I have a funny story to share about a trade show exhibit we attended in the early days of our company. We were at our booth with a bunch of fittings that we had previously glued pipe into. We then demonstrated to the hundreds of people walking by how PVC pipe could be debonded and reglued.
These demos generated considerable buzz at the show and our booth was VERY busy! At one point a distinguished gentleman came up to me with a very disapproving look on his face. “This can’t be done” he declared. “What can’t be done?” I replied. It turned out that the man was a glue chemist from one of the glue manufacturers also there at the show. “This can’t be done with MY glue” he challenged. “Bring it on!” I responded. And the contest was on.
He went to another area and returned with an old glue joint using his glue. I placed the DEBONDER in his hands and he was completely dumbfounded when he proceeded to debond and extract the pipe. He couldn’t explain it, but I can. Pipe glue is intended to resist sheer forces that want to pull the pipe out of the socket. The glue is very strong in this function. The glue has almost no strength in tension and that’s how we unglue it by shrinking the diameter of the pipe when we extract. We pull the pipe from the fitting in tension. It’s never been done before.
One thing that has helped in this product development is my training as a chemical engineer. There is considerable misunderstanding about how glue truly works chemically. The bond that is formed is still chemically a separate structure from the pipe wall. Certainly there is bonding, but there is no fusing into the pipe itself. And the truth is that this bond can be broken with the proper application of heat and force. That is what we do with the debonding technology. Yes, sir, it CAN be done, and many across the United States are benefiting from that physical reality every day with the successful use of the DEBONDER in all repair applications.