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Thread: CA sizzling?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
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    Vadnais Heights, MN
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    CA sizzling?

    I finally got a little turning time today to make some projects for upcoming school and church auctions. It didn't last very long as I'm still recuperating from a fall on the ice a few weeks ago (but that's another story!)

    Anyway, I started to turn a bowl from some Box Elder. Just as I was rounding the bottom and making the tenon, I noticed a small branch/bark inclusion. Not wanting to waste time on something that might not work out, I decided to try a different blank. Once I rounded out the outside of the second blank, my body had had enough.

    And here's where it gets weird : I looked at the inclusion of the Box Elder and decided to add some thin CA to beef it up so I can finish a bowl at another time. When I did this, the CA made a sizzling sound and put off a little cloud. Then I added a little more and it did it again. I tried to get a closer look but the CA fumes were too strong. Then I added CA a third time and it still sizzled. Finally after a good soaking everything seemed fine.

    What gives? Any insight on this phenomena?

    I've used a fair amount of CA (thin and thick) and have never seen a reaction like this. It wasn't smoking just sizzling and a little puff of something....
    Doug Swanson

    Where are John Keeton and Steve Schlumpf anyway?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    NE AR, NW TN
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    221
    The CA I use has pretty much always done this, it's more noticeable on pens where the coating on the paper towel is thin and cures really quickly. It could be that box elder has some component that acts as an accelerator for CA as well. Not sure what it would be...

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    Enid, Oklahoma
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    If the wood was wet, then I'd bet it's the moisture acting as an accelerant. CA will bubble, off gas, and turn white when it cures very rapidly... It's also a weaker glue joint when this type of thing occurs although I'd guess it would be fine for the situation you described.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Georgetown,KY
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    David's right on the money with the moisture suggestion, and it's not an unusual reaction.

  5. #5
    Oh, and it gets hot too... I've gotten some pretty good quarter sized blood blisters on my thumb where some thin CA soaked through my paper towel and cured almost immediately. You don't bother with the Acetone at that point, you're just ripping it off so it stops burning the heck out of ya...
    CarveWright Model C
    Jet 1642 EVS, Jet 1014
    Half-a-Brain

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Mount Sterling, KY
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    Ditto what David and Jim said. I see all the time especially with punky wood. The punkier the wood the more moisture it apparently retains and the faster the reaction.
    ____________________________________________
    JD at J&J WoodSmithing
    Owingsville, Kentucky

    "The best things in life are not things."

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
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    Vadnais Heights, MN
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    I'm not sure the problem was moisture because the wood seemed pretty dry. The bark/branch part I was trying to strengthen is about 1" deep and was full of bark. Maybe there was something in the bark?

    Either way it sure was an interesting sight!
    Doug Swanson

    Where are John Keeton and Steve Schlumpf anyway?

  8. #8
    Some brands of paper towels will catalyze CA too. If you ever use CA with coffee grounds for packing cracks or voids, you'll sometimes see it as well.
    CarveWright Model C
    Jet 1642 EVS, Jet 1014
    Half-a-Brain

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    North Texas
    Posts
    542
    That's what CA does and it can be worse than getting a strong dose of ammonia fumes. During very humid weather, the problem seems to be much more likely to happen. Also, the quantity of CA makes a difference. If you only use a few drops then it probably won't fume, but if using a lager amount then the reaction can happen suddenly and very intensely. Yesterday I was applying teaspoon size quantities of thin CA to some soft areas in mesquite and it would fume within a few seconds. Having done this sort of thing before, I now know enough to only do this outdoors.
    Bill

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