More About Adhesives (Glue)

     When repairing a broken figurine or action figure, you will often find yourself turning to adhesives (glue) as a solution. This is all well and good. Glue is easy to use, fairly inexpensive and, if used correctly, very effective...
  
... BUT...

     Not all adhesives are appropriate for all situations.
     Here are a few tips about how to choose and apply the right glue for your project.
There are many different types of adhesives.
  1. Know Your Break!
     This may seem obvious, but knowing some key aspects of the break which you are trying to repair is necessary if you are to choose the right adhesive for the job.
     Some key things you should know are:
Is the fracture close-fitting? Many adhesives (such as Supa Glue) only work on fractures which have clean, close-fitting surfaces. If you can push the two halves of the broken piece together and they fit snuggly with no gaps, then your break is close-fitting. If not, this needs to be taken into account when choosing an adhesive.
What material are you trying to fix? If you're reading this page, then you're probably trying to fix a plastic figure. Most of our Japanese figures are made from PVC and ABS plastics, which are (luckily) fairly glue friendly, but this is not always the case. To tell what plastic your broken figure is made from, simply look at the box it came in – there will normally be abbreviations for the types of plastic used somewhere on the back or bottom of the package. Some common abbreviations are PVC, ABS, POM, PET, PP, PE.
Abbreviations showing different types of plastics on various figure boxes.
EDIT: An anonymous poster very kindly wrote in with the following translations:
製品素材 (Product Materials)
フィギュア / フィギュア本体 (Figure / Figure body)
べース / 台座 (Base / pedestal) 

       A little more about plastics...
       Many figures will have a bunch of different plastics listed on the box. Some of them will be used for joints, others for the stand and some even for the blister pack!
     PVC, ABS and POM are the most common plastics you will encounter. If the type of plastic your figure is made from is not listed on the box, it is probably safe to assume it will be a combination of these. PVC, ABS and POM are structurally sound and opaque. They are usually used for joints and major parts, so if you see them listed on your box, chances are the thing you just broke is made from one of them. Some adhesives will stick to them.
     PET (polyester) is usually used for making blister packs... PET is glue-friendly.
     PP (polypropylene) and PE (polyethylene) plastics may be used for a variety of packaging and figure parts. If you've broken one of these plastics, then you will require a special plastics glue to repair it since PP and PE are resistant to most adhesives.
  2. Know Your Adhesive!
     When you go to the supermarket or hardware store to buy glue, you will probably find yourself faced with a multitude of choices.
      Different adhesives are designed for different purposes.
Some will stick to wood but not plastic, some require close-fitting bonds, others double as sealants.
     By far the best way to choose the right glue is to simply read the instructions on the packet. This should tell you what uses the glue is intended for and what it will and will not stick to. (If it doesn't specifically mention that it sticks to plastic, then it probably doesn't.)
      Make sure that your specific project meets the requirements of the instructions on the packet.
      For example, the packaging might say,
      "Ensure surfaces to be bonded are clean, dry, free of dust and close fitting."
     If your break is a little mushy and doesn't fit seamlessly together then this adhesive will not work for you.
    
  3. Apply Your Adhesive!
     Follow the instructions on the packet for this part. If it says to apply to both surfaces, then apply to both surfaces. If it says to apply sparingly then apply sparingly. If it says that this adhesive is extremely flammable, then they are not kidding!!
     ... I'm surprised that some of this stuff is even legal...
Many adhesives say they need to be "clamped".
This just means that you need to hold the joint steady. Be creative!
     
When spreading glue, I invariably find that the nozzle on the tube is way too big for the little tiny thing I'm trying to fix. In this case I use an applicator to spread it. Just get a little glue on the end of your applicator and then apply it to the figure as per the instructions.
A used matchstick An applicator.     
     For your reference, PVC and ABS are non-porous.

  4. Wait!
     I put this in its own section because it is so tempting to not wait the full time for glue to dry before messing around with the newly-fixed joint.
      Really, it is very much worth waiting those extra few hours for "full strength" to be reached.
     Most adhesives will say they form a bond within a couple of hours and then add that full strength is reached after a day or so.
     Because figures are so tiny, and moving parts get put under so much strain, we really need to get the most from our glue when repairing them. Wait until full strength is reached before putting strain on the joint to avoid a re-breakage.

  5. Other Stuff!
There are a couple of other things to keep in mind when gluing a figure.
Broken Nendoroid joints are great for testing adhesives.
  • If your figure is really precious to you, then you might want to consider testing the adhesive on a piece of PVC before applying it to your figure... you know, just to see how it handles...
  • PVA wood glue is tempting, very tempting, because of its cheapness, etc, but it really won't work on plastics.
  • Be aware that many adhesives dissolve paint!
  • You can increase the effectiveness of an adhesive on shiny plastic (particularly PE and PP) by scratching the surface with a craft knife before applying. Glues will often adhere better to rough surfaces than smooth ones. Note that this is only the case for adhesives which don't require a "close-fitting" bond.
  • Avoid using a hot glue gun on figures. The "glue" in a hot glue gun is a thermoplastic (IE, a plastic which melts when you heat it up). Since PVC and ABS are also thermoplastics, the hot glue will most likely just melt your figure, making a horrible squishy mess.
  • Some adhesives are also sealants. Sealants are bulky and will usually dry to form a spongy, soft, rubber-like substance. While they might stick to PVC, sealants are (in most cases) totally inappropriate for fixing broken figures.
  • If you find yourself next to a bunch of pencils and stickers looking at UHU sticks and Clag, then you are in the wrong isle ;D

     Well, that's all about adhesives (for now) and, as always, Good Luck!
     Cheers!
     Sparkey.



164 comments:

  1. Hello there, I added you in my blogroll. If you don't mind I edited your banner photo so that it will fit. If you don't like it you can always send me a 174x60 banner.
    And can you please help me with my problem. What's the best way to reattach Flandre's ribbon?
    http://s1149.photobucket.com/albums/o596/okamiissun/?action=view&current=IMG_0479copy.jpg

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    1. Hey! Thanks for the add! The banner looks fine ^__^

      I looked at your photo and I think your Flandre would probably be repaired easily with a little glue. Nendoroids are made of PVC, so any glue which says it is suitable for repairing plastic toys or jewellery should do the trick since the area looks quite close-fitting and smooth.
      If I were doing this repair, I would just apply the glue (follow the instructions on the packet for that part), push the two pieces back together and then leave her to sit untouched until the glue's drying time is up. Of course, the drying time/ full strength time will be written on the packet.

      The only thing to be mindful of is not accidentally dripping glue onto painted parts of your figure, because some kinds of glue will dissolve paint.

      Good luck with your repairs!
      Cheers!
      Sparkey

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    2. Oh! Thanks for the advice! Hopefully I won't mess up when I'm about to apply the glue.

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    3. You'll be fine. Don't worry.
      Just be steady and try not to apply too much glue.
      ^___^

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  2. Help, I super glued a part on my 1/8 Konomi pvc figure, but I put to much. It leaked out around the part. It looks awful, it didn't dissolve the paint it just dried glossy clear on her skin, in a bump. Is there a safe way to remove the super glue without damaging the paint of the figure. Any help would be appreciated, I am just afraid that I just ruined a very nice, and expensive anime figure.

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    1. Hi. Thanks for your question!
      That's a tricky one. Can you please show me some photos of the problem? I've got a few ideas but I need to see it.
      I need one pic of the whole figure, from an angle that shows the glued part, and two or more closeups of the glued area from different angles. When you're taking photos try to make sure that they're taken in *daylight* (not direct sunlight and NOT in artificial lighting) and are sharp and properly focused.

      Also, could you please tell me, does the glue packet tell you to use it in a well ventilated area? Secondly, do the instructions ask you to insure that the bond is close fitting?

      I can be much more helpful once I have a bit more info (:
      Cheers!
      Sparkey.

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    2. I will get you some pictures asap, and yes I looked on the glue instructions it says to use in well ventilated area. Also it says to also make sure the bond is close fitting.

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    3. Ichidono, my digital camera is on the fritz, I tried to use my cellphone camera you couldn't see anything. But someone told me to take a wet paper towel soaked in dishwashing liquid. And let it set on the area for 3 hours, and it would make the glue lose enough that you could lightly scrape it off? And if the towel starts to dry out losely cover it with plastic wrap? I have yet to try it I don't know if it would screw up the paint.

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    4. Hi.
      Sorry for the late reply.
      I've never tried (or heard of) that method of removing glue and I have no idea if it'll work. It probably works on some kinds of glues but not on others. You could try it. My guess would be that the paintwork will be safe, but as I say, I've not tried it. If you do, please tell me how it goes!

      If it were me, I would probably first try to dissolve the glue with ethyl acetate solution, which you can make by mixing white vinegar and ethanol. You can also find it in NON-acetone nail polish - in this case, you should probably dilute it with three parts water: one part ethyl acetate.
      Once you have your solution, just dab it on plentifully with a paintbrush, and wait a few minutes. Try not to spread it on unnecessary things.
      If it works with your kind of glue, then the dried adhesive should go soft and be easily removed within half an hour. Watch (and/or prod) it carefully for changes over the first few minutes.
      In my experience, ethyl acetate is very kind on paint, but different figures utilise different kinds of paints, so proceed with caution!!!!

      If that doesn't work, or you don't feel comfortable doing it, you will probably have success filing away the glue very carefully with a fine file. Don't use a metal file. Use an emery-board type file such as those sold for making polymer clay jewellery and models. I use these often for removing paint blemishes and sculpting custom figures. I suggest you buy a mixed packet of different grains so that you have some rougher ones for removing the bulk of the glue and some very fine files for cleaning up the surface afterwards.
      Just be very gentle and work slowly and carefully. If you need to, use a magnifying glass. I do this sometimes.

      Well, without photos, that's about all I can suggest.
      If you have any questions, feel free to ask!
      Cheers!
      Sparkey

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    5. Thanks for your help, I have already found, and purchased a replacement figure on Mandarake. I consider myself lucky to have found one, and at a decent price. Also the wet paper towel soaked in dishwashing liquid was a complete load of BS. It didn't work at all; I just ended up with a wet figure. Thank you for all your help, and in the future if I ever use superglue on a figure again I will only use a microscopic amount.

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    6. Hi!
      Sorry you weren't able to fix your figure. That's disappointing!
      Still, she may be good for something. Maybe you could mod the old one and do a custom! I suppose every cloud has a silver lining, eh?

      You know, I doubt that the dishwashing liquid method is complete bollocks. Different adhesives have different chemical properties. It's likely that you were just unlucky in that the method and your particular glue didn't match. Horses for courses, if you know that one?

      Anyway, best of luck for the future!
      Cheers!
      Sparkey

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  3. As we all know very well that there are many ways where we can buy some adhesive products which are very useful to us.

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  4. I know this is a different type of figure, but I've trouble with using superglue on older plastics like Shogun Warriors. The glue actually melts the plastic. Any thoughts?

    Thanks,
    Joe

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    1. Hello!
      No problem. I'm enthusiastic about many types of figures!

      Your situation reminds me of the glue which is commonly used in model kits. This glue also melts the plastic. To use it, you apply a small amount glue to both surfaces to be bonded and then push them together once the plastic has melted slightly. The pieces are then effectively "welded" together and it makes quite a strong bond.
      This could easily work in your case as well, and I'd say it's definitely worth a try.
      **Better to test it on an inconspicuous area or an old figure first, though! There are several things which could go wrong, since this glue is probably not designed for this application:
      1. The glue may not dry properly if it reacts chemically with the plastic. Check that the glue you applied to your figure previously has dried.
      2. The resulting bond may be very weak and crumbly.
      If either of these things happens, then you'll just have to use a different kind of glue.

      I don't have any experience with Shogun Warriors, but just looking at pictures of them and drawing from my own experiences with older toys, I'd say your safest bet is to score the broken surface (scratch it up with a large needle of pocket knife - carefully, of course) and then fix it with hot melt glue from a glue-gun or a polymer based adhesive/sealant such as "Fix All" (pictured above).

      If using hot glue, be mindful of not allowing the gun to heat up too much. Use it as soon as the glue is workable and if you need to use it over an extended period, then turn the gun off for several minutes to allow it to cool down slightly between applications.
      As mentioned above, hot melt glue is a thermoplastic with a low melting point, BUT its working temperature covers a large range which extends above the melting point of many thermoplastics which toys are made from. Thus, if you allow hot melt glue to become very hot before applying it, it may also melt the plastic on your figure. Of course, this forms an extremely good bond, but it also tends to warp parts. It looks utterly horrible, and I'd only recommend it for interior pieces which won't be on display.
      Not all plastics are thermoplastics, though. To test it, heat up a relatively small part, such as a small weapon, with a hairdryer until it feels warm (but not hot!). If the part is slightly more flexible after heating then it's a thermoplastic.

      Sorry for the long post, but hopefully I've said something useful in there!
      Best of luck!
      If you have any more questions feel free to ask,
      Cheers!
      Sparkey

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  5. I just bought a figure and a small part was broken off and I'm not sure what I should do to fix it? Here are some pics
    http://i660.photobucket.com/albums/uu322/josephl64/2013-04-01-230946_zps2f0fc4a2.jpg

    http://i660.photobucket.com/albums/uu322/josephl64/2013-04-01-230901_zpse99963d3.jpg

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    1. Oh no! How annoying! I hate it when that happens.
      This is just like my Millhiore nendoroid's hair part.
      I can't tell how clean your break is from the pics, but if the pieces can fit back together with no gaps (I'm guessing from what I can see that they do), then a very small dab of supa glue will fix it right back up. I've included this exact method in one of my posts.
      Check out "Method No. 1" detailed in this article: http://figurefixer.blogspot.com.au/2012/08/generic-action-figure-repairs-two.html

      If the pieces don't fit smoothly together then just buy a kind of glue which says it sticks to plastic and DOESN'T say it needs a close fitting bond, then follow the same "Method No. 1", taking note of the directions on the glue packet.

      One last thing – It's best to use a very small amount of glue so that it doesn't flow over the edges when you put the two parts back together! Your broken part is super tiny and it's not part of a weight-bearing piece, so it will only need a tiny dab of adhesive. You'll need to use an applicator (such as a small paintbrush, a toothpick, etc) to apply the glue. If you apply it direct from the tube you'll probably get too much and it will look messy.

      Good luck! I hope it works!
      Cheers!
      Sparkey

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  6. Hello, one more satisfied customer here :) I was in despair when my Kuga Natsuki figure broke on the same day I'd just bought her, but Google led me to your site and now she is as good as new again. Arigatou!

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    1. That is fantastic to hear! Thankyou very much for commenting to tell me! :D

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  7. Very nice article about gluing action figures. I have many of them and always wondered which sticky adhesive would be the best. Thanks for the article.

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    1. Hey, thanks! :D
      Yep! The Liquid for really clean breaks and the Gel for mushy breaks... looks like a good choice!
      Cheers!

      Delete
  8. It may appear like petty talks, but I must agree that having an extra knowledge with these kinds of adhesives can make things easier for you. We have different variants of glue that are used for different materials. For example, the white glue. It sticks papers or wooden boards together, but it definitely doesn't necessarily mean that it would bond metal sheets or joints together.

    #Shannon@InstantCA.com

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    1. Hi Shannon,
      I appreciate the fact that you think my article is worth the effort, but please don't try to use my blog for advertising purposes without my consent.
      In any case, your product is irrelevant to my readers, since this blog is all bout fixing broken toys which are made from plastic, not metal sheeting.
      Cheers!

      Delete
  9. I bought a Leafa Figure from amazon i got her today and her head is off of the body and will not go back on i would show you pictures of the breakage but i do not have a camera

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    1. Hi!
      (Sorry for the late reply – I'm on holiday and my internet is reallly slow!)
      I'm sorry to hear that your figure is broken, but I can't help you at all without knowing more.
      Which Leafa figure do you have? Can you show me a link?
      Secondly, does the head have a peg which attaches it to the body which has come out, or did her neck actually break/snap?

      Hope I can help you!
      Cheers!

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    2. http://www.amazon.com/Sega-Sword-Online-S-A-O-Figure/dp/B00EVAGHIY/ref=cm_cr_pr_product_top this is the figure i have and her neck actually snapped

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    3. Hmmm, how annoying!
      Well, luckily it's not a moving part, so if the break is smooth and the parts fit together snugly (just try fitting them together and make sure there are no gaps), then you can probably fix it with super glue. Just make sure you read the instructions on the packet to check that it will stick to plastic (PVC). Some glues won't.

      If the broken surfaces are a little lumpy/crumbly and don't quite fit together, use a type of glue which says it will stick to plastic and which does NOT say that it needs "close-fitting" surfaces.

      If the broken surfaces are warped and don't fit together much at all, can I suggest repairing it with some fine-particle *air-dry* polymer clay? That way you can fill in the gaps smoothly. When it's dry, just sand it gently down with an emery board and paint over it with acrylic paint.
      The beauty of this is that if it looks lumpy the first time you do it, you can just soak the figure in water and the clay will come right off so you can try again (better to do this before painting though).
      ... and you can use any leftover polymer clay to make models. It's great stuff :D
      You can buy it from art stores or online.

      I hope that helps!
      Cheers!
      Sparkey

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  10. Oh, I'm really glad I found your blog. I was crushed when my Sailormoon Figuarts had one of her pigtails break off from the ball joint. I can't tell for sure.. but I think it's a 'mushy' break. (Everything is so SMALL I need a freaking microscope I swear..)

    I'm going to try the method where you drill/poke a hole in each part, and insert a small section of paperclip for added reinforcement. As of now, it's deciding what kind of glue to use, and also how on earth I'm going to "clamp" both pieces together.

    It doesn't show the break .. but I thought bonus 'crying' face was never more appropriate than for this picture I shot... That yellow blob in her hand is the ball joint. Ergh.

    http://www.myimg.us/images/01.17.14/40427.jpg

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  11. Oh! I forgot one thing. Sorry, my brain died after all this drama happened... What 'gel' glue do you recommend for 'mushy' breaks? I saw the supaglue and superglue for 'clean' ones.. but what do you suggested for less than clean ones?

    also, if I screw up and it does end up being a clean break, and I'm retarded, will using a gel adhesive end up being a big mistake?

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    1. Hullo, Anonymous! Thanks for your question.
      No worries! It would be fine to use gel glue on a clean break. I only recommend using super glue on clean breaks because it looks better, but if in doubt, gel will be fine.
      As for fixing this break with the drill-and-pin method... aren't you going to have trouble drilling into the broken surface if you can hardly make it out? It's a real bummer, but this break is so small I'm not sure that method will work (though I stress that I'm not really sure either way).

      Do you have access to a glue gun (for applying hot glue)? I know I normally say not to use one, but for itty bitty ball joints like this, I would probably pop the ball back into the joint and then *carefully* put a little blob of hot glue onto the broken surface. I'd then push the broken surface of the pigtail into the glue and then press my fingers around the area as the glue cools to make a kind of brace/cast.
      It's best to do this repair with glue which is not super hot. When you turn the glue gun on, the glue will become useably warm quite fast, but if you leave the gun on for a while, the glue gets so hot it causes instant blisters and melts plastic. You want to use it at the "useably warm" stage. If it gets too hot, just switch off the gun for a couple of minutes to let it cool down.
      This method will make a bit of a lump at the joint, but because the joint is on the back of the figure's head, it should be fine.
      I used the same technique to fix a Nendoroid Petit stand, which was about this size, although mine was much more badly damaged... on my figure the joint doesn't work anymore, but as I recall, the reason it broke in the first place was because it was jammed. Your break doesn't look as bad, but still, the joint would probably be a bit delicate afterwards.
      Here are some before and after pics to help you out (I was going to write a blog on this but never got around to it):

      http://s630.photobucket.com/user/green-jelly/media/TinymushyBreak1.jpg.html?filters[user]=89019184&filters[recent]=1&sort=1&o=0

      http://s630.photobucket.com/user/green-jelly/media/Mushybreakrepairedwithhotglue1.jpg.html?filters[user]=89019184&filters[recent]=1&sort=1&o=1

      I hope that helps!
      Have a great weekend!

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  12. Thanks so much for your help! I actually was able to make a tiny hole on either end, using a pair of those little salon curved scissors.. I can see where I should put the hole.. but the entire thing is so small that it's hard to get a decent grip on it. At the moment I'm using my fingernail tips as a 'vice' of sorts.

    I might try the hot glue technique though, that sounds much easier. Would the joint still be movable if I did this? I'm thinking it might be easier to hold the ball part between my fingernails and then press the hair part against it. I'm worried that if I pop the ball joint back in, some of the glue might get on part of the bun part of her head, and make the entire thing stuck.

    Thanks so my for replying! Finding this blog made me feel a lot better, considering I spent 50 dollars on this figure and it's already past Amazon's return window.

    Oh, one other thing, how long should I let the glue dry if I use the hot glue gun method. I used to have one of those glue guns that don't get lava hot somewhere, I'm going to go hunt around for it.

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    1. No problem! I'm glad to help!

      Yes, in your case the joint should still be moveable if you do the hot glue technique, but it might be a bit delicate (just be careful when you're posing it because the plastic which hot glue is made from is quite soft compared to PVC and can warp easily).

      It is true that it would be easy to freeze the pigtail joint if you put the ball in the socket before gluing. I think you're right – it may be safer to glue the parts together when the ball is out of the joint.
      The reason I suggested doing it the other way around is that, since the repaired part will not be very strong, it may be impossible to pop the ball back in without breaking the repaired joint... but that really depends on how tightly the ball fits the socket. You'll have to be the judge of that.
      Luckily, no matter which way you choose, there's a way out if something goes wrong.
      Way One: Try repairing the part out of the socket. If it breaks while you're putting it back in, peel off the glue (you can soften it with a warm-not-hot hairdryer to help with this) and try way two.
      Way Two: If you accidentally glue the pigtail to the head, it's possible to detach the erroneous glue by sliding something gently under it (I'd probably use a sewing needle). Hot glue doesn't stick to smooth surfaces very well (that's why you need to make a brace around the parts... to hold them together!), which means if a small part of the glue is stuck to something it shouldn't be, you can often poke it free with a small amount of pressure.

      Hot glue doesn't really "dry" as such... it sets. It's like the way butter goes hard at certain temperatures and soft at others.
      As soon as the glue is cool, you can use the joint. It normally takes about five to ten minutes to be fully set, depending on the ambient temperature.
      The glue will feel pretty hard after about two minutes, but I can tell you from experience, give a bit of extra time to cool properly or the inside may still be warm and bendy.

      Cheerio!

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  13. Thanks so much for all the coaching!! You're a life safer, seriously! I bought a low temp glue gun and some glue sticks at the store, and I'm going to attempt to glue the hair back together now.. I'll let you know how it goes and post a pic!

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    1. OK! I hope it works! *is looking forward to pics*
      Just remember – if at first you don't succeed, try, try again.

      Delete
    2. Aw, I tried.. like 4 times and it never held. :(

      I have a "super low temp" glue gun, called "Cool Shot Super Low Temp Mini Glue Gun." It says on the instruction packet as a warning, that the glue nosle and heated glue can reach 170 degrees Fahrenheit. But, I've had the melted glue on my fingers, and it's only felt warm.

      Another issue is the socket for the joint is pretty tight, which also can make the entire thing break off, most likely.

      Since the hot glue doesn't seem to be working, do you have any other suggestions? Will super glue work if the surface isn't totally flat? I'm also not sure if part of the bottom section towards where the long piece of hair broke off from the ball joint is no longer there. It's so tiny that it's hard to tell...

      Figuarts don't have warranties either, do they? That's really such a bummer and crappy, because they cost so much. People are telling me to contact Amazon about it, even though it's past the return window (got her on Sept 28th, a whole 4 months basically before all this happened.. talk about not lasting long... :/ ).. or, to contact bluefin or tamashii nations.. but I have a feeling I won't get far with them. *sigh*

      Thanks again for all your support. Glad to feel not totally alone in this. What a bummer still, she cost me like 50 bucks.

      Delete
  14. Thanks for u information, but i want to point out that PA,polyamide, is nylon,not PET.

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    1. Oops! Thanks for correcting me! I meant polyester, but I wrote nylon. I'll correct it right away.
      Cheers, mate!

      Delete
  15. Okay, after looking around I'm going to try a superglue called Fill the Gap, which is made for .. gaps. Some people recommend it.. so hopefully that might work! Only thing is I can't find it locally and have to order it... lol. But, here's to hoping...!

    If it works wonders I'll post a pic for you!

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    1. Hi again!
      Gees. I'm really sorry the hot glue didn't work :/
      Maybe it was just too soft to hold a joint like that. I'll admit the stuff is not that strong.

      I'm really glad you've found another glue that might work, because, apart from replacing the whole joint with one from a bootleg figure (or failing that, a bit of wire held in with putty) I don't have any other ideas... except maybe this: http://figurefixer.blogspot.com.au/2012/11/writing-to-manufacturer-ins-and-outs.html

      These little things are very hard to fix, unfortunately.
      Still, I admire your persistence and I would love to hear about it if you manage to repair your figure!

      The very best of luck to you!
      Sorry I couldn't be more help,
      Cheers!
      Sparkey

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    2. Oh, and one more thing that might possibly be useful is a section in the middle of this article, which explains how to manage stiff joints: http://figurefixer.blogspot.com.au/2013/04/using-heat-to-fix-warped-parts.html?showComment=1390613825895#c5139501105750137580

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  16. That was really a nice share.. Thanks.. It was very useful....Super Glue or Cyanoacrylate.

    ReplyDelete
  17. Thank you so much! I needed to know this. Now I can go to my hardware store with confidence. In case you don't know what the characters mean right beside the listed plastics on the back or bottom of your figure/figurine's box, this is what I translated:
    製品素材 (Product Materials)
    フィギュア / フィギュア本体 (Figure / Figure body)
    べース / 台座 (Base / pedestal)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh! Thankyou very much! That's very helpful!
      Would you mind if I use that information to update my post? I'll credit you, of course... what name would you like me to use?
      If you don't get back to me in a few days, I'll just put you down as "anonymous".
      Thanks again!

      Delete
  18. That was really a nice share.. Thanks.. It was very useful....Super Glue or Cyanoacrylate.

    ReplyDelete
  19. I have a PVC figure from Kotobukiya. Liara from Mass Effect. The head is, unfortunately, severed from the body. If you ever read this message, what would you recommend for repairing it?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Super glue, if the broken surfaces fit together snugly.
      If the broken surfaces don't fit together very well, then you should use a type of glue that specifies on the label that it sticks to plastic and that does not require surfaces to be "close fitting".
      If the broken surfaces don't fit together at all (for example, if the plastic is badly warped), then you may want to try "drilling and pinning". The process is Method No. 2 explained in this article: http://figurefixer.blogspot.com.au/2012/08/generic-action-figure-repairs-two.html

      Hope that helps!

      Delete
    2. Thank you for your advice. I will muster up the courage and try the drilling and pinning method, as it seems best for my circumstances (parts don't fit too well). Much appreciated.

      Delete
    3. No problem!
      I hope it works out well for you!

      Delete
  20. I have a one of those figurines that only stand when it is attached to a stick and a stand... and unforunately I lost the stick. Any idea how to make our own replacements or my figurine destined to stay in my cupboard for the rest of her life? ;-;. Thanks in advance for anyone that can suggest something!

    ReplyDelete
  21. Hullo!
    Thanks for your question!

    There are LOTS of ways that you can get your figure back up on the shelf, but without knowing what the lost stick is like or which figure you have, it's hard for me to make specific recommendations.

    In the past, I have solved similar problems by glueing the figure to a broken stand or by sticking the feet to the stand base with blu-tack.
    On a small figure with a stand like the one you describe, a piece of wire can be used to replace the lost part. Also, some figure companies will send you a replacement stand if you ask them nicely, but all that depends on the particular figure and the company that made it.

    If you tell me what figure it is, then I can give less vague advice!

    Cheers!
    Sparkey

    ReplyDelete
  22. Hello, I Got a Tachibana Kanade - Angel Beats! Figure.(http://imgur.com/a/UAn3E)
    It got a broken wing part, and want to fix it. On box says PVC & ABS. Do you know that type of plastic the wings are?

    Thank you =D

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hullo, Ghostly Neko!
      Sorry for the slow reply.

      Woah! That is a lovely figure - I'm sorry to hear about the wing. I'm not certain, but I expect the wings will be made of PVC. It shouldn't really matter anyway, though, since most glues that work on PVC will also work on ABS.
      It's a nice clean break, so a dab of clear super glue should do the trick.

      Best of luck repairing your figure!
      Cheers!
      Sparkey

      Delete
  23. I'm looking for a weak adhesive for use on small parts of a pseudo-cast-off figure and don't want them to become more or less permanently glued. Should be PVC plastic I'm dealing with, I believe.

    Do you have any thoughts or recommendations on the matter?

    Any advice would be much appreciated.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hello! Thanks for the question!
      If you only want to temporarily attach the parts, then I recommend using either
      A) Blu-tack or something similar (sounds like it won't work, but it does!)
      B) Glue from a glue gun which has not heated up properly (just use it as soon as it's soft enough to pull the trigger and then peel it off again when you're done - a warm hairdryer may make this easier)
      C) Use a tacky adhesive like "FixAll", which sets to form a gummy sealant. These stick to PVC really well, but some of them also dissolve in home-made ethyl acetate solution, making it easy to remove (test the ethyl acetate on it first, though... some sealants probably won't be be dissolved or softened by it).

      Since the third option is my personal favourite, here's an explanation of how to make your own Ethyl Acetate:

      Ethyl Acetate AKA ethyl ethanoate is a meek little solvent which is often used in non-acetone nail-polish removers. You *could* buy some instead of making your own, but making your own is way more fun and cheap. In my experience, when diluted to about 1/4 strength, ethyl ethanoate does not harm PVC or commercial PVC paint, but it would be sensible to test it before spreading it all over your figure.

      Alrighty!
      The first thing you need is ingredients. Some ethanol and some acetic acid, to be accurate.
      These can be obtained in the forms of methylated spirits (AKA denatured alcohol) and plain white vinegar. You can buy them at the supermarket.
      Sometimes denatured alcohol is coloured. I suppose it's possible the dye in this type could stain the figure, but since it sounds like you're doing Figure-Frankenstein-Glue-Surgery of some sort anyway, maybe it doesn't matter. Anyway, clear is better, if you can get it.

      Note: DO NOT USE ISOPROPANOL (AKA RUBBING ALCOHOL) in place of ETHANOL (AKA DENATURED ALCOHOL)! They are different chemicals, and if you use isopropanol, you will inadvertently create a solvent which can dissolve plastic. RUBBING ALCOHOL = NO!

      Okay now, in a glass jar or plastic tub – an ice-cream tub or something will do – mix the vinegar and ethanol in roughly equal parts.
      You will notice some interesting things happening in tub, including swirling, a small amount of heat and a weird smell.
      This is because a chemical reaction will be taking place between the ethanol and the acetic acid. When the reaction has finished, what you will have is a mixture of acetic acid, ethanol, water and ethyl acetate.

      If there’s any methanol in the methylated spirits, you will also have a small amount of methyl ethanoate, which is also a useful solvent (and also sometimes used in nail polish remover).

      The mixture you will have created is not overly dangerous, but it’s best not to inhale the vapours. I recommend working with the stuff outdoors or in a room with an exhaust fan, like a bathroom.
      Please also note that most of the chemicals in the mixture are flammable, so don’t let them get anywhere near sparks or flames.
      Be sensible and exercise general caution around solvents.
      Make sure that no children or pets have access to the mixture.
      Treat this mixture as you would treat a tub of nail polish remover… because it actually IS a tub of diluted nail polish remover (plus alcohol, plus acid, plus some other stuff).

      Once you have the solvent, just sponge it over the glue and wait. You might need a few applications, but if you've tested it and it reacted, then it's only a matter of time before the glue turns into a booger-like substance and can be easily removed.

      I hope that helped!
      Cheers!
      Sparkey

      Delete
    2. That third option sounds perfect.

      I had been worried about the strength of commercial nail polish remover.

      Thank you for such a quick and detailed reply!

      Delete
    3. Hey, no problem! Heh heh. I'm glad you liked the third option.

      As for commercial nail polish, if you buy the non-acetone type and dilute it to a 25% solution v/v in water, it should be fine.

      Delete
  24. Hi, I was hoping that you could help me! Today I broke the leg of my medicom black rock shooter, it's the kind of disc shaped joint of the knee. I noticed that her knee had felt a little loose, but I hadn't expected it to break. But now that I look at it, the joint is really thin. It's a pretty clean break. Should I just glue it? Is there a brand of glue that you would recommend?
    Thank you,
    Izzy

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hello, Izzy!
      Errrr, hmmm. That sounds tricky. The knees of figures like that are put under quite a lot of strain during normal use and I don't think that glue alone will be strong enough, especially if the contact area is small.
      Can you show me a closeup photo of the broken surfaces so I can give better advice?

      You might need to contact Medicom and get a replacement knee.

      Cheers!
      Sparkey

      Delete
    2. Thanks for the reply! Hmm, I was afraid glue might not be enough.
      Here are some closeups on my Flicker: http://flic.kr/p/oJppYR

      Izzy

      Delete
    3. Hello again, Izzy!
      Ouch. That looks difficult.
      Since Black Rock Shooter's legs can be taken apart at the thighs and calves, my first recommendation would be to contact Medicom Toy, show them a photo of your broken part and ask if you can get a new knee.
      Have a look at this article:

      http://figurefixer.blogspot.com.au/2012/11/writing-to-manufacturer-ins-and-outs.html

      It explains all about contacting figure companies.

      If Medicom can't help you, then feel free to leave another comment and I'll try and think of something else.

      All the best!
      Sparkey

      Delete
  25. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  26. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

    ReplyDelete
  27. Hello, I just purchased a new Luka Megurine Figma figurine and the neck broke off her shoulders, but it was a very clean break as if the pieces look like they are supposed to go together and just assemble that way. It's a very close fit and I just wanted to know what brand or type of glue would be best for this fix so she can be good as new (: thank you

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hello!
      Sorry for my slow reply.
      I would usually use super glue, or more specifically "Selley's Quick Fix Super Glue", though the available brands will depend on where you live.
      It sounds like a pretty simple thing to fix, so any glue that sticks to PVC should be fine!

      Thanks for writing!
      Cheers!
      Sparkey

      Delete
  28. Hello, it seems you are quite knowledgeable with figure repair.

    I have recently purchased a Soul Eater Maka figure and her right arm came detached. From what you've described and what I guess, it seems to be a close-fitting break. So I just wanted to send you a picture of the break and see if you had any specific suggestions. Thank you in advance!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It seems I can't upload the pictures from my phone to here, but it is basically a nice snug fit. The torso has a little part sticking out and the arm piece fits right into it.

      Delete
    2. Hello!
      Thanks for the question!

      From what you say, I think that a little drop of super glue would be perfect. Parts that are designed to fit together usually repair very easily.

      All the best,
      Sparkey

      Delete
  29. Hello Sparkey Davis!
    If you have the time could you help me, I have bought a scale figure of Ymir around a month ago and have recently discovered that her big bow on the back of her dress has fallen off. It looks like the glue that the factory had used to stick it on to her dress had given out.

    Her dress is made from soft PVC and her bow is made from a hard smooth plastic. Heres a link of a image of the bow on the figure to give you an idea with what were working with. [ http://s1.tsuki-board.net/image/gumonshoe1401776434.jpeg ] I need to find a glue that will bond the two pieces together while keeping the soft PVC dress pliable, also the glue must be water proof.
    (This is just preference but I would like the glue to be odor less after curing.)

    Thank you in advance for the help! Also I love your blog keep up the good work. ^_^

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hello, Sorata!

      Unfortunately, it's hard for me to tell you exactly what glue you should use, because the brands of glue available vary depending on where you live.
      What I can tell you is your break is the easiest kind to fix and pretty much any glue which sticks to PVC will do the trick.

      If I personally was doing this job, I would probably choose a cyanoacrylate glue (often marketed as "super glue") or a polymer based adhesive.
      Cyanoacrylate is probably the better choice since it can bond instantly, has no smell and is pretty much invisible.
      If you can't get that, Soudal Fix All is a pretty good polymer glue. You can buy a clear variety which sets to form a flexible plastic. It's also low odour.

      Cheers!
      Sparkey

      Delete
    2. Thank you very much for the fast response I will try the super glue ^_^

      Delete
  30. Hello sparky I need advice one of my favorite toys broke so I need to know what kind of glue to use I've tried all the normal glues but it won't even set to dry it is broken at the very center
    Thanks

    ReplyDelete
  31. Replies
    1. Hello, Ryan!
      Sorry for my slow reply.
      Can you show me a photo of the toy and the broken parts? I can't really help you unless I can see what the problem is.
      If you would like to email me, this is my email address:
      sparkeydavis@yahoo.com

      All the best,
      Sparkey

      Delete
  32. Hello, Sparkey?
    I was wondering if you had any pointers or tips on how to fix this~

    http://sta.sh/013h1ve534yy

    http://sta.sh/0xigi5d7vgg

    I bought this figure over a month ago and it is my first.
    I ran into the desk and knocked him off- really thought he would have broken worse but
    it is made entirely out of PVC.
    Could you please tell me how to fix a crack this small without making it worse if you get the
    chance? I would very much appreciate it..
    I'm new too this and skeptical of how to fix it...

    Thank you in advance.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hello! Sorry for my slow reply. It's a busy time of year!

      Hmmm, that doesn't look like a crack to me. It looks like a dent.
      Let me explain:

      A "crack" by my definition, occurs where the plastic has had two forces from different directions applied to it simultaneously (such as when a figure hits the floor – the opposing forces being the momentum of the figure and the stationary floor). This causes the plastic to tear or split with a jagged edge, often accompanied by warping of the plastic, torn paint and white areas.

      A "dent" is where something hits the plastic and leaves an indentation without structurally damaging the plastic.
      Just looking at the photos, it looks like this is what has happened to your figure. Perhaps he hit something when he fell?

      The good news is that dents rarely cause any major damage to figures. They're just a bit unsightly!
      The bad news is that fixing dents is a real pain. When I have a figure with a dent I usually just leave it alone.
      If you want to fix it, I recommend filling the dent with putty or AIR-DRYING polymer clay and then repainting the whole area afterwards. You will probably need to buy matte paint from a hobby shop to get the right texture.
      Sadly, this method is a lot of work and can *sometimes* end up making it look worse. If you try it, it would be a good idea to practice recreating the hood's texture by applying paint to a test-surface (like a PVC food tub) before attempting to repaint the figure.

      I hope that helped!
      All the best,
      Sparkey

      N.B. In the case that I have misinterpreted the photo and what you really have is a crack through the plastic, I would recommend dabbing a little super glue into the fissure and then pushing the damaged parts back together. That kind of thing usually fixes well as long as there is no significant warping.

      Delete
  33. Very useful article! Thanks for sharing! For packing and adhesive products Philippines, visit: http://www.papti.com.ph/.

    ReplyDelete

  34. Can you help? I want to glue my figure to wood, sea shell, beach glass...I am making a scene...hot glue does not work...does not last and figure falls over...thanks Terry

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hello! Sorry I was a bit late replying, but yes! I can help.

      Try scoring the surface-to-be-stuck with a pocket knife (criss-cross patterns work well). Then wait for the glue to get really hot before applying it.
      In my experience, these joins will take a lot of pressure before they come unstuck. I glued a handle back onto a large plastic water jug this way once. It lasted for months, even though it was just regular hot glue.

      Delete
  35. LRW here again. While cleaning my Prisma Illya figure a few minutes ago, I accidentally partially snapped her supporting leg.

    She still stands as the leg didn't break entirely, so it's rather close fitting, but I'm rather worried about what to do. I live in a rather hot place and fear what temperature variation will do to her. I'm especially worried give how brittle her leg was in the first place.

    She seems to be made out of ATBC-PVC and ABS. Based on my super glue instructions it seems to be okay to glue her, but I'm worried about the ATBC distinction in the plastic. If that's a non-issue I would love to just glue her back together.

    If you happen to know if ATBC-PVC can play well with super glue, please let me know.

    Thank you,
    LRW.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hello!
      If I was in your position, I would just glue the leg back on with cyanoacrylate glue. Cyanoacrylate adhesives are often sold under names like "super glue". (Read the packaging of your super glue carefully - it's probably cyanoacrylate.) This glue will bond close-fitting surfaces really well (it bonds in about ten seconds), and it dries clear. Just make sure you don't use too much, as this can actually stop it from forming a bond.

      Delete
    2. It seems to be working!

      Will let her stand and observe for a while before moving her though.

      Thanks for another really quick reply!

      Delete
    3. Not a problem! I'm really glad to help!

      Delete
  36. I dropped my sp-039 Madoka Kaname figma the other night and all but her hair bows survived. the breaks are relatively clean, and i can send pictures if you'd like. what would the best way to repair such tiny parts as her bows be?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hello!
      For the problem you describe, I would recommend cyanoacrylate glue (often sold under the name "super glue". Read the fine print on the packet – it should say "cyanoacrylate" somewhere) and Method No. 1 outlined in this article: http://figurefixer.blogspot.com.au/2012/08/generic-action-figure-repairs-two.html

      I hope that helps!

      Delete
    2. thank you so much! she's good as new now!

      Delete
    3. No problem! Always a pleasure.

      Delete
  37. Hello, well my brother broke my Rias Gremory's neck (the soft bust version) and I'm gonna try and fix it, will epoxy work with it?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yo!

      Yeah, epoxy will definitely "work", but it may not leave a clean finish (could cause lumpiness or discoloration). If the break is clean enough I would recommend a cyanoacrylate-based adhesive instead. It's often marketed as "super glue".

      If the break is mushy and you decide to go with the epoxy, then just don't use too much. It should be OK.

      Cheers!

      Delete
  38. Hi! Thanks so much for your article!

    I have an old Mcfarlane Halo 3 War Chieftain figure, whose butt-plate (the golden bit) got snapped off a long time ago. I found the butt-plate (the little diamond-ish thing that extends over his rear) while cleaning out my room, but because the packaging is long-gone I have no idea what plastic these figures are made of (Google hasn't helped).

    That being the case, what sort of adhesive would you recommend would be best to re-affix the butt-plate back onto the figurine? The break is, as you described above, "close-fitting," sitting snugly in the break. Any particular solution you'd recommend? (Hopefully something ubiquitous - I live in a place where hobby stores are hard to find haha)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yo! Thanks for your question!
      For something like that, I'd recommend a cyanoacrylate glue. This is often marketed as "super" or "supa" glue. If you read the fine print, it should mention "cyanoacrylate" somewhere. That chemical is the one you want.

      This stuff is great, because it sticks to pretty much anything (including people - don't get it on you), it generally doesn't let off dangerous fumes, it's clear, and it bonds almost instantly.
      In my experience, you can get it at almost any hardware store or even sometimes at the supermarket.

      I hope that helps!
      Cheers!
      Sparkey

      Delete
    2. Thanks, I'll be sure to try that out once I can get myself to a store!

      I know that when waiting for the glue bond to solidify you need to "clamp" or "pin" the two broken bits - would a rubber band wound tightly be sufficient or do I need something that gives more weight/tension?

      Delete
    3. Cyanoacrylate adhesives bond so quickly that you just have to hold the broken pieces together for about ten seconds and they're stuck!
      Then just leave the figure somewhere he won't get bumped for about 24 hours so the glue can set fully. During those 24 hours, *do not* touch or apply any pressure to the bond.

      Delete
    4. Right so, update: I procured a bottle of the stuff and tried it out. After leaving the figure alone overnight the connection feels rather solid, so thanks! Shouldn't have any problems provided I don't treat the figure too roughly/drop it on its backside too often. Thank you for your time!

      Delete
    5. A pleasure!
      Thanks for letting me know! It's always very gratifying when I get to hear about positive results.

      Delete
  39. First of all, I would like to say that I really liked the article and found it quite informative. After reading it through, I'm still a little uncertain what my best course of action would be and was wondering if I could ask for your advice.

    I recently bought Satori and Koishi Love Heart ver.
    and it arrived last night. It had been a long day and I was very tired, which led to me not being careful enough and broke the heart Koishi's third eye was forming as I was unwrapping the plastic off it. I'm pretty upset as I've been collecting figures for many years and this is my first time really damaging one.

    My main concern is that the broken part is very small and so whatever adhesive I use wouldn't have much surface area to work with. I'm also unsure as to what glue to use. Based off the translations "anonymous" gave I know that the main body of the figure is PVC and the base is ABS, but the broken bit itself could be PVC, ABS or PE. Just based on how it feels, if I had to guess I'd say it was PE.

    I've taken some pictures if they'll help at all (sorry for the poor photos, particularly the break point; it's a crappy camera and this is only the second time I've used it).

    I would be very grateful for any advice you could give on making this repair.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hey, Apolloncrash!
      Thanks for the compliment! ^__^

      Luckily, that break looks like a really simple one. I'd recommend cyanoacrylate glue (often called "super glue" or "supa glue"). The stuff forms a bond almost instantly on tiny surface areas, it dries clear, it doesn't smell, it doesn't need clamping. Basically, it's awesome as long as the pieces fit together snugly.
      When glue shopping, just read the fine print on the packet and find one which says it contains "cyanoacrylate" -- it is often packaged in small bottles.

      To apply the glue, I recommend following Method No. 1 in this article: http://figurefixer.blogspot.com/2012/08/generic-action-figure-repairs-two.html

      Just be careful not to use more glue than you need, since it can dissolve certain types of paint (I have no idea what paint is on your figure). I've never ruined anything that way, but it can end up looking a little messy if you're inattentive.
      Also note that once the glue has grabbed, it will need about 24 hours to form a really strong bond, so leave the figure somewhere safe where it won't get knocked or bumped for a day after gluing.

      All the best,
      Sparkey

      Delete
    2. Firstly, I'd like to apologise for taking so long to check back here; I've been really swamped lately and haven't really had a free moment. That said, thank you so much for responding. I'll try my hand at fixing it as soon as I get a chance and I'll let you know how it goes.

      Delete
  40. Hello, I just got my first nendo. It's Noel (498).
    Unfortunately, when I unboxed her, I noticed there was a couple of cracks, like hairline cracks in her chest (she wears white shirt, so they show �� )
    I'm trying to get a replacement, but if I can't, can you tell me how to fix her?
    Also I'm a noob, I don't know how to attach a picture here .. ��

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hello. Sorry for my late reply - it's been a mad couple of days for me.

      I'm afraid I can't help you with that kind of repair unless you can show me some photos (you can't embed them here. You'd have to upload to something like Flickr or Photobucket and then link.)

      However! GSC are, in my experience, very committed to their customers. If you contact them about the problem, they will probably send you a replacement part. Read this: http://figurefixer.blogspot.com.au/2012/11/writing-to-manufacturer-ins-and-outs.html

      All the best,
      Sparkey

      Delete
  41. Hi Sparkey. My daughter has a set of three Sailor Moon figurines and they seem to be made out of about 100 pieces that fall apart the minute you touch them. We don't have any packaging (they were secondhand), so I have no idea what they are made out of. I'm going to try using some superglue (very tiny amounts with your matchstick method) to glue the parts together. It'll probably take me a week as I want to do one joint at a time and give it time to cure. I just wanted to say thank you for sharing your tips. I wasn't even sure if it was OK to glue a figurine together.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Woah! That sounds like a doozie of a tedious job!
      I'm glad to be useful, though!
      By the way, there's one thing I didn't mention in this article because I didn't know this back then, but if the parts are close fitting, then CYANOACRYLATE GLUE is THE BEST because it doesn't smell, it sets fast, you only need a tiny bit, it usually comes with its own snazzy brush applicator (which is even better than a matchstick!) and it's mostly invisible!
      It's often sold under names like "super glue" and if you read the fine print on the packet, the word "cyanoacrylate" will probably be mentioned.
      Good luck!
      Thanks for writing!

      Delete
    2. Thanks for the tip. I'll read the packaging carefully.

      Delete
    3. All done. Took a week, but worked well. One figure had 12 pieces and the other had 18 pieces! My daughter is delighted. Thanks for the helpful advice.

      Delete
    4. Thanks for letting me know it all worked out! (:

      Delete
  42. Hello Sparkey! I have a Hatsune Miku Lat type figure that might be a bootleg, because when I put her glasses on I probably put too much pressure on her hair. So her right ponytail snapped! I threw the box away but I remember that the figure said PVC. The little hole where her hair was is really small and when I put the two pieces together it kinda fits but not perfectly. Should I use super glue or a glue that sticks to plastic but not close-fitting. I will provide photos as soon as possible. Thank you!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hello!
      I really need to see a picture of that before I can tell you much.

      The only things I can say are that
      a) It makes no difference whether the figure is bootleg. It'll be PVC.
      b) If the part that came off was previously glued in place, then "close-fitting" should be fine.

      If something actually *snapped*, then I have no idea without seeing it.
      Cheers!
      Sparkey

      Delete
  43. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  44. Hello! I recently bought a figure (http://myfigurecollection.net/item/166975) and it came with a cracked piece.

    Photo of crack
    https://c7.staticflickr.com/9/8899/28128401830_e5bca75f7f_z.jpg
    https://c3.staticflickr.com/9/8708/28130376050_3b321554d6_z.jpg

    Instruction manual showing how the parts fit
    https://c7.staticflickr.com/9/8566/27794409534_4674cb843c_z.jpg

    Rough diagram of how the parts work [dont mind the lousy graphics ;x]
    https://c1.staticflickr.com/9/8701/28128405400_1c3a506a0c_z.jpg

    The box stated that the figure itself is made of PVC + ABS while the stand is made of ABS. So i guess this is clear ABS? O_O So this should be a close-fitting fracture that can be easily repaired with glue right? But the main problem is that after gluing, do you think it would still be able to function as it did originally?

    Thankyou!

    -edit: Added one more image of the crack >__>

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hey there!
      That hardly even looks broken to me. I think if you could squeeze some cyanoacrylate down there you'd probably fix it just fine with no loss of function. Just be sure to wipe off any overflow immediately (and not with your fingers. Use a damp paintbrush).
      I hope that answers your question!

      Delete
    2. Yea I do know it looks nearly fine but as a connector piece, the crack will cause it to loosen and this happens: https://c8.staticflickr.com/9/8808/28351484351_c89815c81a_z.jpg
      And thanks for the advice! I appreciate it. Will try it out soon ^^

      Delete
    3. I hope it fixes up alright! Good luck!

      Delete
  45. could a two part (ultra strong) epoxy glue a jointed piece on a transformer, but neither super glue, super glue+baking soda, quick epoxy, also tried different brands(at least 4 or 5), is rigid plastic, but thats all i know

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hello!
      I'm not totally sure what you're trying to fix. Could you link me a photo of the break?
      Cheers!
      Sparkey

      Delete
    2. http://imgur.com/qw5IN2y

      is the piece at its feet, see the light purple part? that is where the joint "is", it broke, the joint still attached to the figure and still pinned in, it doesnt stick to anything, and the figure istn exactly cheap, it is between 85 to 150 bucks (even without packaging), i bought this one at only 20 bucks because of the broken part, the joint actually doesnt need to much strength to move, or transform, but still any movement is enough to separate the piece again(no matter what glue, or brand or trick i use)

      Delete
    3. Okay, I see.
      The surface area on that break is really small, and I don't think any glue is going to fix that.
      I don't know much about transformers, but if you can't remove/replace the joint, have a look at Method No.2 as outlined in this article: http://figurefixer.blogspot.com.au/2012/08/generic-action-figure-repairs-two.html
      This will probably work as long as you figure out how the joint functions and are careful not to freeze it during the repair.

      Good luck!

      Delete
    4. nope, anything has worked, have tried many different superglue brands, i got one that is pretty cheap, and even one would say generic but has worked wonders for me and still nothing, epoxy glue,(i cant quite figure out the exact proportion of resin and hardener, but that is beyond the point) as it just, separates way too easily from the pieces themselves, again, drilling a hole and pinning it isnt possible because there is no space available for such thing, i have tried the "superglue and baking soda" method but because the way it is broken i cant just put soda and superglue, because it hardens instantly and what i need is to get both pieces...mmm maybe there is a way, i will tell you how it goes, i got a new figure(different colors but same figure nonetheless) but i still want to repair the old one

      Delete
    5. Are you sure there isn't enough room to drill and pin? You can fix some pretty tiny things that way.
      All you need is about 3mm width and 2mm depth on either side of the break.

      The only other thing I can think of is trying to replace the joint with a part from another figure.

      Good luck!
      Sparkey

      Delete
  46. Amazing page you have here Sparkey!

    Reading through the various posts, I think I found the answer to my question, but I thought I would post some pictures just to make sure.

    I bought the Skeleton Sega Saturn Sega Hard Girl PVC figure and one of her ponytails were mostly broken off of her head when I removed it from the packaging. It looks to be a clean close fitting break and I sounds like some Krazy Glue (cyanoacrylate) would do the trick. Please correct me if I'm wrong.

    There is a purple ring that surrounds where her ponytail connects that obscures the break/application area a bit. Do you think maybe putting it on with a fine tipped paintbrush would do the trick?

    Any advice would be a HUGE help! Thanks in advance and here is a couple of photos of the break.

    http://i296.photobucket.com/albums/mm177/Archaictear8x/20160810_101722_zpscilyhxw6.jpg

    http://i296.photobucket.com/albums/mm177/Archaictear8x/20160810_101722_zpscilyhxw6.jpg

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hey thanks! I'm glad you like my page!

      The solution you suggest is exactly what I would do in your position.
      The only thing that might be a problem is cleaning the brush.
      In my experience, you can sometimes clean up residual glue using hot water, but I've never tried it with a paintbrush before so if that doesn't work, acetone-based nail polish remover should do the trick (the acetone free type apparently doesn't work).
      Or you could just use a cheap paintbrush and chuck it out afterwards...

      Cheers!
      Sparkey

      Delete
    2. Thanks for the reply and I'm glad to hear I was on the right track. Unfortunately last night my 4 year old decided to rummage around on my desk and the head fell and pony tail broke off completely!

      It is still close fitting. The break fits back together perfectly but is oddly smooth and has a shiny almost polished surface. If you want another picture I'll take one.

      So, from what I have read the last few days, I am assuming I should order a pin vice and some thin gauge wire? Drill a small hole in both the head and the pony tail where they connect and then insert a piece of wire to help hold along with the glue?

      Delete
    3. Nah. The cyanoacrylate should be fine on its own, just like before.

      You really only need to pin a break when it's part of a joint. Action figure joints are put under a lot of stress when you move them, so they need reinforcement.
      For a figure without moving parts, the only time I would ever consider pinning a break is when the broken part is REALLY narrow and it's holding something REALLY heavy.
      In your case, I don't think that will be necessary.

      If the cyanoacrylate doesn't work because the break is too mushy, just try using different glue. Luckily those pink hair-rings will hide any unsightly repairs.

      Delete
  47. Okay. That sounds like a plan. I was just concerned a bit because the ponytail has some heft and I'm not exactly sure how I am going to keep it pressed to the head while it dries.

    Like you said however, the ring should obscure the repairs. So I'll give the glue a try and if the ponytail ends up falling off again then I will look into ordering a Pin vice, etc. to help keep it fixed in place and anchored to the head.

    Thanks for all the help. This really is a fantastic site with a wealth of knowledge in the posts and replies. I have learned quite a bit over the last few days.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Good news: cyanoacrylate bonds almost instantly so you won't have to hold it while it dries. Just wait for it to grab (about 3 seconds) then give it 24 hours to "set".

      Delete
  48. Hello Sparkey, I humbly come to you looking for advice. I have this figure: http://myfigurecollection.net/item/261133 and all of a sudden the peg in the arm snapped. These are the results:
    http://i.imgur.com/MgaUvRx.jpg
    http://i.imgur.com/wEfnrgP.jpg
    http://i.imgur.com/NmTe9k0.jpg

    Unfortunetly I kind of panicked and first tried to remove the peg with pincers (originally from the main body, fit into the arm part) because the part is removable and I wished for it to conserve said functionality. This caused the broken piece to now be a little out of shape, my bad.
    I now plan to use your "drill bit + wire" method now. would normal super glue work for this? The figure is mostly made of ABS and PVC. Do you think I can still salvage the peg? It does seem rather frail, my idea is to first try to superglue the wire to the broken piece and try to pull it, but I fear I might only damage the piece further.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hello!

      That is a slightly tricky problem, but I think that, yes, you can probably salvage the peg.

      N.B. Before you start, make absolutely sure that the peg belongs in the upper arm, not the lower one. I can't tell which way it is from the photos since they're a little blurry.

      Okay, first up, the best way to remove the peg from the arm piece is probably to drill a small hole into the peg, a couple of millimetres deep.
      Next, screw a self-tapping screw just a couple of turns into the drilled hole.
      Then heat up the arm with a hairdryer to soften the plastic a little -- this is best done from the side, NOT the top where the peg is. You don't want to heat up the peg too much.
      Lastly, pull on the screw with pliers. The peg should come out like a cork from a wine bottle.

      After that, you are free to remove the screw and repair the break using the drill and pin method as usual. You will need a glue that doesn't require close fitting pieces though, since your break is mushy. Regular superglue probably won't work.

      I hope that helps!
      Cheers!
      Sparkey

      Delete
  49. Hi, Sparkey.

    Recently a beloved Evangelion-01 figure of mine felt off the shelve. Two pieces placed off their site. They do not appear to be broken, just disattached from the rigid joint where they sould be.

    In other case, I would just fit those pieces and glued them with some plastic glues I am used to, but in this case I am not sure because I can´t recognize the material the figure is made of.

    Is a solid but flexible plastic. You cand bend it slightly and feels soft to touch but hard to broke. The residuary original glue from the joints seems to be not solvent.

    Some pics:
    http://www.avaray.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/20161026_191503.jpg
    http://www.avaray.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/20161026_191439.jpg
    http://www.avaray.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/20161026_191544.jpg

    It would be amazing if you may guide me on this repair.

    Thanks a lot!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hello! Thanks for your question!

      It sounds like your figure is *probably* made from soft PVC.
      In any case, any gel type glue which says it sticks to plastic should be fine. Super glue might work too, but I'm not totally sure.

      I hope that helps! If you have any more questions, feel free to ask!
      Cheers!
      Sparkey

      Delete
  50. hello

    nice blog

    any experience with neca stuff ?

    i have broken wrist blade, broken spear and broken knee. as far as i can tell , all materials are different.

    and broken arm on a queen alien that i plan to use a screw or maybe some memory steel and a hand borer.

    also some mcfarlane buggies from halo - their handle for the pasanger seems to always brake in mail.

    cosminharaga9@gmail.com
    thanks a lot

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. i think neca can take either epoxy solder or regular superglue

      Delete
    2. Hello!
      Sorry for my slow reply - I've been sick this week.

      Unfortunately I don't have any personal experience with neca figures, but I suspect that they are made out of regular PVC and ABS or something very similar, so glues that work for those should do the trick.
      If you want any more specific advice, you'll have to show me some photos as I'm not totally sure what's broken and what you need to know.

      All the best,
      Sparkey

      Delete
  51. Hi,

    Yesterday as I was moving my OOT Link statue I accidently broke the sword by mistake. I think it is made or resin? The damage look exactly like the one on this picture :
    http://www.worthpoint.com/worthopedia/first-figures-ocarina-time-link-127800466

    Do you have any recommendation on how to fix it in clean way? The sword is very thin so I am not sure how to proceed here. I am completely clueless. This status is worth a lot and it drive me nuts!

    Any help would be greatly appreciated!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hello!
      Sorry I took so long to reply to your question. I've been ill.

      Anyhow, to solve your problem, I recommend cyanoacrylate glue of some sort. It can stick the smallest of things back together as long as the break is clean.
      Have a look at Method No.1 in this article for more details: http://figurefixer.blogspot.com.au/2012/08/generic-action-figure-repairs-two.html

      Again, sorry for the delay, I hope that helps!
      All the best,
      Sparkey

      Delete
    2. Thanks for the help! Any particular brand of super glue you recommend? Can I get the cheapest one?

      Delete
    3. Any old brand of cyanoacrylate should do. It doesn't have to be expensive.
      I can't recommend brands because people write to me from all over the world and I never know what will be available in their respective countries anyway.

      Delete
  52. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  53. Hello.

    I have a saber figure and one of her armor pieces from her dress fell off. I was thinking of using this super glue that I have at home, it's a Loctite liquid super glue but I'm not sure if it going to work so I want to know what type of glue you would use to fix this. I think the armor piece is made out of ABS.

    https://jpeghost.net/x-ohbaaa.jpg
    https://jpeghost.net/x-nhbaaa.jpg
    https://jpeghost.net/t-mhbaaa.jpg

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hello, Bryan.

      Assuming the break is close-fitting, I would use a cyanoacrylate glue.
      According to its technical data sheet, the Loctite adhesive you have is indeed cyanoacrylate-based, so it should work just fine.

      As for how close-fitting the break is, I can't tell from the photos, so you will have to make that judgement for yourself.

      Best of luck!
      Sparkey

      Delete
    2. Hi!

      Thanks for the help. The glue worked for my figure. You're the best dude!

      Delete
  54. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi, I see you've deleted your comment (they're automatically emailed to me as soon as they're posted, so I've already read it -- sorry!)
      If the narrow shaft between the neck and the ball joint which holds the head in place has snapped, and you still need help, have a look at Method No. 2 in this article: http://figurefixer.blogspot.com.au/2012/08/generic-action-figure-repairs-two.html

      Method No. 1 may also work -- use a cyanoacrylate-based glue -- but the neck would be a little fragile afterwards.

      All the best,
      Sparkey

      Delete
  55. Good information - thank you! If interested, see lessons for pottery, china, sculpture and ceramic repair lessons in the link below.
    http://lakesidepottery.com/Pages/Repairing-restoring-ceramic-porcelain-china-pottery-lessons-tutorials.html


    Lakeside Pottery Studio

    ReplyDelete
  56. So I bought the xenonorph or alien queen from NECA and I dropped it and it's head snapped off I put super glue on the body then put tape on it then on the head part I put super glue then put it all together but it still doesn't hold together so is there a way you guys could fix it or a way I could fix it?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hello!
      Sorry for my slow reply.
      If you use a cyanoacrylate-based super glue, you shouldn't need to put any tape around the neck. The glue will grab after a few seconds. Then if you just leave the figure alone for about 24 hours, the glue will set and be really strong.
      Have a look at Method No. 1 as outlined here:
      http://figurefixer.blogspot.com.au/2012/08/generic-action-figure-repairs-two.html

      If that doesn't work, Method No. 2 will almost certainly get that busted head back on.

      Best of luck!
      Sparkey

      Delete
  57. Nice and useful information about vinyl. I really liked it.
    Good work.

    Pattern Heat Transfer Vinyl

    ReplyDelete
  58. Hello again,

    Kind of unfortunate, but I'm here again. I removed the head of my new Akeno figure the other day and one of her antenna hair got caught on her wing and snapped off the thin piece of PVC.

    I superglued her head back on and the antenna looks just fine, but to my dismay, the glue had run down a bit on the underside opposite where I had my finger.

    Are there any new methods of getting the excess glue off?

    If you need pictures I can find a way to get some tomorrow after she rests for the rest of the day.

    Thanks,
    LRW.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. To be clear, her antenna/ahoge was what snapped off, not her head from the body.

      Delete
    2. Hi, LRW.
      Ugh. Spilt glue. That can be really tricky.
      You're right -- I will need to see a close-up photo (taken in good light, and focussed) before I can give specific advice, but I think it'll most likely be a job for extra-fine sandpaper.

      Delete
    3. Just want to say I haven't forgotten, I have the photos, but will have to wait until after work to upload them.

      LRW.

      Delete
    4. Here are the photos, I took a few of them so hopefully some are clear enough.

      https://lrw.s-ul.eu/Akeno/jOfcKGut
      https://lrw.s-ul.eu/D4h9yRbu
      https://lrw.s-ul.eu/Akeno/Q7v9Q45s
      https://lrw.s-ul.eu/Akeno/HLlDLMgW
      https://lrw.s-ul.eu/Akeno/cZEp4xWq
      https://lrw.s-ul.eu/Akeno/6Rdp84Np

      Thanks,
      LRW.

      Delete
    5. Thanks for the photos!
      I see the problem now, and you're in luck, because the appearance can be drastically improved just by scuffing the surface of the glue to remove the shine on it. Removing the glue completely is more-or-less impossible, but if you improve the texture, then it won't catch your eye.
      To do this, I would recommend using very find sandpaper, maybe 300 grit, wrapped around a popsicle stick... or just buy a product like this: https://hlj.com/product/WAVHT-454
      Once you have your fine abrasive, gently scuff up the glue, and take off that bump at the edge of it. You'll have to take it slowly and be careful not to damage the paint. Stop as soon as it looks reasonable to you -- it will never be perfect. Instead, aim for perfectly fine! LOL

      And just FYI, I don't recommend using a regular emery board, because the grit isn't fine enough. Also, if you want the files, but don't want to wait for the postage, you can buy super fine grit files at most hobby shops.

      I hope that helps!
      Cheers!
      Sparkey

      Delete
  59. I used super glue to join the parts of my figures together, left a mess in the worst are possible (https://static.myfigurecollection.net/image/snakeisekans1505891055.jpeg) any ideas on how to get rid of the residue?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi!
      I can't make out the residue in the photo, but I normally recommend people to sand off the glue with very fine sandpaper or a very fine grit sanding stick from a hobby shop.
      Unfortunately, glue can really be a pain in the butt to remove.
      If you have any further questions, don't hesitate to ask!
      Cheers!
      Sparkey

      Delete
  60. Hi there! I'm hoping you're able to still answer questions - I gave my boyfriend an Okabe Rintaro figma, but the peg on the ball joint in the shoulder almost broke off. I unfortunately don't have a good picture of it, but I'll do my best to describe it. So the issue is with the ball joint of the shoulder - the peg that goes into the arm has halfway broken off where the peg meets the ball itself. It's still intact enough where the arm stays on, but if it's twisted, I'm pretty sure it'll rip off. I was hoping since it's not completely broken that a dab of superglue could potentially seal it back into place. Does this sound feasable? I'm hoping to save it without the complications of having to do surgery.

    Thanks,
    AW

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hello!
      Sorry for my slow reply.

      Figma shoulder pegs are put under a lot of strain when the figure is posed, so I wouldn't be that confident about glue alone being enough for the job.
      That said, it wouldn't do any harm to try fixing it with a dab of cyanoacrylate just to see if it holds. If it does, all's well that ends well!
      If not, you can still drill and pin it afterwards as per method two in this article: http://figurefixer.blogspot.com.au/2012/08/generic-action-figure-repairs-two.html so you really don't have anything to loose trying the glue.
      Cheers!
      Sparkey

      Delete
  61. Hi there, first of all great blog; learning a lot here but I'm hoping you wouldn't mind giving me your personal expert opinion. :)

    I bought a new figure a while back (it's a cast-off) but the second time I removed the bra (by unclipping the middle) I accidentally broke one of the vertical bra straps above it. :(

    Here's a pic from the back:

    https://static.myfigurecollection.net/image/Kaneel1487214370.jpeg

    The vertical strap is small and thin; maybe it's not possible to glue it back together and have it hold but I wanted to try. The entire bra can still hold in place perfectly fine; I guess I'm just not happy knowing it's slightly broken at the back. Worst case scenario it could always be displayed topless indefinitely but why waste a perfectly good accessory and have that option.

    Would this be categorized as a low stress area? What type of glue would you recommend? Does the set include an applicator? (I think I'll need a small but very precise amount to put on the broken surface)

    Figure materials (and possibly the bra) are made of PVC and ABS.

    I'd appreciate any advice you're willing to give.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hello!
      Thank you for your question!

      Yes, I would say that's a low stress area and I think you can probably fix it with a dab of cyanoacrylate glue. Cyanoacrylate is often sold under the name "super glue" or some variation thereon. However, not all "super glue"s will be cyanoacrylate, so best to read the packet to be sure you're getting the right stuff.
      When it comes to applicators, that will depend on exactly what brand of glue you buy. If there isn't an applicator included, just use a tooth pick or something like that to dab the glue on.

      You can use Method No. 1 in the following article to fix the break: http://figurefixer.blogspot.com.au/2012/08/generic-action-figure-repairs-two.html

      I hope that's everything you wanted to know!
      Cheers!
      Sparkey

      Delete
  62. Hey Sparky,
    This is a pretty cool blog. Hope you're still answering questions. I'm not sure if my damage can be considered a 'clean break'. I bought this here https://order.mandarake.co.jp/order/detailPage/item?itemCode=1083918198&ref=list and I made a terrible mistake while putting in Remi's wing.
    She has a couple of very small holes in her back, that you are supposed to shove the wings into. I dropped her while I was putting the second wing into her back, and when she hit the floor, the first wing was rather wobbly. I thought that was because it had come loose- but when I touched it, it broke right off. So now the hole in her back is filled with some broken soft PVC, and I have a wing with no peg.
    The problems here are that I don't think I would call this a clean break, since it's less like it snapped and more like it twisted off. The other issue is that the broken area is so tiny that I don't think the drill and pin technique would work.
    What would you advise? I can post some pictures once I get home if you think it will help. I'm really kicking myself for dropping her, normally I would buy a replacement but since this figure is 5 years old nobody is selling them anymore. I think I got the last one :(

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I've looked at the damage again, and it looks like it is actually a pretty clean break. I'll be picking up a tube of cyanoacrylate at my local hobby shop and applying it with a little pin I had lying around. Have a good one, thanks again for the writeup.

      Delete
  63. If your trying to re-attach plastic on plastic I'd recommend a plastic cement, they work through a chemical reaction to melt two pieces of plastic together, as opposed to something like super glue that just holds things together.

    https://www.amazon.de/Testors-3509C-Plastic-Cement-Value/dp/B00JDMWVSU/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1525853391&sr=8-1&keywords=Testors+Plastic+Cement

    If your trying to glue any other materials together, I'd just use super glue.

    ReplyDelete