View Full Version : Super glue finish again

05-05-2003, 07:12 AM
After reading so much good thing about using super glue as a finish, tried it too (on ebony). Alas, results were quite opposite. What may be wrong?

Thin layers are uneven, sanding between coats or after many coats (600 grit and up) easily goes to the wood or leaves some pattern, as if layers were not welded together and holes go through different layers.

Slighest thickness in application foams to white as it dries, and have to be sand off.

I tried different kinds, from common kinds to gel, and super glue for wood and leather, and 90 sec Vigor SG from jewelry supply. All the same. Ebony in the some cases was de-oiled with the acetone before application.

How are you do that, people? What are using as applicator?


Don Cowles
05-05-2003, 10:31 AM
Here is how Scott Slobodian does it:
Forget the toothpick for spreding...use Webril wipes...4x4 cotton squares
available at photo stores (good ones). They act as a wick and keep the glue
from setting up in the pad. Pad on lots of coats of the thin glue.
Occasionally use an accelorator to speed up setting. Block sand out with 400
- 1200 grit and polish by hand with Final automotive compound for
final rubout of car paint. Do not use thicker will not set up
evenly and you will end up with ridges. You do need lots of much
as 50. Wear rubber gloves and do it outside to avoid the vapors. If you end
up doing much of this...let me know and I can reccomend a wholesale from Japan (shipped in the US). Scott Slobodian...the guy
who invented the technique.

05-06-2003, 06:38 AM
Thank you for the help, Don!


Osprey Guy
05-06-2003, 12:16 PM
I DO highly recommend taking it outside as Don suggests. The last time I did a superglue finish, the fumes snuck up on me and I before I knew it I suddenly found myself feeling seriously "woozy"...and that was while wearing a good, organic respirator! Luckily I wasn't that far from the back door and was able to get out there in time to catch my breath.

Talk about Glue Sniffing!!!:eek: :(

Dennis Greenbaum

Yeah Baby!:smokin

Don Cowles
05-06-2003, 12:33 PM
I guess I need to clarify a point here- these are not my suggestions, but a direct quote from Scott Slobodian. I should have put the message in quotes to make that obvious. Scott's work has been featured in Knives annuals, Fine Woodworking, Blade, etc. He knows his stuff. He (as you can see from the quote) is also willing to share what he knows. If you have questions on the fine points of his technique, I am sure he would not mind if you emailed him at

05-06-2003, 10:52 PM
I too tried Super Glue, ended up sanding it off and using Verathane(sp). Why would one use Super Glue? (Guy at paint store said Super Glue will yellow).

05-07-2003, 12:50 PM
>Why would one use Super Glue?

I am looking for clear glossy non-darkening finish, revealing a wood structure, and seems that it is the only option beside the water-based Varathane.

With Varathane (Diamond Clear kind, green-blue label) there was a problem on the oily wood: even after applying the acetone for de-oiling wood before applying the finish, resulting cover was easily peeled off like a thin film. Your experience?

Thank you all for the responses,

05-07-2003, 02:06 PM
Your experience?

Experience in the same line as my name would be false advertising, but based on the one handle I have done it worked great. Found the wood in a friends garage, some African wood with great debth. Sanded it down to 6000 grit and was shiney enough that it did not need the Verithane but sure looked great with it. After letting it sit 3 days I sanded the first coat and it was very hard...maybe all the sanding closed the grain so the oils were sealed in?

Osprey Guy
05-07-2003, 02:29 PM
I used several coats of CA (superglue) on one of my first knife handles...The scales were cocobolo with amazing color and figure (bright reds, oranges, and yellows mixed with very dark black, that reminded me of a bullseye).

As I still do with most of my scales, I sanded them down to a 2,000 grit (sometimes I go to 7,000 grit) and then put on several coats of the superglue in the hopes of retaining as much of that great color as possible.

Looked great when I got finished. That was about a year ago...still looks great today! I don't see any signs of yellowing yet.

Dennis Greenbaum

Yeah Baby!:smokin

05-08-2003, 03:12 PM
Fritzers, can you identify the wood you used, or at least name color and feel during sanding (dry feeling or relatively viscous) - could be this wood oily or not? How many layers you applied, with sanding between layers or not, did the brushmarks bothered you mush or not?

As an oily woods the books of wood finishing list cocobolo, rosewood, ebony and, somewhere on these forums, claro walnut. I may add from own experience the bloodwood, what may be incorrect from classification point of view.

I had not problems with Varathane on other woods, I really like it, but have to find an alternative for a different wood.

Didn't found the photography wipes yet, at weekend may be...


05-09-2003, 01:35 AM
I'll try to get the is like a honey gold, tan, with dark brown to almost black "stripes", translucent. I'll try to post a pick. I sprayed on 5 layers of Verathane, sanding after the first. In the past I have only worked on oak, pine, and doug fir so it is oily compared to that.

05-09-2003, 05:43 AM
Tulip wood, olive wood, zebra wood? I have no experience with them... Was it Varathane from a can, what kind (color of the label or the name), what you used to dilute it for spaying?