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Thread: Electric glue pot alternatives ?

  1. #1
    Join Date
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    Electric glue pot alternatives ?

    Was wondering if anyone has an alternative to the rather expensive electric glue pots used to heat hide glue. I will only be using it occasionally and for small glue ups so, keeping a pot cooking isn't necessary. Thanks.

  2. #2

  3. #3
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    John, Fantastic thread ! Exactly what I was looking for. Thanks very much.

  4. #4
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    Mike - One aspect of using hot hide glue is that while the standard package of acid brushes from the big-box stores is certainly workable, it's worth getting some better brushes if you use hide glue for a furniture project that requires fairly large glue surfaces. Tools for Working Wood sells some excellent ones - search for "glue brush" on their site. These brushes are highly cleanable, and last a reallly long time. One other worthwhile purchase if you're going to be using hide glue on fairly large surfaces is an electric heat gun. The heat gun allows you to warm up the two surfaces to be glued and allows a much longer open time.

  5. #5
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    When I did musical instrument repair, we used to mix up glue in small glass containers that we kept in the refrigerator. When we needed glue, we would place the container on one of those small warming plates intended for keeping coffee cups warm. Worked great for small batches.

  6. #6
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    Meridian, Idaho
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    John, great link, thanks for sharing, as someone new to using hide glue this just saved me money and trouble

  7. #7
    Just for giggles, this is the glue pot I'm currently using. It's absolutely the perfect size and configuration for instrument work...and by extension, for anything that requires small batches.

    http://www.musicaravan.com/gluepot

  8. #8
    That little hot plate/coffee warmer that is used in John's link is about all you need. It's only when you really need perfection that temperature control becomes important - controlling the exact temperature range means you can get the glue to its optimum temperature range (there are a lot of different types of hide glue i.e fish, rabbit, etc. with their own temp ranges), if you overshoot the temperature range, the glue breaks down and loses strength. The old glue pots were simple cast iron double boilers. The heavy iron would retain the heat.

    That said, I have known people that do excellent work who use a regular pan heated on the stove. When doing something like that you risk destroying the glue, but when you have to make do it can be done. Of course a proper heavy double boiler would be better, and an electric double boiler with temperature control would be ideal.

  9. #9
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    Many folks just use a crock pot,but you DO NEED to use a thermometer. As said,if you get the glue a bit too hot,it will ruin the glue. The protein gets cooked. You can glue on gold leaf (in bookbinding),with an uncooked egg white,but fry that egg,and you will not get it to stick. The maximum temperature must not exceed about 130º F.(for ordinary wood glue). I also have kept hide glue in the fridge,then put the whole bottle with glue in it into hot water inside my glue pot. The glue will last 3-4 days in the fridge,then begins to stink and rot.
    Last edited by george wilson; 04-09-2011 at 11:05 AM.

  10. #10
    I found potpourri pots (mini crock pot) at Big Lots for a few dollars. Bought 3 and kept the one that stayed at the temp I was after.
    “If liberty means anything at all, it means the right to tell people what they do not want to hear.” -- George Orwell


  11. #11
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    Another tip for using the frozen hide glue is to use the microwave to quickly heat up small quantities. Just be careful not to overheat the glue.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by John Coloccia View Post
    Just for giggles, this is the glue pot I'm currently using. It's absolutely the perfect size and configuration for instrument work...and by extension, for anything that requires small batches.

    http://www.musicaravan.com/gluepot
    Cool! I had no idea that anyone was making new gluepots of the traditional design. I searched forever before I found an antique copper one, and it was pricey....

  13. #13
    I have been using the Rival 'Hot Pot Express', IIRC it was about $15 at Walmart. The lowest setting generally does the trick for my unit.. The trick is to let the units temperature stabilize for 15-20 minutes before the glass baby jar of hide goes in. The tip about the meat thermometer, is a must have also.. Cause you really don't know when 140-150 degree's is going to be on your pot.. The whole setup will set you back about $20-25
    Last edited by Robert LaPlaca; 04-10-2011 at 12:04 PM. Reason: misspelled rival

  14. #14
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    I have a real electric glue pot,but they are pretty expensive. Used to be about $90.00 years ago(unless Asian now). If a Big Lots cheap pot works,good enough. just put a decent thermometer in it to not go over 130º.

  15. #15
    I have had a couple of the Hold Heet glue pots, but the best 'glue' pot I've ever had is one of these wax pots. I used a cheap ($8 off eBay too) digital meat thermometer to initially check the temperature dial increments and then marked the sweet spot with a felt pen.

    The inner pot is removable and spare pots are available, so you can keep one for straight glue and another with additives in it etc. The tight fitting lid ensures the glue heats up rapidly and moisture loss is kept to a minimum. I keep a wooden handled glue brush in the pot permanently, even with the lid on. There's a wiping bar across the centre of the pot, but I replaced it with a thick elastic band which I stretch across the folding handle and when it becomes gunged up with glue, I rip it off and replace it with another one.

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