Being one of the most popular adhesives in the last couple of years, hot melt glues are thermoplastic polymer-based formulations that are typically 100% solid (no water or solvents involved). They are sold in a solid state at room temperature and are ‘activated’ upon heating beyond their softening point which is usually between 50 and 160 degrees.
Melting at high temperatures and hardening upon cooling, the hot melt adhesive is perfect for a variety of applications across multiple materials. It is solvent-free, safe to use, and promises durability.
The Benefits of Glue Sticks
As one of the most popular applications of hot melt glue, having secure and firm glue gun sticks will take all your craft designs to the next level. You can glue paper and card stock together or anything that comes to your mind. Hot glue sticks are well-known across the world for their strong bonds, simplicity of usage, and clean-running characteristics, no stringing, for example. However, they also provide exceptional temperature stability, so avoid getting burned in the glue tank. This unique feature removes the annoying nozzle clogs linked to less sophisticated adhesives.
Because hot melts don’t include solvents, they’re regarded as environmentally safe and non-hazardous, which makes them the perfect bonding solution for all your kids’ fun crafts. Moreover, they emit no fumes, have a faint scent, have low toxicity, and have very little volatile organic compound (VOC) content. When used in an industrial setting during the manufacturing process they produce minimal waste. Plus, there aren’t many or any environmental safety measures to take into account when getting rid of a hot melt.
Glue Sticks Common Sizes
Since 1.5 cm glue gun sticks are the most widely accessible size on the market right now, the greatest range of formulations can be used with them. Making sure the temperatures of your hot melt gun and glue stick match up properly is the most important factor to consider when selecting a 1.5 cm glue stick. You need to use a high-temperature glue stick with a high-temperature gun and a low-temperature glue stick with a low-temperature gun unless you are using an adjustable temperature hot melt gun.
Because they are larger and can dispense a larger volume, 5/8″ hot gun sticks have the advantage of requiring fewer stick replacements, which is terrific for big-volume applications.
The only glue gun that uses the 3 x 8 cm stick size was invented by 3M and has been around for as long as we can remember. When it comes to high-volume pneumatic glue guns, the 3M PG II is a reliable and constant top seller. For the 3M PG II glue gun, it’s crucial to get the proper temperature hot melt, which is available in both standard and low temperatures. On the other hand, 43mm glue sticks, on the other hand, are common for high output industrial applications.
You likely picture crafting applications when you think about glue sticks and glue guns. Nonetheless, from commercial packaging to construction, these useful adhesive marvels are frequently employed in some of the most demanding industrial applications in the world.
Hot melt glue sticks are widely used in food packaging applications, such as sealing cereal boxes or cracker box tops. This is largely because the glue sticks don’t contain volatile organic compounds (VOCs), which can deteriorate food quality and cause unpleasant odours. Hot melt adhesive is a common option for agricultural packaging since it can tolerate high temperatures and performs well in hot weather. For usage in carton-closing freezer goods, there is also certain hot glue that is suitable for freezing.
In addition to food-grade packaging, hot melts are used in a wide range of various packaging applications, from toys and home goods to medical equipment. They work well for a variety of packaging containers because they offer a strong binding between paper, cardboard, plastic, and other materials.
Still, carton sealing is one of the most common uses for industrial hot melts. Hot adhesives are used in the packing industry for pallet sealing and stabilization, as well as for efficiently sealing boxes and cartons.
Furthermore, gun sticks are frequently used to bind books and periodicals together because they provide a flexible yet strong binding. Because of this, they are widely used in print finishing and bookbinding because of their flexible and quick-drying properties.
3M: Best Hot Melt Glue Sticks to Get
Because of their rising popularity, nowadays there is a wide selection of manufacturers producing hot melts. They all claim their products to be the best of the best, however, some names in the business never seem to disappoint in terms of quality.
3M, one of the most well-known hot melt brands in the world, has produced an incredible assortment of hot melt glue sticks for any kind of application or bonding requirement. Since choosing the right size from the 3M catalogue is one of the things that causes the greatest trouble, these are some of the most common sizes explained.
The only 3M stick size that fits in all common 1.5 cm glue guns is the AE size. This stick size is compatible with any normal 1.5 cm glue gun, including the 3M Polygun AE. It brings an impressive performance on a wide range of materials, making it one of the most versatile options.
For larger projects that require more adhesive power and longer bonding time, the DT size is ideal. With a diameter of 2.5 cm, these glue sticks are perfect for heavy-duty applications and can be used with the 3M Polygun TC or LT models. The extended bonding time also allows for more precision and adjustment during assembly.
On the other hand, if you are looking for a smaller size that still packs a strong bonding punch, the PG size is a great choice. With a diameter of 0.7 cm, these glue sticks can fit into smaller glue guns like the 3M Polygun LT or EC models. They bring a more precise and controlled application, perfect for delicate and intricate projects.