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Alan Turner
10-21-2003, 9:56 AM
Hey guys,
I am taking the plunge into hide glue, and have a million questions. I read the FWW #57 article from 1986 on the Peter Cooper Company, and Frid's book No. 2 on the subject. And the download from Highland Hdw. And, I got a lesson from a friend of mine who has used it for years. All different, interestingly.
So, the questions --

1. How thick should it be at point of use?

2. To clamp, or not to clamp. This is actually the biggest issue for me. Like all of us, I have too many clamps, and never enough, of course. My friend doesn't clamp at all. He just rubs the joint, and puts it aside. He says that as the glue hardens and dries, it pulls the boards together.

3. Put it in the fridge when not in use? In the fridge, how long will it last? This is a real question for me, since my buddy has about 50 lbs, and gave me some, but it was contaminated with sand, it seems. He is a tile contractor and one of his guys must have thought the gunny sack of glue was sand, so added some. So, after discovering that, I made some up, got it quite liquid, and strained it with a cone style of paint strainer. Worked fine. Now I have about a gallon of glue, dry, and was thinking of making up a bunch, straining it, and then putting it up in several ounce packs, in baggies, and storing in my shop's beer cooler. how long will it last like that?

4. When I thin it as I am using it, do I need to add hot water, or is room temp OK?

5. Save it from day to day? Frid, and my buddy, do so; Peter Cooper says no.

6. What else should I know that I didn't ask about?

Thanks for any advice or help.
Alan

Sam Simpson
10-21-2003, 2:25 PM
Hi Y'all,
Alan, I can't believe that your answers are not contained within the reading matter you have sited. Allow me to answer your questions in a different order than asked.
Hide glue will keep for a a very long time if stored properly in it's manufactured state. (crystal or pearl) (do not refrigerate) As soon as you add water it's pot life is very short. (one day) It should be soaked with a small amount of cold water prior to use, (this will produce a thick jelly state) then warmed in a double boiler when needed for use. The warming will reduce the viscosity. (make it thinner) The viscosity can be adjusted with water just prior to use, until you have the correct consistency. The correct consistency when hot is a smooth running stream from a brush. If the stream is broken (dripping) it is either too stiff or too runny.
Your questions suggest you have thinned the glue with water until thin enough to strain. If so this glue is of no use. Always use clamps, unless you encounter a situation where a rubbed joint is necessary due to clamping limitations i.e., hammer laid veneer, or inside corner glue blocks. Though it is true that shrinkage in the glue line will tend to reduce the distance of parts, it is also true that the swelling of wood due to the migration of water from the glue will cause movement in the wood.
There is a big difference between cold hide glue, which will store for up to one year (comes in bottles already mixed to proper consistency) and pearl or crystal hide glue. The biggest difference is the addition of preservatives. There are some specialty brand hide glues that are a mixture of both kinds. They come ready mixed with a reasonable shelf life, but still require some warming before use.
Hope this helps, Regards Sam Simpson.

Jim DeLaney
10-21-2003, 3:29 PM
Well... I disagree with Sam.

Many of the old time wood shops kept a 'perpetual' pot of glue going, and used it from day to day, with no apparent problems.

Personally, I've mixed up a batch, and cooled and re-heated it at least a dozen times with no problems. Furniture I've built using the reheated glue is still nice and tight after twenty-plus years.

You thinned your batch an awful lot, and will need to cook it for awhile to evaporate the excess water out of it, but it should still be quite usable. Whatever you do, though, don't overheat it. Keep the temperature below 160F (70 C), and preferably closer to 140 (60 C).

As for clamping, your call. A 'wiped' joint works only if it fits perfectly before gluing. I prefer to use clamps. Don't clamp too tightly, though, or you'll squeeze out too much glue for a good joint.

BTW, although some will consider this a sacrilege, my favorite method of mixing to to put the glue crystals in warm water, then nuke it in the microwave for a few seconds to bring it up to temp. Then I keep it in a small pan, floating in a cheap electric teapot that I bought at K-Mart for under $10.00.

YMMV

Don Henthorn Smithville, TX
10-21-2003, 11:43 PM
Here is another good site to go to regarding hot hide glue.
http://www.spurlock.com/iD57_hot_hide_glue.html

Alan Turner
10-22-2003, 9:22 AM
Here is another good site to go to regarding hot hide glue.
http://www.spurlock.com/iD57_hot_hide_glue.html
Don,
This is not a good link. Is there another way to get the information? Thanks.

Alan

Richard Laing
10-22-2003, 1:52 PM
Don,
This is not a good link. Is there another way to get the information? Thanks.

Alan
I think this may be the one he meant:
http://www.spurlocktools.com/id57.htm

Mark Wurdeman
01-03-2014, 10:29 PM
Just checked my full bottle of TBHG and it was gelled solid. up here north of Minneapolis it gets cold and my shop isnt the warmest. Im sure thats one reason it gelled.


So I tried warming the glue in the microwave and it thinned down nice after 5 15 second periods.


Now Im testing it to see if its going to stick and dry.


Original plan was to use it for a crackled paint project. Set up a test piece for that too.


Anyone else had a similar experience or did you just toss the bottle like I was going to do?

Michael Ray Smith
01-03-2014, 10:38 PM
I'm just gaining experience with hot hide glue myself, but one of the best things I did from the get-go was to bite the bullet and get a temperature regulated glue pot. I got mine at Woodcraft. It wasn't cheap, but I don't think I paid as much as the price now shown on their website. I have enough things to figure out without having to worry about whether the glue is hot enough or too hot; it's nice to take that variable out of the mix.

http://www.woodcraft.com/product/2084790/38166/hold-heet-electric-glue-pot-1-quart.aspx

Jessica Pierce-LaRose
01-03-2014, 10:59 PM
LMII has one that's purty and brass . . .

http://www.lmii.com/products/tools-services/specialty-tools/brass-glue-pot

Roderick Gentry
01-03-2014, 11:56 PM
When I started out, I used a small pot the baby bottle warmers. They are no longer made the same way. The alternative I am using is the small Lmii pot, but I made my own pot out of a plumbing end cap for a few bucks. I have the big pot that comes from most of the woodworker catalogs, but it is too large for the kind of work I do. I think if you are starting out, mix a small amount and go from there. Anyway, in how many cases go you use a whole 4oz of white glue at a go. Then cut that estimate with the fact that there are many uses where the hyde glue open time would not be long enough for some of the larger jobs, at least for a newbie.

When I work with small amounts I put an inch of dry glue in a baby food bottle and cover with water to a two inch height, which is to say it is a total height of two inches. I leave it over night, and pour off any excess thin liquid on top, heat and use.

A methodology well worth trying out is the method a lot of luthiers use. It is great when you want to use a squeeze bottle to dispense the hot glue. Get a 9 dollar Rival type crock pot, and a small squeeze bottle. Fill the bottle with your glue mixture and place it in hot water in the crock pot. a trick often used is to raise the bottle to a good height by filling the crock pot most of the way with cheap marbles. Add a large SS bolt to the bottle. This will hold the heat up when the bottle is out of the pot. Google Luthier crock pot hyde glue, then check the images to find articles that show the many different ways a squeeze bottle system can be configured.

Roy Lindberry
01-04-2014, 12:50 AM
Hey guys,
I am taking the plunge into hide glue, and have a million questions. I read the FWW #57 article from 1986 on the Peter Cooper Company, and Frid's book No. 2 on the subject. And the download from Highland Hdw. And, I got a lesson from a friend of mine who has used it for years. All different, interestingly.
So, the questions --

1. How thick should it be at point of use?

2. To clamp, or not to clamp. This is actually the biggest issue for me. Like all of us, I have too many clamps, and never enough, of course. My friend doesn't clamp at all. He just rubs the joint, and puts it aside. He says that as the glue hardens and dries, it pulls the boards together.

3. Put it in the fridge when not in use? In the fridge, how long will it last? This is a real question for me, since my buddy has about 50 lbs, and gave me some, but it was contaminated with sand, it seems. He is a tile contractor and one of his guys must have thought the gunny sack of glue was sand, so added some. So, after discovering that, I made some up, got it quite liquid, and strained it with a cone style of paint strainer. Worked fine. Now I have about a gallon of glue, dry, and was thinking of making up a bunch, straining it, and then putting it up in several ounce packs, in baggies, and storing in my shop's beer cooler. how long will it last like that?

4. When I thin it as I am using it, do I need to add hot water, or is room temp OK?

5. Save it from day to day? Frid, and my buddy, do so; Peter Cooper says no.

6. What else should I know that I didn't ask about?

Thanks for any advice or help.
Alan

Alan,

I've had many of the same questions lately, and have been trying to do some research. In this video (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Raq3pbGmmOg), the gentleman says that you can heat/recool for weeks and the glue will still be good, as long as you are sealing the jar up tight.

In this article (http://www.highlandwoodworking.com/woodworkingwithhideglue.aspx), Tage Frid cooks his glue ahead of time and on day three feels that it is best ready to use for the next two days.

As far as consistency, I found this video (http://woodtreks.com/animal-protein-hide-glues-how-to-make-select-history/1549/) helpful. Basically, it needs to cook until you can get a solid stream (not drips) from the brush about 12" long. Many people compare the consistency to maple syrup. I cooked up some glue last week, and four days later it was still going strong, and in my opinion, working better than the first day. It's been sealed up for a couple days now, and tomorrow I will see if its still good.

Good luck, and let me know what you find out through experience of more research!

Warren Mickley
01-04-2014, 1:47 PM
One of my friends keeps the glue hot all day long, five or six days a week. He makes a fresh batch every week. Part of the reason the glue gradually weakens is because of this elevated temperature. It lasts longer at room temperature. I only heat the glue when I need to use it so it can last much longer. What happens is that the glue gradually dries out in the pot so it is not susceptible to fungus or bacteria. When I need to use it I add water or water and more glue. Occasionally the glue is too runny when I leave it and it is warm and humid in the shop and it can get fungus (obvious when you see it). Then I throw it out and make new.

In your case I think I would buy a good pound and learn to use it before fooling with the sand contaminated stuff. That is just too complicated for someone who doesn't know what they are looking at.

Sometimes clamps are helpful for bringing a joint together. For example, a mortise and tenon joint will get a little stiff as you are assembling it so a clamp will help seat things tightly. The clamp need only be on for a few seconds. Sometimes pieces are held with finger pressure for 5 or 10 seconds.

It is pretty easy to learn to use hide glue if you are in a shop with an experienced person, someone for you to watch and someone to look over your shoulder. Otherwise experience is much more valuable than reading about it.

Curt Putnam
01-04-2014, 1:56 PM
I bought Stephen Shepard's book: Hide Glue: Historical & Practical Applications (http://www.amazon.com/Hide-Glue-Historical-Practical-Applications/dp/B0034WT9W6/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1388861685&sr=1-1&keywords=hide+glue) by Stephen A. Shepherd (2009)It will answer even the questions you didn't know you had.

Winton Applegate
01-04-2014, 10:15 PM
Hey Alan,

I am no big expert on hide glue, just a struggling amateur such as yourself but this is my suggestions any way . . .


1. How thick should it be at point of use?
I am assuming you are making up a standard ratio glue to water batch and are referring to how thick the glue layer should be.
As thin as possible. Excess will squeeze out though. If it gets too cool then you have a thick glue line so parts need to be warm(ish) at least 70 F and any applicators such as a brush or metal spatula or veneering hammer etc need to be as hot as the glue.


2. To clamp, or not to clamp. This is actually the biggest issue for me. Like all of us, I have too many clamps, and never enough, of course. My friend doesn't clamp at all. He just rubs the joint, and puts it aside. He says that as the glue hardens and dries, it pulls the boards together.

Weeeeeellllll . . . how good 'a joint maker are you ? ? ? ?
For instance a but joint in a table top or cabinet side to make up wider boards . . .
if the joint is puuuurrrrr fect, no day light between the mating surfaces ALL ALONG THE JOINT, (spring joints need not apply) then yah a little glue, rub the joint back and forth until it starts to grab from capillary action, align it quick like a bunny and badabing badaboom. Works great !
PS: use gravity to your advantage. Two boards at a time and stacked vertically as opposed to the "normal" glue table arrangement with the boards in the same plane as the floor.
Stacked like this :
http://i801.photobucket.com/albums/yy298/noydb1/IMG_0252_zps2679f070.jpg (http://s801.photobucket.com/user/noydb1/media/IMG_0252_zps2679f070.jpg.html)
Ignore clamps here. I am using Gorilla glue in this bubinga glue up. No rub joint possible and Gorilla likes lots of clamp pressure and ultra thin amount of glue. I still do not horse on the clamps though just snugged up good.

Then again . . . joints with some dowels or tennons and MAYBE some air in it that got compressed as you put it together or has enough weight to it to come apart under it's own weight THEN clampy clampy.

The wood swells some from the moisture in the glue so you may need the clamp just to draw it together at the last and then no more. Kind of a trial and error, even with prefit up and a dry run clamp up with no glue.

? ? ? Come to think of it . . . is that where the term "Dry Run" came from ? ? ?


3. Put it in the fridge when not in use? In the fridge, how long will it last?

I think that depends some on your local sitcheastion. If you are getting mold problems etc there may be stuff in the air or water or otherwise that is getting in the glue and causing mold. If no mold and you use the glue daily then maybe not the fridge.
If it sits in the fridge very long it may get hard as the cured glue anyway and so then you can take it out or throw it away what have you.


contaminated with sand,
Two comments there :
1. I would think the sand would settle to the bottom if you did't stir it up too vigorously as you used it.
2. At least for butt joints some wood workers actually sprinkle sand on the glue before putting the second board of the joint on to keep the joint from creeping under clamping forces.

Not on my joints thank you very much. The last thing I want to do is plane joints with sand in them but, yah, strange but true. (must be those belt sander dudes that like that stuff ).


4. When I thin it as I am using it, do I need to add hot water, or is room temp OK?
You will be using a water jacket glue warmer, more on that in a minute, so just dip a little HOT water from the water jacket and pour it into the glue.

Here is my water jacket glue warmer for small projects. For veneering or huge projects or more than one person using the glue pot then get the big O normal metal thing but I just could not see my self needing that big O pot for my work.

Keeps my espresso or hot chocolate hot when I am not gluing also. I have used this one for years and works great.

Glue warmer (http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B001C3I1AA/ref=oh_details_o05_s00_i01?ie=UTF8&psc=1)

http://i801.photobucket.com/albums/yy298/noydb1/IMG_0797.jpg (http://s801.photobucket.com/user/noydb1/media/IMG_0797.jpg.html)


http://i801.photobucket.com/albums/yy298/noydb1/Allyouwantandhot.jpg (http://s801.photobucket.com/user/noydb1/media/Allyouwantandhot.jpg.html)



5. Save it from day to day? Frid, and my buddy, do so; Peter Cooper says no.
Yes save it for a couple of days unless it has gotten too hot or contaminated with wood shavings etc.
PS: let me put a finer point on that one. If you heat up the glue, put your work together and don't cook the glue all day long. Then can use more than one day. If it sets there in the warmer for hours then maybe not. Experiment on some test samples and break them apart etc.


6. What else should I know that I didn't ask about?
Don't try to ride a zebra, they aren't like horses even though they look like they might be.

and, ummm

How to get a million dollars without spending much time and effort. I don't know that one but if you find out will you let me know ?

John Coloccia
01-04-2014, 10:32 PM
You can mix up a batch, and then pour it into an ice cube tray and stick it in the freezer. When you need some, just nuke a cube for a few seconds and toss it in your glue pot.

The two things you will fight with hide glue are heat (breaks down the glue and make it weaker) and mold. I suggest you treat it the same way you'd treat soup that you planned on eating the next day. If you DO get mold, clean that container VERY well....boiling water helps. If not, the mold problem will never go away.


Generally, you only want to mix up enough for a couple of days. 1 gallon of hide glue is a LOT of glue unless you plan on doing a lot of woodworking.

Winton Applegate
01-04-2014, 11:30 PM
Yep,
I'm hogging the thread again.
I get excited about this REAL woodworking talk and can't stop.
I am posting the following NOT to show what a good woodworker I am .
If I can do it you can do it.
I TOOK GREAT PAINS AND A LOT OF TIME TO GET THE RESULTS SHOWN.
A GREAT woodworker could do it quick without all the "great pains".

What I am trying to get across is my enthusiasm and amazement at rubbed joints and how well they can work given the ideal conditions and done within a small tolerance fit up.

These walnut cabinet sides were all hide glue rub joints and I just stood them on edge to glue up and to cure like the one standing with the coin balanced on it's edge.
Again, not to brag, but it is possible and these have it . . .
the glue line is invisible for the length of the joints.
All that is making the joint visible is where the grain does not blend from one board to the next.
On the boards laying parallel to the floor the joint is under the coin.
I put the coin on the thin edge of the one board to give a gauge for the thickness of the boards.


http://i801.photobucket.com/albums/yy298/noydb1/Pics%20to%20post/IMG_0395_zps13f2e3b7.jpg (http://s801.photobucket.com/user/noydb1/media/Pics%20to%20post/IMG_0395_zps13f2e3b7.jpg.html)


http://i801.photobucket.com/albums/yy298/noydb1/Pics%20to%20post/IMG_0396_zpsa421d191.jpg (http://s801.photobucket.com/user/noydb1/media/Pics%20to%20post/IMG_0396_zpsa421d191.jpg.html)


http://i801.photobucket.com/albums/yy298/noydb1/Pics%20to%20post/IMG_0397_zps7db7deb1.jpg (http://s801.photobucket.com/user/noydb1/media/Pics%20to%20post/IMG_0397_zps7db7deb1.jpg.html)


http://i801.photobucket.com/albums/yy298/noydb1/Pics%20to%20post/IMG_0402_zps1fc9e08e.jpg (http://s801.photobucket.com/user/noydb1/media/Pics%20to%20post/IMG_0402_zps1fc9e08e.jpg.html)


http://i801.photobucket.com/albums/yy298/noydb1/Pics%20to%20post/IMG_0404_zps1b698717.jpg (http://s801.photobucket.com/user/noydb1/media/Pics%20to%20post/IMG_0404_zps1b698717.jpg.html)

I'm not sure what you are seeing on your end. Here is a larger photo with more definition. This is on the inside of the chest where the joint could be visually less than perfect. The hide glue still sucked the joint together for me for a very satisfying end result.

http://i801.photobucket.com/albums/yy298/noydb1/IMG_0401_zpsfe627820.jpg (http://s801.photobucket.com/user/noydb1/media/IMG_0401_zpsfe627820.jpg.html)

Rick Markham
01-05-2014, 4:00 AM
I just use a Hold Heat glue pot, Its a no brainer, no tinkering to get the temp right, I just plug it in and add my hide glue granules soaked in cold water. I just make a small amount, what I am going to use in a day or two. I generally keep the pot covered when not being used, and frequently check to make sure it doesn't dry out. I rehydrate it with warm water. The trick to adding the water is you need to let it come back up to temp (especially if using room temp or colder water.) Otherwise you will experience a false viscosity until everything comes back to temp. (It will appear thicker than it really is) Warm maple syrup consistency is what works for me.

Rubbed joints are great, I still clamp some things.

Cold press hyde glue is fun too! I don't nuke it to warm it up, it just needs to sit in a pot of warm water for a bit before use.