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help with glue

terry otto

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glue alone isnt the best option....

unless i misunderstand what you are wanting.


i generally use an epoxy like 'araldite' to make sure of it.

but if you want to use a wood glue specifically ... there is a stuff called 'yellow glue' thats available here ..

its a pva glue, but stronger.


but, as i said ... epoxy is king.



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thank you very much kind miss. will any kind of epoxy work or do thay make ones for timber. i know there are different sorts for different applications. i use one at word for gluing steel into concrete, and a different one for applications at home. i even made a cheese glue once but what a drama that was

thank you


Edited by terry otto
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it depends on what application you are going to be using it for.


if you are trying to attach a handle to a knife, really you should put a pin or two through the handle in order to have an actual mechanical hold on the scales of wood/antler.


if you rely on the glue alone, you are going to be disappointed when the scales come flying off.


i normally use the 24 hour cure epoxy that is commonly available from hardware stores around the place.


mainly because it gives you time to work, and is a little stronger than the 5-min sort.


hope that helps.



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i know of other makers who use pine pitch for putting blades together ..

but i havent used it myself ... so i cant really say.


the trouble is that pva glue cant deal with water too well ..

epoxy and pitch dry out over times ..

superglue is fragile at the best of times ..

construction glues are ,.... ugly


thats why most tend to rely on a mechanical means to ensure that the handle wont come apart.

you dont even need to have the pins showing if you dont want ... blind pinning is a possibility ..


but, however works.



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i wouldn't use yellow glue for any thing other than gluing two halves of a wood sheath together using it on a tang has a tendency to rust the metal. stick with the epoxy long set up times mean stronger glue up and deeper penetration on wood

Brandon Sawisch bladesmith


eagles may soar but weasels don't get sucked in to jet engines

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I've been surfing the 'net for months trying to determine the best way to attach slabs/handles to knife tangs - specifically elk antler. I'd tried several methods, epoxy, peened rivets (brass, copper,steel) and special bolts. All work to some degree but nothing great. I finally found some great information on a couple of forums, and thought I'd pass along the information. For those not wanting to read the whole thread, here is a summary.


The best 'modern' way (according to the professionals) to attach slabs/handles is with high strenth aerospace epoxy and pins. A couple of knife makers/members of the knifenetwork forum tested a number of glues and epoxies and documented the results in a spreadsheet. Here is the link to the spreadsheet along with a link to the thread (LOOOONNNGGG thread). I've also include information about Loctites epoxy designations. The 'E' series of epoxies are high end epoxies you can't get at Lowes or Home Depot (try Fastenal first). All 'E' series are extremely high strength and the HP's are high performance.


For my 2nd knife, 5160 steel, full tang, elk antler I chose Loctite Hysol / E20HP. It is an off -white, high strength (3,000 - 5,000 psi adhesive strength), chemical and solvent resistent, 300 degree temperature rated, dishwasher safe, two-part epoxy. I first tested the epoxy on an identical piece of steel with a left-over piece of antler. After 24 hours I tried to beat the antler off with a 22 oz ball peen hammer. All I seceeded in doing was breaking off pieces of antler - not where is was attached with the epoxy, just pieces of the antler. This is MUCH better epoxy that you can get at your local hardware store. Best place to find it - Fastenal.


One other IMPORTANT note: One of the most significant 'discoveries' of the test was that if you sandblasted the tang, as opposed to just grinding or sanding it, you will get much better adhesion. I sandblasted my tang using a $19 siphon sandblast gun.



Good Stuff below.


Adhesive spreadsheet Link


Adhesive Spreadsheet


Testing for the Ultimate Adhesive link"


Testing for the Ultimate Adhesive



Loctite epoxy nomenclature


First Letter E = Epoxy

Numbers (120 and 60/50/40/30/20) = Cure time

Last Letters = Sub type/color:

HP high performance

CL clear

FL flexible

IC induction cure

NS non-sag

NC Non-Corrosive

GW galvanized steel to wood

HT high temp

UT contains kevlar

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i attached one of the first antler handles i done ages ago with industrial silicon and i still cant get it to let go. it was a hidden tang not a full tang.hole drilled into the antler. most of the knives i have made have this type of tang not full tang with scales.


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