Review: JB Kwik Epoxy
I first discovered JB Kwik thanks to a pack of Japanese schoolgirls. By which I mean in the course of my reviewing a great set of multipart Japanese schoolgirls produced by Left Hand Miniatures, company president Graydon Gorby recommended it to me by name as a way to securely bond the mini’s weapon hands to their tiny wrists. I decided to give it a try, and it’s rapidly become a valued tool on my work bench.
Like most epoxies, JB Kwik is packaged as two separate elements, a resin (which they call “steel”) and a hardener. To use, one dispenses equal amounts of each onto a disposable surface and mixes them thoroughly, generating a sticky dark-gray goo about the consistency of hot fudge. I quite like the thick and sticky texture of the stuff, as it does a lovely job filling even the biggest gaps and it really helps keep wayward parts in place while it cures.
A small amount of the freshly-mixed epoxy is applied to one of the parts to be joined, and then one simply holds them together for three our four minutes. This part of the procedure is definitely not as easy as conventional cyanoacrylate superglue, and there is nothing like the endlessly useful “Zip Kicker” to accelerate the curing of JB Kwik. Still, the package promises curing in four minutes, and in my experience that’s a pretty reliable estimate.
Though it is a bit more of a hassle to use than superglue, in my experience JB Kwik forms a bond of superior strength with none of the brittleness I’ve come to expect from superglue, especially as it ages. I’ve found it especially useful for joints that will be subject to a lot of structural stress like heavy limbs or torso pieces for Warmachine Warjacks and the like. You will probably find it necessary to go in and clean up any excess epoxy with a knife or file, as it tends to ooze out of the joints and into places you don’t want it, but this usually a quick and easy job.
The major limitation in using JB Kwik is not the dark color (which you’ll be painting over anyway), but fact that you must be able to hold the pieces you’re trying to bond perfectly still for four minutes or so. If a fit is too awkward or a joint to shallow you’d best have the steady hands of a neurosurgeon and the patience of Job to do the job with epoxy. Jobs like that are why I still keep a bottle of superglue on my workbench.
I hope this has encouraged you to give JB Kwik a try. I’ve been most happy with using it on my own models, and I’m sure it can prove itself useful to any miniatures enthusiast. At a mere $5 or so, it’s a cheap date as well.
For a full demo on using JB Kwik, check out the video. I’m afraid it does drag a bit towards the end as I rather ran out of patter waiting for the darn epoxy to finish curing, but it does give a good idea of just what’s involved for those who have not used two-part epoxy before.
Pros: Cheap, Very strong and durable bonding, excellent gap-filler
Cons: Messy, Somewhat cumbersome to use
Final Verdict 4/5
Source: Home Depot
Popularity: 8% [?]
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