Introduction: Save Your Paint Brushes - Sugru Brush Hack
As an artist and one that really enjoys using watercolors I've lost many brushes to water damage. Besides just trying my hardest not to leave my brushes in my water cups there wasn't much I could do to ward against this, until now!
The seam between the metal holding the bristles in and the wooden handle is the most vulnerable area of a brush. It is such a small area too that it would drive me crazy to see some of my favorite brushes ending up disintegrating.
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Step 1: Getting Everything Together
- Lay out some baking paper (yes the stuff for cooking.) It will help you work on a clean surface and also doesn't stick too badly to the Sugru.
- Get a small glass of soapy water. (Hand soap or liquid dish soap work.)
- Clean all of your brushes and hands with soapy water to remove any oils, grease, or left over paint.
- Carefully open your 5g packet of Sugru in whatever color you picked. Knead it a little in your hands first.
- Make a very small ball with your fingers and roll it out to the length you will need to wrap it around the area of the brush you wish to seal. (I was making balls the size of peas or even smaller depending on the brush size.)
- If you would like to texture the Sugru to give some grip or just make life interesting find something with a nice texture on it already. I used the grip on a small hand flashlight. When applying the texture be sure to get it all soapy with the water you have then apply it to the Sugru rolling it up and down quickly. It will probably take several passes to cover all sides and look uniform.
Step 2: Applying the Sugru to Brushes
Be sure to cover the seam with the Sugru and use your finger to gently push it down and spread it out a little. You need to have no areas around the metal or wood where the water could seep in.
Something important to keep in mind is that 5 grams of Sugru actually can go a very long ways especially with fixing brushes this way. When all was said and done I covered 30 brushes, some of those were quite large as well, all with one pack.
Step 3: So Fresh and Clean
The last thing you will need to do is let your brushes dry so that they do not touch each other or anything else. You would stick them into some foam, place them in a cup so they fan out without touching, balance them off the side of a table, the list could go on forever. They need at least 24 hours to cure before you try to use them again.
This is a great example of exactly why I needed to find a solution for my brushes. The water always hits the area that is vulnerable. I am very forgetful and leave my station without taking my brushes out of the water sometimes even for a whole night. If you have kids or do this as well it is totally worth using a pack on.
I have not tried covering a whole brush yet but I suppose you could. You could make the obvious grip but often I like to move my brushes around in my hand as I use them so that wasn't the best idea when making my hack.
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