How to Remove Super Glue From Porcelain Figurines

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How to Remove Super Glue From Porcelain Figurines. Super Glue, or cyanoacrylate, is an adhesive that polymerizes (creates chemical bonds which result in polymer chains) when exposed to the hydroxide ions in water. As water molecules are everywhere, including in the air, Super Glue bonds to an object--be it porcelain or even skin--through contact with those molecules almost instantaneously. Here are the best methods for breaking down or dissolving this tricky substance from porcelain figures.

Things You'll Need

  • Ice cube
  • Adhesive remover
  • Acetone or nail polish remover
  • Craft blade
  • Cleaning supplies

Freeze the glued area with an ice cube, or place the object in a freezer for several hours and then gently and carefully remove it. Super Glue bonds break down in colder temperatures and the glue should, after freezing the glued area, pop or scrape off.

Buy and use a professional adhesive or super glue remover.

Apply an acetone-based nail polish remover or professional grade acetone to the glued area with a cotton swab or cotton ball.

Scrape the area carefully with a craft blade if all else fails. Keep in mind that a craft blade may remove more than the glue--it may also remove paint (if the piece was hand-painted after glazing) or the glaze and any undercoats of paint.

Clean the area, once you have removed the glue, with a mild cleanser and then dry (See "How to Clean Rare Porcelain Figurines," under Related eHows).

Tips & Warnings

  • Always wear goggles, a mask and gloves when using acetone--especially if you have a compromised immune system, suffer from chemical sensitivity issues or are elderly--as acetone is a solvent with vapors that can cause upper respiratory and mucus membrane damage, nerve damage, permanent eye injury or skin damage. If the solvent comes in contact with your skin or you breath in the vapors, immediately wash the contact area and apply moisturizer. Move to fresh air and ventilate the room.
  • Never breath in Super Glue vapors. Instead, wear a mask as the vapors can also irritate or damage the skin, nervous system and mucus membranes as well as the respiratory system and the eyes. Also, never use cotton to apply Super Glue to your porcelain figurines, as cyanoacrylate reacts to cotton and can instantly ignite and cause possible burns or fire damage and more vapors.

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