[Toolbox Builds] Improving The Gluebox

Since writing about building this gluebox, I lost it, found it, then realized its unwieldiness. What this version-two-point-zero needed was a smaller box, unmistakable for another, along with a project worth deciding on all useful glue elements. That project is a future-retro “console” with television and two-tiered rolling rack. I want to reinforce its rickitiness and do what I can to turn it into something that, either in the apartment-mansion or elsewhere, will be cool.

Let’s cover relevant “tools” and “glues” first.

Tools: Newspaper, paper, and scrap paper are useful for working on items while letting them dry. Since we tend to be impatient in life, if we put something we’ve glued that’s half-dry on some surface, the glue can ruin the surface, so why not use some scrap paper that we can recycle later? Throw in some paper bags and napkins for cleaning. I keep a pair of “glue gloves” that I don’t mind throwing away after they get sufficiently glued up. I don’t mind glue on my hands too much, but if I don’t have to worry about it, all the better. I keep a dust mask as a reminder to work in a well-ventilated area.

I’m thinking of making a “Let Glue Dry” weigher…

Glues: Before we get into glues themselves, because I am not an expert by any means, I included wall thumbtacks to puncture the glue containers back when I first built this gluebox, and, I must say it’s nice! Other than that, I get cheap cyanoacrylate or “Super Glue” at Daiso because I can get a bulk size resembling a toothpaste container of glue that has a shelf life longer than the small little super glue containers that dry up instantly. There are other glues that work for specific surfaces, so depending on the project and the professionalism, do the research.

For me, form follows function, and I’m not overly worried about glue damage.

My plan of action for the future-retro console area is: glue the front plate back on, glue the inside edges to increase rigidity, then maybe I’ll glue cardboard inside the rack itself to provide additional rigidity. This will be sufficient while I find its short-term home, whether where it is, or further back in my living room. Its caster wheels aren’t great for moving around on carpet, so when I move it, I’ll have to move the TV first, then the rack, where I’ll probably spend more time gluing its undersides, before moving it to a more permanent location.

I think this gluebox might necessitate a trip to the hardware store.

Before splitting this essay into pre-trip and post-trip, the way I’ve differentiated the gluebox from other boxes is by gluing the cardboard glue backers to the box for both aesthetic and function. The glues I like better are featured more prominently. I’ll either glue the ones I don’t care about as much to the bottom or recycle them. I used to keep the used glue containers, but, that’s just wasteful…

Well, in the 8 days since I wrote the first part, I changed my mind.

The media rack has taken on a life of its own, so I’ll certainly include a photo of where it’s at in the outro, but instead, let’s shift gears into first why I finally got around to working on this project, and the value of deciding when something is worth salvaging and when you should just throw it away.

It starts with this plastic coathanger:

I accidentally snapped it in half trying to retrieve a pantshanger.

I taped it and it seemed to hold but overnight, it had fallen into my bathtub in such a state where it looked like something had taken a large… well… dropping. I liked the coathanger well enough to consider it the candidate for some glue project. The smaller cyanoacrylate “super glue” I had was too runny and didn’t do much to reinforce it.

I also didn’t do much to make sure the two breakpoints had good contacts:

It ended up never gluing quite right.

I ended up recycling it and chalking it up to bad luck. For something like that, I’m learning to not waste too much time on things that don’t matter much. For this essay, I covered the essentials but had caught my wheels spinning on building out this whole intricate media rack. One part of it is drying in my bathtub after being washed throughout the day. The corners will need a bit more of an aesthetic direction because if it were up to me, I would glue the corners with cardboard, slather the glue on, and let it dry into a glue monstrosity that would have the force to withstand even the lightest touch.

Its home will eventually not be with me, so I have to do it “better.”

Unlike the coathanger, I can’t throw it out because I didn’t do it cleanly.

I’ll have to do it right the first time so it looks good. I’ll be using it first to test out all the videogames I’ll be selling throughout my time in the apartment-mansion. By test, I do mean play the games I want to play, along with testing them to make sure they work. After that’s that and before I move out of the apartment-mansion, I’ll be giving the TV and rack to a friend of mine, so I want to make sure that he doesn’t get something gnarled and ugly for his game room. It’s a nice feeling to know because unlike the 27″ TV I donated last year that no one wanted, this friend actually wants the TV and will take care of it, and the rack actually works well for a portable little media center. They both have a nice woodgrain aesthetic that works well together so they should stay together, I think. I just need to fix it up so it’s sturdy, roadworthy, and reliable enough for both me and him.

That project probably won’t contain any more glue.

Quotes: None.
Sources: My personal experiences.
Inspirations: Part 1 was based on wanting to write about my glue experiences. Part 2 was based on wanting to get this essay out the door.
Related: Check out the first Gluebox essay for more technicality. There aren’t many other Toolbox Builds yet.
Pictures: The first is an overhead shot of everything in the gluebox. Then some coathanger shots. Penultimately, the media rack as it sits now, or I should say, after I cleared out some boxes so you could fully see it. Finally, the “Let Glue Dry” object, which is actually a computer heatsink, but will make for an effective reminder.
Written On: 2020 January 21 [24 minutes, from 12:27am to 12:51am. Gdoc.] ——– 2020 January 29 [16 minutes, from 8:38pm to 8:54pm, while listening to Hydrosphere, after pasting the Gdoc into WordPress.]
Last Edited: 2020 January 29 [Minor edits from Gdoc, so let’s just say second draft; final draft for the Internet.]

My big goal is writing. My most important goal is writing "The Story." All other goals should work toward that central goal. My proudest moment is the most recent time I overcame some fear, which should have been today. I'm a better zombie than I was yesterday. I'm not better than you and you're not better than me. Let's strive to be better every day.