Strongest white glue

What is the strongest white glue you use?

Right now I think it’s micro crystal clear. I’ve tried Gator Grip also, but this seems to win out. Would like something even stronger.

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Depends on what you want to use it for! All “White Glues” have the same basic formulation - polyvinyle acetate. Basically it was meant as a bond for porous materials, ie; wood, paper, cloth, etc. It will glue solids, but not as securely. I don’t think there are stronger white glues than Elmer’s, Lepage’s, or Gorilla Glue. Carpenter’s glue is similar (polyvinyl acetate) and grips stronger, but is not always transparent when dry. AFAIK CA is the strongest clear all-purpose adhesive available.

Keep in mind that there is a difference from a PVA “white glue” and acrylic adhesive products like “Gator’s Grip.”

PVA glues, like Elmer’s and Woodland Scenics Scenic Cement, are not only water soluble, but the dried glue can be re-dissolved with water. Their strength mostly lies in the volume / mass of the dried glue and the overall size of the surface area of the glue joint. The less water in the glue solution, the stronger the glue mass (but the less it will absorb into a porous surface). Still, the adhesive strength on a non-porous surface doesn’t really improve much after a point by using a thicker viscosity mixture. At that point, the strength is mostly in the size of the area of the joint.

Acrylic adhesives, like Gator’s Grip and common artist clear acrylic gel medium or matt or clear mediums, are just like water soluble acrylic paint, and once they’ve dried and are totally resistant to water. FWIW, I’ve tested Gator’s Grip glue and found that it was essentially the exact same thing as artist acrylic gel medium in regards to strength and clarity once dried. These adhesives seem to have about the same bonding quality on a non-porous surface as a water soluble acrylic paint. It’s better than PVA, though. Again, once a certain point in viscosity is reached, the strength of the adhesive mass doesn’t seen to get any better.

Yellow glues, are aliphatic resin adhesives. They are also water-proof once dried, but, of course, they don’t dry clear like PVA or acrylic adhesives. Again, the adhesive viscosity and the area of the joint seem to be the main determining factors in the overall strength of the joint.

All of these adhesives have much better shock resistance (sheer strength) than CA glues, but the CA glues have better tensile strength.

I haven’t used any of the newer CA glues that have been formulated specifically for increased sheer strength, like Gorilla CA, but those may have a lot of potential. Still, for clear styrene parts, the effect of CA off-gassing and clouding the parts is also a possibility, I think.

Thanks. My hands are not really steady enough to get a part in exactly the right place first try. It does happen, but rarely. So I need something I can move around with.

I’ve had bad experiences with knocking stuff off that is attached with CA glue, but I imagine I might have the same problems with white glue.

I’m interested to hear you say Gator’s Grip is better than PVA glue because my experience with it has not been very grippy…

If there’s any “trick” to using one of the acrylic adhesives like Gator’s Grip, it’s to let it cure / dry overnight. Even when they dry-off in an hour or so (for small applications), they don’t reach full-strength for quite a while.

(Kind of the same for PVA glues which benefit from being left alone to dry overnight.)

On the plus side, once they do cure, they have very good shock resistance and even a small bit of flexibility (so a lot of times, parts will move a bit and then return to where they were).

Whenever I use one of these glues, I just plan to leave whatever it is alone until the next day, at least. For canopies, windshields, and other clear parts, I’ll often use a thin piece of masking tape to hold them in place. I clean up any excess glue or squeeze out with a damp brush, and then just leave 'em alone.

I do try to keep the glue away from the tape so it doesn’t run under it, so the next day, I’ll remove the tape and finish up the glue joint. The subsequent application and cleanup will not effect the earlier glue, though, unlike with PVA where you risk dissolving the earlier work, which is a major advantage to the acrylic adhesives.

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Didn’t Gator Grip company close? :disappointed:

Maybe. I haven’t bought any more Gator Grip since I figured out that it’s the same thing as artist acrylic gel medium, only in a smaller bottle.

I’ve got large tubs and tubes of the acrylic gel medium already, so no need to resupply with the Gator Grip branded product. I just refill their bottle (which is a convenient size for the workbench) with fresh gel medium from a tub.

The acrylic gel medium has many uses, to include as an adhesive. Basically, it’s tube acrylic paint without the pigment.

It can be used in water and ice effects on bases. I’ve made icicles out of it by dipping clear thread and clear stretched spue into it - increase the size by repeated dipping like making candles. It can be added to acrylic paint to make semi-transparent glazes (picture painters often brush it over paintings to add simulated brush mark textures). You can add dry pigments to it to make a custom acrylic paint color that is a perfect match for the dry pigments (keeping in mind that it will dry glossy and the final color saturation will by much higher than the dry pigment).

You can thin it with water to make it less viscous, but once dry, it’s water-proof and will not re-dissolve like PVA.

BTW, artist matt acrylic medium also works quite well as a light to medium duty adhesive. It also works quite well as a pigment “fixer” since it dries flat. It can also be mixed with dry pigments to make a “mud slurry” that will dry dead flat - no sheen. Add more medium or thin it with water and you can also make a custom pigment colored paint. However, you can add too much water to to it, and if it’s over-thinned, it can dry “frosty” white rather than clear flat (unless you’ve added dry pigments; it then dries with that color).

The artist matt medium’s best use is as an additive to make your own thinner for acrylic paints, like Vallejo Model Colors. I mix my own using 1:1 acrylic matt medium and water and then add 5% by volume, each acrylic drying retarder and flow aide. I keep this in a bottle on my painting bench to thin acrylics for hand-brushing.

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Clear acrylic gloss gel is my go-to material for making water for ship models, although it can only be used in depth of a few millimeters.

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