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There are many things that will 'loosen' the joint.
But nothing that will actually remove the old glue are really make it easier to remove the old glue.
Styrene glue actually melts the plastic through a chemical process. So it is litteraly bonded into the plastic. You can scrape and carve it away, but there is nothing that will just let you peel it off, or disolve it.
You can scrape and carve it away, but there is nothing that will just let you peel it off, or disolve it.
I have a debonder for Testor's Red glue. The former owner of the hobby shop got the instructions from an old magazine and made his own version of it. when i bought the shop from him, I "inherited" these bottles full of debonder. It's all "Secret Ingredients" so I don't know what's in it. However, it doesn't hurt the plastic and will break down the glue to the point where it will fall off with a toothbrush. I've used it before, and in some cases, you have to let it sit on the glue joint overnight and / or reapply it in the morning. Retails for $6.00. Contact me:
Good plastic cements work by melting and fusing parts together. You can't really debond that. But You can still get kits apart pretty well. Someone had blobbed old tube glue all over my Aurora 2001 Moon Bus kit some 40 years ago, pulled the parts back apart and stuck it back in its box. The glue was so old and it hadn't effected the plastic and you could just flake it off. Freezing kits works to make the joints pop apart better. You could try soaking the kit in a plastic safe solvent like Super Clean. That will also remove old paint. And, depending on the kit, you may not need to take every single piece off. If its a figure and the parts are farily well secured, just leave it be, work over the seams, etc. and repaint. For something like an airplane maybe work on some of the smaller parts, so fixing up the big assembly is easier wihtout the risk of breaking small parts off.
I've found that white spirit, which is used to thin paint and clean brushes, helps to separate glued parts. I had also tried freezing kits and other ideas, but the most effective has been to put white spirit in the seam, and then after a few minutes separate the parts with a hobby knife. If you can get inside the parts that are stuck together, like a head or leg, even better as then you can 'paint' white spirit into the seam from both sides. Some glues take longer than others, or need several attempts. But don't leave the parts in white spirit for too long!
I recently found an old glow Dracula kit that I want to restore. Whoever put the kit together (not me, I hasten to add) glued the hands on the wrong arms. Does anyone have good suggestions for removing the hands without breaking the plastic? I've stuck the kit in the freezer, poured some water down the sleeves, and can hear the joints crack when I run hot water on it.
Is simply disassembling the arms the best way to go?
What is the best way to separate the arms at the seams?
I know some of you experts have done this hundreds of times, so any advice would be appreciated.
Thanks in advance