Smokin' Hot CA Glue

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Forum topic by Tomoose posted 02-17-2014 09:54 PM 1425 views 0 times favorited 4 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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422 posts in 4835 days

02-17-2014 09:54 PM

Topic tags/keywords: safety burn glue ca cyanoacrylate


I burned the heck out of my fingertip with CA glue this weekend – who knew? I would post some pics but I don’t have the online skills – just imagine a big blister on the fingertip like you touched something really hot ;)

I know many of you use CA (Cyanoacrylate) glues for various jobs in the shop – from durable finishes on turned pens to minor repairs, gluing a cut closed, or what I was doing – combining with some saw dust to fill a gap in a project. I filled my little seam (more on that when I post the finished project) with some curly maple sawdust and dribbled on some ultra-thin CA glue – pretty standard operation for those of us who often have to mend gap errors in projects. As the glue seeped in, I noticed I needed to add a bit more sawdust to top off the gap, so I hastily (glue was setting) brushed on more dust from my little pile and squashed it into the seam with my bare fingertip. What an idiot. Well, the glue had a reaction with the wood dust and got so hot it was literally smoking – right on my fingertip. Who would ever think to have something on fire and then glue it to yourself? By the time I felt the burn and realized what was happening the glue had set and it would not peel off – “SuperGlue – Bonds Skin Instantly!” Ouch ouch ouch! I may as well have put my finger on a hot iron. So I guess the moral of the story is don’t use your finger for packing CA glue and sawdust into a seam. I know I can’t be the only one who uses a finger for a glue spreader (especially with wood glue) from time to time. I had no idea CA glue could react in this way, but after a little web research I see that it can, and did.

So, that is my little heads-up for all you lumber types out there. Thanks for reading!


-- “I am always doing that which I cannot do, in order that I may learn how to do it.” Pablo Picasso

4 replies so far

View TheWoodenOyster's profile


1355 posts in 3397 days

#1 posted 02-17-2014 10:10 PM

Been there. It’s even worse if your fingers get water on them. I think moisture in general speeds it up. I once glued myself to some wall base at work (I was a superintendent back in the day). I felt like the guy in 127 hours, except not nearly as unlucky.

-- The Wood Is Your Oyster

View Net55's profile


78 posts in 3049 days

#2 posted 02-17-2014 11:31 PM

Use my fingers all the time…hurts even more if you use a ca glue accelerator. – i also use a skin shield as ca gluing can get messy on the fingers

-- Bill, SW Florida

View crank49's profile


4032 posts in 4433 days

#3 posted 02-18-2014 03:22 AM

CA has to have water to react with. That’s what makes it work.
Your dust might have had excess moisture, or your finger itself might have been sweaty or wet and actually caused the accelerated reaction.
For a long time you could not buy large containers of this product because of the danger of people using it without proper knowledge of what it can do.
I used to work in a rubber molding manufacturing plant. They used the hot stuff and had bottles containing a quarter liter. One day a bottle split and squirted glue on a worker, who happened to be wearing a sweaty tee shirt. The shirt burst into flames. He was out of work for months.

View Richard's profile


11310 posts in 4495 days

#4 posted 02-18-2014 05:33 AM

I would NEVER use my Finger to spread Super Glue!! Or, fill gaps with it. I use a diluted solution of Carpenters Glue already Mixed with Very Fine Sawdust.

Every type of Super Glue Container That I Know of has a Warning on it somewhere. “Bonds Skin Instantly”.

You also have to be careful with PL Premium. ONCE! I wasn’t and used a Couple Of Finger for spreading a Spot I couldn’t reach easily.

Took a week to get rid of it. Their Warning? ”Can Only Be Removed By Mechanical Means”.

-- Richard (Ontario, CANADA)

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