0

My sibling needs me to repair their eyeglasses for them because the repairs they've tried in the past aren't holding. The eyeglasses have both plastic frames and plastic lenses and the break is a very small and inconvenient area that doesn't have enough surface to tape together. The location and size of the breaks also makes it difficult to gorilla glue them back together. When successful it doesn't hold very long. Just replacing them isn't an option, so what better ways are there to fix them and are there any quick and cheap ways to repair them more permanently?

The following image is a diagram of roughly where the breaks in the eyeglass frames are, indicated by the red circles.

enter image description here

  • 1
    This question would definitely benefit from having a picture of the damage – Caius Jard Apr 12 at 20:13
  • @Stan my sibling has declined to allow me to share a picture of their eyeglasses. But I can tell you the breaks aren't anywhere as simple as the bridge. one is just below it while the other is at a corner of one of the lenses. – Demon Apr 15 at 10:55
  • @Stan first of all, it's my sibling like I clearly stated several times. I don't have kids. And it's a good thing I'm not here about interpersonal problems then. I'm here for a hack to fix broken frames. If I wanted help with an interpersonal problem I would be at Interpersonal Skills. I can see about making a diagram but I'm not just posting pictures of somebody else's stuff online. And as I said in the question, replacing them isn't an option so no new frames. – Demon Apr 16 at 23:53
  • Please accept my apology. – Stan Apr 17 at 2:18
1

If the broken edges fit very well together, I would use cyanoacrylate (super glue) to mate them. Since CA sticks poorly to polyolefins and acetal, you may want to make sure your glasses are the right material by gluing something small like a piece of wood to a spot near the back and seeing how much effort it takes to break it off. This test will also help you verify the glue is good, not a bad brand or a bad batch. Better brands do tend to have fewer quality issues, but the core ingredient of every CA glue is pretty much the same. For both the test and the break, it will be beneficial to wipe away oils with rubbing alcohol or lighter fluid.

If the glue is a water-thin type, set up the glasses and optionally use tape to hold everything in place. Put less than a drop of glue onto each crack so it wicks into the space.

If the glue is thickened, you'll need to apply as little as you can to each break, perhaps using a toothpick. Wear gloves, put it together and hold it for 30 seconds. It you stick yourself to the glasses, use vegetable oil and a screwdriver to slowly pry yourself off. Don't get acetone on the glasses.

The glasses will be strong enough to wear within an hour. You still need to treat them gently, since they could break at the same place. If you already contaminated the joint with gorilla glue (horrible stuff), this repair may still work since CA sticks to damn near anything, but it will always be a weak joint since the gorilla glue can tear.

| improve this answer | |
  • glues just don't cut it. gorilla glue brand super glue, super glue brand super glue, they aren't strong enough. As I said in the question, I need something better. – Demon Apr 18 at 21:12
  • @Demon You didn't mention CA in the question, but it occurs to me that if you have tried it without success, you might need a variety that is modified for increased peel strength. The brands you mentioned (marketing companies that don't really make adhesives) don't have that type of product. Peel strength of (unmodified) CA is its shortcoming, while lack of adhesion is the shortcoming of many more common adhesives. I find lack of adhesion to be the more severe problem, which is why I suggested a test and degreasing. Those steps are NOT optional if you want the fix to hold. – piojo Apr 19 at 5:32
  • Assuming CA can adhere well, Loctite Ultra Gel Control is the cheapest CA that's modified for toughness and peel strength. Gorilla "hammer tough" did not have good peel strength according when I tested it. – piojo Apr 19 at 5:41
0

The fastest and cheapest kind of repairs to plastic glasses that have broken frames is called Bondic™.

It is a UV cured epoxy. Happily, the UV curing light is included in the kit which is available at well-stocked hardware stores and online. My kit was about $25.

The process takes about 10 seconds. There is an online repair demonstration video of frames broken across the bridge which is very impressive.

It may not work if there has been other kinds of repairs attempted with other materials and adhesives at the break location. With the cost of frames to replace, it might be worth a try.

Good Luck.

| improve this answer | |
  • I'm assuming that the light can't cure the glue in areas where it can't shine on it. If that's true then wouldn't it need to be applied over the breaks instead of between them? – Demon Apr 15 at 11:03
  • @Demon The only way it would cure all the way through the break is if it's one of the advanced types where the UV catalyzes the cure, then curing continues during the next day or two whether light or dark. Cheap UV glue isn't like that, as far as I've seen. – piojo Apr 17 at 5:55
0

A hacky repair that might hold better but might look terrible is hot glue. It bonds to most smooth surfaces and stays flexible after hardening, so the chances of the repair breaking are slim. Another advantage is that you can probably peel the glue away from the frame and lens if you find a better solution. My dad repaired his reading glasses that way. It looks stupid, but still holds today.

Another idea that might look just as bad but might hold even better is clear construction silicone. That sticks to almost everything and stays flexible after curing as well, but it might be very hard or impossible to remove it once it's cured.

First clean the frame thoroughly and let it dry completely. Then dip your fingers in a solution of water and dishwashing liquid (Silicone won't stick to that solution). Dab a tiny amount of silicone onto the break and smooth it out with your wet finger. Remove any smears immediately and completely. Let the silicone cure for several hours.

| improve this answer | |
  • That sounded promising but a few hours isn't anywhere near quick enough. Because of where the breaks are it's really difficult to get the glasses to stay in the correct position until they dry unless I'm actually holding them in place. I wouldn't be able to hold them for several hours. – Demon Apr 15 at 11:00
  • You could try placing rubber bands around the frame to hold it in place? – Elmy Apr 15 at 11:08
  • On further thought, such a tiny amount of silicone probably only needs 20 - 30 minutes curing time instead of several hours, but that's still a long time to hold a frame together. – Elmy Apr 15 at 11:38
  • I've tried the various methods for get them to stay in position on their own without me holding them but because of where the breaks are nothing has worked. I can hold them steady enough for about 45 minutes. Would a tiny amount on the breaks dry before then and be enough to permanently hold them together? – Demon Apr 17 at 0:00
  • After seeing the picture you added to your question, I doubt any kind of glue alone would suffice. You probably need to add a support like stiff metal wire to keep the 2 halves from bending and moving. If you use a small amount of silicone, hold the frame togeter for 20 - 30 minutes, but let it dry much longer after that (without holding it together). The silicone is completely cured once it stops smelling like vinegar. – Elmy Apr 17 at 5:45
0

SUPER GLUE & BAKING SODA.... Yes, this little hack comes from the tech world and has been one of my best plastic repair hacks...i have repaired many of my glasses frames and my husband's sunglass frames due to dropping them on my tile floor.....I happened across a youtube video by accident and has been the best accident in my world.... Search YouTube for the words above!

| improve this answer | |
  • 1
    How does the baking soda contribute in this type of repair? – piojo Apr 23 at 4:04
  • 1
    The baking soda adds strength and helps build the plastic or the surface up you can then file it down smooth – Vickie Scott Apr 23 at 19:11
  • I also repaired some refrigerator trays that are made out of a certain hard plastic the repair was really amazing 0 because I used a plastic bonding epoxy made by loctite called plastic bonder – Vickie Scott Apr 24 at 18:44
  • I gather baking soda is only for cases where the surfaces aren't perfectly mated? I've used it the same way, though I hope the glasses are well mated. BTW, Loctite plastic bonder is acrylic, not epoxy. I've heard good things about two-part acrylics on plastic. I've even used acrylic caulk on plastic! Acrylic just loves other plastics. (Teflon/PP/PE/acetal are special cases and usually need to be dealt with using different techniques.) – piojo Apr 25 at 4:11
  • What the loctite did basically was fill/seep into in the crack and when completely bonded the repair was as if it were one piece again saved me $30 price to replace, I love the stuff... The SG & BS... Is for those tiny plastic breaks – Vickie Scott Apr 25 at 4:30

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.