Glues – Part 4: Plastic Resin Glue

by Dale on January 25, 2014

In my career I’ve used veneer glue on one or two projects. It is a glue that dries hard, not flexible, and it’s used commercially for making plywood. So it is a very good glue for veneering.  This glue is also used by small shops who do their own veneering on a small basis. Interestingly, this glue is used cold.Glue_powdered

The powder is mixed with distilled water, to about the consistency of regular yellow glue. Then it can be applied by brush or roller. I like to use a regular roller frame with roller covers made for contact cement and sold by cabinet hardware suppliers.

I think Woodworker’s Supply sells them. I usually mix up more than I think I will need because I don’t want to have to stop & mix more in the middle of a glue-up. It’s always good to get everything glued and clamped as soon as possible. It is also best to roll glue on both surfaces when veneering, this insures that it will stick everywhere. You just need enough to get both surfaces wet no more. I’ve had very good results with this method.

One thing to be aware of, this glue has a shelf life even in the power form. After you add water you must use it within 1 – 2 hours. I have tried to use the powder after posted shelf life and it mixes differently, it seems to foam up a bit.

Then after it dries the next day, it turns back to powder. A sharp rap or blow causes everything comes apart. That’s not good. I’ve also used this glue for laminating legs together like on a quadrilinear white oak leg and I’ve used it for edge gluing for table tops.

All are good uses of this glue. Just make sure it hasn’t expired.

Also when veneering this glue will set-up in about 3-4 hrs. which is an advantage. Also commercial hot presses add heat to the process and it sets up very quickly, in minutes. Many large processing plants, furniture factories etc. use this method and type of glue. Regular cabinet grade plywood is also glued with this type of glue.

It is not appropriate for mortise and tenon joints in my opinion. It’s not flexible enough. The grain direction on a tenon is usually 90 degrees different MB_battle of the bondsdirection to the grain direction inside the mortise so the wood moves in different ways to each other, so the flue needs to flex a bit. This is certainly debatable.

Epoxy dries rigid as well. Exterior panel doors are sometimes glued with this glue, with good results and I have made many exterior doors with epoxy glue and never had a joint failure. So, if you decide to use this glue, read the directions and make sure it’s fresh and you will be that much more glue savvy.

Please be sure to share your experiences with me in the comments below. Share you glue savvy!

Thanks, Dale

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Karunakaran Jayachandran February 11, 2014 at 5:38 am

You are right Dale. Since 1981 I use only Epoxy glue for mortise & tenon joints for all species of hardwood solid doors for the interior and exterior purpose. I never had any problems till this day.

Best wishes,

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Dale February 13, 2014 at 10:36 pm

Right Jay, thanks for your comments. I agree!



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