How Super Glue’s Solvent Cements Work

December 6, 2016 by Leave a reply »
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With seemingly hundreds of options of glue and adhesives lining the shelves of every home improvement store out there, you may be questioning the necessity for so many choices. After all, glue is glue, right? In fact, many of these adhesives offer different application methods, work only on certain materials, and achieve their sticking power from a variety of chemical processes. Today we are going to focus on solvent cements.

What is an Adhesive?

An adhesive is simply any bonding substance used to adhere one surface or object to another. There are two primary forces at work when you use most types of glue, adhesive and cohesive. Adhesive forces are what hold the glue or cement to the surface you are applying it to. Cohesive forces are what hold the actual glue or cement together. Much like a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, these forces must work in tandem to provide a strong bond.


You may have heard terms like epoxies, super glues, and cements in a variety of contexts. While there can be some overlap in the interpretation, typically super glue refers to single part adhesives that are used for common bonding. Epoxies are two-part solutions, made up of a resin and a hardener, that cure when mixed.  They can either be used for bonding or a binder for fiber-reinforced composites, like building materials. Cements are single-component and generally include additional vulcanizing agents to strengthen the hardening process.

Types of Cements

Hobby & Model Cement

Model Cement is a polystyrene resin that works by attacking the plastic surface and chemically welding the parts together. It cures completely clear and dries to full strength in 24 hours. Model cement is most effective on:

  • Plastic

  • Ceramics

  • Cardboard

  • Wood

If you or someone in your family is interested in constructing model planes, cars, or trains, this is the adhesive for you. With the benefits of extremely durable adhesiveness, water resistance, and a variety of household uses, model cement is great product to have in your home.

Contact Cement

This single component contact adhesive is unique because of its flexible, acrylic contact bond. Contact Cement dries to full strength in 24 hours and cures to an amber color. For best results, apply to both surfaces you wish to adhere. This cement works best on:

  • Laminates

  • Particle Board

  • Plywood

  • Leather

  • Tile

  • Rubber

  • Metal

Since many glues are applied wet, making contact cement is highly desirable because of its dry contact, flexibility, and effectiveness on nonporous surfaces. Make sure to store in cool temperatures and are prone to evaporation if left open for long periods of time. Remember to always use in a well-ventilated workspace.

Household Cement

Household Cement is a single component adhesive that can be used on porous, nonporous surfaces, and is dishwasher safe. For nonporous materials only apply to one surface or edge. For porous materials coat each surface, allow to dry, and apply a second coating to both. Household cement is bested used on:

  • China

  • Ceramics

  • Glass

  • Metal

  • Plastic

  • Rubber

  • Wood

  • Jewelry

Dry time is typically 16 hours and finishes with a clear cure. A widely applicable adhesive used for a variety of around-the-house fixes, this product is a must have.

Super Glue Corporation and Pacer Technology are proud to bring you these versatile and high-performance products. With all cement adhesives, it is important to remember to keep them out of reach of children, avoid storage in hot temperatures, along with avoiding skin, eye, and mouth contact.


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