Preferred CA glue viscosity for tape method?

Finally getting ready to order my Onefinity, and for the majority of what I’ll be doing, the CA glue+blue tape will be my preferred hold down method.

What viscosity CA glue is everyone using? I’ll be using starbond. They have thin, medium, medium-thick and thick. Thin and thick are off the table; thin is too runny and I wouldn’t want to have any high areas from using thick and not pressing it down completely.

So I’m between medium and medium thick.
Any input is appreciated.

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I use medium nearly 100%. I occasionally use thick for gap-filling on something that has an uneven or textured bottom.


Yeah I’m leaning towards medium. It’s available in more sizes than the medium-thick too.

I do already have some thick 2p10 I can use for anything uneven.

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I use the medium myself but generally get more smaller bottles vs 1 larger bottle. I find that even with careful capping, the bottle can crust up or dry out. You really don’t need to use a lot. I keep the bottles in the fridge (in a ziplock that I’ve sucked the air out of to prevent condensation) until I nearly use one up. Then I pull a fresh bottle out of the fridge and let it warm up to room temp before using it. That way I get to spread shipping across a bunch of bottles or take advantage of coupons, referral codes, etc but don’t have it going bad.

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That makes sense. I was planning on ordering a 4oz bottle; would it be a good idea to get 2oz bottles instead? It’s about $3.50 more for the same 4oz. I knew about keeping glue cool, but hadn’t though to use my vacuum sealer to keep unopened bottles completely free of any possible air contamination.

Starbond has free shipping at $50 after discounts and there’s a few coupon codes floating around so my initial order would be for 4oz of glue and two bottles of the 16oz pump spray activator. Those come with a smaller bottle for refilling.

I second this. I have four viscosities: Thin, Medium, Thick, Gel.

I find that Medium is best for tape and general adhesion. If I need to fill gaps, I use thick glue. If I need gravity to not have as much effect on runny glue (vertical surface maybe), I’d use gel. Remember that the thicker the viscosity, the longer the setup time or you’ll need to use accelerators. Also, depending on the material, you may not want the heat caused by the use of accelerating agents.

Thin on the other hand has its usefulness, but it is very dangerous if you’re not accustomed to working with it. It’s light weight and you often cannot feel it running everywhere until you move and realize you’re stuck. A good application for thin is if you need to glue a splintered piece of wood back to where it broke off. You might put a small dab or two of medium and press firmly to let it bond. Then turn the wood where the seams are and let the thin glue ‘wick’ into the edges for a good bond.

Anyway, since you asked about tape, just use medium. I’ve used this for bonding straight edges to rip cut on the table saw fence, bandsaw, router, router table, etc… Use some sense that it’s not meant to have tremendous holding power and you’ll be fine; you’ll be plenty happy with the medium glue sticking to paper. If you need more holding power, get it across more surface area.


And there was me believing there was only gel and non-gel. :slightly_smiling_face:

I dont use the gel form but i do wrap a piece of blue tape around my finger for spreading the glue around.


Great info in here, thanks.
Looks like medium it is.

Thin I like to use to strengthen threads tapped in wood. Especially plywood or MDF.

I appreciate everyone’s input here.

Not to sound cheap, frugal maybe, but I use the cheap stuff. Whatever I can find on sale, Harbor Freight, or Dollar Stores. None of them have let me down and all I use is the tape, CA glue, tape method. Basically CA glue is CA glue. I know not everyone will agree but that is what I use and it works fine.

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I get the 2oz - I’ve tossed enough half-empty 4oz bottles to know that I can’t be relied on to keep it from hardening up - either the tip, top or the glue itself. I usually buy a bunch (& the activator) at once and use a coupon code or YT video guy’s discount code. I figured that covers the extra cost of going the 2oz route.

You might try the 4oz and see how long it lasts you and whether you have drying/crusting problems. It’s really dependent on how much you use & how often. I’ve seen people cover the full surface area of their material with blue tape & CA when really you only need a couple of strips. If you’re a full-coverage guy you’ll use more faster.

I’m fine with the 2oz bottles. I’m definitely not a full-coverage guy; two or three strips is what I figured I’ll be using most of the time. I’d rather not have glue go to waste if possible.
Thanks again for your input.

@PaulC Nothing wrong with being frugal. :+1:

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@JimHatch is correct about the hardening of the glue, but don’t worry about it too much. Just wipe the glue bottle tip after every use before putting the cap back on. Also make sure that you don’t have any glue that runs down the neck. If you miss it, you’ll be inclined to scrape with a razor which ultimately causes the tips to be destroyed more quickly.

Get a few alterations pins, the kind with a metal head and not the plastic ball at the end. I use those 2 ounce bottles and they last a long while. I mostly use thin and medium, like I described above and I burn through medium the fastest. One of those two ounce bottles goes a long way if you just place droplets on the tape rather than a straight bead.

Happy carving brother. I’m anxious to see what you do.

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Thanks, will do on the pins; I may already have some kicking around in the shop.
Yeah I saw a few videos mention that you don’t need to overdo it with the glue, drops is how I planned to use it.

I’m so excited to finally be getting my CNC after planning for just about two years now.

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Here is a link to the tape and glue that I use:

10 Rolls Painters Tape 2 inch

Kraken Bond WOW! CA Glue & Activator

I have had pretty good luck with them. For my latest project, I seem to be going through a lot of CA glue because I am cutting out many small parts out of a large plank (game board pieces). If I get a crust on the top, I just poke it with a nail and seems to be fine.

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Thanks for the links. I already have some blue tape I got from my wife (she does paint pours and epoxy art and goes through a lot of it) but I was looking into wider rolls, like 6" for larger projects. I know that some use paper masking used for vinyl decals so I may grab a roll of that to try out.

No issues with the glue expiration? Some of the reviews mention getting glue only a couple of months away from the expiration date. I know that it can easily last longer kept sealed and in the freezer.

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I guess it would depend on how much you use whether or not it dries up on you.

As for expiration goes, I bought this glue in January. I had it on the shelf for a few months before I finished with my other bottle. I have been using this one for at least a month or two with the initial seal broken (but capped) and haven’t had any issues. Not to say that tomorrow i wont, but so far so good!

Oh, and I have not been refrigerating nor bagging it. I just throw it on a shelf in my workshop. :astonished:

@JohnBCS I’m not sure about the freezer. I’ve heard people reference this because of the temperature but typically refrigerators and freezers can generate moisture, which is bad for the glue. If it’s not sealed up pretty well, there’s a chance the freezer is not actually your best friend.

I’ve kept my glue bottles and the refills sealed tightly in a cool room temp and not had a problem. This issue is the seal. Maybe I’m completely mistaken and in that case, just ignore me.

Good luck.

Thanks. Honestly I can’t say I’ve ever had ca glue “expire”; more than anything it just dries up in the bottle. I have a small bottle of titebond thin CA I’ve been using for a few years with no issues that I can see.

@Timberly I have one of those small, holds 6 cans of soda mini fridges my wife got me a couple years back. Right now I just keep my shellac flakes in it but that’s where I’d put the extra bottles of glue after I vacuum seal them.

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Hey Timberly, hey all,

The water vapor brought into the refrigerator with the ambient air by opening the refrigerator door condenses on the surfaces and freezes. As cooling increases the condensation rate of the water vapor in the air while decreasing the evaporation rate, the saturation vapor pressure of the air inside the refrigerator decreases. The water vapor condenses at the coldest point, i.e., the evaporator tubes (or the wall surface into which they are foamed), where it is defrosted by regular brief warm-ups and conducted outside. Therefore, the air in a refrigerator is typically the driest air in a home.

This is especially the case in modern refrigerators, where the so-called “No-Frost” technology is used not only in the freezer section, but also in the normal refrigerator section. Automatic defrosting of the evaporator coil appeared in 1955[1][2].

One can easily verify this phenomenon by cutting two slices from a loaf of bread and storing them in the refrigerator, the one in an air-tight container, the other without :slight_smile:

In my experience, cyanoacrylate glue dries out if the closure is not airtight, which can happen with some dispensers that become gummed up and are then no longer tight. Cyanacrylate glue dries by water, air moisture is enough.

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I wouldn’t use the freezer. I’ve read warnings against that. Seems the chemistry of CA glues is adversely affected by 0F & below temps.