Sugru

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For the surname, see Sugrue.
An unopened packet of Sugru silicone rubber.

Sugru, or Formerol, is a patented[1] multi-purpose, non-slumping brand of silicone rubber that resembles modeling clay.

Properties[edit]

Sugru is malleable when removed from its airtight, moisture-proof packaging, retains its plasticity for thirty minutes,[2] and is self-curing at room temperature after approximately 24 hours. The material adheres to aluminium, steel, copper, ceramics, glass, fabric, brass, leather, plywood and other materials including ABS plastics.[1] When cured, it has a 'soft touch' or slightly flexible, grippable texture similar to features commonly found in soft overmolds. It is waterproof and dishwasher-safe,[3] and the material is thermally insulating, with a service temperature range between −50 and 180 °C.[1] Sugru is not resistant to some solvents.[4] The product has a shelf life of six months.[5] According to the product packaging, this can be extended to around 18 months if kept in the freezer.

History[edit]

The idea for Sugru was developed by Jane Ní Dhulchaointigh from Kilkenny, Ireland.[6] Ní Dhulchaointigh studied product design as a post-graduate research student at the Royal College of Art[6] where she conceived the idea for the substance in 2003 whilst using mixtures of standard silicone sealants and sawdust in her work.[7]

After receiving business grants,[8] Ní Dhulchaointigh worked with retired scientists from Dow Corning[9] and a silicone expert over a seven-year period[7] at the materials department at Queen Mary, University of London[7] to develop a silicone elastomer that was moldable, self-adhesive and self-curing. Her goal was to enable people "to easily and affordably repair, improve or customize things they already own."[9]

Sugru was developed by and is marketed by FormFormForm, a company in Hackney, London, with over 100,000 customers as of 2012, annual sales of $2 million, and a staff of 30.[10]

The name Sugru derives from the Irish language word "súgradh" for "play".[6]

Chemical compound[edit]

The formulation of sugru contains 30% Silicone caulk (Polysiloxane) 20-50% Talc, and the remaining additives including: methyltris (methylethylketoxime) silane, γ-aminopropyltriethoxysilane, and dioctyltin dilaurate.[11] The company claims its formulation can be varied to offer different levels of consistency, plasticity, softness, resiliency, surface adhesion, modulus and abrasion resistance, setting time, density, and ability to float[citation needed].

The company claims that Sugru is classified under EU Health & Safety regulations[clarification needed] as "not dangerous",[12] but that it may cause an allergic skin reaction in uncured form.[13] It is manufactured by London-based Formformform Ltd. Sugru is not currently CE marked, and therefore not tested to European standards.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

External links[edit]