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What type of glue for a workbench?

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D_W

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Try gluing a bridge on an acoustic guitar with white pva and see how long it holds out in a car on a sunny day!

I did something common in the US but that's probably not correct (it's definitely not for at least some of the titebond line). I referred to titebond as PVA (They're used interchangeably here among hobbyists because there really isn't PVA use to any extent).

So, if I mentioned PVA for guitars, I meant TB I, 2 or 3.

I don't know if TB is marked up overseas, but it's so unbelievably cheap at the hobby level here that you can buy a short dollar amount and not be able to get through it before it spoils. For example, TB1 is on the shelf two places on the road I live on for $17 a gallon. I'd bet the retailer makes more profit on it than the manufacturer.

I don't know for sure what was used on guitars when these glues became common and cheap, but some of the manufacturers now flatly state which TB is used for joints because the internet forums are full of people who have never built a guitar, but they "know" about the tonal problems with different glues. So, manufacturers do all kinds of rubbish they never did before the internet (showing pictures of neck tenons, specifying which TB, etc.).

And then you look at a glued joint in some of the guitars, and they have a ton of play in them so that they can be clamped in place and try to make the glue do the work. So, I don't get into too many conversations with instrument buyers who don't build them as they'll be obsessed on the glue type and then show me a neck tenon picture that looks like it has two ounces of hide glue in it and talk about how hard the glue is and how great the tone will be because of it.

And they'll get confused when I say "wouldn't it be nice to have a tenon that had too little space between it and the guitar to even see the glue? - then you wouldn't have to care what glue it is, but you'd also have to drill the bridge posts after the neck is instead instead of putting a loose joint on a guitar so that you can turn the neck to match where the bridge is located".

So, my apologies for PVA/TB comments as if they're the same - they're just said the same here as TB 1 is more or less the cheapest thing you'll find to glue wood.
 

D_W

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So what are you saying? Is Titebond PVA or is it something else?

At least some of the TB types are "aliphatic resin" glue (I think all three TBI,2, 3). I found this explanation on a model aircraft forum (I used to fly RC planes - glue suddenly becomes more important when it's gluing little tiny parts together and the plane is doing maneuvers at extremely high Gs).

"
Aliphatic resin glue is chemically similar to PVA (white glue), but it is chemically modified to make it stronger and more waterproof. It is typically a buttery yellow color and is sold as "carpenter’s wood glue."........ Like PVA, it's very inexpensive.

A center part of the post more or less said "Titebond is this type and it's ubiquitous in the US. Which is true - if you go to a box store or hardware store, you'll find "School glue" (white- which some people will call "milk glue", though I don't think there's casein in any of it), and "yellow glue", which before the internet was called "carpenter's glue" and now some of the non TB brands say "carpenter's wood glue" on them.

The internet is a minefield as there are "guru expert" woodworkers with articles like "TB I, 2 or 3 - which PVA glue to choose?"

The draw of the guru personality is far more important than the need for even reasonable precision, I guess. I called Yellow "PVA" above even knowing that it's not a plain PVA glue because of bad habit here in the states. PVA, yellow glue, and wood glue are all said in the same sentence only occasionally saying "OK, yellow glue, not PVA".

Franklin makes a gaggle of other glues, though, and even when they're polyurethane or liquid animal glues, they still have the "titebond" brand on them.

(I made the comment about guitars as often very highly regarded guitars now that have "vintage tone" that supposedly can't be matched were made with aliphatic resin glues - which were probably seen as a blessing in guitar factories before the work went sloppy if for no other reason just because there's a little extra open time, and the areas where gluing is done in a factory don't need to be kept at high temps for hide glue and I guess - not a glue expert - other precursors to AR glues were more aromatic or toxic).


Long story short, for this topic - I seriously doubt anyone is going to properly glue a bench with TB and have it fail.
 

Jonm

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Am I looking at the wrong thing?

I have seen everbuild 502 5 litre is for about £30 at Toolstation, £22 change on Amazon while Evostick 5 litre is only £13 at Toolstation. How is that more expensive? Unless I'm looking at the wrong product?
I think the references to “evostick PVA” are to resin W, and I can understand why you have been confused.

I used to use evostick resin W. One day I was making a box with folding legs to go in the caravan to put the small tv on with DVD player in the box, lightweight construction. Had run out of glue so used some pva from a 5 litre container, it said it would glue wood. It worked and held the wood together, the box was thin ply for lightness, glued and pinned. A few days later I dropped it accidentally, it was only a small bump. The whole thing fell apart with a sound similar to breaking glass.

I redid all the joints with resin W and it was fine.

I now only use pva for glueing wood if it is called “wood adhesive” or similar. I tend to use everbuild D4 now.
 

JobandKnock

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I don't know if TB is marked up overseas, but it's so unbelievably cheap at the hobby level here that you can buy a short dollar amount and not be able to get through it before it spoils. For example, TB1 is on the shelf two places on the road I live on for $17 a gallon. I'd bet the retailer makes more profit on it than the manufacturer.
No, I find it ridiculously expensive relative to what I normally use in the UK

"Aliphatic resin glue is chemically similar to PVA (white glue), but it is chemically modified to make it stronger and more waterproof. It is typically a buttery yellow color and is sold as "carpenter’s wood glue."........ Like PVA, it's very inexpensive.
And this is where we seem to hit the differences in terminology between the USA and the UK/EU. In this market PVA glues are described with a "D" number, from D1 to D4.

D1 PVA is basically "builders PVA", an admixture which goes into coatings or is used to seal dusty concrete. Contact with moisture reverses the bond

D2 PVA is suitable for interior use, such as furniture. Contact with moisture reverses the bond, but more slowly than D1. A widely used example of D2 PVA is Evostik Resin W (green bottle)

D3 PVA is suitable for sheltered exterior use, such as some types of joinery. It is modified so that it cross-links as it dries and because of this is is relatively durable unless you use it in extremely exposed positions. the joints are a lot harder to break. A widely used example of D3 PVA is Evostik Resin W (blue bottle)

D4 PVA is suitable for exposed exterior use. It is modified so that it completely cross links as it dries (the manufacturers refer to this as " hybrid resin technology", so the joints cannot easily be reversed (maybe with acetone, not sure). A widely used example of D4 PVA is Everbuild D4 Wood Adhesive which we've been buying in at around £11.00 per litre bottle as opposed to the £6.50 or so we pay for Everbuild 502 (D3) [Those are the one litre bottle prices - we do get bulk when we can, either 5 ltr or 25 ltr, but availability is decidely flakey at present, and prices vary a lot]

Note that D4 doesn't necessarilly mean PU (polyurethane) glue, as is often mis-stated in the UK for some reason

By your definitions(?) that probably makes D3 and D4 PVA glues (as we call them) aliphatic resins. Either way I was chatting about this with a neighbour this evening who used to be a shop foreman for a furniture manufacturing business (mainly hardwood and veneered boards, medium volume). He said that they used to be able to specify their glues for different jobs, so if they wanted a glue which produced a dark glue line (for walnut) they'd order PVA with an added colouring agent, same if they wanted a straw coloured glue line, etc. the also used to get low viscosity glues (runnier) for their dowel inserter line. The manufacturer just required a minimum batch size of 20 litres (or just over four gallon size plastic bottles). He also mentioned something about being able to retard faster setting glue by adding up to 5% distilled water - a lot of the D3 and D4 PVA I've used in recent years has an open time of 5 to 20 minutes, so speedy working with it is often a must

So my own feeling is that Titebond, at least as far as the UK is concerned is overhyped to a tremendous degree and there are equivalents which would do a goodly percentage of what Titeboond can do - at a lower price
 
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D_W

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It sounds like distribution is the problem. If there's a material savings below $17 per gallon (or 10% below that for professionals), it would get lost in rounding here.

If TB costs a lot more than that in the uk, that's unfortunate.
 

Cabinetman

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No, I find it ridiculously expensive relative to what I normally use in the UK


And this is where we seem to hit the differences in terminology between the USA and the UK/EU. In this market PVA glues are described with a "D" number, from D1 to D4.

D1 PVA is basically "builders PVA", an admixture which goes into coatings or is used to seal dusty concrete. Contact with moisture reverses the bond

D2 PVA is suitable for interior use, such as furniture. Contact with moisture reverses the bond, but more slowly than D1. A widely used example of D2 PVA is Evostik Resin W (green bottle)

D3 PVA is suitable for sheltered exterior use, such as some types of joinery. It is modified so that it cross-links as it dries and because of this is is relatively durable unless you use it in extremely exposed positions. the joints are a lot harder to break. A widely used example of D3 PVA is Evostik Resin W (blue bottle)

D4 PVA is suitable for exposed exterior use. It is modified so that it completely cross links as it dries (the manufacturers refer to this as " hybrid resin technology", so the joints cannot easily be reversed (maybe with acetone, not sure). A widely used example of D4 PVA is Everbuild D4 Wood Adhesive which we've been buying in at around £11.00 per litre bottle as opposed to the £6.50 or so we pay for Everbuild 502 (D3) [Those are the one litre bottle prices - we do get bulk when we can, either 5 ltr or 25 ltr, but availability is decidely flakey at present, and prices vary a lot]

Note that D4 doesn't necessarilly mean PU (polyurethane) glue, as is often mis-stated in the UK for some reason

By your definitions(?) that probably makes D3 and D4 PVA glues (as we call them) aliphatic resins. Either way I was chatting about this with a neighbour this evening who used to be a shop foreman for a furniture manufacturing business (mainly hardwood and veneered boards, medium volume). He said that they used to be able to specify their glues for different jobs, so if they wanted a glue which produced a dark glue line (for walnut) they'd order PVA with an added colouring agent, same if they wanted a straw coloured glue line, etc. the also used to get low viscosity glues (runnier) for their dowel inserter line. The manufacturer just required a minimum batch size of 20 litres (or just over four gallon size plastic bottles). He also mentioned something about being able to retard faster setting glue by adding up to 5% distilled water - a lot of the D3 and D4 PVA I've used in recent years has an open time of 5 to 20 minutes, so speedy working with it is often a must

So my own feeling is that Titebond, at least as far as the UK is concerned is overhyped to a tremendous degree and there are equivalents which would do a goodly percentage of what Titeboond can do - at a lower price
Thanks for that, explaining the mine field, mind you it won’t make any difference, I shall stick (lol) with blue resin W, never had any problems, and in relative terms it’s not an expense consideration. Ian
 

John Brown

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Yes, thanks. It is confusing. My dad had Cascamite(in powder form), Evostik Resin W, and Unibond(in a tin).
I tend to use Everbuild 502 mostly, as it's pretty cheap, I think I've paid around £5 for a litre.
But I do have some TB 3, as I read it was food safe. In fact I just used some TB3 that I've had for almost 15 years, and it seems to have held. Time will tell.
Also have some Gorilla PU glue, as apparently it works better with wet wood than PVA.
 

Phil Pascoe

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He also mentioned something about being able to retard faster setting glue by adding up to 5% distilled water - a lot of the D3 and D4 PVA I've used in recent years has an open time of 5 to 20 minutes, so speedy working with it is often a must

So my own feeling is that Titebond, at least as far as the UK is concerned is overhyped to a tremendous degree and there are equivalents which would do a goodly percentage of what Titebond can do - at a lower price

In summer especially I wet the wood before applying the glue, which gives a little more time (and I suspect aids its spreading).
I don't knock Titebond, Resin W etc. per se, I just wonder why people pay the premium.
 

Jake

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So what are you saying? Is Titebond PVA or is it something else?

Having been down this rabbit hole myself in the past, it's PVA. The aliphatic resins are an additional modifier (i.e. not the base glue itself, which is PVA). The aliphatic resins act as tackifiers (increasing the initial feeling of 'stickiness') and a platform for marketing BS. My suspicion is that the yellow colour is just a colourant to make it look like not-PVA but I have no proof of that.
 

JobandKnock

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It sounds like distribution is the problem. If there's a material savings below $17 per gallon (or 10% below that for professionals), it would get lost in rounding here.
Remember that prices here are quoted inclusive of our equivalent of in-state sales tax, known as VAT, at 20% - so if you take 20% off the prices quoted it starts to look a bit more reasonable, especially if you take into account shipping and (in the case of Titebond) import duty

Even locally produced materials will seem more expensive - this is down in part to the relative costs of operating in a smaller economy

I do have some TB 3, as I read it was food safe. In fact I just used some TB3 that I've had for almost 15 years, and it seems to have held. Time will tell.
By the same standard PVA glues should also be food safe unless the manufacturer adds stuff to them (at the end of the day PVA is just modified starch - and always chec k the CoSHH sheets) - how long it lasts is down to storage, I'd say. At this time of year the thing that kills it is frost when it is stored outdoors in sheds and vans

Also have some Gorilla PU glue, as apparently it works better with wet wood than PVA.
PU glue is activated by moisture in the air, so adding water to the joint acts as a bit of extra activator. Similarly PU doesn't seem to like being stored at sub-zero temperatures, but that's maybe because the seal on the bottle neck is less effective at low tempoeratures.

I don't knock Titebond, Resin W etc. per se, I just wonder why people pay the premium.
TBH I think it is overhyped and that people haven't got much understanding of "PVA", which is a bit more than just one glue. I find it interesting that I haven't come across anyone running a joinery shop or a shop fitting firm who use Titebonmd exclusively
 
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D_W

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I guess I"m not completely following the cost for glue there - PVA - 5 pounds a litre? is that about right (for white glue?)

If we just call the price in dollars converted to pounds without adjustment good enough, that would give a cushion of about 40%.

So titebond 1 would be 17 pounds at retail. So enough to add VAT plus 20%.

Realizing that if you have a greedy distributor, they could add 50% themselves plus the cost of transport. AT one point here in the states, one person had control of all of the shapton stones and they cost double what I could buy them for from Japan including proxy shipping for a group.

I guess my point is that I don't think the issue is titebond in terms of the cost, but it could be someone else.

if I were a contractor, I would automatically be able to buy five US gallons of the stuff for 78 bucks less 10% and no tax -at retail.

At your cost there in conversion, that would be about 10 pounds per gallon. And that includes profit for the retailer and transport to it.
 

Spectric

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So my own feeling is that Titebond, at least as far as the UK is concerned is overhyped to a tremendous degree and there are equivalents which would do a goodly percentage of what Titeboond can do - at a lower price
So spill the beans, I use Titebond three because it works and I know no better, ie stick with the devil you know but if there are cheaper alternatives or at least ones as good but with a better open time then name them as I am interested.
 

D_W

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This works both ways, by the way. Years ago, I wanted to get a sebo automatic. They were gobs cheaper in England than they were in the US, despite the VAT - smelled funny to me.

This was a while ago now, but it was $880 plus sales tax for a sebo automatic and 500 pounds with VAT in the UK free shipping at the time. When we have to pay more for something here than you do and it's not pork pies shipped air, something is off. Whoever is distributing and owning the naming rights must really feel entitled.

(I ended up finding the same vacuum under a commercial brand for $425 including shipping. Identical vacuum, different colors, and the operating manual and parts list that came with it was labeled "sebo automatic".

Marshall amplifiers are another - why we get robbed blind for those, I don't know, and just buying them from europe isn't quite as easy because the electric supply isn't the same. By that, I mean the ones made in Bletchley and not the ones made in vietnam with "marshall" written on them. We get shelled.

Gibson guitars are cheaper new than they are in the US, too. Figure that one out (all of them are US made).
 

JobandKnock

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if I were a contractor, I would automatically be able to buy five US gallons of the stuff for 78 bucks less 10% and no tax -at retail.
Well I am a contractor (or at least I'm a foreman for one) and the best we can get Everbuild D4 PVA for according to the 1 December price list is about £105.00 for 25 litres - D3 such as Everbuild 502 is under £70 for 5 litres (those prices are exclusive VAT, but inclusive delivery charges). I was quoting single litre prices including VAT because I suspect that most guys on here would be buying.

It's maybe also worth knowing that PVAs are all made from the samer basic raw material, namely corn starch, of which the USA is the largest single producer in the world with about 28% (?) of world production. The UK doesn't have the climate to produce corn for starch so we need to import or use alternative source, such as wheat. It's all part of the joy of living on a small, wet island
 
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D_W

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You make a fine point about amounts
If you go to certain small hardware stores, you'll sometimes find a pint of tb1 for $7 or something of the like, maybe more if the tun some kind of coupon sham.

Home depot here has strong markups, and rockler woodworking was down the hill from them. If you had a 25% off coupon and bought a quart of finish and home depot had the same thing, the regular price was less than the coupon price at rockler. 10% further off for contractors or veterans at home depot and no waving coupons around like a mark.
 
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