Thursday, February 2, 2012

sugru you

I know I haven't updated this blog in ages, but it's not because I haven't been doing any DIY — far from it. A few of the bigger projects are still not yet ready for prime time, but a lot of other ones are completed.

The ever-cool Cathy gave me several packs of Sugru for my birthday last year. Sugru is a kind of silicon clay that has the texture and viscosity of stiff plasticine when fresh, and is sort of like an old-school pink pencil eraser when cured. It comes in lots of fun colours, and is intended to be used to "hack things better" — to repair, make, and improve things.

I went on the web site and had a look at the suggested uses to get an idea of what to do with the stuff. It's one of those things that when you first encounter it, you think, "that's interesting, but I don't know if I'd ever use it," but then once you find the first use, you can't stop finding things to do with it.

Not all of my attempts were successful (the web site warns you about that), but everything I made with it last autumn is still working great.

The very first thing I did was use a pack of Sugru to make better (and semi-permanent) cushions for a pair of cell phone earbuds I have. The original ones were constantly coming off and getting lost, and just weren't that comfortable. I got this straight off the Sugru web site, so no photos.

The next thing I did was a bit more original. My laundry room (more like a laundry closet) just has a bare light bulb sticking out of the wall to illuminate it. The room is so tiny and crowded the bare bulb has a hard time lighting what I need to see, so a proper shade did not appeal. Instead, I made this so-ugly-it's-fun beaded cage to put around the light. The Sugru is the blue and orange stuff next to the wall. It holds the main structural wires together and pads the wall against the wire of the cage:



The idea for a light bulb cage came from a photo of Little Edie's room at Grey Gardens.

My first experiments showed that Sugru is best for sealing something (including something that needs to be waterproof, since it's silicon), or making something more ergonomic, or padding something. Next time I get some packets of it I'm going to check over the suggestions for shoe repair on the web site very carefully.

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