Keep your sealant from drying out

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  1. #1
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    Default Keep your sealant from drying out

    I hardly ever finish using a whole tube of silicone or adhesive. They always dry out after a few months. Some times I leave the nozzle attached and squeeze out a small ‘Dag’ of sealant from the tip of the nozzle and leave it to cure. At other times I tape up the tip and put it in a zip lock bag which seems to make it last for quite a few months. Today I came up with another idea.
    It involves cutting a 50mm PVC pipe to a length of 330 (3 lengths to a 1 meter pipe), solvent cement an end cap at one end, and a 50mm rubber plug at the other. Now when I finish a job, I just leave the nozzle attached and store it inside this tube and seal it with the rubber plug. Hopefully it will still be good to go next time I use the sealant.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails sealant.container.jpg  

  2. #2
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    Brilliant, Thanks
    Lashings will continue until morale improves.

  3. #3
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    Will be interesting to see if it works.

    i usually just leave the nozzle on and make sure it is very tight on the tube. It normally cures most of the way down the nozzle, sometimes at the end of the tube the product may be a little firm, but not hard. Next time needed, unscrew, squeeze a little to see it flows, and add a new nozzle...

  4. #4
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    Great!

    Sometimes you can get nozzles with caps that screw on - got some from the nozzle bin at Bunnings last year - brilliant.

  5. #5
    Community Moderator phild01's Avatar
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    I tend to grab the pre-used silicone cartridge with the nozzle still attached. Unscrew the nozzle and find that half the silicone is uncured so I stick a nail in the uncured end and leave it aside to fully cure. Put a new nozzle on and away I go. The next time use, the nozzle with the nail is fully cured and I can extract it all leaving a perfectly unclogged nozzle. I just keep repeating the process needing just the two nozzles per cartridge.

  6. #6
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    That's a good idea too! It is cool how some product comes out really easily once cured.

  7. #7
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    phild01, have you tried your idea on adhesives cartridges?

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by justonething View Post
    phild01, have you tried your idea on adhesives cartridges?
    I don't think it would work for liquid nails or polyurethane.

  9. #9
    Je pense, donc METRIX's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by justonething View Post
    I hardly ever finish using a whole tube of silicone or adhesive. They always dry out after a few months. Some times I leave the nozzle attached and squeeze out a small ‘Dag’ of sealant from the tip of the nozzle and leave it to cure. At other times I tape up the tip and put it in a zip lock bag which seems to make it last for quite a few months. Today I came up with another idea.
    It involves cutting a 50mm PVC pipe to a length of 330 (3 lengths to a 1 meter pipe), solvent cement an end cap at one end, and a 50mm rubber plug at the other. Now when I finish a job, I just leave the nozzle attached and store it inside this tube and seal it with the rubber plug. Hopefully it will still be good to go next time I use the sealant.
    Be interested to see how long it lasts, I hate wasting silicons especially when some of them cost quite a lot, but this is the one I always find goes off quickly once opened.
    Most Silicons have a 12 month shelf life unopened, once opened they don't last long after that. Selleys All Clear is the worst, it's a great silicon but sets quick, although the one in the small metal toothpaste tube, lasts for years, the cartridge one sets quick.

    Gap fillers are good for 12 months after opening if resealed correctly, I always use the resealable nozzles with Gap filler it keeps it fresh for ages.
    I don't worry too much about old / new nozzle as usually get it by the boxful and there is heaps of spare nozzles in there.
    Mieux vaut prévenir que guérir

  10. #10
    Deactivated User Marc's Avatar
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    I find the following way useful. Get a plastic bag and cut a 10 cm corner off. Put it over the nozzle and squeeze a 2 cm ball of silicone inside. Tape around the nozzle at the tip to trap the ball of silicone around the end of the nozzle. The silicone will eventually cure inside the plastic bag corner but it will take a long time to cure inside the nozzle. None of this tricks will keep the silicone forever, but if you then store them in the spare fridge with the beer, you give it a fighting chance. I think it has to do with the beer ...

  11. #11
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    Great excuse for the absolute "NEED" to get a big beer fridge
    "A big boy did it and ran away"

    Legal disclaimer denying responsibility to be inserted here.

  12. #12
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    Can't offer any revolutionary way of preventing the sealant from going off, but tend to minimise my losses nowadays by only buying the 1/2 size tubes from Bunnsies.
    Only a $3.50 loss rather than $7-8 and I find the small tubes ample for my DIY jobs around the house.

  13. #13
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    I use a combination of what phild01 does. Just let it set in the nozzle anyway and pull the set plug out when you need to use it again. Also when in Bunnings take the push on cap off and replace it with the screw type. They seem to last much longer. It's also trail and error for the different silicons. Some of the ones I use for glass to aluminium are expensive and I tend to care about those more than the $3 ones.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Marc View Post
    I think it has to do with the beer ...
    I think I'll put some beer in the tube..... On second thought. I think I'll just drink the beer

  15. #15
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    When I cut the tip off I save it, when finished with the sealant I shove the tip back into the nozzle backwards. Its always a perfect fit and all the sealants I use last for ages. When I cut the tips off I do it at 90 Degrees not on an angle, I like to save as much product as possible.

  16. #16
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    Most sealants are moisture curing, so keeping them in the fridge with it's low humidity is a plus. If you can cut off the air in any way it will last longer.

    I go through lots of Sikaflex11FC, buying it in a box of 40 sausages at a time it's a lot cheaper, but, they all go straight into the fridge and only come out as needed, any tube left in the gun has a 10 to 30mm stub left outside the nozzle that cures in minutes and is simply pulled out when next needed, in most cases this is the following day. If I know it will not be needed for the next 3 or 4 days it goes in the fridge.

    Good luck and fair winds.
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  17. #17
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    Do you put anything else in the Fridge? I'm not allowed to put non eatable stuff in our fridge

  18. #18
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    After using many of the techniques above for decades (the fridge and 50mm PVC tube are new to me) and trying one of those useless thingos you buy in the shop to put in the end of the nozzle I came up with a successful variation.

    Silicon in the nozzle goes off from the tip down, but after the nozzle is dry the neck of the cartridge dries which is then hard to clear a passage through to fresh silicon. In the early stages the plug in the nozzle can be pushed out but pushing a nail/screw etc through the tip is pushing on the pointy end of the dried plug and often pushes through or around rather than pushing the plug out. Digging in from the screw on end is often better, especially with a screw to try and screw in and pull the plug out but is messy as you digging through uncured silicon.

    What I now do is take the nozzle off and shove it back into the cartridge tip first hard up against the screw neck and make sure some silicon is squeezed out so I can run my finger around and give it a collar as protection from air getting in (like a glob around the tip as mentioned in another post). You may need to push the nozzle in a few times if it wants to ride up. I leave all silicon in the nozzle which dries out from the screw end of the nozzle, thus easier to pry/screw and pull from the wide end. Pull the nozzle out of the cartridge by peeling away the dried collar around where it was inserted.

    If any silicon has started to cure around the top of the cartridge inside, the nozzle once removed will have left a core open down deeper inside the cartridge to fresh silicon.

    If using a nozzle which has been cut off low for a wide bead of silicon and therefore not much to poke inside the cartridge I just use another nozzle, one with a dried plug in it already is sufficient.

    This is by far the best method I have used and can be used for various adhesives including liquid nails for a much shorter time. I have used silicons for several months and a few openings this way.

  19. #19
    GeoffW1
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    Quote Originally Posted by joynz View Post
    Great!

    Sometimes you can get nozzles with caps that screw on - got some from the nozzle bin at Bunnings last year - brilliant.
    Yes,

    I have found they work for some months at least

    Cheers

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