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Sticky situation

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Unless you buy larger quantities or from a supplier, it’s nearly impossible to get decent epoxy glue. When, and why, did this happen?

I don’t use a lot of epoxy in the shop, but sometimes it’s indispensible. In those cases I’d just run to the local Big Box store – or even a local drug store – and get a package that contained two small tubes, one of resin the other of hardener. I’d mix up what I need, recap each of the tubes, and put whatever was left away.

Now, though, epoxy only seems to come in these double-tube syringe things with a double plunger that’s supposed to squirt out equal amounts of each for mixing. Some of these even have some kind of funky nozzle with internal spiral channels that are supposed to mix the two liquids automatically for your convenience. Unfortunately, these things are the worst way to deliver, apply and store epoxy.

Invariably, when pushing the double-plunger one side squirts out more than the other and you get a bad mix. Then, when you have as much as you want and let go of the plunger, residual pressure keeps it squirting it out. Those mixing nozzles rarely work, either. And they leak at the base since you have to push those plungers so hard to get the thick liquid out. Finally, once you’ve managed to mix up a batch of epoxy, there is simply no way the tiny cap they give you will successfully cover both openings of the syringe. The next time you go for it, all you’ll find is a glob of primordial goo that’s oozed out of it (and all over wherever you had the misfortune to store it).

These things are sold and marketed as some kind of no-mess, easy-to-use consumer convenience thing, but they aren’t any of those things. Unfortunately, it’s the only way you’ll find epoxy anymore in small quantities, unless you send away to a woodworking supplier, which is just what I ended up doing this week. The package I got had two small squirt bottles (similar to restaurant ketchup bottles) with excellent caps, and I couldn’t be more pleased.

Ordering it wasn’t particularly convenient, but once I got the epoxy it was certainly easy to use, and it stored quickly without mess and without waste. And that’s good enough for me.



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