Does Hot Glue Work On Wood?

I’m not a crafty person…well, let me rephrase that:  I am not a crafts person.  I have friends who make crafts and sell them at craft fairs.  It’s a sideline for them, and making the crafts is more important to them than the sale of their crafts – process more than a product for them.

Every craft person knows of hot glue and probably has a variety of hot glue guns and its ammo – hot glue sticks of various sorts.  Which glue gun to use and which glue to load will depend on the glued material.  It’s all very scientific for them, and they take it as seriously as we take our woodworking.

A little imagination, a little ingenuity, a little cutesiness, and a craft is completed.

We use wood glue in our shop, and the type of glue we use depends on the project and whether it is for an inside or outside purpose.  The choices are as important in woodworking as they are in crafting.  But is hot glue one of those glues?  Does it work on wood?

QUICK ANSWER:

The answer is a qualified yes. Crafts don’t have to be able to carry a lot of weight, but in woodworking, this is not often true – chairs, tables, cabinets, desks, etc.  The ability of hot glue to support weight is limited.

In the right situation, hot glue can work for you, but there may be better options.

What Is Hot Glue?

Gorilla Dual Temp Mini Hot Glue Gun Kit with 30 Hot Glue Sticks

Hot glue is a thermoplastic adhesive that is commonly sold as solid cylindrical sticks of various diameters designed to be applied using a hot glue gun. The gun uses a continuous-duty heating element to melt the plastic glue, which the user pushes through the gun either with a mechanical trigger mechanism on the gun or with direct finger pressure.

The glue squeezed out of the heated nozzle is initially hot enough to burn and even blister skin. The glue is sticky when hot, and as it cools, it turns solid quickly.

Hot glue is a versatile adhesive that can be used to bond a wide variety of materials, including wood, paper, fabric, plastic, and metal. It is also non-toxic and water-resistant, making it a safe and easy-to-use adhesive for a variety of projects.

Here are some of the benefits of using hot glue:

  • It is a fast-setting adhesive.
  • It is non-toxic and water-resistant.
  • It is easy to use.
  • It is relatively inexpensive.
  • It is available in a variety of colors and finishes.

Hot glue is a great choice for a variety of projects, including:

  • Crafts
  • Home repairs
  • DIY projects
  • Decorations
  • Packaging
  • Food packaging
  • Medical devices
  • Electronics
  • Automotive
  • Aerospace

When using hot glue, it is important to take safety precautions to avoid burns. Always wear gloves when using a hot glue gun, and be careful not to touch the hot glue. Hot glue can also melt some materials, so it is important to test the glue in an inconspicuous area before using it on the final project.

Hot glue comes in a variety of types, depending on the use to which you want to put them.  These varieties include different bonding strengths, flexibility, melting temperatures, and color.  

If you double-check that list of projects for which hot glue is a good choice, you do not see wood or woodworking projects.  There’s a reason.

Is Hot Glue Permanent?

Hot glue is not permanent. It is a thermoplastic adhesive, which means that it melts when heated and then cools and hardens. This makes it a good choice for temporary projects like crafts and repairs. However, hot glue is not as strong as other types of adhesives, such as epoxy or wood glue. Therefore, it is not recommended for permanent projects.

If you need to remove hot glue, you can do so with a sharp knife or a razor blade. You can also try to soften the glue with a heat gun or a hair dryer. Once the glue is soft, you can scrape it off with a putty knife or a credit card.

It is important to note that removing hot glue can damage the surface when it is applied. Therefore, it is best to prevent hot glue from getting on surfaces that you do not want to damage.

Can You Use Hot Glue To Join Pieces of Wood?

Yes, you can use hot glue on wood. Hot glue is a thermoplastic adhesive that melts when heated and then cools and hardens. This makes it a good choice for bonding wood, as it can create a strong and durable bond.  It will bond better when used with raw wood that does not have a smooth surface if you are using it to join wood pieces.

There are a few things to keep in mind when using hot glue on wood:

  • Be sure to use a hot gun that is made for wood gluing. These guns have a higher temperature setting that is necessary to melt the glue.
  • Apply the hot glue to both surfaces of the wood that you want to bond. This will help to create a stronger bond.
  • Hold the wood pieces together for a few seconds after applying the hot glue. This will help the glue to cool and harden. Hot glue cools quickly, so you don’t need to use a clamp – just your hands will be fine

Hot glue can be used for a variety of woodworking projects, such as:

  • Joining wood pieces together
  • Filling gaps and holes
  • Attaching hardware
  • Creating decorative accents

When used correctly, hot glue is a safe and effective way to bond wood.  

But How Much Weight Can Hot Glue Carry When Used On Wood?

The amount of weight that hot glue can support depends on a number of factors, including the type of hot glue, the surface area of the bond, and the weight of the object being supported. In general, hot glue can support between 10 and 25 pounds. However, it is important to test the weight capacity of hot glue for each specific project.

Here are some tips for increasing the weight capacity of hot glue:

  • Use a hot glue gun that is designed for heavy-duty applications.
  • Apply the hot glue to a large surface area.
  • Use multiple applications of hot glue.
  • Support the object being bonded with additional adhesives or fasteners.

There it is – between 10 and 25 lbs.  

Hot Glue Used In The Woodworking Shop

Hot Glue Gun

Hot glue is a versatile adhesive that can be used for a variety of woodworking projects. It is easy to use and can create strong bonds. Here are some tips on how to use hot glue in woodworking projects:

  1. Choose the right hot glue gun. There are many different types of hot glue guns available, so it is important to choose one that is right for your project. Consider the size of the project, the type of wood you are using, and the amount of weight you need the bond to support.
  2. Use the right type of hot glue. There are many different types of hot glue available, so it is important to choose one that is right for your project. Consider the type of wood you are using and the amount of weight you need the bond to support.
  3. Apply the hot glue correctly. When applying hot glue, it is important to apply it evenly. Too much hot glue can make the bond weak, while too little hot glue may not create a strong enough bond.
  4. Clamp the pieces together. Once you have applied the hot glue, it is important to clamp the pieces together. This will help the glue to cool and harden properly.
  5. Let the glue cool completely. Once you have clamped the pieces together, it is important to let the glue cool completely. This will ensure that the bond is strong and durable.

Here are some examples of how hot glue can be used in woodworking projects:

  • Joining pieces of wood together. Hot glue can be used to join pieces of wood together. This is a quick and easy way to create strong bonds.
  • Filling gaps and holes. Hot glue can be a substitute in some instances for wood filler we would normally use to fill gaps and holes in wood. Its use to do so, though, is limited to small areas, although it can be a great way to repair damaged furniture or to create a smooth finish.
  • Attaching hardware. Hot glue can be used to attach hardware to wood. This is a quick and easy way to add hinges, knobs, and other hardware to your projects.
  • Creating decorative accents. Hot glue can be used to create decorative accents for your woodworking projects. This is a great way to add a personal touch to your creations.

When used correctly, hot glue is a safe and effective way to bond wood. It is a versatile adhesive that can be used for a variety of woodworking projects.  Again, though, keep in mind its limitation in supporting weight greater than 25 lbs.  Wood projects that fall below that threshold should be okay.

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Can Hot Glue Be Used To Support Wood Joints In Furniture?

Yes, hot glue can support joints in wood furniture. However, it is important to use the right type of hot glue and to apply it correctly.

The type of hot glue you use is important because different types of hot glue have different strengths. For example, hot glue that is designed for wood will be stronger than hot glue that is designed for paper.

It is also important to apply hot glue correctly. When applying hot glue, it is important to apply it evenly. Too much hot glue can make the bond weak, while too little hot glue may not create a strong enough bond.

Here are some tips for using hot glue to support joints in wood furniture:

  • Use the right hot glue gun – check to see if it is specifically for use with wood.
  • Use hot glue that is specifically designed for wood.
  • Apply the hot glue evenly.
  • Clamp the pieces together.
  • Let the glue cool completely.

By following these tips, you can use hot glue to support joints in wood furniture. However, it is important to note that hot glue is not as strong as other types of adhesives, such as wood glue or epoxy.

Therefore, it is not recommended to use hot glue for joints that will be subjected to a lot of stress.

What’s the joint you are gluing?  How much weight does it need to carry?  A picture frame, maybe, but certainly not a chair that needs to support my 172 lbs.

Will It Peel Off The Wood I’ve Used It On?

Hot glue can peel off from wood, depending on the type of wood and the type of hot glue. In general, hot glue is more likely to peel off from smooth, finished wood than from rough, unfinished wood. Hot glue is also more likely to peel off if it is not applied evenly.

Here are some tips for preventing hot glue from peeling off from wood:

  • Use the right gun – we’ve already covered this above.
  • Use hot glue that is specifically designed for wood.
  • Apply the hot glue evenly.
  • Clamp the pieces together.
  • Let the glue cool completely.

If hot glue does peel off from wood, you can try to remove it with a sharp knife or a razor blade. You can also try to soften the glue with a heat gun or a hair dryer. Once the glue is soft, you can scrape it off with a putty knife or a credit card.

It is important to note that removing hot glue from wood can damage the wood. Therefore, it is best to prevent hot glue from peeling off in the first place.

Some Video Tips About Hot Glue In the Woodworking Shop

In this video, you will see how hot glue can find a place in your woodworking shop.  The tips included in this video are actually very good, and you can easily see why having a hot glue gun and a supply of hot glue sticks handy.

The Glue In Our Own Woodworking Shop

We have our handy supply of wood glue, specifically glue for wood, and in fact, keep a few types of wood glue in our inventory for use in different projects, inside and outside.  Elmer’s Glue, Gorilla Wood Glue, and Titebond.

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We will admit, though, we do not have any hot glue or even a hot glue gun.  We’ve written about these glues in past articles, including this one discussing how strong wood glue is – it seemed appropriate for this article. 

If you decide to use hot glue in your woodworking projects, understand its limited applicability when joining pieces of wood and the low weight it can support. In the right circumstances, hot glue could actually be of benefit to you.

Last update on 2024-05-28 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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