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Strain Gauge Bonding

  1. Aug 3, 2012 #1
    I have a few strain gauges that are going onto the suspension of a race bike. Ive never installed these things before. While I have found a lot of information on installing them, I am having a hard time finding many adhesive and chemical options. It seems a lot of them are non-permanent, or require a complex curing procedure. I would like a permenant method so I dont have to reinstall them a few times. One set of gauges will be close to an exhaust system as well. Anyone have any use personally with some of the available options?

    FYI, I am a poor engineering student, so I tend to do things the hard way if it saves me a few bucks. Maybe the non-perms are better and I just reinstall them often?
  2. jcsd
  3. Aug 4, 2012 #2


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    Gold Member

    Welcome to PF Strgt. (From the Stargate movie/series?)
    I don't know where you are, so this might not be of help. In North America we have a product called "J-B Weld". It's a binary epoxy similar to auto body filler, but is so strong that it actually works more like welding. (I know of one guy who mended a broken trailer hitch with it, and one of their ads showed it repairing the ram of a 12-ton bottle jack.) You can get it in hardware or auto parts stores.

    edit: I've used it to fabricate machine parts rather than carve or mould metal.
    Last edited: Aug 4, 2012
  4. Aug 5, 2012 #3
    Half my race bike is made out of jbweld :) Didn't know that was a suitable epoxy for strain gauges as its a bit thicker than the superglue-like stuff used in most of the applications guides.
  5. Aug 5, 2012 #4


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    That and duct tape will carry you through life, my son. :biggrin:

    Perhaps I should have asked for a description of the strain gauges in case I have the wrong idea about them. I'm thinking "little flat things" (pardon the technical jargon) about the size of a postage stamp. Anyhow, my idea was to encase them, rather than just glue them on. I think that the easiest explanation is if I tell you to think of a barnacle. The J-B forms an enclosure, and the gauge is the animal inside. That might be inappropriate for your purposes, though.

    I also like "contact cement", but again it might not be suitable. I don't know how it stands up to stress.

    edit: Upon further reflection, I think that J-B might be a bad idea. It would alter the physical properties of the material that it's attached to, and thus compromise the accuracy of the gauges. :frown:
    Last edited: Aug 5, 2012
  6. Aug 6, 2012 #5


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    Staff: Mentor

    From a quick google search, I conclude that you are not Robinson Crusoe! It seems the process can be as painstaking as ones patience will endure. :cool:

    From brief reading, it seems you´ll probably end up using superglue, but here are some links to read through first.


    ⊳ http://fetweb.ju.edu.jo/staff/Mechatronics/LShareef/Trans_files/5%20Stress%20and%20Strain/Lab%203%20-%20Strain%20Gauge%20Installation.pdf [Broken]

    http://www.disensors.com/downloads/products/Practical Hints For Strain Gauging_784.pdf

    Good luck! :smile:
    Last edited by a moderator: May 6, 2017
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