This is the first time I've used poly glue of any kind. I'm gluing 2 fir
beams together then laminating them with 3/4" oak to create a vertical post
for a stairway/landing. I glued the fir beams together yesterday with one
bead of glue, dampening both parts as per instructions. After a few hours,
I noticed the lack of the foam that's supposed to appear. I removed the
clamps only to have the 2 beams come apart with the glue dried in between.
I re-dampened the beams, used the equivalent of about 3 beads, in a squiggly
pattern down the length of the wood then clamped and allowed to dry
overnight. Still no foam this morning but the wood did seem to hold and a
chisel driven at different points didn't seem to make the wood separate.
Being still paranoid, I will use good ol' Elmers wood glue to laminate on
So my question is, did I do something wrong? Why is there no foam? I've
searched the group on google and didn't find this exact problem.
on 4/13/2005 1:03 PM NorthIdahoWWer said the following:
In the first instance I'm wondering if the wood was cupped, etc. and not
in contact. Sounds really strange that you would have NO glue joint as
opposed to a weak one in the situation you describe.
Had the glue been opened prior to this? I haven't had that much
experience with the polyurethane glues other than once or twice with
Gorilla Glue and it performed as advertised but then it was a new bottle.
I'm told that this stuff has a shelf life of ~ 6 months max once opened
unless you do something to evacuate the air in the bottle. Whether it's
wet or not it should expand, no?
Finally, I don't know that I'd even bother with poly for the project you
describe. Using this as a vertical post is not going to subject the
joint to much stress. I think I'd probably just get a good smooth
surface with the fir beams, glue and nail them up and then glue the oak
facade to the resultant post and be done with it. Titebond/Titebond II
should be more than adequate for your needs.
If one end of the post is going to be sitting on a concrete floor
(basement, maybe?) I'd seal it well and maybe even melt some wax on it
to prevent its wicking up moisture from the concrete or a minor flooding.
on 4/13/2005 1:44 PM NorthIdahoWWer said the following:
Sorry, I have no answer for your original question then. My thoughts on
the necessity of poly hold true in light of the balance of the message.
Done properly, a glueup with Titebond, any Titebond, will be stronger
than the wood itself. I didn't believe it until I tried it myself.
You stated that you placed a single bead on the face of the fir
before clamping the first time. Did you spread the bead so that
glue covered the entire surface, or did you expect the clamping
pressure to redistribute the glue? What were the dimensions of the
face of the board, in particular what was the width?
it sounds like it was not spread. you get a little bit of adhesion from the glue
migrating but it is not very strong. It needs to be spread so you have a shiny
layer over the whole surface. then you can clamp it up. it's like any other glue
in that way but you only need to do one side.
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I was assuming that the foaming action would make the glue cover the area.
It was a 2.5" wide board. Thing is, the instructions are very sparse on the
bottle. It just says to dampen both surfaces, says nothing of spreading.
Even Elmers' website gives no details on how to use the glues.
The single bead would have had very little surface area to contact
moisture on the wetted surface. Not getting foaming in this case
is perfectly understandable.
Use a small (3" x 5") piece of formica to spread the glue in a thin
layer over one piece and wet the other with a sponge so that the
entire contact area is moist. As Steve pointed out, for oily
tropicals wet the surface that you spread the glue on before
spreading the glue.
on 4/14/2005 1:43 PM Scott Lurndal said the following:
I can't speak to Elmer's as I've never used it. However, I have used
Gorilla Glue both with and without moisture (other than ambient) and
that stuff was like that foam insulation, it was all over the place.
If Elmer's glue is compounded differently, I withdraw the question.
I just tried Elmer's urethane glue for the first time last night. I'm
making work stands for various tools out of 2x2 poplar with loose
mortise and tenon joints. It started foaming less than 15 minutes after
applying it. I wiped it all off once, but it kept coming back. I
didn't use any water in the joints, partly because it was raining and
humidity was 100%. I checked them just now, and the joints seemed solid
as a rock.
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