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Nonsense I say. Here's why.

Checking carefully for cross threading, I screw a  new tin of foam gun cleaner on a new gun. Close the valve tight.  And put the assembly in the metal box.  It has a tight-fitting lid. 

 

Two days later I open the lid.

Had I been smoking I would have self-immolated on the spot. Almost all of the content had leeched out. An hour later, my clothes still reek of the volatile gas.

 

I'm slightly cross. And grateful to have learned the lesson.

 

No matter how much care is taken the union between gun and canister is not gas tight.

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I only ever put the foam cleaner canister on when changing foam canisters just for a quick flush through before putting on a new canister so luckily not had this problem, my biggest grumble is with the manufacture of some brands of foam canister where the joint between the foam canister and the bit of plastic on top of the canister with the male thread on  is shite and if you bump the gun then it separates and you end up with a right bloody mess..... 

50229DAD-5872-40FE-A715-570C3FB44250.jpeg

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10 minutes ago, Cpd said:

I only ever put the foam cleaner canister on when changing foam canisters just for a quick flush through before putting on a new canister so luckily not had this problem, my biggest grumble is with the manufacture of some brands of foam canister where the joint between the foam canister and the bit of plastic on top of the canister with the male thread on  is shite and if you bump the gun then it separates and you end up with a right bloody mess..... 

50229DAD-5872-40FE-A715-570C3FB44250.jpeg

Yup! and its bloody hard to get it out of your hair.

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You've not heard about the plumber driving his van and it caught fire?  The quickfire blow torch got trapped, trigger pulled, gas still attached.

Always disconnect your cannisters!  But not with foam!!

 

Foam gun cleaner is a bit of a misnomer.  We find it ruins more guns than it helps.  Best just to keep it clean and keep a can connected.

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Why oh why oh why is the industry handing us a health hazard?

Disgusted of Lancaster

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36 minutes ago, markc said:

some brands of foam canister where the joint between the foam canister and the bit of plastic on top of the canister

 

Had that with a Everbulid can of foam from Toolstation. Picked the gun up by the handle and the can snapped off. Hence I don't use that foam anymore!

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I wish I understood this thread.

 

I had thought that expanding foam cans were used once with some sort of plastic straw in the nozzle and an hour later everything was binned.

 

My first experience of these is coming up because I will be following prior advice from @PeterWand anchoring my electric cavity meter box in the wall with a few quirts.

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8 minutes ago, epsilonGreedy said:

I wish I understood this thread....

 

My boy, when yer as old as I am you will........

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1 hour ago, ToughButterCup said:

Almost all of the content had leeched out. An hour later, my clothes still reek of the volatile gas.

 

I'm slightly cross. And grateful to have learned the lesson.

 

No matter how much care is taken the union between gun and canister is not gas tight.


The canisters are, the valves are not as gas tight on the guns themselves and due to the volatility of the liquid and the gas, it will leach past the valve head if the pin is not perfectly clean. 

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I have been using quite a bit of this myself recently.

 

Having had a couple of guns cleaned out and then seize up my conclusion, supported by reading up on the internet, is that you are better to leave the foam cannister attached and close the gun so that it is airtight.

 

Also unless you are using a lot of the foam it might just be easier to use single use cans and not bother with the faff of cleaning guns. I also find the combination of gun plus 750ml can is often very hard to get into the spaces where I want to use foam.

 

i had to knock this up to get foam into hard to reach spots.

3160A5DD-C21D-4994-9AB6-F86595099874.jpeg

Edited by AliG

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26 minutes ago, epsilonGreedy said:

I wish I understood this thread.

 

I had thought that expanding foam cans were used once with some sort of plastic straw in the nozzle and an hour later everything was binned.

 

My first experience of these is coming up because I will be following prior advice from @PeterWand anchoring my electric cavity meter box in the wall with a few quirts.

 

The 'one shot' cans of foam have their own plastic nozzle and are pretty much only good for that initial use (i.e. assume you'll use all the foam in one go) because as soon as it goes off in the nozzle you will struggle to use it again. Also it tends to over-expand - which is fine for big gap filling but not for more targeted applications.

 

If you use the low expansion gun grade foam with a gun (Soudal is great), you can make a can last ages as the foam never goes off if you close the rear gun valve after each use. You may get a buildup of hard foam at the tip but can easily knock this off or remove with a knife. I've picked up a foam gun after 6 months and it's still been fine.

 

I've never used the cleaner, just gone immediately from spent canister to new. Isopropyl alcohol (£10/l on eBay) is the best for cleaning the gun exterior after use and to remove wet foam from surfaces (but you have to be super quick).

 

Always wear gloves and old clothes as it quickly stains your skin black and I've had to sandpaper it off in the past!

 

I always had a square of cardboard or ply to sit the gun on flat as foam can weep out the top of the nozzle when the valve is open but the trigger relaxed.

 

Once the gun did get properly clogged but I was able to strip it down and clear the blockage with a paperclip and length of wire, plus plenty of isopropyl alcohol. 

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51 minutes ago, Bitpipe said:

The 'one shot' cans of foam have their own plastic nozzle and are pretty much only good for that initial use (i.e. assume you'll use all the foam in one go) because as soon as it goes off in the nozzle you will struggle to use it again. Also it tends to over-expand - which is fine for big gap filling but not for more targeted applications.

 

If you use the low expansion gun grade foam with a gun (Soudal is great), you can make a can last ages as the foam never goes off if you close the rear gun valve after each use...

 

 

Excellent post thank you.

 

At what size of void would you consider switching from low to full foam cans?

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If i can access the void I often partially fill it with off cuts of Calotex and then foam around that, not sure about specific gap sizes. 

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1 hour ago, Bitpipe said:

Always wear gloves and old clothes as it quickly stains your skin black and I've had to sandpaper it off in the past!

I second this and recommend using disposable latex gloves and not the cheap ones included with cans of foam.

 

Never wear clothing you don't mind being destroyed when using it either.

 

If you do get it somewhere you don't want it, immediate application of the gun cleaner will clean it, but usually the best idea is to let it dry and then scrape it off. Trying to wipe it off whilst wet is a disaster.

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21ACE38C-A3FF-4CBA-94F3-28E7ED1718DF.jpeg.35894d441acf63bfbde0195b842fc69b.jpegSometimes the foam can seal ain’t great either... almost new can, fortunately a bag at hand to keep it for later.

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4 hours ago, epsilonGreedy said:

 

Excellent post thank you.

 

At what size of void would you consider switching from low to full foam cans?

 

I never used it to fill huge voids, it was primarily used to adhere big (1.2m x 2.4m) sheets of EPS to the basement concrete walls and then to fill any small gaps in between boards, that's where the gun is great as you can really control the flow and get it deep into the crevice.

 

I did have a few bigger cavities to fill and just opened up the gun valve to let rip but given it's more expensive than the high expansion stuff,  if that's the majority of what you're doing then maybe the single use cans of high expansion are better.

 

Another tip is that if you're using it as 'glue' then making both surfaces damp helps adherence. 

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3 hours ago, AliG said:

I second this and recommend using disposable latex gloves and not the cheap ones included with cans of foam.

 

Never wear clothing you don't mind being destroyed when using it either.

 

If you do get it somewhere you don't want it, immediate application of the gun cleaner will clean it, but usually the best idea is to let it dry and then scrape it off. Trying to wipe it off whilst wet is a disaster.

 

if you use a rag soaked in IPA (not the beer) then you stand more of a chance. It really does stick like s#!t so scraping it off a painted surface will take the paint with it too!

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5 hours ago, Bitpipe said:

If you use the low expansion gun grade foam with a gun (Soudal is great), you can make a can last ages as the foam never goes off if you close the rear gun valve after each use. You may get a buildup of hard foam at the tip but can easily knock this off or remove with a knife. I've picked up a foam gun after 6 months and it's still been fine.

 

Recommendations for a decent quality foam gun??

Edited by Rob99

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5 hours ago, Bitpipe said:

 

The 'one shot' cans of foam have their own plastic nozzle and are pretty much only good for that initial use (i.e. assume you'll use all the foam in one go) because as soon as it goes off in the nozzle you will struggle to use it again. Also it tends to over-expand - which is fine for big gap filling but not for more targeted applications.

 

If you use the low expansion gun grade foam with a gun (Soudal is great), you can make a can last ages as the foam never goes off if you close the rear gun valve after each use. You may get a buildup of hard foam at the tip but can easily knock this off or remove with a knife. I've picked up a foam gun after 6 months and it's still been fine.

 

I've never used the cleaner, just gone immediately from spent canister to new. Isopropyl alcohol (£10/l on eBay) is the best for cleaning the gun exterior after use and to remove wet foam from surfaces (but you have to be super quick).

 

Always wear gloves and old clothes as it quickly stains your skin black and I've had to sandpaper it off in the past!

 

I always had a square of cardboard or ply to sit the gun on flat as foam can weep out the top of the nozzle when the valve is open but the trigger relaxed.

 

Once the gun did get properly clogged but I was able to strip it down and clear the blockage with a paperclip and length of wire, plus plenty of isopropyl alcohol. 

This^^^^

 

Foam guns aren't rocket science. I've used loads of foam in the last year, loads, and I quickly gave up cleaning them. Waste of time.

 

Can runs out, switch straight to a new one.

 

Close valve when finished.

 

Use knife to clear the end of the nozzle pre-use.

 

Easy.

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1 minute ago, Rob99 said:

 

Recommendations for a decent quality foam gun??

 

I got a £20 one from Screwfix, still going strong 5 years later!

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