A while back my saw chain sharpener rolled the wrong way as it lay on the workbench and the plastic handle broke off. I should have been more careful, but mistakes do happen. Apparently, the handle was just barely strong enough, with a bolt inside that tightened into the white metal casting of the main body of the machine. This is not an easy part to replace. How on earth can I fix that? With only the slightest thickness of white metal to glue to, there’s not much surface area. Epoxy? No, that’s probably not going to work. Then I remembered the cyanoacrylate instant glue I got a while back. That’s the sharpener you can see below, with the plastic handle repaired and working again.
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A Truly Super, Super-Glue
The glue I have is from a company called Starbond. I’d never heard of them before until about five or six years ago. Their self-announced claim to fame is that they sell the freshest cyanoacrylate instant adhesives in the world. Now, freshness is important because cyanoacrylate does have a fairly short shelf life. I mean it can last for years, but it’s not going to last forever on the shelf.
So I gave this product a whirl on my broken sharpener, but not just the glue on its own. I needed an adhesive that was fairly instant. And while this stuff is called an instant adhesive, you’d think it would be more instant than it is. But left on its own, no cyanoacrylate is entirely instant. No instant glues are. It can take 5 or 10 minutes for thick cyanoacryate to harden. And that’s a long time when you’re holding a part that’s impossible to clamp yet needs to be aligned just so and kept from moving. That’s why I used some of the Starbond accelerator. It’s a spray and it causes cyanoacrylate glues to truly harden more or less instantly. It’s got acetone in it. You can smell it. There’s other things in it, too, I’m sure, but it evaporates away, so it doesn’t really affect things. I used this medium viscosity Starbond on one side of the repair, then I sprayed some of the accelerator onto the other side. In a couple of seconds the joint was strong. Didn’t seem quite as strong as I wanted, though, so I added more glue followed by more accelerator, several times around the repair area. The result is an excellent fix that has stood up to regular use just fine. I’ve used cyanoacrylate instant glues ever since I was a teenager, so I’m well familiar with them. But what I’m really impressed with here is the different viscosities and colours in the Starbond line and how well they work. This is the best kind of glue of its kind.
I don’t know about you, but when I manage to fix things really well, I’m often glad the trouble happened in the first place. It just feels so good to make something right again, doesn’t it? And in this case the whole repair took less than 10 minutes. Click below to watch the Starbond cyanoacrylate glue in action on a tricky challenge with one of my old tractors, a challenge that would have been difficult to tackle in other ways. Once again, the repair has lasted for years.
Do you have an exterior glue job to tackle? Click here for a detailed lesson on the different glues that are ideal for outdoors.
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