Friday, June 3, 2011

New"STRONGER" Formula Elmer's Glue All

There was a pretty good exchange on TRF about the new "stronger" formula Elmer's Glue All.

At left is the older formula bottle, #E372
In the middle, the new "Stronger Formula" #E1324
On the right, School Glue #E308

Here's what was posted on TRF:

Everyone knows you should not use yellow glue when joining airframe tubes with couplers, right? So I thought I should follow the common wisdom and use white glue instead of going with epoxy. (Did I mention that I hate coupling LPR tubes?)

What I didn't realize was that Elmer's Glue-All (New Stronger Formula!) is now a close relative to cyanoacrylate glue rather than the slippery white stuff of days gone by.
Needless to say, the coupler went in about 3/4" and seized up. I panicked and banged the end of the coupler down on the bench to drive the coupler further into the tube. The additional 3/4" that resulted was close to where it should have been so press on!
Figuring I had not used enough glue to create that slippy/slidey feeling, I added even more Elmer's to the other tube and spread it around making sure I had a nice even coating.
Same story. The coupler went in 3/4" and no more. I tried to remove the second airframe tube and managed to crinkle the aft tube WITHOUT budging anything. (See why I hate LPR tubing couplers?)
Alrighty then, nothing for it but to salvage what I could (fins and motor hook) and do what I should have done in the first place: Replace all the flimsy waxy Estes airframe tubes with standard white tubes from QuasarOne.

Note to self: Use epoxy when doing couplers. It just works.
Note to everyone else: Elmer's Glue-All (New Stronger Formula!) is to be avoided at all costs. This vile stuff's only redeeming attribute is the pointy cap which can be used as a replacement for the annoying ones found on Titebond Mounting and Trim Glue.

Ouch. I just had a similar experience trying to put a baffle into an old BT-80 rocket. Shouldn't have tried it, but I could slide it all the way down the tube, so I figured why not? Spread some Elmers on there, and should slip right down, right? Wrong. Wasn't in there 5 seconds and it set tight enough to break the plywood when I pushed on it. Lost the baffle and about 3 inches of tube in the deal. Stupid glue. I'll have to keep this in mind when I start my MM soon.

The Elmers school glue is still the same old white Elmers. It makes strong paper to paper bonds. It's all I use for couplers, motor mounts, engine blocks and the like. You can buy a big bottle for a quarter when the school year starts.

I don't have any opinion on the Elmer's School Glue, they may have changed the formulation since I've used it. In the past, I read it doesn't have a strong of bond as the standard Glue-All.
I found a few bottles of the old formula Glue-All (#E372) at a Staples store. I now have five, 4 oz. bottles in reserve. After that, I'll probably have to switch to epoxy when gluing engine mounts and couplers. I'd rather play it safe!


  1. My wife found a few 16 oz. bottles of the 'older formula' (bottle deco is the same), but it is No. E371, rather than E372. Seems the same as the 372, though! E371 must be the number for the 16oz bottle.

  2. You are probably right about the bottle size and numbers. As long as it doesn't say "New Stronger Formula" you should be okay.
    I'm going to check Alene's Tacky glue when I run out of the old stuff. Either that or use epoxy when installing an engine mount or couplers.
    I wonder if the big two have had any complaints from young modelers trying to install an engine mount with the new stronger formula?
    I wrote a note to Estes and Quest about the new formula Elmer's with a link to this article. Estes said thanks for the heads up, I never heard back from Quest.