The use of Hot Hide Glue - A dying Art?

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Forum topic by Maclegno posted 02-07-2010 03:31 AM 2318 views 0 times favorited 14 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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224 posts in 3259 days

02-07-2010 03:31 AM

Topic tags/keywords: restoration hotglue adhesive wood veneering veneer

Sometime ago I attended a short course on antique Furniture Restoration. During it the use of hot animal glue for veneering etc. was featured. I was impressed by the unique properties of the substance, the fact that it could set very quickly but be reactivated using heat, it’s strength etc. I was wondering if some Restorers/Luthiers among us could give us some facts, tips uses, anything of interest, as I’m sure many younger LJs have never even heard of it. More people would use it if they realised how unusual it was

-- Maclegno,Scotsman in Italy

14 replies so far

View a1Jim's profile


117328 posts in 3774 days

#1 posted 02-07-2010 03:34 AM

I know instrument makes have used it for centuries. Thanks for the info Mac.

-- wood crafting & woodworking classes

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224 posts in 3259 days

#2 posted 02-07-2010 03:39 AM

Thanks Jim, I altered my request to include Luthiers.

-- Maclegno,Scotsman in Italy

View barryvabeach's profile


159 posts in 3241 days

#3 posted 02-07-2010 03:41 AM

Mac, I use it fairly regularly. Here is a great place to see how to make your own glue pot

One tip is to make a sample joint with glue and test it the next day by breaking it apart – if it breaks cleanly at the glue line, something wasn’t right. While some say it can only be heated a few times, I make it in a mason jar, and heat it all day, then throw it in the frige, and use it again and again without any problems.

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224 posts in 3259 days

#4 posted 02-07-2010 03:55 AM

Thanks Barry that’s a good article, I just read it, but I would like to read members experiences using it for normal shop purposes. I’m sure it could be a good choice for many applications apart from the obvious ones

-- Maclegno,Scotsman in Italy

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13640 posts in 3538 days

#5 posted 02-07-2010 04:10 AM

a word to any future antique furniture restorers ,

only hide glue will keep the provenance real ,
any use of modern glues or screws
will stop it’s value !

-- david - only thru kindness can this world be whole . If we don't succeed we run the risk of failure. Dan Quayle

View hObOmOnk's profile


1381 posts in 4325 days

#6 posted 02-07-2010 05:13 AM

A lot of furniture artisans in Kentucky still use animal glues.
I make the stuff from rabbit and squirrel hides.

-- 温故知新

View stefang's profile


16123 posts in 3532 days

#7 posted 02-07-2010 01:25 PM

Hide glue is good for some applications, but having to heat it and keep it warm is a bit of an inconvenience. Not to mention getting the right proportions of water/glue. You can buy dry hide glue and add water and heat. For me it’s not worth the bother, while for others it might be just the thing.

-- Mike, an American living in Norway.

View Maclegno's profile


224 posts in 3259 days

#8 posted 02-11-2010 09:18 PM

I’m sorry I offended you by posting such a simple question, not including the word Hide, and using the word Art facetiously. I am indeed a newcomer here but have been practicing woodwork for over 20 years and most of what I have learnt has been from practice and from reading. What I wanted fom you was PERSONAL experiences and tips. These things are best found here in a site like this.

-- Maclegno,Scotsman in Italy

View Milo's profile


869 posts in 3517 days

#9 posted 02-12-2010 05:54 PM


Don’t worry about it. People get too persnickity sometimes. Ask away.

Hey uptight folks. If you don’t like a question someone asks, DON’T ASWER. Some that cares will. How are newbs supposed to learn if they are afraid to ask?

-- Beer, Beer, Thank God for Beer. It's my way of keeping my mind fresh and clear...

View Cozmo35's profile


2200 posts in 3233 days

#10 posted 02-12-2010 10:29 PM

Maclegno, I was very interested in your posting. I have never heard of this type of glue. Of course, I am not as experienced as some. Sometimes you have to take the good with the bad on the web as far as comments go. Some people need to switch to decaf before loggin on. LOL! I think that with your experience of over 20 years, you’d be a wealth of information that should be very much welcomed and prized and not be bothered by someones persnickity rebuttles. Post away and enjoy. I learn A LOT on this site and will continue do drink from this fountian of information, so don’t be slighted by negative postings.

-- If you don't work, you don't eat!.....Garland, TX

View Maclegno's profile


224 posts in 3259 days

#11 posted 02-13-2010 02:07 AM

Milo and Cozmo35 Many thanks for your support and kind words

-- Maclegno,Scotsman in Italy

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224 posts in 3259 days

#12 posted 02-14-2010 02:51 AM

Many thanks Autumn

-- Maclegno,Scotsman in Italy

View woodmight's profile


113 posts in 3254 days

#13 posted 02-14-2010 08:43 AM

Here is some info on hide glue… I hope it will answer some or all your questions.

-- ~~ Remember You can't saw... What you can't see ~~

View Maclegno's profile


224 posts in 3259 days

#14 posted 02-14-2010 04:24 PM

many thanks woodmight, very informative

-- Maclegno,Scotsman in Italy

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