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Adjustable thread lock fluid?

DavidUK

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How can I thread lock a nut and bolt BUT then be able to adjust it later by, say, one or two revolutions and still have it secured against working loose?

I've had a Google and came up with: Vibra-Tite VC-3: The Adjustable & Reusable Threadlocker.

...but this appears to be an American product not cheaply obtainable in the UK. Is there a Loctite equivalent anyone?

Many thanks.
 

jbtsax

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You might want to look at this: Loctite 243 I used to use purple, but it is no longer available. The medium strength blue should work fine. Just don't use too much.
 

Stephen Howard

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Loctite 243 is a medium strength threadlocker, with some resistance to oils. Loctite 222 is a low strength threadlocker.
Trouble is, none of them will withstand repeated adjustments. You might get three or four goes and then the threadlock just crumbles away.
Might be better off with a mechanical solution, such as a Nylock nut....or a few turns of PTFE tape on the thread of the bolt.

If it's a sax-related application (for example, the locking nut on King point screws) then Loctite is about the only bet.
 

Phil

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Yes, its really just a jazzed up latex/polimer coating. It has its uses and in Europe its kind of expensive given that you probably only need a few drops. Then it just sits on the shelf (and I dont know its shelf life once unsealed).
 

turf3

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Let's be clear: Loctite is not a "jazzed up latex/polymer coating". I don't know what that other stuff is, but Loctite threadlockers are cyanoacrylate adhesives with varying fillers/thickeners, different strengths, and different viscosities.

I'm looking at the Loctite catalog right now.

222MS is purple, listed as "low strength", thixotropic viscosity (means thick, like syrup).
243 is blue, listed as "Medium strength - disassemble with hand tools" - also thixotropic viscosity
248 is blue, listed as "Medium strength - disassemble with hand tools" - viscosity is listed as "semi-solid".

For the teeny screws in most saxophone work I'd go with 222. Better to have a screw gradually back out than find you have to put a torch on it to get it loose.

McMaster-Carr shows all these as currently available in a range of container sizes. For those not in the US, McMaster-Carr is a general purpose industrial supplies company, from whom everybody in any kind of technical industry constantly orders all kinds of stuff from fasteners to tools to factory supplies like oils, greases, threadlockers, adhesives, etc., etc., etc. I am sure that wherever you live, there is at least one company of similar type, serving manufacturing engineers, technicians, machinery maintenance people, prototype builders, etc. I have no idea whether M-C will export.

Be advised that CA threadlockers have expiration dates, so don't buy a whole bunch at one time. However, since they're anaerobic adhesives, having opened the container doesn't accelerate their degradation.
 

Phil

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Turff, that still adds up to jazzed up polymers in my world :D

(Especially when we are talking about the ones that remain semi soft.)
 

Stephen Howard

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The difference appears to be that Loctite sets - or at least semi sets, so once you back the screw out a few times you effectively grind or crush the locking matrix. The Vibra-Tite stuff appears to act like plastic sludge, so I'd assume it maintains its properties even after the screw has been adjusted.
 

DavidUK

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I don't have enough room in my application for a Nyloc nut.

The adjustment/s should be when when the nut is first installed or within a day or so of that. Just didn't want to have to upset or contaminate the whole assembly by using a crumbling thread lock fluid, rather to simply adjust a little and still be sure it's not going to move. There are no spinning forces applied, only vibration, so the nut/bolt wouldn't be to inclined to undo.

This points toward the plastic sludge type as being the best solution (sic).

Thanks for all your advices.
 

Colin the Bear

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I find a dab of evo stick on the thread will last as long as anything else. Resists vibration loosening and allows later adjustment. Easily cleaned off when disassembled. It's already in the cupboard too. ;)
 

DavidUK

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You've been through my cupboard! o_O
 

jbtsax

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I mostly use "threadloc" on pivot screws---especially those that cannot be tightened so as not to move mechanically. On adjustment and regulation screws if they are tight to begin with I do not use anything. On those that turn easily, I turn them to the best possible adjustment and then unscrew them 2 or 3 full turns keeping track of the orientation of the slot. Then I add a drop of the threadloc and screw them back to the starting position. Rarely is there much change after that point and when there is, only a very minor adjustment is required.
 

PigSquealer

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In a pinch I’ve used clear fingernail polish. Small dip of the toothpick on the head area only. Clean up with acetone or fingernail polish also as a remover. Be cautious not to get any remover on the instrument finish !
 

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