Sugru Is A Self-Setting Rubber Like 'Bouncy Wood,' And You Can Use It To Fix, Well, Pretty Much Anything

"Sugru" is an odd word for an odd material, described as "bouncy wood" or silicone rubber. But however weird it sounds, it works: Sugru started out as a concept in an art school workshop and now, a decade later, has become a cult hit. Sugru is essentially like Play-Doh — except much stronger, very adhesive, and actually pretty useful.

Sugru is flexible, which means you can form it into a shape — but about 30 minutes after you do, the Sugru stops being bendy. You can do anything you like with Sugru: Create a more comfortable knife handle; create an easier grip on pot handles (Sugru is also pretty heat-resistant;) repair broken cables; repair a broken door handle; cover up holes in leaking boots — you name it.

The inventor was Jane Ni Dhulchaointigh, now the CEO of Sugru, who was profiled in a Guardian article Sunday. As a masters' student studying product design at the UK's Royal College of Art, Dhulchaointigh began brainstorming Sugru back in 2003. This included undertaking experiments that involved a combination of bathroom sealant with wood-dust powder. The results? Wooden-like balls that bounced.

However, once she graduated with her M.A., Dhulchaointigh still hadn't arrived upon the final version of her product. All she knew, as she told The Guardian , was that she wanted a "really, really functional version of Blu-Tack that would be permanent and have lots of benefits."

With the help of business grants, scientists, and a silicone expert, she then spent seven years after RCA at a London university developing Sugru. Needless to say, she exceeded her goal:. As of 2013, Sugru had made 1.8 million in English pounds (the equivalent of $3 million) through sales and retailers, and now Sugru will turn a profit in this year's second quarter.

Take a look at a promotional video from Sugru here.

Sugru on YouTube

In fact, British Olympic fencer, James Davis, used Sugru on his foil back in the 2012 games, as you can see below. He structured a strip of Sugru around the handle to make the foil more comfortable for him to hold.

Sugru on YouTube

But we have to ask — why "sugru?" As Dhulchaointigh told The Guardian, the word is Irish for "play." Well, fancy that!

Image: M-image/Fotolia