Can This Super Glue Work for Woodshops?
By Bill Esler | Posted: 06/25/2013 11:01AM
The wood adhesive business may seem like an unlikely place for a venture capital start-up.
But Cincinnati-based Bioformix has decided to start there, launching a business in 2010, and bringing the first product to market - Nexabond 2500 Instant Wood Adhesive - late last year.
Bioformix describes Nexabond is a high viscosity, water-free adhesive for assembly of materials that require uniform stress distribution and high strength. But in layman's terms, it's a Super Glue for wood.
The intellectual property behind Nexabond stems from a high-powered team of scientists who originated at Dow, Loctite and other chemical companies - notably Bernard Malofsky, chief technology officer. His array of adhesive related patents includes microwaveable hot melt dispensers, and developments in the methylidene malonate process that makes this glue possible.
We had a chance to visit the Loveland, OH labs where development and small scale production is carried on.
A team of dozens of researchers were hard at work in development and testing. Matt Ellison, Director of Reactive Tehnology, gave us a tour, where we saw various wood species in a number of different cuts being glued together and pulled apart in controlled settings.
We also spent time with Bioformix's team of wizzes - in both finance and science - and the presentation was impressive.
But it also means wood joints don’t swell, eliminating long dry times before finishing. On the plus side, this means Nexabond 2500 can bond even oily woods. And to a large extent, it either reduces or eliminates the need for clamping.
But in practice, this means you may be cutting joints and setting dowels differently. Over centuries the projection of how a dovetail might swell then contract as the glue cures is part of the art of the woodworking process.
With Nexabond, as we saw in the lab, you glue just one side of a joint, not both - then push the pieces together. If the workpiece isn't too large, you can hold it steady for a minute while it presets. And within 3 minutes it's at nearly full strength.This means its open time is much shorter than carpenters glue.
So using Nexabond means cutting tighter joints. And it means planning that the glue will set much faster than you are used to. Is this practical? In many cases, yes.
About the Author
Bill EslerBill Esler, Editorial Director, Woodworking Network Bill is responsible for overall content at WoodworkingNetwork.com Woodworking Network magazine, and related newsletters. Bill also manages event programs for Woodworking Network Live conferences at the Woodworking Machinery & Supplies Expo in Toronto and Cabinets & Closets Expo. He developing audience engagement programs using custom digital printing, live lead-generating events, custom websites, and custom digital and print content. Read Bill Esler's woodworking blogs. He can be reached at email@example.com or follow him on Google+.