to keep growing this forum with woodworking related content i thought we might discuss what our favorite products for holding things together are. for me my standard wood glue is titebond II. i like the working time and ease of use and clean up. for outdoors projects it's titebond 3. if i need an epoxy it's jb weld 2 part 5 minute which i may or may not tint with dye. for ca glue ive been using stick fast products but ive found they all work pretty much the same. so what are your favorites and why ?

working with my hands is a joy,it gives me a sense of fulfillment,somthing so many seek and so few find.-SAM MALOOF.

98 Replies

One of my favorites is Elmers Glue, and Scotch Glue stick. And Ducky’s fav Duct Tape.  I chose them because you forgot to mention them.  😀

And I like spray on Contact Adhesive. 
I think it’s about What ya doin and what ya gonna be glueing. 

James McIntyre

Agree with both of you on the adhesive.   I have and do use Hide Glue on some things.    Not often.  Result of seeing Grandfather and his glue pot when I was a kid and later my Dad in his Violin and Viola projects.   Does have a unique aroma.   


Wood glues:

Titebond II and III.  Titebond Speed Set.  Hot hide glue.  For liquid protein glue my favorite is fish glue.  It has all of the good properties of LHG and seems to have a better shelf life.  I've never had a bottle go bad on me.

Probably 90% of the time it's Titebond II.

I'll get to the other types later.

Half of what we read or hear about finishing is right. We just don’t know which half! — Bob Flexner

Even though you can tint the TB glues, I like TBII (dark) for walnut and TBIII for almost everything else wood. TBIII supposedly is a tad stronger than the I & II plus also has a slightly longer working time. TBIII's color goes well with the lighter brown/red woods. TBI is good for pine and maple.

3M 77 spray is nice in that you only need to spray 1 surface, wait a minute, then slap on whatever (I use it for felt).
The 3M 90 is stronger, but I think you need to spray both surfaces like Brush on contact cement.
There’s a lot of good info so far. Splinter I don’t know you were such a gluster. You even figured out what glues go with which woods and colors. And that TB can be tinted. I’m proud of you bro. This stuff is good to know. 

The oldsters even used beaten egg whites for glue. 

Pottz you really have a talent for piquing peoples interest. What ever happened to Dr Quackner?

James McIntyre

I don't worry about strength.  Every glue I use is stronger than wood.

One thing to keep in mind about TBIII is that it dries really hard.  No flex to speak of.  That can make some wood movement issues more serious.  

When I built my front entry door I used TBIII to glue the frame pieces around the glass.  With TBII I can let it set most of the way and then slice the squeeze out free with a chisel plane or whatever.  The TBIII dried hard as a rock.  I probably spent 3 or 4 hours cleaning up all of those panels.  They had to be perfect since that's the show side.

One more... When Alex Snodgrass was here doing the 3D cutting board he used TBII.  I asked him why and he said with the wood movement in an end grain board, he'd had failures using TBIII when the environment changed rapidly.  He's sponsored by Titebond, so I suspect he has pretty good inside info on using it.

Half of what we read or hear about finishing is right. We just don’t know which half! — Bob Flexner

I bought some what I think is TB2 but not is extended open/dry time....I always mess around to long during a glue up and end up with problems....other than that I like either 2 or 3 TB.  I also use West systems epoxy for pens and a myriad of other fix it things....seems like something is always broken....and I also use a lot of both JBWeld quick set and normal...I have fixed a ton of stuff with that. I have no welding equipment or skills for that matter and JB Weld has gotten me out of some scrapes.  Love that stuff.  I also have 5 or 6 kinds of CA.  Thin, med, thick, flex, black and gel.....As we have discussed my shop is very organized....I keep all the glues in one short sided tub with the CA in Ball jars where I shoot Bloxygen into and keep silica gell insiode to extend the life.  Works great.  

Thre are a few glues on my list to try...hide glue for one


I have an have used the TB II Extend.   It sets slower and is good for those complicated or involved projects.    It is whiter than the Original.    Comes in a white container.   Lowe's here and Home Depot did not carry it a one time.  Lowe's does now.   


oh yes i forgot about the contact glue. yes it's 3m for me also. i like to spray both surfaces though, i think it makes a better bond ?

working with my hands is a joy,it gives me a sense of fulfillment,somthing so many seek and so few find.-SAM MALOOF.

The higher the number, the higher the strength.

You can rip things off of the 77 if needed, not so with the 90.

I tired some "Locktite" branded spray when I could not get any 77, it required both surfaces and sucked. 😆
I use almost exclusively TBII, light and dark both. For me, because I don’t usually do overly huge glue ups, the open time isn’t a big issue. Honestly, I like the shorter open time…usually.

JB weld 5 min epoxy is my go-to, but I’ve also had good luck with Hardman brand 2 part epoxy.

Stick Fast CA, both thin and medium. I use the medium much more often, and pretty much just use the thin for finishing pens…the medium has a better viscosity for ‘gluing’. 

E6000 is a new glue for me. It’s in a spray pump bottle. I found it recently for a project where I needed to glue fabric to wood, and I didn’t want bleed through. Worked really well!

I’ve also been known to use cheapy hot glue for temp gluing and Elmer’s contact cement. 👍🏼

Ryan/// ~sigh~ I blew up another bowl. Moke told me "I made the inside bigger than the outside".

I just do not like TB PVA glues unless I need some water resistance.   Elmers wood glue is better in my experience.  TB glues always seem go bad before I can use them all -- usually in about 2 to 3 years and yes I have learned to check the MFG date before I buy it.    On the other hand, I bought a gallon of Elmer's Wood Glue in 2014 and it is just now starting to show signs of end of usable life.   When I was building my workbench, I knew I didn't have enough of the Elmers left and could not find any at the time so bought a gallon of TB 2.  I used about 1/3 of it laminating the top, legs and stretchers.  I just checked and the MFG date on it is 10/21 and still seems to have the right consistency so the experiment continues.  I have never had a glue joint fail when using Elmers but I have had a couple fail when using TB3.  

 I do like TB's liquid hide glue but I also use Old Brown Glue sometimes as well.   The TB LHG seems to have a longer shelf life than the OBG, though I keep both of them in my beer fridge to extend their life.  The OBG has a stiffer gel stage than the TB LHG.  Since I keep them in the fridge, I often have to drop the bottle in hot water for a few minutes so that it flows better.   I also have a bottle of fish glue in the fridge that I have used when gluing up light color woods.  It is another protein glue.  If you have used and remember the smell of Mucilage glue, the fish glue smells similar.  If you remember the taste of old lick to seal envelopes, that is similar to fish glue (yes, I tasted it).  Liquid hide glues are my go to for vintage furniture repairs.  Many antiques are glued with hide glue so it is easy to simply remove or reactivate the old glue with warm water and just add some new hide glue.  Unlike PVA glue, you do not have to remove all of the old glue to reglue something that was originally glued with hide glue.  In fact, when repairing loose chair rungs or stretchers, I usually clean off the old PVA glue and use LHG for the repair. 

I do not use it often these days but I also like to use Hot Hide Glue.  I love it for fastening veneer and if the project is big enough to warrant mixing up a batch of HHG, it is great for assembling furniture and other large decorative pieces.  It does not creep like PVA can so it is good for table top laminations, though LHG is a little easier to use for those.    

--Nathan, TX. Hire the lazy man. He may not do as much work but that's because he will find a better way.

Splinter try a Heat gun with 90. It’s like removing a sticky sanding disc. 

What’s your thoughts on that Splinter and Pottz. 

We haven’t heard from LBD yet. I wonder if he uses glue. Or something he finds between his couch cushions. Sorry Ducky it just popped into my mind  got no filters. 

Rich. I really respect Lex Snodgrass. He has the best band saw tuning video with the Saw Dust Whisper. A must watch if you want a perfectly tuned band was. If he tells me something I believe it. 

Moke I like your way of preserving CA glue. I gotta try that. Thanks for the tip bro. 

Hi Pottz. 

James McIntyre

Speaking from a luthier's perspective. Hot hide glue at number 1. Titebond original at number 2. Titebond 2 and 3 not used due to cold creep over time on stressed joints and much more difficult to reverse. Titebond 3 is used for glueing purflings to bindings prior to bending as it tends not to separate like Titebond original does. Fish glue is great for climates that don't get overly humid. Both fish glue and hide glue don't require a major clean up prior to re-gluing of separated parts as it sticks to itself. Bottled Titebond hide glue not used because of a number of catastrophic failures at unpredictable times. Old Brown glue occasionally used with reservations and suspicion for any important, stressed joints.
hi james. as for spray adhesives ive never needed to remove one yet so i dont know ? oh the duck will be here soon enough to set us all straight, thats a given like taxes and death !!!!!!!!!!

working with my hands is a joy,it gives me a sense of fulfillment,somthing so many seek and so few find.-SAM MALOOF.

Sorry Pottz this was to be posted on show us your dog or cat or your BBQ post. I’ll repost it there soon. 

James McIntyre

Same here. TB two and three. For CA glue I bought TB. It’s really watery but does what it’s suppose to do. 
Corelz25. I like the runny ca glue too. The thick stuff is dried out ca glue. I just keep adding more or it and spryIng it with the set spray. Tell use more about your experience with  thicker ca glue. 

James McIntyre

well for ca glues i use a lot of thin for soaking into cracks. but to do a fill ill go with medium.

working with my hands is a joy,it gives me a sense of fulfillment,somthing so many seek and so few find.-SAM MALOOF.

I just do not like TB PVA glues unless I need some water resistance.   Elmers wood glue is better in my experience.

I don't mind TB stuff if the price is better, but most of the time a gallon of Elmers comes in winner. I've been using it before I ever saw TB anything, and can't say if I had a fair coverage, that I've never had a failure. I am NOT a thick/heavy/excessive applicator of glue, just enough so approximated the 2 sides make for a little squeeze out, A lot less cleanup afterward that way. I see so many just glop it on, and a river squishes out. I think that is the biggest reason for people wanting to use cauls, trying to control the slip and slide machine. The right amount and you can start a little rub joint, and then just clamp. Salt????? I think all the manufacturers say it isn't good for the glue up. 

For wet conditions I like TBIII, don't really like it, but it does do a good job if it will get wet.

Old Brown glue is decent if you need a longer set. I used to use a pot with liquid hide, but what a HUGE PIA to keep that going.

More and more I am using a mix of CA thick, and Elmers for a Now and Later mix. Not blended, but dots along the line so it's one or the other. I wouldn't do it on a tabletop, but to adhere joints, and a lot of non stress areas it's fine.

CA thin is hard to beat if you need to sneak something down into a crack.

I've found all of them do ok for lasting if stored upside down, Get the glue at the top, and AIR can't get at the top, and cause it to set in the container. This especially true with Franklins TB products.

For actual application I am having a hard time imagining something better than a Glue Bot, unless it's a baby glue bot. 

I don't like a glued fingertip, and these silicone brushes kick major buttocks. On BIG glue ups a silicone roller works. Just let it dry. Later you can almost shake the dried glue out. Good as new.