Houdini Threadlocker? or There is no Loktite thief in the South African Postal System!
R. Kwas  Original Mar 2016


Background:  Why is there always a mess around the Loktite container...is it leaking?  I have noticed the Loktite containers are always sticky and there is a mess around where they had been sitting (no, the container didn't fall over), as if the contents somehow have climbed up and out of the container...this is slightly baffling, as I don't know much, but I know water (and I have to presume Loktite) likes to run downhill (Ron's Rule No 1)...is Loktite somehow able to defy that rule and walk up the walls and out of the container? 

Apparently I am not the only one with questions about threadlockers. 


Link to thread VOC thread:  [Idler Arm Bushing 671444]:  http://www.volvoforums.org.uk/showthread.php?p=2072809#post2072809  

Excerpt from "Maver1ck"s posting: 

"...I had to use a local equivalent (of threadlocker) made in South Africa. The brand is not even worth mentioning, but it was green "retaining compound" and I tried not to care that half of the bottle had been siphoned off somewhere along the way to the store. I figure at least they didn't replace that half with water, like the several bottles of radiator coolant I bought last year to do a flush (some bottles had dark green liquid content but most were composed of a very pale yellow). The joys of living in Africa."

...my response:   

...I can't speak to the SA postal system, and the nice guy who was kind enough to make 50% coolant mix for you, but I can relate a story and some interesting information (I thought!) about the half full/half empty Loktite container...for a long time, I noticed a mess around the Loktite containers in their storage spot, or even on them...they were always gooey and wet, sometimes even sitting in a small puddle of the stuff...OK, sometimes one may have fallen over, so I figured the stuff had leaked out and made a mess...but it wasn't as simple as that...sometimes the mess was there even when containers hadn't fallen over...and they were still gooey and wet, since last time I cleaned them...I thought the contents might be wicking up and out of the container (generally speaking... "I don't know much, but I know water likes to run downhill" [Ron's Rule No. 1]...and as an extension of that, I would expect a liquid like a threadlocker to stay in the bottom of the container, but as a wicking liquid, who knows...maybe it indeed was capable of walking up the side of the container and pulling a Houdini...)...I needed an explanation...

...so being near Loktite's home in Connecticut, I asked my resident Loktite expert, who gave some interesting explanations...he advised me that the product, being an anaerobic mix (which works when deprived of air) must first be kept in breathable containers so that it doesn't think it has been applied, and wicked into to a joint, is now no longer exposed to the air, and does its' chemical trick and harden, locking the components...but apparently, as air is allowed INTO these specialized containers of special porous plastic, over time, this does allow some weepage of product in the other direction...OUT...so I wasn't dreaming...or drunk and disorderly (and Ron's Rule No. 1 is safe and not in need of amendments...phew!).

And to explain your situation, he also noted that their product (and apparently the SA produced version) is intentionally shipped with an unusually great volume for an unfilled airspace in the container for the same reason....so I suggest what you found was normal packaging, and there is no threadlocker thief in your postal system you need to be concerned about...just thought I'd ease your worried mind! ...and no, you won't get it at half the cost just because the container is half air! 

Thanks John B. for reference info...I hope I recounted it here accurately enough!


External material sources are attributed.  Otherwise, this article is Copyright © 2016.  Ronald Kwas.   The terms Volvo and Loktite are used for reference only.  I have no affiliation with these companies other than to try to keep their products working for me, help other enthusiasts do the same, and also present my highly opinionated results of the use of their products here.  The information presented comes from my own experience and carefully considered opinion, and can be used (or not!), or ridiculed and laughed at, at the readers discretion.  As with any recipe, your results may vary, and you are, and will always be, in charge of your own knuckles! 

You are welcome to use the information here in good health, and for your own non-commercial purposes, but if you reprint or otherwise republish this article, you must give credit to the author or link back to the SwEm site as the source.  If you donít, youíre just a lazy, scum sucking plagiarist, and the Boston Globe wants you!  As always, if you can supply corrections, or additional objective information or experience, I will always consider it, and consider working it into the next revision of this article...along with likely the odd metaphor and probably wise-a** comment. 


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