Author Topic: MEK Substitute : Good replacement for MEK gluing?  (Read 3054 times)

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Ian MacMillan

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MEK Substitute : Good replacement for MEK gluing?
« on: February 27, 2014, 10:53:46 AM »
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Straight MEK is getting hard for me to find retail and all I can find is MEK Substitute. For those of you who have used MEK in replacement of Tenax, have you used MEK Substitute with acceptable results?
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Philip H

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Re: MEK Substitute : Good replacement for MEK gluing?
« Reply #1 on: February 27, 2014, 10:58:01 AM »
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https://www.therailwire.net/forum/index.php?topic=28790.0 Seems to sum up the state of play . . .  :trollface:

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6axlepwr

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Re: MEK Substitute : Good replacement for MEK gluing?
« Reply #2 on: February 27, 2014, 11:04:33 AM »
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Have you tried Tamiya Extra Thin Cement?

It is an excellent solvent cement and has the best fine brush attached to the cap. Really fine point. It flows great and is not super hot to instantly melt 0.005" styrene. You can lay it thinly under 0.005" sheet and it does not wrinkle it.
Brian

wazzou

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Re: MEK Substitute : Good replacement for MEK gluing?
« Reply #3 on: February 27, 2014, 11:28:47 AM »
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Have you tried Tamiya Extra Thin Cement?


This is what I use also, for fine and delicate work.  If I have to slather it on, I still use MEK and Testors liquid.
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Ian MacMillan

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Re: MEK Substitute : Good replacement for MEK gluing?
« Reply #4 on: February 27, 2014, 11:41:26 AM »
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I know of others out there but I use MEK because of cost and hobby glues are even harder to find locally.
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C855B

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Re: MEK Substitute : Good replacement for MEK gluing?
« Reply #5 on: February 27, 2014, 11:50:32 AM »
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If it were me I'd pick-up a quart can and see if it works.

OTOH, I have a workshop full of all manner of barely-used adhesives, paints and solvents tested for projects and they didn't do the job to my satisfaction. They eventually get thrown out when they have dried-out or evaporated. Memo to self - move the flammable solvents to the outbuilding. :|
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DKS

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Re: MEK Substitute : Good replacement for MEK gluing?
« Reply #6 on: February 27, 2014, 12:08:36 PM »
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If it were me I'd pick-up a quart can and see if it works.

As I'd noted in that other thread, I didn't even get a chance to test the MEK substitute, as it induced a horrible headache--I could not possibly wok with it. Oddly, I was just in Lowes the other day and saw genuine MEK on the shelf, where the substitute was sitting a few months prior. No idea what's going on.

Another possible MEK substitute is methylene chloride. Works just as well as MEK on styrene, with the added bonus that it works on acrylic plastic (Plexiglas) and does a decent job on ABS (Plastruct). You can get methylene chloride through chemical supply houses--I found one that deals on eBay.

C855B

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Re: MEK Substitute : Good replacement for MEK gluing?
« Reply #7 on: February 27, 2014, 12:52:07 PM »
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As I'd noted in that other thread, I didn't even get a chance to test the MEK substitute, as it induced a horrible headache--I could not possibly wok with it. ...

I have a 3' drum fan that will take care of any fumes issues. Clears off the workbench pretty well, too. :trollface:
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Re: MEK Substitute : Good replacement for MEK gluing?
« Reply #8 on: February 27, 2014, 03:26:01 PM »
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Going by my sniff test, both Ambroid PROWELD and Tenex are methylene chloride.  Many industrial acrylic adhesives (like IPS WELD-ON #3) are also based on methylene chloride.  Those industrial adhesives can often be purchases in larger containers in your local friendly hardware stores (like Ace ot TrueValue).  They might have to special order it for you.

Plastruct also has several adhesives which work quite well for their intended purpose.

I use many different adhesives in my modeling. I use both, MEK-based and methylene chloride-based solvent cements.   Methylene chloride evaporates very fast (often too fast).  MEK evaporates much slower, so larger gluing areas can be coated. It also allows for some repositioning of the glued parts after assembling them.

I still have a quart of MEK. If I can't buy it anymore, or if the Testors MEK-based liquid cement is discontinued, I will miss it dearly.
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Ike the BN Freak

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Re: MEK Substitute : Good replacement for MEK gluing?
« Reply #9 on: February 27, 2014, 04:29:36 PM »
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Oddly, I was just in Lowes the other day and saw genuine MEK on the shelf, where the substitute was sitting a few months prior. No idea what's going on.

The local Lowes here also has real MEK, but only in gallon cans, really don't need a full gallon.  The Home Depot sells the MEK Sub in quarts.

As for the topic of this thread, I too was wondering if MEK Sub would work as well as MEK.

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Re: MEK Substitute : Good replacement for MEK gluing?
« Reply #10 on: February 27, 2014, 04:36:04 PM »
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I use both, MEK-based and methylene chloride-based solvent cements.

Yep, I use both as well. MEK about 90% of the time for general styrene work, and DCM when I have ├╝ber-tiny plastic parts to assemble, or if I'm bonding acrylic.

I think MEK will always be available, one way or another; you just might have to special-order it from a chemical supplier at some point. I've never seen DCM available "over the counter" anyplace but the now (sadly) defunct Commercial Plastics, when it was sold under the name Comstick.
« Last Edit: February 27, 2014, 04:37:55 PM by David K. Smith »

chesapeake490

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Re: MEK Substitute : Good replacement for MEK gluing?
« Reply #11 on: February 27, 2014, 05:42:41 PM »
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Tenax is still available. I just received several bottles from an online retailer'
p.s. this is my first post here but a long time lurker
mike

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Re: MEK Substitute : Good replacement for MEK gluing?
« Reply #12 on: February 27, 2014, 06:06:09 PM »
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Welcome, Mike. I used to buy products like Tenax, but found it far more economical to just buy a can of MEK. It's a fraction of the cost and works just as well.

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Re: MEK Substitute : Good replacement for MEK gluing?
« Reply #13 on: February 27, 2014, 06:40:50 PM »
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I found Tenax evaporated right through the bottle.  I quit buying it because it seemed like it was always gone when I needed it and I only used it for certain types of joints.
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Chris333

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Re: MEK Substitute : Good replacement for MEK gluing?
« Reply #14 on: February 27, 2014, 06:41:38 PM »
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I saw here that MEK was being phased out and my local store no longer had it so I bought a bunch of Testors brush on glue bottles thinking someday I won't be able to find those as well. If I ever see MEK I'll snatch it up.