(Amazing E-6000 – an artist’s/crafter’s secret weapon…..)
Put the hot glue gun back in the craft bin, put the Gorilla Glue back in the tool box, and put the Super Glue back in the junk drawer……………..enter E-6000!
I came across this glue a few years back when I decided to stop using hot glue for my art projects – I wanted to start getting more serious and professional about my artwork and move from “display only” mode to “sell-worthy” mode. Walking down the glue isle at Michael’s Arts and Crafts, I saw a little grey 2 ounce bottle of glue with the words E-6000 written down the front of the tube, and the inconspicuous word “Amazing” elegantly written above. I thought, “So how amazing could this stuff really be?” And like fate, at that exact moment a Michael’s store employee walked right by me and said, “Are you looking for glue? I have that E-6000 – It’s amazing!” (Ok…so maybe I’m embellishing the story a bit – blame the artist’s imagination in me – but this glue really is great!)
Amazing E-6000 is a industrial strength glue but also works wonderfully on things as delicate as a feather . It bonds well to just about any surface you can think of, including: wood, metal, plastic, cardboard, ceramics, leather, fabric, and much more. Just about the only thing it is not compatible with is Styrofoam (polystyrene, polyethylene or polypropylene plastics) – I have tried it just for kicks on Styrofoam, and E-6000 pretty much melts and eats right through it.
It is a flowy maple syrup consistency right out of the tube and gets tackier the longer it is exposed to air. The glue is clear, and it remains clear and glossy even after curing, which takes between 8-72 hours depending upon your project and the amount you use.
Anyhow, I have been using E-6000 glue for the past 5 years or so and, in my opinion is one of the best glues out there on the market for artists and crafters. Here are a few reasons why:
- It is good for your small, delicate projects or crafts – I mostly use this glue for mounting my spacers to the back of my feather paintings, and then my spacer to my mat boards, but I often use it for bead work as well (using very small seed beads). And you don’t have to worry about burning yourself with a hot glue gun or accidentally gluing your fingers together with super glue when doing very small detailed work. And it remains clear and doesn’t get cloudy or yellow like some other glues do after they have cured over time – so a little overflow is nothing to be afraid of. (And just a tip – Although they sell it with a fine applicator nozzle, I find that squirting a small amount of E-6000 out onto a piece of cardboard and then taking a toothpick or pin to be able to apply it in smaller amounts works very well, if not better.)
- It is acid-free – So it is safe to use on art projects and photographs.
- It is strong and permanent – Like it says, it is industrial strength, so you can rest assured that your projects are going to stay put for the long haul.
- It does not expand while drying – Now some people like glues that expand because they need to accommodate for gaps within their projects, but being a detailed-oriented artist where I often use my glue in conspicuous places – the last thing I need to worry about is an oozy yellow foam monster seeping out from behind my project…
- It is paintable – So if you need it to match a surrounding area, camouflage away!
- It has about a 5-7 minute “set” time – Having a small window of time to readjust things as needed is always a plus. Unlike hot glue which sets in about 10 seconds, you can now take a minute or two to make sure everything is “just right” and placed exactly where it should be. (Now that is not to be confused with the total drying/curing time, which I find is about 8-12 hours for small applications, 12-24 hours for medium sized applications, and about 24-72 hours for thick and heavy applications for large projects such as repairing furniture or something similar)
- It’s flexible – Do you crack under pressure? Well E-6000 doesn’t! After curing it doesn’t turn as hard as a rock, which is great in my opinion – it retains a slight rubbery-like consistency which in turn increases it’s durability. Now don’t be alarmed – things wont be wiggling around by any means.
- It is dishwasher and washer/dryer safe (waterproof) – This has nothing to do with art, but it was a good point to include. So for those of you that are repairing broken dishes and hemming a pair of jeans - this is the glue for you.
- It is non-flammable (after it has cured): This is especially important if you will be using it to repair clothing and such.
- Fumes – and this is a big con for some people. Now there is a reason that there is a whole host of warnings on the back label regarding the fumes (and for some reason – warnings about not ingesting the product….why people haven’t figured out to not eat glue by now is beyond me….) – I can see how the fumes can be strong, but I have to be quite honest and say that I don’t notice them much, but then again, I only use this glue 5-10 minutes at a time. I think a good rule of thumb that we can all agree on: You shouldn’t use large amounts of this glue for extended periods of time in a contained environment that is not well ventilated.
- Similar to hot glue it can be a bit stringy when applying – Now this is only a minor problem that occurs on occasion for me. But I find that after you have applied a dot of glue with the tube’s nozzle or a toothpick, lifting your applicator and rotating it to wrap up the small stringy bit (much like you would with spaghetti noodles on a fork) works well. But again, this only occurs some of the time.
Now they sell this stuff in different size tubes: 1oz, 2oz, 3.7oz, and a large 10.2 oz cartridge. I have found that my 2 ounce tube has lasted me several years – a little goes a long way. And if this will be your first time using the stuff, I’d recommend trying out a small tube first to see if you like it – but I don’t think you’ll be disappointed. These tubes range in price from a couple dollars all the way up to about $10 for the 10.2 oz. Amazon.com sells them for a pretty cheap price – click here to read more E-6000 reviews on Amazon.com.
I give this stuff a 4.5 out of 5 stars. And it is definitely on my “All-Time Favorite Things List”!
So what project are you planning on using your E-6000 on? Please feel free to leave any questions or comments below!