polymethylmethacrylate, <0.5% hydroquinone and a trace of organic sulfonic acid.
    The cyanoacrylate glue hardens very quickly when trapped between two surfaces. The reaction is caused by the condensed water vapor on the surfaces (namely the hydroxyl ions in water). The water comes from the surrounding air, so obviously the air humidity is a factor that may affect bonding capabilities, or cause them to differ from application to application. The curing reaction starts at the surface of the bonded material and develops towards the centre of the bond. Because of this, thick seams or large blobs of glue may harden less satisfactorily than surface-to-surface bonds with good fit. In a thick blob of glue, a polymerization reaction may stop before it reaches the centre of the blob. A rule of thumb is that seams thicker than 0,25 mm should be avoided. Thick seams will also take longer time to cure. Thus a thick superglue-filled seam will allow adjustment of the parts, but will bond instantly and definitely when they are pressed together, so that the gap decreases below 0.25 mm. Pressing the parts harder against each other will make the glue cure instantly.
    The hardening reaction can be described like this. The cyanoacrylate is a polymer which contains its own hardener compound. However, a weak acid is added acting as an inhibitor, preventing the reaction and “holding apart” the molecules which accounts for the liquid consistency of the compound. When exposed to water, the acid is dissolved. It triggers a chain reaction and the compound cures to the solid state. Manufacturers use the inhibitor to control the curing time of the glue. Slow-setting superglues have a larger proportion of inhibiting acid in the basic mixture.
    Besides water, cyanoacrylate polymerizes also in presence of alcohol and basic compounds (including weak amines). The latter can be used to produce a superglue “kicker” – a compound which triggers quick polymerization of the glue. Baking soda is one well-known substance with this effect. If you apply a layer of superglue to a seam and gently pour baking soda over it, the glue will cure very quickly. It makes for most effective filler for smaller jobs, and the baking soda results in a slightly rough surface which is good for sanding.
     
  10. N4521U

    N4521U Well-Known Member

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    Ohhh Mike, someone just Had to ask........

    seriously, you are a wealth of knowledge, and we are lucky we have you here to explain, weather we can Fully understand it is another story. But we now know there is an explanation for what happens.

    You say baking soda will accelerate the cure. I had a friend who used to build guitars, good ones. When he mounted his "pick-ups" he used to "bed" them, like glass bedding a barrel in a gun stock. But he used baking soda for the bed, then sprayed super glue over it to set. Does this make sense?? He would also fill seams with baking soda and add thin super glue, I haven't done this one yet.

    Thanks for your response to the question mate.
     
  11. meatloaf109

    meatloaf109 Well-Known Member

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    See?
    Magic!
     
  12. N4521U

    N4521U Well-Known Member

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    All the time I spent on that, and all I had to do was reply..... Magic??
     
  13. Crimea_River

    Crimea_River Well-Known Member

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    Great info Mike!
     
  14. meatloaf109

    meatloaf109 Well-Known Member

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    I live in a very simple world.
    Easier on the brain.
     
  15. stona

    stona Well-Known Member

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    I use CA glue and baking soda as a filler on a regular basis. A word of caution. If you are going to sand it don't dilly dally. The mixture will cure very quickly but will still take some time to go off and harden completely. Sand as soon as the initial hardening,which is almost instant,or you'll find that the filler is much harder than the surrounding plastic making for a much tougher job.
    Wherever possible I use this filler from the inside where it won't be seen and sanding on the outside is minimal.

    Also be aware that some heat will be given off as the glue cures.

    I usually apply the glue and then sprinkle the baking soda on top.

    To add to the accelerant question,simply blowing on the join/CA will work due to the moisture in your breath.

    Cheers
    Steve
     
  16. mikewint

    mikewint Well-Known Member

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    Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.
    Arthur C. Clarke
     
  17. N4521U

    N4521U Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for backing up the sprinkling tip..... and that last sentence explains a lot!!!!
     
  18. meatloaf109

    meatloaf109 Well-Known Member

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    Bingo!
     
  19. Crimea_River

    Crimea_River Well-Known Member

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    Well I tried water as an accelerator and it did not work for me. Everything turned to gel.
     
  20. mikewint

    mikewint Well-Known Member

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    Andy, can't explain what happened unless you were not using a CA-type (cyanoacylate). All types of super glue perform the same job, there are different brands and chemical makeup but all require hydroxyl ions to initiate the polymerization process. The Ethyl-2-cyanoacrylates were first discovered back in 1942 when American researchers were looking for a material to make plastic gunsights. It was quickly rejected and forgotten because it stuck to everything. There are many different brands, when Eastman redicovered CAs in 1951 it was sold as "Eastman #910", one of the first consumer brands was Krazy Glue. Less toxic to living tissue N-butyl-cyanoacrylate is a type of super glue that is used for veterinary purposes. While the least toxic 2-octyl-cyanoacrylate is the type of super glue used in medicine commonly termed Dermabond
     
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