on single-use CA glue tubes
vs. 2 oz. glue bottles
got quite a response. I had people agreeing with me that the single-use tubes are the way to go and those who shared my frustration with nozzle-type bottles. And I had people saying “Huh? What’s the big deal with glue bottles? They work just fine for me.” Here’s a letter of the latter type:
Jared K writes:
I was quite surprised to hear about your woes with super glue, as well as your assertion about its shelf life. I am not one to tell another man he’s wrong, but your experience is definitely different than mine. We use the Bob Smith 2 oz bottles of “Instacure” glue at my office, and generally a single bottle will last between 3 and 4 years. In that time, we might go through 1 or 2 extra tips (replacements here). In addition, we use these tips for precise application of the glue, and generally find those to last 4-5 months each. If they do clog, it’s almost always at the very tip, so we just cut the tip just below the clog and continue using it until the “bore” becomes too large for our use. To delay the clogging of those tiny tips, simply place the bottle upright so that the vast majority of the liquid drains out of the tip, put a small piece of tissue over the end, and pump the bottle briskly to force air (and any small volume of glue) out of the nozzle. DO NOT do this without the tissue over the tip, as it can send high-velocity superglue into places you don’t want it (eyes are especially bad). The best part is that with these thin tips installed, we never have to put the cap back on. It just sits on there until the next time we need to use it (maybe 3-4 times a week), ready to apply in a precise manner. That way we avoid the mess of putting on/taking off a cap. To be honest, I had never heard that CA glue goes bad. It simply hasn’t been our experience at all. Anyway, I just thought it might be interesting to bring up, as it’s so different. Maybe our use of the thin applicator tips is what makes the difference?
Again, I have no idea why I struggle so much with this (others too), while some folks deal with these glues just fine.
I also got a lot of messages questioning my assertion that opened CA glue has a short shelf life. Different manufactures and sites claim different times, from a month or two to a year, but yes, CA glue does have a shelf life. (Look it up to learn more.) I think the confusion is that glue beyond those dates still works, it just begins to lose its rated bonding strength after that point. This is the sort of thing I’d love to see one of my readers actually test out (gravity, torque, and impact tests) on old vs. brand new glue. I’ll give you copies of both volumes of my tips books
as a thanks. If nobody is game, I might propose such a test to Todd at Project Farm
BTW: You can extend the life of your opened CA glue by storing it in an air-tight container in a cool, dry place with some desiccant packs thrown in for good measure.