The Wood Glues I use


In the Time Machine by H.G. Wells, the main character builds a Time Machine and travels into the distance future.  He finds mankind’s state a bleak one, to say the least.  Our time traveller returns home and tells his friends about his journey.  His friends are not  buying his story.  Next thing you know our time traveller jumps back into his Time Machine, and returns to the distance future.  He’s intent on saving future mankind from themselves.  His housekeeper after his departure notes that three books are missing from his library.  One of the time traveller’s friends replies to the housekeeper, “Which three books would you have taken ?”

So with that said, the three glues I use are:

Titebond III Ultimate Wood Glue

Titebond  Liquid Hide Glue

Gorilla Glue

I mean no disrespect to the other manufacturers’ of glues.  It’s just that these are the ones I am most familiar with, except for the Hide Glue.  These are the glues that I find readily available here in NW Fla, and that’s a huge plus.  Not to say that other glue brands are not readily available here in NW Fla.

Titebond III Ultimate Wood Glue:
This is the glue I generally use in my workshop.  According to the label on the bottle:

It bonds stronger than wood (A 4,000 psi bonding strength is quoted in the company’s product literature).

The open time of this glue is 10 minutes (That sounds like plenty of time to me).

Titebond literature said to clamp for 30m to 60 minutes (Personally I leave clamps on for 24 hours, did I mention that I own a million clamps, at least that’s what my wife claims).  In any event, when you own a million clamps or so, leaving clamps on for 24 hours is not a big deal.

Easy cleanup with water.

Non-toxic (Gotta love that).

What I like about this glue is that I can use it for both indoor and outdoor projects.  Therefore instead of stocking separate indoor and outdoor rated glues, I stock just one type of glue rated for both indoors and outdoors.

Information at the Titebond web site states that this glue passes the Type 1 specification for water-resistance.  The Type 1 specification is explained briefly at the Titebond web site ( Titebond – The Professional’s Choice for Woodworking & Construction  Click on the FAQ’s tab).  The test involves boiling, oven baking, more boiling, then cooling with running water, and then the glued up wood assembly is sheared while still wet.  During shearing the wood assembly must pass a battery of strength & wood failure requirements.  Sounds good to me, I figure it should meet my needs for any outdoor project I have.

Lowest recommended application temperature is above 45 degrees F. (That’s find with me, I have no desire to work in any environment colder than 45 degrees F.)

Storage life is 12 months in a tightly closed container at 75 degrees F.

Titebond Liquid Hide Glue:

With a bonding strength of 3,591 psi, its roughly  equivalent to the bonding strength of Titebond Original Wood Glue (3,600 psi bonding strength).  In short, the wood fibers will fail before Titebond’s Liquid Hide Glue.

The open time of this glue is 10 minutes, and the clamp time is 30 to 60 minutes.

For cleanup use a damp cloth while glue is wet.

Literature doesn’t say its non-toxic, does caution that contact with eyes will cause irritation.  Literature also cautions not to take internally.  From phone conversation with Titebond, there are no toxic fumes given off by the glue.

I have not used Hide Glue, but the reversibility of the gluing process is what appeals to me.  The ability to restore say an antique piece of furniture, and yet be able to reverse the gluing process if necessary, I think is a huge advantage.

To reverse the gluing process, you use water or steam, which will break the glue down.  From talking with Titebond, steam will probably do the job in minutes, while just water will take longer (All depends on the size of the glue joint).

Was not surprised to read the caution, not to use outdoors or where moisture is likely.

Lowest recommended application temperature is above 50 degrees F.

Storage life is 12 months in a tightly closed container at 75 degrees F.

Gorilla Glue:

The only thing I could find at the manufacturer’s web site about the bonding strength, was that the bonding strength is greater than wood, and that the wood will fail before the glue bond would fail.

Open working time is 10 to 15 minutes, and recommended clamping time is between 1 and 2 hours.

For cleanup wipe with a dry cloth or paint thinner.

Gorilla Glue’s MSDS (Material Safety Data Sheet) basically said to use it in a well ventilated area, protect your eyes, and do not take internally.

This glue tends to be messy to work with (For me anyway), but the fact that it expands 3 to 4 times, makes it ideal for expanding inside loose joint assemblies.

Its 100% waterproof, so using it outside is not a problem.

Lowest recommended application temperature is 40 degrees F.

Regarding storage life, literature found at the Gorilla Glue web site stated the following:  “As long as the glue is in its liquid form, no matter how old it is, it is at full strength and fine to use.”

In Summary:

I use the Titebond Ultimate III because it can be used both indoors & outdoors.

The Hide Glue I would use because its possible to reverse the gluing process.

Related Links:

Titebond – The Professional’s Choice for Woodworking & Construction

Gorilla Glue

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