I thought over the next week I would blog about some of my favourite things. But don't worry, its about simple, useful (and cheap!) things around the workshop that I use everyday and wouldn't be without.
So to the first item - Superglue.
I'm sure most of us have used superglue at one time or another (and have a bad memory of sticking your fingers to the item to be repaired!). Its cheap, easily available and dries fast.
I was interested to find it comes in different thicknesses - I'd only used the regular stuff. You can get a thick gel version (which doesn't run - useful on vertical surfaces) and a low viscosity thin version, too. The thin stuff has become a workshop favourite of mine - it has hundreds of uses. The cool thing is this - due to its watery consistency it wicks into cracks and openings. So you can sit two pieces together then wick the glue in afterwards - cool! And it also draws itself into cracks, so the next time you have a piece of timber chip or split just let some glue seep its way in and then hold the chip down for a few seconds until it sets. Perfect repair!
Over in the guitar making world repair guys use superglue for many, many things. And turners also use superglue as a finish! Is there no end of uses for this wonderful stuff?
A perfect companion to superglue is accelerator - just spray one surface with it before putting the two parts together and the glue sets almost instantly. Or you can use a drop of accelerator to set a layer of glue before adding another, allowing you to build up a repair quickly.
So - some of my applications for superglue:
As a filler - just add sawdust.
For gluing metal to wood.
Repairing splits, checks and cracks.
To glue up quick jigs.
To temporarily tack pieces together (pry them apart within 10 minutes though)
To strengthen soft areas of timber.
As a thread lock.
For me the best attribute is speed - apply the glue, hold the pieces together for a few seconds - done! And its a surprisingly strong bond, too, once it cures fully.
Just remember not to glue your fingers together - maybe an emergency tube of superglue dissolver would be a good thing to add to the list.