The best glue is one that is

  1. Compatible with the surfaces to be bonded, 
  2. Is strong enough under the range of exposure that the finished article may experience, 
  3. Is easy enough to apply.  

To be compatible with the surface think about what the glue will actually touch – for example the item may be wood but if it is painted wood the glue will actually have to bond to paint, not wood.  

The strength of the bond relates to required performance - heat, water, UV, stiffness etc.   

Application is important to consider, for example you may need to slide fit a product into place so a contact adhesive may not be suitable.

The first consideration is whether the surface is porous or non-porous.  Porous surfaces include most timber, most concrete, fabrics, cardboard etc.  These will allow moisture from a water based adhesive such as PVA, to escape and to dry the glue, or allow moisture curing glue such as PU to absorb moisture to cure.  Non- porous surfaces would include metal, glass, most plastics.  
This generally means that you may need a chemical curing glue such as a 2 part epoxy, or molten glue such as a hot melt adhesive. In addition some surfaces have low surface energy like polythene, Teflon and some rubbers and may need very special treatment before they can be glued.

PVA glues are good for rigid joints in timber and cardboard.  They are easy to use, almost odourless, easy to clean up but not good for wet environments without being painted first.  The water content in the PVA may also cause paper and cardboard to swell and distort as it dries. VAE (EVA) emulsions are similar to PVA but significantly more flexible and so excellent with fabric and cardboard lamination. PU adhesives react with moisture in the timber/paper/cardboard and often expand as they cure.  
They will not cause the timber/paper/cardboard to swell. PU adhesives are often highly water resistant once cured. Hot melt adhesives are melted before application and so bond well to porous surfaces. Stronger bonds are achieved if the surface is also heated before the hot melt is applied.

This is mainly an issue for bonding of 2 non-porous surfaces together.  If one of the surfaces is porous then consider some of the adhesives listed in the earlier question. When both surfaces are non-porous then we are limited to glues applied as melts (hot melts), chemically reacting glues like Epoxy systems and pressure sensitive glues like a liquid sticky tape.  Super Glues (cyanoacrylates) can also fit for non-porous surface bonding as they cure by reacting with the small amount of moisture on the surface of the substrates.

“Click” on “Waterbased Adhesives” and then “Click” on “PVA’s” to get our latest range of PVA adhesives on offer. We supply standard PVA’s to Aliphatic PVA’s to self cross linking PVA’s. Cross linking PVA are the strongest currently available.
Please refer to Technical Datasheets to help select or contact one of our team.

“Click” on “Waterbased Adhesives” and then “Click” on “VAE’s” to get our latest range of VAE’s (EVA) available. Some VAE’s are suitable for food packaging. Please refer to Technical Datasheets to help select or contact one of our team.

Pressure sensitive is an adhesive that stays tacky even when it has dried. It can come in liquid form or in a hot melt form and is used in a wide variety of industries, commonly used on self adhered labels that can also be removed.


Hot melt is adhesive in a solid state and when heated becomes liquid. You require certain equipment to apply hot melts. It ranges from standard EVA to clean running synthetic based hot melts.  It comes in standard packaging for shelf products, to blast freezer grade applications. It also comes for semi and full pressure sensitive applications. We also supply formed hot melt such as glue sticks and glue slugs. We have a wide range of formed hot melt applicators. Please refer to technical data sheet to help select or contact one of our team.

PU is commonly known in the trade as polyurethane. It is relatively new technology and requires moisture from the substrates or atmosphere to activate the curing. It can be assisted by using a fine mist. It is generally a foaming adhesive but the top of the range has less foaming which makes it easier to sand etc. Please refer to Technical Datasheets to help select or contact one of our team.

Solvent based is used for contact bonding or very difficult to bond substrates. It cures by the solvent evaporating into the atmosphere. It can be harmful if not used correctly and requires breathing apparatus and extraction systems. Solvent based can come in a ready to use pre pressurised canister, in a brush grade or as a sprayable option. Please refer to Technical Datasheets to help select or contact one of our team.

We offer food grade coating waxes for cheese as well as high performance waxes for injection, metal casting and model making.