|Review by grovemadman||posted 02-29-2008 01:43 AM||8647 views||0 times favorited||10 comments|
TITEBOND GLUE GUN REVIEW FOR LEAP DAY: Here is a product all woodworkers could benefit from. Originally designed for the production furniture market, the Titebond Hipurformer is a polyurethane reactive (PUR) bond adhesive that sets fast, won’t harm your surfaces, is very strong and provides a permanent bond to Wood, Metal, glass, porcelain, concrete and a host of other substrates! Not only is it easy to use but it cleans up without a hassle. The bond is near instant reducing the need for clamps and for the faster adhesives in the system completely eliminates the need for clamps all together. Glue “squeezout” is not a problem – simply sand, scrape or pare away any excess with a chisel, and It can be machined.
NOT YOUR AVERAGE GLUE GUN! This isn’t your average craftstore hot melt glue gun. The bonding adhesives come in four varieties ranging from instant to 30 minute open set up time. There is a multipurpose adhesive, wood to wood adhesives and a newer extended open set up time for complicated glue ups. The cartridges are good for a month after opening and cost about $8 each. This may sound like a lot but you use much less glue since it is hot and tends to flow into the joints more easily than regular room temperature glue. The system contains the glue gun and cord, heating element, three different cartriges of adhesive, instructions and a handy carry case to keep the system clean and all in one place.
SET UP and TAKE DOWN
The instructions explain clearly how to use the system to the fullest, for instance which adhesive is best for a certain application. The gun sets up quickly right out of the box, and the glue takes about 10-13 minutes to fully warm up. How do you know it is ready to use? When you plug it in a red light comes on and when the glue is heated the light switches to green for go! When you are finished unplug the heating element, care fully remove the glue cartridge from the gun with a glove or oven mitten and allow a few minutes to cool. While the cartridge is still warm a cap is placed on to the cartridge to keep air out. Pack it all up in the handy case and store in a place roughly the size of a toaster.
HOW WELL DOES IT WORK?
The first time I used the gun I tested two pieces of oak. I ran a thin bead as suggested and pressed the two pieces of oak together with the thirty second bond adhesive for about a minute. I let it sit another minute and then tried to pull them apart. I couldn’t do it! I put one side in a vise and grabbed the other side and leaned down and away from it pressing as hard as I could and still couldn’t break it! I immediately cut the two pieces with a saw – no problem machining it less than five minutes after initial glue up. I let it set up over night and put it to the ultimate test. Clamped in a vise and armed with a 4lb. baby sledge hammer I smacked one side of the two pieces and nothing happened. I gave the next shot all I had and the wood came apart taking part of the other oak block with it!!! The joint where I had glued the wood was still intact! Above is a sample of the bonding power @ roughly 10 secs with the 30 second adhesive and a two year old tube of adhesive! (the tubes have a shelf life of 1 year unopened – mine had been opened) I did this with two dirty pieces of wood that hadn’t been jointed too! At ten minutes into the cross linking the strength of a clean machined joint is 650 PSI, at 1 hour it increases to 1,090 PSI and in 24 hours increases to 1,360 PSI with WW30 adhesive.
ADVANCED HOT MELT COMPARED TO CONVENTIONAL GLUE
Well I must say I still prefer to use conventional room temperature adhesives whenever possible. I still think the interphase process is a bit stronger with conventional wood glue, but not much. I have tested this with other substrates and found the bonding power to be exemplary. Is this gun worth the price and does it have a place in traditional wood working? I believe it does warrant the price and there will be times when nothing else can do the job efficiently. Sometimes when a clamp will slip or the wood/glue wants to creep this tool is invaluable. I use it for making Jigs a lot, when the down time of waiting on a jig to cure from glue up could mean the difference between sitting around or getting back to machining parts! This alone justifies the purchase of the system.
Does it have any down sides? Sure it does but not enough to weigh in favor against it. If I had a gripe it would be forgetting to put the cap back on the glue which wastes a whole tube of the stuff. And sometimes you have to run a drill bit down the tube to get past the hardened stuff, which is an inconvenience. Plus the cartridges can go bad after a year. The price makes regular glue more economical unless you are doing a production run and you need to keep moving. If you don’t get your glue up right then throw it into the scrap pile and start over!
The kit costs a hundred bucks and is well worth it if you do production runs, need a fast clean bonding adhesive without the use of clamps. The strength of the joints it can make are phenomenal, just make sure you are ready to go before you bond two pieces of wood together because that’s where they are going to stay short of breaking the wood. If you need to bond something and machine it right away this tool can do it. So it is for these reasons I recommend the Titebond Hipurformer over fast set epoxies or any other quick cure glues!