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How To Epoxy


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#1 Gengar003

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Posted 22 June 2007 - 08:29 PM

So, you've got some stuff that needs gluing. Maybe a coupler to the end of a plunger, a Longshot bolt to its barrel, or something similar.

So you epoxy it, but lo and behold, the stress of your gun firing breaks the joint. Your epoxy is not too weak, but your kung-fu gluing methods may be. Here's how to epoxy things correctly.

Case 1: Longshot bolt to barrel. This longshot has an AR-15 spring added to the stock spring, and shoots 90+ feet. The bolt is epoxied to the brass barrel, and has held for over two months with no loosening.

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Case 2: Crossbow coupler. This crossbow has a Defender T3 Arrow-shooter spring in its plunger, and is shown with its bungees. There is a coupler identical to the one on the end epoxied directly to the plunger tube, with a short length of CPVC extending to the visible coupler. At least 3 months now, and no loosening or coming off.

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Case 3: Big bad bow coupler. This coupler, when glued incorrectly, WAS, in fact, shot off by the force of the gun. It was an "experiment" of sorts; now, glued correctly, it is rock-solid. (Looks ugly because red FBR got on it while it was still sticky)

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Case 4, no picture: Nitefinder barrels. Same problem as BBB - they get shot off if glued incorrectly or weakly. The ones I've glued correctly have no such troubles.

Let's take a nitefinder air restrictor as our example (because it's what I had on hand).

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You've cut out the middle, and are ready to attach a barrel of some sort, be it brass, PVC, CPVC, PETG, crayola, or a coupler. If you were to put some epoxy on there, and stick the barrel in place, you would be WRONG.

Epoxy is strong, but it has to have something to hold onto. Smooth plastic and a smooth barrel give it nothing to hold onto, so the epoxy is going to loose its grip on one or both pieces when put under stress. You need to give it something to hold onto. So grab some sandpaper, and sand every surface that will have glue on it (including whatever barrel or coupler you'll be using), until it looks more like this:

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In some cases, this may not be enough. Case #3 (BBB) was one of those cases. I needed MORE, LARGER grooves and cuts for the epoxy to sink into and hold onto. So I took a dremel and cut little grooves into the area that was going to have epoxy on it. In the BBB's, case, this was 8 grooves around the outside of the front orange piece at different angles, and 8 grooves around the raised inner ring.

Here, for the Nitefinder air restrictor, I've just cut four on the raised inner ring. It is hard to see, but they are at approximately the 1, 4, 7, and 10 o'clock positions around the ring.

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Sandpaper must be applied to ALL surfaces the glue will touch, if possible. The cutting of grooves should only be done in areas where it will not seriously change the overall "geography" of the surface - I cut several small grooves in the large, flat, orange area of the BBB's front orange piece, such that the coupler could still sit on there and be aligned straight. Small grooves, not large gouges.

Now, when your epoxy hardens, it will have lots of little footholds on both surfaces that were glued, and will be much less likely to detach under pressure.

Also, the more surface area that is covered in epoxy, the stronger your bonds will be. Take a look at Case #3 (BBB). There is epoxy not just where the coupler meets the gun, but along the outside of the coupler, spilling over the entire surface of the orange piece - more area for the epoxy to hold onto.

In case #1, the bottom of the bolt and the top of the brass barrel were sanded.

In case #2, the front of the crossbow plunger tube and the base and sides of the coupler were sanded. Grooves were cut into the front of the crossbow plunger tube.

In case #3, the sides of the coupler, base of the coupler, and entire orange surface were sanded, and 16 total grooves cut into the orange piece.

For my nitefinders, I sand the back and sides of the barrel/coupler, the entire front surface of the air restrictor piece, and cut 8 grooves (4 on inner ring, 4 on flat side of AR).

NO gun that I've glued this way has EVER had a problem with epoxy weakening. The plastic holding one of my nitefinders' plunger tubes in place weakened and broke before the barrel came off.

Hope this helps.

Edit: I use Loctite 1-minute epoxy for most of my gluing needs.

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That image will probably break sometime in the future.

Edited by Gengar003, 22 June 2007 - 10:31 PM.

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#2 Jtcm

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Posted 22 June 2007 - 08:59 PM

I think this will help me alot ( ihad the BBB problem) I dont know why i didnt think of roughing the surface but hey you learn something new everyday. Anyway thanks!
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#3 PvtMcFlurry

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Posted 22 June 2007 - 09:24 PM

Not to derail this topic at all (Which is totally kick ass by the way) do you have to brace the Longshot up against your chest with the combination of the Longshot and AR-15 spring? Also do you have any more of the AR-15 I am in desperate need of one.

~McFlurry
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Crossbow Mod.

#4 six-five-two

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Posted 22 June 2007 - 09:26 PM

Wow... this is a very good tutorial and I think it should be stickied.

Can you specify which epoxy to use? I tried using the one with 2 separate syringes, one is clear and the other one is yellow and so far it has been a waste of my time. I tried using this Lepage Plastic Adhesive stuff and I think it works. Has anyone compared this to epoxy?
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#5 keef

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Posted 22 June 2007 - 09:31 PM

Ahhh! Thanks, this is great!!!
I have had the NF problem.
I read on the package roughing up helps but I said fuck it....
Thanks man! Now make an addition for goop or hotglue or more and get it stickied!!!!
Byah!!!!

-keef
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#6 b00m13

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Posted 22 June 2007 - 09:38 PM

Darn it, I wish you wrote this up 3 nights ago when I was working on the Long Shot Dual Shot integration.
Um, how long does that toxicky smell last?
And what with that warning on the back where it says that the state of California claims epoxy has cancerous toxins? Should I be worried that I haven't put down the LS since I've completed it a few days ago? (I've used an entire tube of that stuff on the front last shot barrel)
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#7 Gengar003

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Posted 22 June 2007 - 10:29 PM

Can you specify which epoxy to use? I tried using the one with 2 separate syringes, one is clear and the other one is yellow and so far it has been a waste of my time. I tried using this Lepage Plastic Adhesive stuff and I think it works. Has anyone compared this to epoxy?

Generally, any epoxy you find will be strong enough for Nerf modification, and it will all come in a syringe-like thing with one clear and one yellow. Some will be slightly different colors.

My absolute most favorite friend ever is Loctite 1-minute epoxy.

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Lowe's sells it. I haven't been able to find it online. This particular size comes with two long tubes that attach to the end, and can be used to apply the epoxy in a thin stream for smaller projects. I love these things... but they're not in the picture because I used them :(
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#8 Guest_DarkInfection_*

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Posted 22 June 2007 - 11:51 PM

I wish that they still sold epoxy in two separate tubes, because I hate those stupid "self mixing" dual syringes. They just suck.
Great article by the way.
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#9 Shadow 92

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Posted 22 June 2007 - 11:58 PM

Um, how long does that toxicky smell last?
And what with that warning on the back where it says that the state of California claims epoxy has cancerous toxins?

It shouldn't last long if you worked in a ventilated area. (That "toxicky" smell means that you're breathing in small amounts of toxins.) If it says " This substance has been known to cause cancer in California," or something like that, just move to another state. :(

Nice tutorial, I'll have to try the groove thing when I get around to re-modding my other 3B.

Edited by Shadow 92, 22 June 2007 - 11:59 PM.

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#10 Rover

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Posted 22 June 2007 - 11:58 PM

That's a fantastic guide! This will definitely help a ton of people (It would make for a great sticky). Anyways, perfect timing for me, I was experiencing the same problem with superglue on my nightfinder tonight. I think that tomorrow I will have to whip out the two-part and sandpaper! I personally thank you for helping me. :(
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#11 watkins

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Posted 23 June 2007 - 12:01 AM

And what with that warning on the back where it says that the state of California claims epoxy has cancerous toxins? Should I be worried that I haven't put down the LS since I've completed it a few days ago? (I've used an entire tube of that stuff on the front last shot barrel)

In California, everything causes cancer.

I wish that they still sold epoxy in two separate tubes, because I hate those stupid "self mixing" dual syringes. They just suck.
Great article by the way.

They still do. I have never bought any, but in my high school art studio we always had connected mix it yourself epoxy as well as separate tubes of adhesive and hardener. I would assume most hardware stores sell separate tubes.
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#12 Guest_DarkInfection_*

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Posted 23 June 2007 - 12:06 AM

I know that they still do, but all of them at my local Ace Hardware are in those dumbass syringes.
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#13 Rover

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Posted 23 June 2007 - 12:33 AM

I know that the epoxy I swear by is two-part stuff that comes in separate bottles. One is the epoxy. and one is the hardener. Sorry to say, I have not a clue where you can purchase it. I personaly found it under a bunch of wrenches in my garage. And I totally agree: it beats the syringe kind any day!

Edited by Rover, 23 June 2007 - 12:35 AM.

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#14 six-five-two

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Posted 23 June 2007 - 12:59 AM

And what with that warning on the back where it says that the state of California claims epoxy has cancerous toxins? Should I be worried that I haven't put down the LS since I've completed it a few days ago? (I've used an entire tube of that stuff on the front last shot barrel)

In California, everything causes cancer.

I wish that they still sold epoxy in two separate tubes, because I hate those stupid "self mixing" dual syringes. They just suck.
Great article by the way.

They still do. I have never bought any, but in my high school art studio we always had connected mix it yourself epoxy as well as separate tubes of adhesive and hardener. I would assume most hardware stores sell separate tubes.

Off Topic:
Yeah one time when I was vacationing in California, my hotel pool had a "Pool May Cause Cancer" sign...

On topic:
I think I saw the separate tube ones at Canadian Tire.
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#15 NerfMonkey

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Posted 23 June 2007 - 08:05 AM

Is it one minute until the epoxy hardens or one minute until it's completely strong?

I used to use JB Weld. It came in two tubes, a red one and a black one, and the substances in them were gray and black, respectively.
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SexD Warves

#16 Gengar003

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Posted 23 June 2007 - 08:18 AM

The "1-minute" refers to the time until it sets, which is really 45-60 seconds. It claims "useable strength" in 8 minutes; I give it 30 before attempting to move/manipulate it, and I let it sit 24 hours before putting it under the full stress of whatever gun it's going into.
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#17 stewy

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Posted 23 June 2007 - 09:13 AM

O..... :wacko:
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#18 Falcon

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Posted 23 June 2007 - 10:32 AM

In California, everything causes cancer.

Especially East Coast Nerfers...

Anyway, great topic. I've always roughed stuff up (ever since I lost a coupler off my crossbow in its first stage of modification, and realized that the plastic was too slick for the epoxy to grip) but this REALLY could prove to be useful for a lot of people.

Edited by Falcon, 23 June 2007 - 10:32 AM.

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#19 Flapper12

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Posted 23 June 2007 - 12:32 PM

Looks like I'll be making a trip to lowes next week. Great topic, I just used hotglue and duct tape for my bbb coupler...
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