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How to Remove Glue From a Plastic Model

Updated February 21, 2017

Many people enjoy building plastic models as collector's items, and the detailed designs require a great deal of concentration and care. When working with glue on these models, glue often ends up where it doesn't belong, securing the wrong pieces together or creating a stain on your model. Fortunately, it's not difficult to remove glue from a plastic model with acetone.

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  1. Dampen the end of a cotton swab with acetone. Gently press the end of the swab against the acetone bottle to remove excess liquid.

  2. Apply the acetone to the glued area. Wait at least five minutes to give the acetone time to dissolve the glue.

  3. Wipe residual acetone and glue away with a tissue or napkin. If the parts have not come apart, or glue is still visible on the surface, apply acetone again until all glue is gone.

  4. Tip

    Acetone can be found on its own at hardware and home improvement stores. Acetone is often found in nail polish remover.


    Acetone can discolour clothing and dry out skin. Wash your hands after using acetone and keep it off of your garments.

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Things You'll Need

  • Cotton swabs
  • Acetone
  • Tissue

About the Author

Samantha Volz has been involved in journalistic and informative writing for over eight years. She holds a bachelor's degree in English literature from Lycoming College, Williamsport, Pennsylvania, with a minor in European history. In college she was editor-in-chief of the student newspaper and completed a professional internship with the "Williamsport Sun-Gazette," serving as a full-time reporter. She resides in Horsham, Pennsylvania.

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