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CA adhesive, which one do you use?

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I am sure you are all well aware that there are several brands of CA adhesive on the market. I am curious which you prefer.

 

Here is my view. The formulation of this rapid curing adhesive dates back to when Harry Coover working at Kodak developed and used it to splice movie film. I remember using this as Eastman 910. Loctite came into the picture and made its own version. Since then there are several more, but (to the best of my knowledge) they all depend on the same chemistry. 

 

However, what I found is that for my use in building models I rely on three types depending on its application and viscosity. The original Eastman 910 was very thin (low viscosity) and was good for smooth surfaces (such as movie film). This is the case for most on the market today. 
I have been using a somewhat higher viscosity type called Medium CA by Zap-A-Gap. It is good for most applications such as threads, cloth, wood and other porous materials.

Then there is one that has lots of fillers and has high viscosity. It is referred to as 'Gel Control' made by Loctite. it is good for making those 'knots' on the rat lines shown in an earlier post. It has good gap filling properties while still bonding pretty well for most bonding jobs.

Here is are the three I referred to:

 

post-246-0-15375100-1421606857_thumb.jpg

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Zap a gap medium for applying copper plating. CA gel for other small jobs - I use one in a tube, it is cheaper than the dispenser type you have in your picture. However, I use it very sparingly as the fumes affect me if I forget to put on a mask. I mostly use a quick drying wood glue.

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I use the cheapest old crap I can find, both liquid and gel control. I usually use off name brands sold by Walmart. Now, my favorite is the Loctite Gel control that you have pictured. I really like the new packaging on this rather than the old tube style. You can run through better than $100.00 just in glue on a model. I have found that the name brands don't really out perform the no name brands.

 

Mike  

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Loctite, or whatever is cheap.

 

I tend to use it for making jigs, small parts installation (not often) or holding ropes (again not often)

 

I like to use PVA as much as possible, as it is repairable, will not harden over time and will move with the model as seasons change and wood expands and contracts.

 

CA glues harden over time and will eventually fail if used to hold structural parts together.

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I've built over 20 ship models in the past 15 years and still own the original first model that I ever built (HMS Bounty) and used strictly CA and white wood glue and have never had an issue with failure that you speak of. Now once a model gets 30 years old and older, most any glue will fail. I have repaired models built back in the 40's and 50's for people and yes there were some issues with glue failure, but that was well before CA glues were invented or used. But I used CA glues on the repaired parts and well over 10 years and they are still in great condition without failure.

 

All models that I have repaired or built and sold have a lifetime repair policy offered by me and as yet, I have never had an issue where I needed to honor that policy. But glue is like the use of tools, wood and anything else, it's a matter of preference.

 

Mike    

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I also prefer the Loctite. Unfortunately the dispenser bottle isn't very well designed, but if you pull the blue part out the bottom with a pair of pliers, you can squeeze the tube itself, and get at least 10-15% more glue out of it. For thin CA, I use this stuff:

 51KJC3RyY6L._SY355_.jpg

I prefer using small tubes like this because it makes it less likely that the bottle will get hopelessly clogged up while there's still a lot of glue left.

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If I may interject.

I had no idea that this would result in a nice 'conversation' about CA, but it is good to know that some (like Mike above) have had positive results and are not too concerned with the durability of CA in the long-run. After all, I don't think our usage involves high stresses (or do they?).

 

By the same token, I am not surprised about having several who like Locktite adhesives, but I am wondering about Zap-A-Gap. I should not a proponent of either of them, but I did return a container of Locktite's marked 'Professional' that showed a model ship on its cover. At the time I decided that was for me???? Wrong!! As far as I am concerned it was the same very low viscosity stuff I can get at half the price.
But I have had a learning and good experience with the green bottle of Zap stuff. So be it.

 

Is price a object? Not in mine opinion. I think we spend a lot more on new tools and other materials than we do on glue!! How much CA do you use on a model? Let's experimentation be separate for this comparison.
Is it true that many of the cheap 'Super Glues' work just as well as those sold by our hobby suppliers. In fact, I will do some more research with your help, please. But again we should be careful about what 'works well for us'.

 

Here I my take.

If you like what you are working with, fine.
If you want to experiment with others, good.
If you want some advise from others on this forum, better. The more the better.
Either way, the application, more than the product, should be the guiding factor in the selection.

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Jay,

 

I see it as a toss-up question.  One of "what works for you may not work for me".  I use mostly PVA for some applications, CA is the ticket.  I've tried the Locktite Gel Control and like it as well as the LHS branded CA (the same stuff ME sells) in various viscosities for various jobs.   They all seem to work well.  However, I'm just not a fan of CA due to the fumes.

 

On the other hand, I'm still wrestling with epoxies to find something I can work with.  But.. what works for you..etc... etc...  :)

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Greetings Mod...

 

With glue, you pick a horse and ride it. The best value, I think, is the 12 pack of the original Super Glue as was previously pointed out above. You can get it at Home Depot and similar stores. I agree with mtaylor: as often as possible I will use PVA for wood to wood applications. The CA works with everything else, including metal to metal and applications where you need a fast bond.

 

wq3296

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This may be a misplaced entry on the topic of CA adhesives. Specifically I am suspect of my CA, namely bsi Insta Cure, Gap Filling, 5-15 sec adhesive. As a matter of expedience I used the CA to glue Castello box wood to Castello box wood. I noticed it wasn't too hard to pry it off after about 5 days of application as I had made a mistake. Now I am concerned about future loose parts over time. The CA glue is about 7 months old and is still very viscous. Its container is immediately sealed even during use. The box wood is silky smooth as it comes from the supplier. Any similar episodes out there and what have you done to combat this problem?

 

Thanks, Joe

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Mark is right. Roughing up the spots where you apply the CA helps a lot. Wood can be problematic for CA, especially when applying on end grain. Tends to wick into the wood. Apply a first coat and let dry. This seals the wood for the CA. Then glue your parts together with a second drop of CA.

I'm not a fan of CA glue for wood to wood applications; carpenter's yellow glue set up fast enough for me. CA is great for dissimilar materials gluing, like Britannia metal to wood. I'd still rough up the smooth surface and seal the wood, though. But, that's just me.

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Thanks guys. I tend to shy away from CA for wood to wood application but could not clamp the particular element so I resorted to the CA. Yellow glue for me as a rule. I have found the DAP Insta Cure (all purpose) has worked better. You can even remove it to re-position it within the 1st 30 seconds with good adhesive results in the end. They also make a wood only version I have yet to try. Why I didn't reach for that bottle is beyond me as an alternative.

Joe

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Here it is nearly 11 months later and I am now working my Cheerful model. I have to admit that my planking results have left me wanting better results. So for the 2nd time I have ripped off the boxwood planks P & S above the wales and have started. In spite of what I said above, I used CA glue prior as I did not wish to wait for the set time of PVA.

 

So here is the question; if one wishes to remove old planking and refit new what is the recommended way to treat the frames prior to reapplication of new planks with CA? I have sanded the bulkheads and removed any noticeable traces of surface CA. What I have been wondering is, should I wipe down those bulkheads with a good dose of acetone fist? I hesitated since I intuitively think, maybe erroneously, that I will dilute the CA that remains and it will seep further into the bulkheads.

 

As a postscript I will add that on the 1st and 2nd plank removal that the planks did seem positively attached to the bulkheads with just prior sanding. What I am worried about is long term adhesive integrity.

 

Joe

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There is a CA remover that can be purchased. Most of us use CA and 5bere is not enough history to know the long term life of this glue. Having said that its such a wonderful and helpful product i would not stop using it myself. I tend to mix use all sorts of glues, PVA, EPOXY, 5 minute to 24 hours, CA thinand  thick. Changes in humidity are probabely more of a risk than the glue you se. perhaps the best advice was given in an earlier post to make sure you have a rough surface and no a polished surface so you get a good bond no matter what glue you use. If you need to remove a piece that is already stuch there is usually a referance in the glue speck that tells you how to remove the particular glue.

enjoy your modeling and do not over think it too much.

Cheers 

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I guess in the time frame of models made in the 1700's CA doesn't have much of a track record - but I have stuff glued with CA going back to 1968 - and it's as good as the day it was applied.   Acetone is the solvent for CA - apply a bit let it soak in and give it a try - add more if needed.  Have never experienced a joint that I wasn't able to get apart using Acetone.

All this is personal experience and I don't hesitate to use it where needed.  At this point as far as I am concerned the CA glue I use today has a longer life expectancy that I do (same with installing LED bulbs in the house).

Kurt

 

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ZAP CA thin (pink bottle).
Am very satisfied with it. My bottle is now two years old and is always sealed airtight after use. The glue is still of good quality 

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Also take into consideration availability. Look for a local source. The best CA on the market, will be of little use, if you run out in the middle of a session, and have to wait while you mail order more, or until you can drive a long distance to get more. While you should keep track and order more in time, some times you forget, or the glue, for whatever reason, sets up on you between modeling sessions.

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I'm taking a break from my Confederacy and building a 1/350 USS Alaska. During my research for this project I found

Mercury Adhesives CA in the usual consistencies. I really like the Mercury products. The bottle cap design seems better than

other CAs that I used.

www.mercuryadhesives.com, take a look.

 

Harley 

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