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J Adhes Dent. 2017;19(3):239-243. doi: 10.3290/j.jad.a38410.

Does Tack Curing Luting Cements Affect the Final Cure?



Short initial light curing or "tack curing" is used to create a semi-gel state in luting cements for easier excess material cleanup. The effect of tack curing on the final cure of luting cements was measured in terms of hardness.


Three cement types were tested: two dual-curing composite cements (RelyX Unicem 2; Maxcem Elite); three light-curing veneer cements (Choice 2; Variolink Esthetic LC; RelyX Veneer); and two self-curing resin-modified glass-ionomer (RMGI) luting cements (RelyX Luting Plus; Nexus RMGI). Cements were placed in 1.5 × 2 × 8 mm plaster slots covered with orange glass during curing and were cured from one end. Tack curing was performed for 2 to 5 s using an LED curing light, followed 2 min later by 10-40 s final light curing or self-curing, as per manufacturer instructions (n = 10). Control groups received only final light curing or self-curing. After 24 h storage (37°C, 100% humidity), Vickers hardness was measured in 0.5-mm depth increments. Results were analyzed using two-way ANOVA and pairwise comparisons (α = 0.05).


The hardness of dual-curing and light-curing cements significantly decreased with increasing depth (p = 0.0001). Tack curing of dual-curing and light-curing cements tended to increase hardness at all depths, except near the surface for light-curing veneer cements. Self-curing cements showed no hardness reduction with depth and no effect from tack curing.


Although a slight surface hardness reduction may occur in light-curing veneer cements, the overall effect on three luting cement types was insignificant or resulted in only a slight increase in depth-of-cure.


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