What is Cyanoacrylate and how can it be used to

by:Xintao Technology     2020-08-08

Something that's better known as Super glue to most belongs to the family of adhesives known as Cyanoacrylate. It comes in many forms with varying degrees of viscosities, curing rates and bloom effect. The bloom effect here refers to the gases it releases in the process of curing, which cause formation of white haze in the area under curing. Its two most popular versions are in the form of gel or liquid and easily available at most hardware stores.

That background about superglue was provided as this article tells you how to use it for repairing scratches or minor damages in different types of stones like granite and soapstone etc. If the surface containing the chip or scratch is on a plane flat surface, it can be better treated using Super Gel in liquid form, but if the scratch is on a vertical surface it should be treated with thicker form of gel so that it doesn't flow down easily and just escapes the crack or chip.

So, now you know that one criteria for deciding the kind of gel to be used is the positioning of the area needing repairs.

At the outset you need to clean the area using Acetone. And don't forget to take necessary precautions of using eyewear, gloves and appropriate dress. Before taking the next step it's important to ensure that all the acetone has evaporated.

Next, you start filling the scratch with the chosen adhesive. And, don't try to fill it in just one stroke. You need to apply one layer after the other while giving time for one layer to get cured before applying the next. See that the entire gap, from its top to bottom is filled and let it overflow a bit from the top.

So, you get a slightly overfilled hole and you like to get rid of the excess of glue. Naturally, the first thing that comes to mind is to use a blade and shave off the extra glue on the stone. That's fine but the angle for holding the blade plays a critical role here. As a matter of fact you can't cut the excessive adhesive, you have to scrape it off by holding blade at a right angle to the surface. Keeping the blade at right angle to the surface, slowly approach the filled portion from all the angles. Ultimately, you have to get a smooth surface with hardened glue very much in tact within the cavity. In the process if some of the hardened glue comes out of the cavity, you have to fill that part once again, follow the same procedure and get an even surface at the end.

Clear super glue generally works very well with colored stones by taking color of the stone surrounding it and blending well with that. But, here again there are a few limitations and exceptions. For instance, darker stones better accept pigmented epoxy, while deep scratches or larger chips give better results with pigmented epoxy rather than Cyanoacrylates.

At times it may be better to polish some of the scratches rather than filling them up. It all depends on the characteristics of the stone and the depth of the scratch, as also the finish of the stone.

But, don't consider it as the only or the best option available for filling of all cracks, though it remains to be the most accepted and helpful for most but not all of them. There could be an element of risk involved in trying any of the suggestions here and it would be best to have the opinion of an expert stone fabricator whenever in doubt.

What Cyanoacrylate Actually Is?

Cyanoacrylate Adhesive or Cyanoacrylate Glue, is more popularly known as Super Glue.

This adhesive comprises of a simple polar linear molecule that polymerizes swiftly on getting exposed to moisture, and that's why it's better known as Super Glue.

Many people find this glue to be the easiest to handle for carrying different bonding jobs. As a matter of fact ethyl cyanoacrylate formulations are often used for a variety of general-purpose bonding including paper, plastics and wood.

The benefits of super glue are that it cures very quickly, is extremely strong requiring no catalyst. Unlike most epoxy adhesives there is no need for an oven or even clamps for curing it.

Cyanoacrylate behaves like a pressure sensitive adhesive, making it necessary to have a good fitting joint for long lasting bonds. You require a thickening agent when the parts to be joined do not mate.

>> How Does Cyanoacrylate Adhesive Cure?

For making the glue work, you need moisture that is naturally present in the parts to be attached. Moisture works like a catalyst.

Generally, setting takes place in 5 to 25 seconds, though at times it may take up to 1 minute. Smooth surfaces with a close contact are great for a quick and strong bond.

>> What Types of Cyanoacrylate Glue Are Available?

Ethyl formulations are the most popular formulations of cyanoacrylate. You get these with three viscosities: thin, medium, and thick.

>> Advantages of Cyanoacrylate Adhesive

Cyanoacrylate glues do not need any catalyst. They contain no solvent and quickly set in at room temperature. They provide good bonding with many different materials and come in different viscosities.

Cyanoacrylate Adhesive - Using It Properly>

Cyanoacrylate glue, more popularly known as super glue, or 'CA' glue, is the most often used adhesive in a wood turners studios. It helps to have super glue as an adhesive among other adhesives for any woodturning workshop. It's quite a multipurpose adhesive to have. Here are some tips for using and storing cyanoacrylate glue, enabling you to get most out of it.

Using Accelerators

If have been handling cyanoacrylate adhesives earlier, you would have probably noticed that a white haze, or frosting appears on the cured surface. This trend is known as blooming, or frosting. High levels of humidity or inappropriate use of accelerators can cause as a result of violent curing reactions. If you're looking to repair or bond any disimilar materials instantly without waiting for the adhesive to dry, I'd recommend checking out Instantbond. They are the strongest and fastest curing adhesive in the market. For more details please visit: www.instantbond.com

Storing Cyanoacrylate Glues

The shelf life of cyanoacrylate glues is generally limited to 6 - 12 months after the container has been opened. Bottles that have not been opened can be stored in freezer to extend the life of this glue. But if the bottle is opened once and exposed to atmospheric moisture, it needs different storage measures to prevent premature curing of the contents of the bottle. Unopened Containers: Sealed bottles should be stored in freezer to get longest shelf life. It's important the bottle comes down to room temperature before being used; leaving them out from the freezers for about 24 hors does the trick.

Opened Containers: opened bottles should be stored with their caps on unless these are being used in an area that has very low levels of humidity all around the year. Prolonged exposure to humidity could lead to premature curing of the cyanoacrylate adhesive in the bottle.

Those buying big containers of cyanoacrylates for subsequent transfer to smaller containers should ensure to use only polyethylene bottles for storage.

Open containers of cyanoacrylate adhesive should be kept away from bottles of manual pump accelerator. During summers, high temperature can cause vapors of accelerator to escape the pump spray unit, and cause premature curing of uncapped bottles kept close by.

Open bottles should not be stored in the freezer, because on being removed from there, condensation could develop inside the bottle resulting to premature curing of the adhesive.

To get the best results of long storage, the opened bottles should be stored in a jar with a tight fitting lid and a desiccant pack that goes to absorb any moisture present therein. If stored in such a manner you can almost use the last drop of adhesive without wasting any material.

Preventing Tip Clogging

Characteristically, cyanoacrylate adhesives have a tendency to clog the tips of their applicator bottles on being stored inappropriately. The clogging at tips can be avoided by wiping out any residual cyanoacrylate on the outside of the applicator tip and allowing the residual adhesive to go back to the bottle before reaffixing the cap. Make sure that the tip of the bottle doesn't come into contact with any surface sprayed with active accelerator; else the accelerator will cure the cyanoacrylate inside the nozzle. It's a good idea to buy a few spare tips, available at most woodturning suppliers, thus you will always have some clean tips handy for use whenever needed.

Using Cyanoacrylate Glue To Fill Deep Voids

If you often employ inlay crushed stone and such materials in your woodturnings, these can be secured using either cyanoacrylates or epoxy, depending on the type of fill used. When using cyanoacrylates with deep voids, or as a binder for inlay work with crushed stone, sufficient time must be allowed for a full thickness cure before sanding the filled area. The time varies and needs up to 24 - 36 hours or even longer, depending on the depth of the filled area.

Though one may use an accelerator to speed up curing, nothing is better than time. The best way is to allow the adhesive to cure without using any accelerator on deep voids, because over use of the accelerator often results to blooming and frosting. In extreme cases, bubbles get formed under the cured skin, tarnishing the look of the inlay.

As far as possible, avoid using accelerator, allowing the piece to cure naturally before sanding the area. Natural curing makes sanding easier and the deep filled areas look much better as a result. Nothing works better than time. If you hasten the process of curing on a deep fill, the turning may get damaged and need a wide-ranging repair.

Moreover, sanding before the filled area has been completely cured can prove hazardous, as the inner layers of the void may still be in fluid state, though the top may get hardened. If you sand too soon, there is a risk of exposing the lower layers of liquid spurting out and causing injury in the process.

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