Rubber cement

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An adhesive solution of nonvulcanized rubber in an organic solvent. Rubber cements were originally made from natural rubbers and were usually compounded with gums or natural resins (mastic, Copal, Pine tar, Asphalt). In 1836, a commercial rubber-based cement called Caoutchouc was made using a small amount of the elastomer dissolved in a solvent and mixed with mastic. Natural rubber cements have high tack and give strong initial bonding, but, with time, discolor and become brittle. Most modern rubber cements are made from synthetic elastomers, such as Polyisoprene, silicone, Styrene-butadiene rubber (SBR), Neoprene, and Polyvinyl chloride.

Synonyms and Related Terms

adhesivo de caucho (Esp.); latex cement; rubber adhesive; Caoutchouc; rubber-based adhesive


  • Become yellow and brittle with age.

Physical and Chemical Properties

  • Usually soluble in petroleum solvents.

Resources and Citations

  • G.S.Brady, Materials Handbook, McGraw-Hill Book Co., New York, 1971 Comment: p. 15
  • Ralph Mayer, A Dictionary of Art Terms and Techniques, Harper and Row Publishers, New York, 1969 (also 1945 printing)
  • Theodore J. Reinhart, 'Glossary of Terms', Engineered Plastics, ASM International, 1988
  • Richard S. Lewis, Hawley's Condensed Chemical Dictionary, Van Nostrand Reinhold, New York, 10th ed., 1993
  • Matt Roberts, Don Etherington, Bookbinding and the Conservation of Books: a Dictionary of Descriptive Terminology, U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington DC, 1982
  • Pam Hatchfield, Pollutants in the Museum Environment, Archetype Press, London, 2002