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Discussion Starter #1
A well-known and respected luthier answers that question. See link to article below.

Q:Why is hot hide glue preferred by some luthiers, while others use synthetic glues, and what are its advantages and disadvantages? Doug MacKenzie – Cary, North Carolina

A: Hide glue, animal glue, and protein colloid glue are names for adhesives made from the connective tissues of various animals. Used by woodworkers in a wide variety of forms for millennia, animal glues are made by boiling hide, bones, sinew, or hoofs and refining the residues into granulated solids. Glue is prepared by dissolving granules in warm water to form a gelatinous protein compound that can be refrigerated and stored for future use. When heated in a double boiler, the gelatin liquefies into a workable glue that quickly sets after cooling to room temperature.

Guitar Guru – Hide Glue | Bourgeois Guitars
 

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Discussion Starter #4
the big thing is hide glue can be undone with a little heat/steam. Modern glues don't come apart.....ever. Important when you are setting a neck that may have to come apart someday to be re-set.
Is that true of all modern glues? I thought heat worked on some of them.
 

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Hide glues advantages far outweigh its disadvantages. Disadvantages being open work time. You gotta be quick before it gels.
First and foremost, when it dries, its glass hard, unlike modern glue's which remain somewhat gooey. I and many other believe that this contributes to jangly like resonance.
Not only can it be undone with heat, but it can adhere to itself as old glue simply becomes part of the new hot glue.
Modern glues need to be completely cleaned out of the joint before re-applying new glue. This feature of hide glue, being able to be simply applied ontop of old dried hide glue, helps with things like neck resets, brace repairs, etc.

The clean up is my favourite part about working with hide glue.
After you've clamped the piece up, you wait about 5-10 minutes and all of the squeeze out drips take on a gel like jello consistency. A simply card or scraper cleans the glue off like nothing, thus avoiding having to sand it off later and potentially damage your work.

It requires prep, and foresight.
You can't just start gluing, you need to have made up a batch of glue; which is stupid easy to do.

The drip lines below are the kind that come right off after a few minutes of waiting.
 

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any of the PVA glues, (Polyvinyl acetate ) can be removed with heat or steam. Tightbond is an example of a PVA glue Vinegar works as well, but I doubt we'll see anyone put Vinegar near their guitar.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
any of the PVA glues, (Polyvinyl acetate ) can be removed with heat or steam. Tightbond is an example of a PVA glue Vinegar works as well, but I doubt we'll see anyone put Vinegar near their guitar.
I saw a video the other day of someone removing a pickguard from a guitar. I didn't think it was hide glue as it was not a high end instrument. Maybe it was a PVA glue.
 

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Both of my acoustics are put together with hide glue. I've heard the claims of better tone. Not sure but my guitars are reissues of prewar, which is why they're done with hh glue.
 

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there are 5 types of glue that can be used to glue wood decently. PVA, like Tightbond, Gorilla and Elmer's, then there is Hide glue, CA glue (crazy glue), epoxy resin and polyurethane glue. 90% of the wood glues available will be PVA glue which is removable.
 

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Another advantage to hide glue is that it acts as a lubricant when fitting joints together while PVA glue swells the wood and makes it harder to put the joint together.



I have never used hide glue myself but I would like to try it. I want to pick up a bottle of Tiitebond liquid hide glue which you don't have to heat to use to start out with. I have used Gorilla Glue (polyurethane?) and I hated it. It expands and foams as it sets and makes a hell of a mess. I suppose under the right circumstances it is the thing to use, but I can get Premium PL construction adhesive that will stick just about anything to anything and not have the mess.

My "go to" glue for things that don't have to come apart has be LePages outdoor waterproof glue. For stuff that may have to come apart it has been Natura wood glue. Both are PVA and everything I have mentioned can be had at Home Hardware, which is my local source for stuff. I like supporting local businesses when I can.
 

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The big thing about hot hide glue is if you do it right you don't need a set of 500 clamps around
 

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I've used hide glue from Lee Valley for a neck reset and a SG build. In some research reading, was mentioned that hide glue contracts as it crystallizes, such to draw the materials tighter together. I use a makeshift double boiler on a hotplate. Coffee can and a glue can and a decent thermometer, all inexpensive. Heating the wood with a heat gun or blow dryer on your localized area before applying glue can lengthen work time a little, to get clamps on. A dry run with your clamp setup should be done so you can execute correctly with no fuss, and you reduce your needed working time. Heat the area and GO !
My SG neck needed clamping in two directions, and bracing the body to my bench. So I had my wife help out to apply heat while I apply the glue and and fit the neck and clamped, a savior :) and I'm more than happy with the result.
Any small amount of squeeze out you miss will come off carefully with a moist cloth.

For headstock breaks, and braces, I use Titebond III Ultimate Wood Glue.
 

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Re Gorrilla glue, my daughter bought me a repaired headstock guitar for me to try to fix up.
There's a smear of squeeze out on the back of the neck that I could not scrape. There's risk of removing wood before the glue comes off, so I left it alone. The repairer also put two bolts through the headstock, so its truly ugly. I still have it, it works, but it looks like crap and annoys me most days I pick it up to play.
 

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Another advantage to hide glue is that it acts as a lubricant when fitting joints together while PVA glue swells the wood and makes it harder to put the joint together.



I have never used hide glue myself but I would like to try it. I want to pick up a bottle of Tiitebond liquid hide glue which you don't have to heat to use to start out with. I have used Gorilla Glue (polyurethane?) and I hated it. It expands and foams as it sets and makes a hell of a mess. I suppose under the right circumstances it is the thing to use, but I can get Premium PL construction adhesive that will stick just about anything to anything and not have the mess.

My "go to" glue for things that don't have to come apart has be LePages outdoor waterproof glue. For stuff that may have to come apart it has been Natura wood glue. Both are PVA and everything I have mentioned can be had at Home Hardware, which is my local source for stuff. I like supporting local businesses when I can.
Get the stuff from lee valley.
It does expire & any I see on the shelf around here has been sitting there a long long time.


Animal glue must stink really bad. Especially when heating it.
It’s not bad, until you manage to spill it on your shop heater..... that was a bad day ;)

Nathan
 
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