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GARAGE FILES – Sugru Moldable-Glue

November 24, 2016
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screen-shot-2016-11-24-at-8-22-34-amYou might be saying to yourself, “What in the world is Sugru?” When we talked with YouTube sensation Danny MacAskill about his bike setup and he mentioned that he always uses Sugru on his bike, we had the same response—a blank stare. Sugru is a funny- sounding word that’s not in any way related to wheels, derailleurs or brakes. Intrigued, we had to dive deeper.

We found out that the word “sugru” is Irish for “play,” and that’s exactly what we wanted to do with this stuff. Sugru is a moldable glue that comes out of the package feeling like Play-Doh. It then cures with exposure to air and becomes a strong rubber material that bonds to almost anything. It’s ideal for chainstay protection, and we’re going to show you how to use it in this month’s “Garage Files.” We can’t wait to see what other applications this wonder material might have on the trails. Sugru runs around $15 to $22 depending on what kit you choose.

garage-11-Sugru moldable glue is available in nearly any color you could want to match whatever your application is. It’s also available in this handy magnetic box that can be stuck to a work bench for quick and easy access.

garage-22-The tool list for this job is pretty simple. All you need is some isopropyl alcohol, a spray bottle, some clean paper towels and a pair of scissors.

garage-33-Have you ever smashed your knuckles when braking too hard? We can use Sugru to remedy that annoying problem.

garage-44-Start by filling the spray bottle with the isopropyl alcohol. This is a handy tip for many jobs and makes it easier to use efficiently.

garage-55-Spray the surface with the alcohol, and use the clean paper towel to prep the surface for the adhesive.

garage-66-Open the Sugru packet. The packets are meant to be used only once, as once you expose the Sugru to air, it begins to harden.

garage-77-The packets can be flipped open to begin the application process.

garage-88-Sugru is slightly sticky at first, but won’t stick to your fingers like Super Glue. We had no problem applying it directly like so.

garage-99-People with sensitive skin may want to wear gloves for this part to avoid a reaction. Once you have enough Sugru on the back of the lever, shape it so the sharp edges of the lever are covered.

garage-1110-You have about 30 minutes once the Sugru is first exposed to the air to finish molding. After that it will begin to harden. After 24 hours, the glue becomes a rubbery-soft material that will prevent your knuckles from being smashed.

garage-1211-Cable rub is an annoying problem on most bikes and can be easily prevented with Sugru.

garage-1312-Clean the cable housing thoroughly with the alcohol and another clean paper towel.

garage-1413-Locate the section of housing that’s rubbing against the frame and causing the rubbing, and mold a little Sugru there.

garage-1514-There are many options for preventing cable rub, but this rubbery wonder material always stays in place thanks to its adhesive properties and will also keep your paint looking fresh.

garage-1615-While Sugru may not work as a full chainstay protector, we have found it useful to prevent the chain from slapping in small spots, like the inside of the seatstays on this bike.

garage-1716-Remove the wheel and spray the clean paper towel with the alcohol. By spraying the towel and not the frame directly, you can avoid over-spraying.

garage-1817-Clean the area to remove any dirt or grime before applying.

garage-1918-Mold most of the packet to the offending area. We used the yellow Sugru in this case to make it more visible, but typically we’d use black to match the frame color and make it less noticeable.

garage-2119-Reinstall the wheel and wait for the Sugru to dry overnight before riding.

garage-2320-One of our favorite miscellaneous uses for Sugru is to keep the delicate cables on our electronics from kinking and breaking. Enjoy your new Sugru!


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