The Friday Fillip: Sugru, the Good Goo

I’ve confessed here before to liking stuff. If you’re a maker or a mender, you’ll probably like stuff, too. And I’ve come across something that is likely to gladden the heart of any bricoleur: sugru. It’s a pliable, adhesive, coloured substance that sets at room temperature to become a heat- and wear-resistant rubbery object. Think silly putty + epoxy and you’re close. You use it to modify — hack — those things around you that weren’t made right in the first place, or to repair those things that have developed just a little fault.

It’s often the case that when something has almost unlimited possibilities, it’s hard to come up with ideas for how to use it — our consumer goods are now quite precisely shaped and announce their utility with a clear voice. By contrast, sugru is… protean. So you’ll find a number of suggested uses online, designed to kick start your imagination. Thus, 10 Clever Uses for Sugru and sugru’s own gallery of “awesome” uses. Connect things, put handles on things, make protective bumpers for things, repair vases, bicycle seats, toys, eyeglasses… You get the idea(s).

You order sugru online. It comes in small sealed packages that live for six months or so. Open one, and mould the stuff in your hands as you like for up to thirty minutes. Then let it cure at room temperature for 24 hours. That’s all there is to it.

To see it in action, check out this video of sugru’s creator, Jane Ní Dhulchaointigh (say that ten time fast; which is why she’s simply “Jane” on the sugru site). By the way, I gather that “sugru” means “play” in Irish Gaelic. Happy play, then.

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