Clues On Glues, By Steve Jordan

This is the most common craft glue for porous lightweight materials such as paper, cardboard, cloth, and kids’ crafts. Their chemical composition means that they can be used to directly bond some plastics with low surface energy, e.g. polypropylene, which with other adhesive types require a surface pre-treatment. With these adhesives you can also glue wooden flooring to tiles or other non-absorbent defatted and soap-free surfaces, e.g. natural stone or glass. It would then stand to reason that if conventional wood glues need to penetrate into the wood in order to obtain a strong bond, then these oily woods would present a challenge in gluing. Melamine glue is rarely used alone, but must be combined with urea to increase moisture resistance.

For parallel heating that involves edge gluing of lumber cores, a rule of thumb is that one KW will cure approximately 100 square inches of glue line per minute. Almost all of the reactive, chemically curing, high-strength adhesives suffer from some combination of low peel strength, impact, or environmental resistance. I should be wary of using them on a boat and certainly not outside the cabin unless the wood is properly sealed to control the moisture level. This tough glue is also resistant to rain/weather, UV light, and heat, and adheres well to a wide range of substrates.

This glue needs very little clamping time (five to 10 minutes), and resists running onto other surfaces—for example, down from a crown moulding onto gypsum wallboard. Well I don’t know about you guys, but I am not about to stock three different types of PVA glue just for the sake of a few hundred theoretical PSI. We need to know about the adhesives available for the wood trades, the characteristics and uses. Thermal hot melt adhesives are solid glues which must be heated and applied as drops or beads, and form a bond as the glue cools. Substances known as natural gums, which are extracted from their natural sources, also are used as adhesives.

Synthetic adhesives may be made of amorphous thermoplastics above their glass transition temperatures; thermosetting monomers as in the case of epoxy glues and cyanoacrylates; low molecular weight reactive species as in the case of urethane adhesives; or block copolymers, suspensions, or latexes. It’s a great all-purpose craft glue for quick set up and execution, but it’s not for use by children.

So far, this technology has only been successfully applied to the acrylic and epoxy-based adhesives. Because of the low process temperatures and very rapid polymerization (from 2 to 60 seconds), ultraviolet-cured adhesives are making rapid advances in the electronic, automotive, and medical areas. Animal glue traditionally has been used in wood joining, book bindery, sandpaper manufacture, heavy gummed tapes, and similar applications. The adhesive is adapted to the needs of those who are allergic to epoxy adhesives.

While some adhesives can be used for a multitude of applications and conditions, you will get the best results if you carefully match the characteristics of the adhesive to the requirements of the project. Two-part epoxy adhesives start to react under ambient conditions once the two components have been mixed together and are often termed room-temperature (RT) curing adhesives because of this. Polyimide and bismaleimide adhesives are the most established types in this class.

This also means that white craft glue should not be used in applications that require water resistance. Synthetic wood adhesives include glues derived from petroleum, gas, coal and other synthetic resins. General purpose adhesives including rubber cements and epoxies are capable of bonding fabrics together, as well as fabrics to other materials. This type of glue ensures a lasting light-elastic bonding of your parquet floor. Keep in mind that the glue must dry before strength is significant and the project often requires clamping to hold it in place until the glue is completely set and dry.

The term animal glue usually is confined to glues prepared from mammalian collagen, the principal protein constituent of skin, bone, and muscle. The mixture can then be used for bonding wooden floors onto concrete or cement screeds without a subfloor. Adhesives in this class become active and cure when exposed to radiation, usually ultra-violet (UV) light.


The demand for adhesives that had a high degree of structural strength and were resistant to both fatigue and severe environmental conditions led to the development of high-performance materials, which eventually found their way into many industrial and domestic applications. Few adhesives are suitable for prolonged use at temperatures between 200°C and 350°C.

Versions are available that are able to wick into tight joints but bond with reduced strength (because much drips out and much soaks into the wood leaving very little on the surface for the bond), or thicker formulations (gel) which can fill very small gaps, do not flow out of the joint, and do not soak so quickly into wood. He also said, Like all epoxy adhesives minimal clamping pressure should be used to avoid starving the glue joint through excessive squeeze out. Thinner cyanoacrylate glue does not bond more quickly nor form shorter polymer chains than the gel version when used on wood.

The polymers used in synthetic adhesives fall into two general categories—thermoplastics and thermosets Thermoplastics provide strong, durable adhesion at normal temperatures, and they can be softened for application by heating without undergoing degradation. If you decide to use an epoxy glue please work with your A & P and IA prior to use to see if they will accept the brand you are using. I am a guitar maker,,i use lignum vitae very ofter, it is a very very difiicult customer” to glue, but since 3 months i started glue this one with cianocrylate, many times fretboards.

The characteristics of elastomeric adhesives include quick assembly, flexibility, variety of type, economy, high peel strength, ease of modification, and versatility. PVAs are familiar as the household glues which bond paper, cardboard and wood, these adhesives cure by loss of their fluid carrier, in this case water. They provide strong, resilient joints which are impact resistant and have good low-temperature strength compared with many other adhesives. You can buy super glue in a variety of viscosities which enable some leeway in gap filling performance.

There are three types of RF heating recognized in the wood gluing field and their terminology stems directly from the location of the glue lines in relation to the direction of current flow. Also, while many adhesives are in liquid or paste form, cement adhesives may come in powdered form and are mixed by hand before use. Epoxy is the most expensive thermosetting wood adhesive, and is typically impractical for large scale woodworking projects. Three or four days may be required to eliminate sunken joints caused by residual moisture in the glue line. After proper curing, either of these will seal the wood and protect it from most chemicals.

Although the starting materials used to make the two adhesive types in this group are different, they are chemically similar and the curing mechanism is the same. Animal glue has a very low moisture resistance, and the bond will weaken considerably when exposed to high humidity. Adhesives that set at room temperature are known as ‘cold-setting’ and those that require heating up to a temperature perhaps in the case of pearl glue 40 and others up to 100 degrees C are known as ‘hot-setting’.

Unlike glues, where the parts are pressed together while the glue is wet, contact cement is applied to both sides of the objects to be glued and then allowed to dry before assembly. I wanted to add something about strength, and the details about why the wood around any good joint will probably fail before the glue lets go. Some adhesives, such as this wood adhesive, are used only with specific substrates because of the cure time needed to allow for good bonding. I do a lot of small veneer projects, and have always used a cold set veneer glue (Better Bond).

They are a low bonding adhesive, but do provide a permanent bond on various types of paper to include cardboard, foam board, and poster board. It basically states that you should consider this type of glue obsolete for aircraft wood repairs and any proposed use should be discussed with the appropriate FAA office prior to use on a certificated aircraft. What I do is I pre-treat the glue joints with a chemical paint stripper before proceeding.

The properties of this glue are, strong strength, waterproof, Excellant for bonding wood to almost any other materials, good gap filler. The time it takes for glues to set up varies from one glue to the we are working on a small project a quick setting glue is suitable for the job, however if the project is large or complex the glue could dry on one part while we are still applying glue to another piece. This is because the blades of a jointer/planer can actually burnish the wood as it passes through the machine. This large class of adhesives is based on polymers such as polyvinyl acetate (PVA), acrylic, rubber or polyurethane.

We needn’t worry about this so long as we accept that jobs like hull building and structural bulkhead construction should be done with structural adhesives (EN 301), whereas most internal joinery and woodwork will be fine with the so-called non-structural adhesives (EN 204). SikaBond-T21 may be used for solid and engineered wood floors (strips, longstrips, planks, panels, boards), mosaic parquet, industrial parquet, wood paving (residential) as well as chip boards and plywood. There are many urethane adhesives on the market today with Bostiks currently the market leader.