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Old Jan 07, 2013, 11:36 AM
Jim in the Desert
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United States, NM, Las Cruces
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Epoxy vs Hot Glue Gun

It seems like Epoxy is the standard glue for RC (along with CA for some applications).

I wonder if hot glue would be better? It seems like it might be stronger, but I'm not sure. I thought I'd ask for opinions. Also, will hot glue be hot enough to melt foam?

Thanks,
Jim
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Old Jan 07, 2013, 11:46 AM
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United States, NE, Omaha
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cloud_9 View Post
It seems like Epoxy is the standard glue for RC (along with CA for some applications).

I wonder if hot glue would be better? It seems like it might be stronger, but I'm not sure. I thought I'd ask for opinions. Also, will hot glue be hot enough to melt foam?

Thanks,
Jim
It all depends on the application. Some use white Gorilla Glue (GG), various viscosities of CA, Spray stuff (3M 77), shoe goo (makes great hinges and reinforces EPP wing LEs etc) and hot glue. Oh, you can pickup hot glue guns with dual temps fairly cheap at big box stores. The high temps will melt EPP foam, the low no. On low you need to work fairly quick. On EPP white GG seems to work well.
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Old Jan 07, 2013, 11:52 AM
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Glue depends on both the builder/repairer and the application. Sometimes I'll use CA, hinges or minor fixes. Others I'll use epoxy, holding in velcro (seems to work decent to fair) or holding in landing gear (though a bad landing can rip up an airframe if the gear have been epoxied in). Sometimes I'll use hot glue, servos or attaching various components (works great to hold velcro, servos, esc, recievers). I'll also use Gorilla Glue for repairs, it's strong and expands to fill in cracks and crevaces. I've also started using white silicone caulk like for your bathroom. It's fairly close to what some manufacturers use to hold in servos and motor mounts, it's strong, and has a decent amount of flex without giving.

Point is don't limit yourself to one glue type, feel free to experiment and see what you like best.

I recently put together an Airfield RC 800 mm Zero and I solely used white silicone.

Some hot glue can be hot enough to melt foam.
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Old Jan 07, 2013, 01:06 PM
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problem with epoxy is it gets heavy real quick. i use gorilla glue alot,it will fill dents or holes,expands so be careful. it is very light and sand off easy,i put tape over glued area to keep it from expanding outward.
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Old Jan 07, 2013, 06:24 PM
Canadian Bacon
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I use mostly hot glue and a bit of CA. Hot glue gun is the small 1/4 sticks. I found the bigger one too hot. All i takes is a small bead with the nose of the gun parallel with the surface.

Gord.
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Old Jan 07, 2013, 06:30 PM
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For most of my smaller electric planes i use hot glue. I have built .25 sized glow planes with hot glue. Flew just fine. I am not sure i would go larger then that.

I use what ever glue will be the best for each application. Epoxy, Ca, white glue, titebond, GG, contact cement, 3M77, 3M90, marine resin, pl4000, liquid nails.

Buzz,
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Old Jan 07, 2013, 06:54 PM
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I've found hot glue to be a little soft/flexible in general, and it gets worse in warm weather. It also adds a lot of weight if you're not careful, and the severely limited working time can be a problem. It's also a little tough to sand. I do love the stuff for quick foamie builds and mounting electronics, though. It's quick and easy, and while its hold strength is inferior to most epoxies, it still tends to far outstrip whatever material you're gluing. Due to the temp sensitivity and flexibility I wouldn't use it structurally on something I'm really invested in.

Epoxy has its own set of pros and cons. The mixing aspect tends to lead to a lot of wastage, and if you get the mix ratio wrong it can result in a very bad, poorly-cured joint. I really love it for high-stress locations (firewalls, wing mounts, tail feathers etc.), and it's a bit more shock-resistant and crack-proof than CA since it doesn't cure quite as brittle. It can be mixed with a variety of "stuff" to make adhesive pastes with different qualities (I just tried balsa dust and I like it), and the thinner long-cure types are the best resins for fiberglass work. In smaller amounts, I've found that bottled-water caps and balsa splints are perfect for mixing.

Then there's CA... Quick, easy, and safe (if inconvenient) for contact with skin/eyes/open wounds. I use it primarily for structural balsa joints that don't individually see much load. It soaks into wood fibers and makes them real brittle, so cracking can be a problem. Regular CA dissolves most foams, so the foam-safe type is usually required. The important part about CA is that it works sort of like a contact adhesive. Big open-air globs will take forEVER to cure, but small particulate matter, water, "squeezing" between two close surfaces, or fibrous material contact will make it set almost instantly. This is both an advantage and a disadvantage.

Use what's appropriate and you generally won't have problems. Most planes, regardless of type, will benefit from the use of more than one type of adhesive.
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Old Jan 08, 2013, 02:26 AM
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I have lots and lots of glues, depends on the material, area, use, and so many other things.
Try lots, research, and do not get "stuck" on one type of adhesive. I have about 20 types that I use depending on what I need for that job.
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Old Jan 08, 2013, 07:45 AM
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Originally Posted by C₄H₁₀ View Post
..then there's CA... Quick, easy, and safe ..
Been wondering what this 'CA' stuff is? I guess it's like SuperGlue, a cyano-acrylate?

The last foamie I bought came with an anonymous tube of really good glue. It was not instant grab like that SuperGlue, it gave plenty of time and was quite thick, not like watery SuperGlue which you end up sticking your fingers together because it runs everywhere - uhgg horrible stuff...

I'd like to get some of that.
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Old Jan 08, 2013, 09:09 AM
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Yes it is a cyano-acrylate. Beware no two are the same. If using it on foam make sure that it's label says "100% Foam Safe" if not it could melt the foam you are trying to glue, if using kicker or accelerator with the ca be careful on foam as it could melt the foam due to the reaction of the kicker and ca. I've really noticed this while using ca and kicker on dollar tree foam builds.

The glue you are talking about is really good, not the super glue. Usually the included glue from a kit like that requires applying a small amount to both surfaces that are to be adhered, allow a few seconds/minutes for each side to dry out a bit, this will give less working time, but will still make a very tight bond.
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Old Jan 08, 2013, 12:02 PM
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is their a specific type of glue that people normally use?
Do you guys use different glues for different aspects of the plane?
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Old Jan 08, 2013, 12:07 PM
Canadian Bacon
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Regular CA is good for EPP and EPO foam but nothing else.

Gord.
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Old Jan 08, 2013, 12:20 PM
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Originally Posted by dedStik View Post
..The glue you are talking about is really good, not the super glue. Usually the included glue from a kit like that requires applying a small amount to both surfaces that are to be adhered, allow a few seconds/minutes for each side to dry out a bit, this will give less working time, but will still make a very tight bond.
Yes, but can you name a commercially available brand or two for me to look for (in the UK)?
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Old Jan 08, 2013, 12:21 PM
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Originally Posted by flypaper 2 View Post
Regular CA is good for EPP and EPO foam but nothing else.

Gord.
Sorry, let me clarify, I guess I was looking for a bit of direction since I am so new.

I hear people using super glue, hot glue, epoxy, ca, etc. etc.

Is there one over the other that is recommended along with a brand?

Or does it depend on plane and part? For example, if you are glueing a foam wing, would you use one product/brand over another?
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Old Jan 08, 2013, 01:08 PM
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Yes, but can you name a commercially available brand or two for me to look for (in the UK)?
I've heard of people using UHU Por with good results. I've never used it myself though.

Some brands I've used.

Elemers Rubber Cement in the bottle with a brush, works great for laminating foam.
Gorilla Glue and gorilla glue white, I prefer the white to normal GG, the white seems easier to sand.
Foam Safe CA, the Hobby King brand is what my LHS sells just with their name on the label.
E-Flite foam safe ca, works as well as the generic hobby store branded stuff.
DAP White silicone caulk, the stuff in the squeeze tube not the kind you need a caulk gun for
2 part epoxy, I've used different brands I personally like the 5 minute variety, the stuff that comes in 2 separate bottles is better than the stuff in the 2 part tube injector, seems there's less waste with 2 part bottles.
Finally hot glue, currently using some bargain basement stuff I got from Target and I hate it. The glue retains too much heat and melts the foam on occasion, it also takes forever to harden. I'd suggest going to a craft store and getting decent hot glue sticks.
I've also used glue sticks when putting printed plans onto card stock to make templates.

Quote:
Originally Posted by lardo5150 View Post
Sorry, let me clarify, I guess I was looking for a bit of direction since I am so new.

I hear people using super glue, hot glue, epoxy, ca, etc. etc.

Is there one over the other that is recommended along with a brand?

Or does it depend on plane and part? For example, if you are glueing a foam wing, would you use one product/brand over another?
If I were gluing a foam wing, it would depend. I've used hot glue to hold a wing onto a jet (built the Fuglyjet google it you will see how much hot glue is used for that), I may use epoxy, I've a trainer .40 that's balsa and the joint joining the two wing halves together is held in place using fiberglass cloth that was cured in epoxy over the joint (it's held up over 20 years now). If it was a simple repair I may use gorilla glue white (just to fill any minor cracks due to gorilla glue expanding when it sets) if it was to put a piece of foam back into place and it was small and not detrimental to structural integrity I may use CA, this stuff from Hobby king is the exact stuff I can get at my local hobby shop and works as well as the Eflite stuff and is less expensive http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/s...oam_Safe_.html.

To give you an idea here is a 800 mm Zero I finished last week that I used DAP white silicone caulk entirely as the only glue. Even for the landing gear, I've flown it 3 times and had a hard landing and all still seems fine. The tail section is also held in by the silicone caulk. The idea being should I need to make repairs I can pull it apart without destroying the plane as the caulk should give under enough stress before the foam does. Parkzone also uses something similar to the white caulk to hold in their motor mounts and servos.

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Last edited by dedStik; Jan 08, 2013 at 01:19 PM.
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