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Re: Which glue for tolex?

5/5/2000 11:47 PM
Peter S
Re: Which glue for tolex?
Great advice
5/6/2000 1:53 AM

Hi all,  
I do auto upholstery for a living, so I have acess to some really awesome solvent contact cement.  
It is what is used to install vinyl tops on cars among other things, it is heat resistant, and I've never had any " bubbling " when I use it.  
I spray mine on ( though you can use a roller as well ), you can use a quart spray gun ( I do) spray thin even coats on both the wood and the tolex ( I've even used regular vinyl fabrics to cover amps , that is what Matchless used on some of their amps and I've seen it on some others too)  
It is harder to work with as it sets fast , but it does hold!!!  
I disagree about the solvent glue causing damage to the tolex, I have an amp I did years ago and it still looks great! What WILL damage tolex and any other vinyl, are silicone base dressings like Armour all.  
I have also heard of some folks using the water based contact cements, and even latex carpet/ vinyl flooring adhesives, both are supposed to work well but take longer to set up.  
In fact I've heard that is what the glue that Rogers sells is, just latex floor adhesive , can't verify that though.  
Anyway, lots of options, but do NOT use the 3M spray adhesive , it will not work well.  
5/6/2000 5:36 AM

"Anyway, lots of options, but do NOT use the 3M spray adhesive , it will not work well."
Besides, when it gets the slightest bit warm from radiated power tube heat, it comes undone.  
5/6/2000 12:52 PM

I still belive that godd old DAP contact cement is the way to go. I've done a number of things with it and never had a bubble problem. If you allow it to set for a few minutes (about 20) before applying, it still gives some repositioning time, and aids in proper adheasion. I have covered big cabinets, small cabinets, heads, footswitches, and even a 3' closet pole, (just for the hell of it) and everything looks good. But, no matter what glue you go with, my suggestion is to take some of the scrap pieces and practice to get acustomed to the glue, and to practice corners and other cuts. Another thing that helps is to use a 3" trim roller on larger surfaces, and a brush in tight areas and smaller surfaces. I have heard nothing but bad news from spray adhesives like the 3m product but have no first hand expierience with it.  
This is of course "MY OPINION."  
5/6/2000 2:36 PM
Eric H

"If you allow it to set for a few minutes (about 20) before applying, it still gives some repositioning time"
If memory serves, you recommend mineral spirits for thinning contact cement --That would explain why you can still reposition after 20 mins. Mineral spirits evaporate very slowly. The solvent for most contact cements (non water-base) is toluene which is Very volatile (fast evaporating). If you called Dap, they would tell you not to do this (using the wrong solvent types is a no-no in the paint and adhesives industries, and can have bad consequences:try thinning lacquer with turpentine) BUT if you haven't noticed any long term effects (corners losing adhesion, etc) I think increasing the drying time of contact cement would make it a lot easier to work with. I'll try it. This ain't rocket-science after all!  
BTW: your step-by-step photos are great.  
5/7/2000 12:10 AM

My reference to mineral spirits is as a "solvent" to clean brushes,& spills etc. I do not recommend "thinning" the cement. Please re-read the text.  
Thanks for the comments on the photos...  
5/7/2000 12:45 AM
Eric H

You are correct, it was apparently wishful thinking on my part.  

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