3M made an exciting announcement in 2007 stating that they had recently acquired Rite-Lok industrial adhesives from Chemence Inc. As stated by Patrick Deconinck, the division vice president of the Industrial Adhesives and Tape Division, “The addition of Chemence’s industrial adhesives, sold under the Rite-Lok brand, broadens our robust industrial adhesives product portfolio.” Simply stated, 3M has an aggressive growth plan that allows them to compete on multiple levels in a broad range of markets. This acquisition opened up new opportunities for 3M and their distribution partners to offer a new set of products to their customers.
3M rebranded the Rite-Lok products to Scotch-Weld in order to fit in with their existing Scotch-Weld line. The range of products offered through their Scotch-Weld line includes:
- Scotch-Weld™ Cyanoacrylate Adhesives
- Scotch-Weld™ Anaerobic Adhesives
- Scotch-Weld™ UV Adhesives
- Scotch-Weld™ High Temperature Silicone Sealant
- Scotch-Weld™ Structural Adhesives
- Scotch-Weld™ Primers and Activators
What are Anaerobic Adhesives?
Anaerobic comes from the Greek word "αναερόβιος" (comprising from the words αν=without, αέρας=air and βίος=life). This means that an anaerobic adhesive is an adhesive that remains in a liquid form until it is isolated from oxygen in the presence of metal. When the threadlocker is used between a nut and a bolt, it solidifies into a plastic-like form that causes the threads of the nut and bolt to “lock” together.
This locking prevents loosening from vibration and also protects from corrosion. Using a threadlocker in this fashion can potentially save our customers money in rework because they will be able to better loosen the bolts when needed instead of potentially breaking the bolt or having to drill it out and re-tap it.
So Many Choices
3M offers a wide range of threadlockers in their Scotch-Weld line. Here’s a quick breakdown:
- TL22 – Low strength, removable with hand tools, used in small diameter, fine thread fasteners.
- TL42 – Medium strength, removable with hand tools, ideal for machine tool access bolts and hydraulic system bolts.
- TL43 – Medium strength, removable with hand tools, good for medium and coarse-threaded screws, nuts and bolts and is oil tolerant.
- TL62 – Medium to High strength, removable/disassembly with heat, developed to secure assemblies with high strength retention
- TL72 – Permanent, high strength, locks bolts and studs up to 1” and seals against leaks and corrosion
- TL77 – Permanent, high strength, high viscosity, works well with larger diameters up to 1-1/2” and coarse threaded parts
- TL90 – Medium strength, low viscosity which provides a wicking action, locks and seals small compression and ferrule fittings with service temps up to 400°
3M Versus the Competition
There are many products that have become household names, even though they are trademarked. A great example of this is the word “Frisbee.” Even though we call every plastic flying disc a Frisbee, only the Wham-O company can legally call them Frisbees.
We see the same thing in the threadlocker market. When someone has a bottle of threadlocker in their hand, they will typically call it “Loctite.” 3M is aware of this and appears to be targeting Loctite specifically. In fact, in the 3M threadlocker line the naming convention used coincides with the Loctite line. If you see Loctite 222, look to the TL22 line, Loctite 272, look to the TL72, etc…
In addition to the specific numbering, the colors represent the type of strength the threadlocker has.
- Purple = Low
- Blue = Medium
- Red = High
- Green = Medium Strength, Low Viscosity
3M is offering these threadlockers with the same 3M quality that is expected as well as very competitive pricing. In regards to pricing, comparing 3M to its Loctite equivalent, 3M is almost 18% less expensive on average. I believe we can use this as a tool to bring our customers another quality 3M product and get a new win!