Hide Glue

Hi Group, Is there and easy way to dissolve hide glue. We need to take some wood chairs apart to repair them. Thanks, Jim
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On 7/24/2012 3:13 PM, James wrote:

Steam is probably the best way.
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On 7/24/2012 3:13 PM, James wrote:

Heat, basically.
Above about 140-145F if it is indeed old hide glue it will tend to reliquify and let go.
An iron w/ damp cloth is generally the toolset of choice...
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On Tue, 24 Jul 2012 15:13:19 -0500, James wrote:

Injecting alcohol into the joint will work if you can get enough in there, but the steam method others have suggested works well also. But too much steam can warp/damage the surrounding wood. I've heard of wrapping everything around the joint with waterproof tape, but only if you're going to refinish the chair anyway.
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If the objective is to try and reactivate the glue after repairing the joint, then steam or heat is the way to go. I like using alcohol but that causes the glue to denature and crystallize making it fail so the joint can be disassembled. The residual glue must be then removed and fresh glue added to reglue the joint.
Good Luck.
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James wrote:

You can make a simple steam injector with a teakettle (this was something I saw in an old woodworking book).
Get three corks (A, B, C) (whichever is cork C needs to fit tightly into the kettle spout), maybe a couple of feet of tubing (1/2" might work well), a needle tip (large kind used for gluing or such),
Drill a hole in two corks (A and B) to fit the tube snug. Drill a hole HALF way through the last cork (C) the same as the other corks. Push tube through the cork A until enough protrudes to place cork C on (both corks should touch). Push the tube into cork B (can push enough through so it comes out the other side a little).
Place cork B into the spout of the teakettle. Insert the needle into cord C so the steam flowing from the kettle through the tube can come out the needle.
Now just drill a small hole in the joint large enough for the needle and the steam should dissolve the bond.
The whole can be filled and sanded so it wont be noticed.
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Michael Joel wrote:
<SNIP> > three corks (A, B, C) (whichever is cork C needs to fit tightly into the

Correction (sorry) that should of course be (whichever is cork B needs to fit tightly into the kettle spout)
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no_email_please@void_void.void says...

This may seem a bit naive since I missed the original question, but wouldn't injecting alcohol into the joint crystallize the glue and break the adhesive bond?
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phorbin wrote:

Yes, it should. Of course if the chair has shellac it will also dissolve any finish that it touches - but then a lot of steam won't help it any either.
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