Some things to consider when you are gluing pieces of wood together for a woodworking project.



Gluing Wood - Using an Adhesive for Woodworking Projects

By:Mike Wescoat

In many - if not most - woodworking projects, it is necessary to glue two or more wood pieces together.

It would be nice if it were as easy as spreading glue on the surfaces and slapping them together.

But if you've ever tried this for a tabletop, or some other piece of furniture - you have probably already realized that the task is not so simple.

There are several things that must be considered when gluing wood pieces together for a project:

  • Nature of the Wood - Depending on the section of the tree that the particular piece of wood was cut from has a lot to do with how well it can be glued. Different parts of the wood will absorb liquid glues at different rates. If one surface absorbs a majority of the glue while the opposing surface receives very little, the joint is likely to fail at some point. The absorption of the adhesive is also affected by the moisture content of the wood.
  • Moisture Content - Liquid glue will not absorb into a saturated surface. There is no where in the surface of the wood for the glue to adhere to. Also, if the wood is too moist, it may shrink away from the joint as it dries, weakening it. If the wood is too dry, you may have the glue absorb and leave little to form the joint.
  • Quality of the Surface - A smooth, flat, unsanded surface is the best surface for gluing. Generally, you want the pieces being glued to fit together without gaps. Use a planer or joiner if necessary to ensure a nice surface.
  • Temperature - Temperature can affect many of the adhesives you may want to use. Some must be applied hot. Others won't set if it's too cold. Required temperature range is specific to the type of glue being used.
  • Type of Glue - Another key factor of the quality and strength of your glued joint is the type of adhesive you use. Whether wood glue, resin, epoxy, or something else, you need to use the right glue for your particular project. Will the joint need to be waterproof, like a patio table? Will it be bearing additional weight, like a chair?
  • Clamping - Whether or not the joint will need to be clamped - and for how long - is specific to the project and the type of glue used.
  • Assembly Time - Some adhesives must be mixed or warmed. If you prep enough for a project, but it takes an hour to fit the pieces together, you may have a problem. Some glues will set up solid in that time. Keep the overall project time in consideration.

About The Author
The author, Mike Wescoat, has created a free informational resource to help woodworkers choose the best wood for their projects. Visit to download a Free copy of Wood For Woodworking - Nature & Qualities of Wood.

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