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I'd like to attach a piece I printed out of PLA to a small titanium rod. I've previously used Superglue (cyanoacrylate) to glue PLA pieces to each other with great success, but the problem is that if you don't apply it perfectly cleanly, it leaves very noticeable stains on the PLA.

Can anyone recommend a good glue for this application that won't leave stains like that?

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  • $\begingroup$ Not an answer... but have you considered tackling the problem from another angle (i.e.: still using cyanoacrylate but masking the PLA next to the part that need to be glued with some tape, that you can remove afterwards)? $\endgroup$ – mac Feb 6 '18 at 21:20
  • $\begingroup$ Try using one of the "gooey" forms of cyanoacrylate. Any of the major brands sells this-- it has the consistency of toothpaste, so it won't "run" along your pieces. $\endgroup$ – Carl Witthoft Feb 7 '18 at 12:57
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I've been a fan of epoxies for unusual adhesion problems. I found on Amazon a product with titanium in the name, but there's a caution regarding polypropylene plastics.

titanium epoxy

PLA is not of that family of plastic, which gives it a good chance of success. Epoxy is typically more viscous than cyanoacrylates, giving you a bit more control of the application, but also creating the need for care with "ooze-out."

The big glue company, Gorilla, also makes an epoxy that includes plastic and metal in the adhesion listing.

gorilla epoxy

As PLA is somewhat sensitive to heat, one would consider that fast-cure epoxies generate more heat than slow-cure epoxy, but the amounts you'll be using are not likely to create enough for concern.

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    $\begingroup$ "Titanium epoxy" sounds like a marketing term that doesn't actually have anything to do with titanium. $\endgroup$ – Tom van der Zanden Feb 7 '18 at 13:07
  • $\begingroup$ Marketing does go overboard in many circumstances. I suppose that since the packaging reads "contains titanium" they can get away with it. Of course, does 1 gram of titanium allow for such claims? Even what might be considered titanium debris would qualify and validate the packaging. Who can say if it adds strength to the product? $\endgroup$ – fred_dot_u Feb 7 '18 at 17:05
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After perusing http://www.thistothat.com/ I decided to give J-B Weld epoxy a try.

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  • $\begingroup$ So, how did the epoxy work for you? Your experiences could be very valuable to someone who has to deal with this question in the future. $\endgroup$ – Tom van der Zanden Feb 11 '18 at 20:29
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A glue gun would IMO work very well, and you can use transparent (or almost transparent) glue sticks to minimize ugly looking stains.

Things glued together usually break before the glue (in my experience) and it's cheap, you can get one for $10 with some glue sticks. It's fun too, I glue everything since I bought one :-)

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Try using one of the "gooey" forms of cyanoacrylate. Any of the major brands sells this-- it has the consistency of toothpaste, so it won't "run" along your pieces. Here's one that I've used with success: loctite goo

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