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Robby W

CA Glue Storage

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I really like to have CA glue around the shop, but in our warm climate (San Diego, CA), it doesn't last very long. Anybody have ideas for extending the life of the glue or should I just expect to toss it after 3 months?

Thanks for your help.

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I'm a couple hours north of you.  Knowing that moisture triggers CA to cure I put my various CA glues in a "Food Saver" vacuum seal container and store them on a shelf in my home office.  I used to toss partially used containers of CA out frequently including the premium stuff.  Really ticked me off. 

Since I started vac-sealing them I run the containers near to empty.  I should have kept track and figured out how much money I'm saving.  Not a fortune but, certainly not insignificant.  I open the container and take out the glue I need.  When I'm done for the day I re-seal the container.  Easy-peasy.

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I keep it in the fridge & it will last at least a year. Keep the lid tightly closed too.

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Thanks for the tips !

I have been using a new (to retail packaging)  cyanoacrylate type adhesive called "RapidFuse".          https://rapidfusewood.dap.com/

It gives you 3 to 5 minutes of open time to align parts and get clamps or fasteners in place. Fully cured in 30 minutes. It's slightly thickened and real easy to use. The Lowes near me carries it $10 for a 4 ounce bottle. Nice cap and tip .

I made a miter joint w 2 dominos and realized I had made the parts mirror imaged from what I needed at the 10 minute point. I pulled the clamps and started trying to knock the joint apart, no luck.  So I clamped it to the bench and proceeded to beat the hell out of it. By the time I got it apart one side was dented and destroyed (It had to be remade anyways)    

Its been handy to use on sub assemblies that need to be aligned and glued before assembling the rest of the piece. A big commercial shop that makes raised panel doors for me sometimes has been using it to glue up panels and on the corners of cope & stick and mitered doors for many years. Dap bought the brand to add to their line of adhesives.  

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2 hours ago, davewyo said:

Put it in the refrigerator. Here's a link about extending the life of CA glue.

That's what I do. A pin is required to clean the opening sometimes anyways.

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I too put mine in the beer box in the shop. I just use a straight pin (one of those with the plastic ball on the end) to seal it.

I also lay it on it's side to keep the air from getting in and letting the glue sit up inside the bottle.

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I have tried the refrigerator trick, but someone usually takes my bottle of special CA glue and uses it to fix their nails and tosses the rest. Grr. I like the vacuum bag trick. I'll have to try it.

Anybody have any other ideas?

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Adam Savage (Tested, Mythbusters) went on a whole rant about CA glue storage.  His primary career has been a prop maker, and as such, uses a lot of CA.  His whole point is that CA tends to cure in the bottle so fast that it's not worth him buying in large bottles.  He'd rather keep a bunch of 1oz bottles around, using them one at a time.    

So while you may spend a bit more buying 4 1 oz bottle, rather than 1 4oz bottle, but if the last 25% of the bottle goes bad, you only lost a quarter oz, not a whole oz, and there you save money. 

Aside from everything that's mentioned, If you have any that spray nitrogen or argon that you use to preserve finishes and such, try storing the CA in a large jar or something, and spraying that into the jar.   If you're careful opening the jar, the gas shouldn't spill out to bad and you can just spritz it to top it off. 

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I store my CA bottles vertically in an airtight plastic container in the shop but that's only so I know where the bottles are. The thing I noticed with CA (I only use 1 oz bottles) is that the nozzle always blocks first. So I make sure that I clean the nozzle everytime before I replace the cap. I use a drop of two of CA glue remover for that. It prevents the cap from binding as well as keeping the nozzle clear. When I open a fresh bottle I also write on the date of first use.

Now I rarely find the CA goes off too quickly in the bottle (with the exception of a bottle that is nearly used having too much air inside and that I will toss anyway).

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I have a 28G (1oz) bottle of CA glue sitting in my desk drawer that is at least 2 or 3 years old & still good. There is a pin in that goes into the nozzle when it's closed & the cap is threaded & seals very well. It's made by MG Chemicals. Other brands I've bought that have less robust sealing don't last.

I think the seal is key to longevity.

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