Bonding various materials

Are you looking for the right products to bond different materials? We have a wide range of professional adhesives for bonding metal, iron, aluminum, wood, plastic and much more! Choosing the right glue can be quite difficult. After all, there are many different glues. Polyestershoppen supplies adhesives from high quality brands such as Araldite, Tec7, Versachem, 3M and Sikaflex.

In this article, we have listed some important characteristics of adhesives, so that it is easier to make a choice. Take a look at the Adhesives & Sealants category if you're curious about which adhesive you need for your project!

Tip: filter options in the Adhesives & Sealants category make it easy to select the adhesives that are right for your application. Need advice on what type of adhesive to use for your project? Do not hesitate to contact our customer service!   

What type of adhesive do I need?

If you are going to bond materials, it is important that you know which materials need to be bonded. Not all materials are equally easy to glue or can be glued with the same adhesive. We distinguish 4 groups of adhesives:

  • Epoxy adhesives.
  • Polyurethane adhesives.
  • Methacrylate adhesives (methyl methacrylate adhesives).
  • Cyanoacrylate adhesives (super glue).

We have listed the most important general properties of these types of glue for you in the table below:

 Types of adhesives Properties
Epoxy adhesives
  • Stiff
  • Strong
  • Slow curing
  • Surface treatment is necessary
  • Suitable for bonding metals
Polyurethane adhesives
  • Flexible
  • Strong
  • Fast curing
  • Surface treatment is necessary
  • Specific properties
Methacrylate adhesives
  • Reasonably flexible
  • Strong
  • Fast curing
  • Surface treatment is less necessary
  • Suitable for bonding plastics and metals
Cyanoacrylate adhesives
  • Stiff
  • Less strong
  • Very fast curing
  • Surface treatment is less necessary
  • Suitable for bonding metals and plastics

Epoxy adhesives

Epoxy adhesives are widely used for bonding metals and fibre-reinforced plastics. The strength and stiffness are high. However, it is important to thoroughly roughen and clean the surface. The curing is relatively slow. Even the "5 minute" epoxy will still take some time to reach full strength. Epoxy glue has a high gap-filling ability that can fill a gap between two surfaces. This means that it is not necessary for both surfaces to fit exactly together. 

Commonly used epoxy adhesives:

Polyurethane adhesives

Polyurethane adhesives are generally used when specific properties are required, such as transparency or flexibility. These adhesives are very suitable for most metals and plastics. These must be thoroughly roughened and cleaned. PU adhesives have a high filling capacity.

Commonly used polyurethane adhesives:

Methacrylate adhesives

Methacrylate adhesives (or methyl methacrylate) harden relatively quickly, have a degree of flexibility which makes them very impact resistant and are less critical on surface treatment. These adhesives can be used to bond metals, plastics and fibre-reinforced composites. Certain types even bond HDPE and PP. Methacylate adhesives have a limited gap-filling capacity. This can vary from 2 mm to 30 mm. Therefore it is important to read the datasheet carefully. If the adhesive is applied too thick, it may cause a slight burning sensation and weaken the bond.

Commonly used methacrylate adhesives:

Cyanoacrylate adhesives

Cyanoacrylate adhesvive is known as “super glue”. It is a very fast bonding of well-fitting parts. Cyanoacrylate adhesives bond most metals and plastics. CA adhesives can also be used to temporarily hold a part in place while another adhesive cures (epoxy adhesive in the middle, a drop of CA adhesive in the corners).

Commonly used cyanoacrylate adhesives:

What packaging does the adhesive come in?

The professional adhesives from our range often consist of multiple components. The adhesives can be supplied in different packaging. We supply adhesives from a tube, tin or syringe.

Double syringe cartridges (without static mixer)

The adhesive is sprayed onto a piece of cardboard or plastic and the two components are mixed. The glue is now ready for use. Pay particular attention to methacrylate adhesives that the processing time is short. So prepare well.

Double syringe cartridges (with static mixer)

Double syringes with a static mixer are generally used in combination with an application gun. The glue comes in packages ranging from 50 ml to 500 ml. The big advantage is that the glue comes out of the static mixer mixed. So there is no time wasted by mixing the adhesives.

Adhesive in tin packaging

Some adhesives come in tins. It is then important to weigh both components (A and B) accurately to obtain the correct mixing ratio. Tinned glue is cheaper and is often available in larger packages (1 kg, 2 kg or larger).

Which application gun do I need?

For adhesives in double syringes with a static mixer you need a suitable application gun. We have one for every adhesive we sell. On the product page of the adhesive we advise which application gun and which mixing tube are required to process the adhesive.

Application gun Mix ratio Glue cartridges
LS50-1 1:1 & 1:2 50 ml
LS50-2 1:10 50 ml
LS50-4 1:10 50 ml
LS200 1:1 & 1:2 200 ml
LS400 1:1 & 1:2 400 ml
LS480 1:10 480 ml

Make your own epoxy glue

Did you know that it is not difficult at all to make epoxy glue yourself? Epoxy glue is often made in-house, especially in yacht building. You make epoxy glue by mixing epoxy resin with one or more fillers. This way you create an adhesive that fully meets the user's requirements.

How do you make epoxy glue?

To make epoxy glue you need an epoxy resin and a filler. The most commonly used resins for glue are universal epoxy with a fast hardener or with a slow hardener.

Use the following products for the fillers:

  • Stewathix
    Use stewathix for stiff and strong connection joints.

  • Cotton fibre
    Use cotton fibre for stiff and strong wood connection joints.

  • White micro balloons
    For lightweight connection joints, use white microballoons, often combined with a little Stewathix.

  • Red micro balloons
    Use red microballoons for light connection joints and fillets.
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Products used in this article

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Do it yourself jobs with epoxy (DIY), polyester and PU foam!

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