Thursday, July 13, 2017

Testor's Plastic Cement Types TIPS

Here's the illustration used on Estes instructions to give guidance on what type of plastic adhesive to buy and assemble the kit.
It looks like the old tube style plastic cement I used as a kid.
Note the white oval on the upper right.

That oval implies "Testor's" brand available at Hobby Lobby and Michael's Crafts.
The red tube style (3501X) might be fine for plastic models that sit on the display shelf but not great for rocket models going through boost and recovery stresses.

George Gassaway used this "recommended red tube glue on his Little Joe II build shown on TRF. At ignition it didn't hold the launch lugs to the vacuform wrap. That led to a crash.

Stay away from the "Non Toxic" blue tube Testor's (3521X). We can thank the glue sniffer's for this useless glue.

Testor's also makes a bottled liquid glue (3502XT) that is probably okay for gluing the body details and tower assembly on the Little Joe II.

This is what you are looking for - Plastruct Plastic Weld Plastic Solvent.
George Gassaway mentioned in his build: "Tenax 7R also is good. Testor's liquid cement not as good but usable."

This is what I've used assembling plastic Saturn V and Mercury Redstone towers. Spray adhesive should be used for vacuform body wraps.
"Used for bonding Plastruct ABS, Styrene, Butyrate or Acrylic to each other, or in combination. Caution: Contains Trichloromethane. Do not take internally. Avoid eye contact and prolonged breathing of vapors. Use in well ventilated area. May cause nausea. Keep out of reach of children."


  1. Does the Tenax even exist any more? I have seen it recommended a number of places online. I was looking for something better than the red tube goo for building an Estes D Region Tomahawk.

    But when I looked for some to buy online, it seemed they don't make it any more, and you can only sometimes find overpriced bottles on eBay. I'm all for going with the right adhesive, but I'm only willing to spend so much for a bottle of glue.

    I went with a bottle of the Plastruct, because I saw it on here. I figured if it's good enough for you, it's got to be a pretty decent product.

  2. Hi Daniel,
    I don't really know about Tenax availability. I went with what I had here, I bought the Plastruct a few years ago. I just checked online and like you said, if you can find it it is expensive.

  3. This is the same stuff (HA!) as Tenax...

    1. Thanks Chris,
      I've heard of Same Stuff and appreciate the info. I don't usually give recommendations unless I've had experience using the product. I'll keep the vendor address for down the road.