Part 1: At the risk of sounding like a commercial (I have no financial interests in any of these products), that’s not ALL you can do with them. Here's a list of 20 varied uses I’ve found for this stuff over the years, and a few more as I let my imagination run wild.
1. Non-permanently attaching posters to the wall (it’s actually sold for that purpose also).*
2. Similarly, holding in place the lower corners of a framed picture that would otherwise be difficult to keep straight on its hook.*
3. Holding the lower corners of a framed picture far enough away from the wall that the picture doesn’t tilt downwards too much from a 3D hook.*
(* For use on painted walls, please see the comments at the end of this article for important caveats.)
4. Holding random loose parts of things so that they don’t move (like a useless D-ring on the bottom of my violin case that would flip out and interfere with it lying flat until I put a small dab of quake putty behind it; see Figure 1).
5. Blocking ants from entering the bathroom through a hole in the tiles.
6. Covering ugly screws visible in otherwise white plastic; see Figures 2 (before), and 3 (after).
7. Non-permanently supporting part of cabinet touch latches that stick out over shelves (see my earlier article about touch latches).
8. Form a barrier. We had a wireless router on a high shelf a while ago that we didn’t want to stick down, because I had to access the back panel every now and then, but didn’t want it slipping off and crashing onto things below. I used quake putty to build a 3D ridge between the router and the edge; you couldn’t see it, but it would prevent the router from sliding forward without interfering with the ability to pick it up.
9. Temporarily stick a recipe to the kitchen cabinet door while cooking.
10. Hold music to a music stand if you are playing a gig outside (not great for page turns, though).
11. Stabilize loose parts (such as thermostat covers).
12. Support loose plugs that aren’t tightly held into their outlets (small bead between the plug plastic and the outlet plate).
13. Stuff it into extra switches on alarm clocks that you don’t want to mistake for the on/off switch (such as ringer volume).
14. Make a tiny snowman! (Figure 4) And the best part is that you don’t have to stick it down with quake putty; it IS quake putty! (But don’t give quake putty to children as a toy.)
15. Use as the equivalent of single-sided Velcro (having some exposed on a surface so that you can occasionally put an object there without it rolling or sliding away).
16. Temporarily fill gaps, a non-permanent alternative to silicone sealant.
17. Stop glass shelves resting on metal pegs in display cases from rattling when the door is opened or closed.
18. Stop a paper plate from flying off the table during a picnic.
19. Put a dab on your finger to help turn pages (if you are the finger-licking type).
20. ...and...stick things down for earthquake preparedness!
Part 2: Quakehold Gel is a great solution but watch out for some little glitches. This is a nice product and I’m identifying it by name because, to the best of my knowledge, it’s the only such product that is clear, so I’m not endorsing one company over another. Because it is clear, you can use it to stick down clear objects like glass and crystal that might look ridiculous if stuck down with cream-colored white putty (Figure 5).
(I recommend against using the Museum Wax, which is very strong but is awful to clean up and stains a variety of surfaces.)
The other thing to watch out for is that, as mentioned above, it oozes. And I really mean it oozes! This gel is essentially an extremely viscous liquid. If you pull a clump out of the jar, there will be a big hole where that clump used to be, but come back an hour later and the edges will have smoothed. Come back a day later and the hole is gone; it’s a flat surface again, probably with little hazy bubbles. Come back a week later and it is a pristine clear surface. So if you put a little too much gel under an object, it might look fine for a day, but a few days later, you might notice that some of it is oozing out, as if you put too much glue under something and pressed down onto a surface. That’s ok, you can just scrape off the excess with a piece of paper or anything else, and if the remaining edge looks rough, it will smooth out by the next day. You might find yourself doing this over and over again though, so just try to be sparing with it in the beginning.
One last caution, because of the properties described above, guess what happens if you stick something down onto a surface that is even slightly tilted...it moves! Really slowly! Like one centimeter per month! And it leaves behind a trail of gel that looks like a snail’s slime trail! Here’s an example of what I encountered when trying to stick down a couple of crystal goblets onto a glass shelf in a display case:
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I then rolled some gel as thinly as possible and gingerly put it in a ring under the outer edge of the bottom of the other goblet, and gently pressed it down. It started out very unevenly (Figure 9), but by about 2 weeks later, it had evened out (Figure 10), and looks much better than the completely filled alternative in my opinion.
However, it certainly oozed! Over the next several days, I found myself daily scraping away excess gel that was slowly seeping out from the sides. I found that a razor blade worked well, since the shelf is glass, or I could take a couple of inches of a plastic drinking straw and flatten it into a mini spatula that could scrape around the edges of the glass. Again, it looked rough around the edges initially, but smoothed out nicely afterward.
And yes, I thought about using quake putty to prop up the front, but that white stuff would have looked terrible under the glass! Sometimes, old fashioned low tech is better.