Attaching Rare Earth Magnets

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Forum topic by Peter Oxley posted 02-11-2008 04:34 AM 7448 views 0 times favorited 8 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Peter Oxley

1426 posts in 3904 days

02-11-2008 04:34 AM

Topic tags/keywords: rare earth magnets attach glue epoxy

I’ve meant to do do work with rare earth magnets before, but never really had a reason until now. I’ve attached metal items to wood before, and had good luck with silicone adhesive and poly glue. But I’ve tried both the silicone and the poly, and neither seems to stick to the magnets. I haven’t tried epoxy yet. What do you guys use?

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8 replies so far

View Ryan Shervill's profile

Ryan Shervill

278 posts in 3842 days

#1 posted 02-11-2008 05:23 AM

I use a lot of magnets…in fact, just in the last ten minutes I’ve installed 16 of them, from 1/8” X 1/8” up to 1” X 1/8” for a jig series I’m doing for Canadian Home Workshop magazine. Not knowing what your sizes and applications are, i’ll give you both methods:

1: Small magnets (3/8” or smaller) Clean the magnets well with a solvent. I like brake cleaner, but mineral spirits or alcohol will work.
rough up the glued side slightly with 220 grit paper, and glue in place with 5 minute epoxy.

2: If you are using the larger magnets (1/2” – 1”), because of their strength, the best method is to secure a like-sized washer to the wood with a screw that sits flush with the surface of the washer, apply some epoxy to the washer, and stick the magnet in place (treating the magnet the same with the solvednt/paper).
This will hold pretty much forever, and backing the magnets with steel actually increases their strength as well.

Hope this helps.


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View GaryK's profile


10262 posts in 4017 days

#2 posted 02-11-2008 07:08 AM

I agree with Ryan.

-- Gary - Never pass up the opportunity to make a mistake look like you planned it that way - Tyler, TX

View rikkor's profile


11295 posts in 3904 days

#3 posted 02-11-2008 02:24 PM

Thanks Ryan for the “how-to”. I have some 3/4” by 1/8” that are really aggressive. I’ll be using your advice.

View Recycler's profile


40 posts in 3794 days

#4 posted 02-11-2008 02:47 PM

I’d never thought of the washer+epoxy approach—only one or the other. Nice tip.

View Harry72's profile


53 posts in 3796 days

#5 posted 02-11-2008 03:12 PM

Cool tip on the washer!
Thx mate.

View Peter Oxley's profile

Peter Oxley

1426 posts in 3904 days

#6 posted 02-11-2008 03:43 PM

Thanks for the great advice, Ryan! I’ll give it a try again today.

For some reason, I always try new techniques on gifts. Most gifts have a very specific deadline, and when the new technique doesn’t work as planned, then I’m in trouble! Fortunately I still have a couple of days!

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View Thos. Angle's profile

Thos. Angle

4444 posts in 3991 days

#7 posted 02-11-2008 04:23 PM

I’ve been insetting them and using 2P-10 to hold them. Seems to work so far. I like Ryan’s method as well.

-- Thos. Angle, Jordan Valley, Oregon

View Jim Crockett (USN Retired)'s profile

Jim Crockett (USN Retired)

852 posts in 3762 days

#8 posted 03-07-2008 05:57 AM

Another method is to use the cups available for most sizes of the disk magnets. It increases the power of the magnet considerable and give you a metal-to-metal glue surface. The cup can be inset into a correct sized hole drilled with a fostner bit or surface mounted. I think that Rockler sells the cups, if not you can get magnets and hardware at


-- A veteran is someone who, at one point in his/her life, wrote a blank check made payable to "The United States of America," for an amount of "up to and including his/her life".

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