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Hot Glue!

A hot glue gun is a wonderful addition to your set of tools if you do arts and crafts. I use mine all the time.

In general they come in two different sizes with two different size glue sticks.

But there are a few different useful variations I will tell you about.


Watch my video on hot glue guns, how to use them and creative techniques including how to quickly cool the hot glue so you don't have to hold the parts together very long.



There are the two different sizes of glue guns and glue sticks. The smaller ones are typically referred to as the mini and the sticks are 5/16" in diameter. The larger one is the standard size and the glue sticks are 7/16" in diameter.

Two hot glue guns


How to use one

It is a pretty simple process. You plug in the glue gun. Feed a glue stick into it and let it heat up. Once it is hot the glue will flow. You squeeze the trigger and apply the glue to the surfaces you want glued. You can apply a dollop or you can move the gun slowly and apply a line of glue like I am doing in this picture. And you have some control over the flow. Depress harder on the trigger and the glue will flow at a higher rate.

Applying hot glue


Hot glue gun

Surebonder PRO2-100 100-Watt High Temperature Industrial Glue Gun, Black




Glue sticks

Surebonder DT-50 All Temperature 50 Glue Sticks, 4-Inch





Glue sticks

Surebonder DT-2010 Made in the USA All Purpose Stick Glue Sticks-All Temperature-Clear 7/16" D, 10" L Glue Stick-20 Sticks per Bag






Glue sticksSurebonder DT-100 Made in the USA All Purpose Stik-Mini Glue Sticks-All Temperature-5/16"D, 4"L Hot Melt Glue Sticks-100 Sticks per bag





Temperatures of Glue and Glue Guns

Typically they have a standard temperature. But some will be denoted as low temperature. Often a glue gun will have a switch to go from high to low temp. I use the high temp most of the time. The low temp is nice for delicate work like lace, floral and small items. Be sure to get the gun and the glue stick for your needs. If you are not sure about what you will need then get a dual temp gun.


Hot glue gun

Surebonder DT-280F Dual Temperature 60 Watt Full Size Standard Glue Gun

Dual temperature glue guns are ideal for crafts, floral and do it yourself projects. A high and low switch, provides a high temperature setting for better bonding to metals, plastics and ceramic. Use the low temperature for bonding delicate material such as lace, foil ribbon, floral form and lightweight fabric. The unit does include a flip down stand but also has an exclusive no drip tip so even if it's laid on it side, this glue gun will not drip. A safer way of gluing. 60-Watt, 120-Volt. Uses 4-Inch or 10-Inch glue sticks with 7/16-Inch diameter.

Hot glue gun

Surebonder DT-200KIT Mini Dual Temperature Glue Gun with 12 - 4-Inch All Purpose Glue Sticks Kit




Hot glue gun

Surebonder H-195 Mini Detailed Glue Gun

The Surebonder H-195 Mini Glue Gun is a perfect addition to your craft supplies and has an extended tip for accurate detailed work. The use of high temperature creates a better bond with paper, fabric, wood, plastic, metal, ceramics and more. The 20-watt glue gun features a lighted power light, insulated nozzle, detachable auxiliary stand and a safety fuse for enhanced protection. Uses high or dual temperature glue sticks, 5/16-inch in diameter by 4 or 10-inch length.


Hot glue gunAdhesive Technologies 0280 Hybrid Multi Temp Cordless Gun

For dual power technology, choose Ad Tech's Multi Temp Hybrid Cordless glue gun with an AC power cord option. Ideal for longer use, the Hybrid Cordless gun can be used in three modes: battery powered cordless (4 AA rechargeable batteries); plugged in with its own 5-foot AC power cord; or battery powered and AC powered when extra output is needed. When used in combination, the AC cord will keep the Hybrid Cordless ready for use at any time without draining the battery power. The Hybrid Cordless is ideal for day-long activities or any lengthy projects where the glue gun is needed at a moment's notice - no restart or warm-up is required. This gun features a precision nozzle, a power on light identifying battery or cord use, and a wide stable base.


Colored Glue Sticks - they are a terrific addition to your glue stick arsenal. I use them to add ornamentation to projects. They come in a wide variety of colors.

Black glue sticks

Black Colored Glue Stick mini X 4" 12 sticks




Black glue gun sticks

Install Bay HMGS Black Hot Melt Glue Stick, 10-Inch (8-Bag)






They also make them for wax sealing.


Glue gun sealing wax

Dark (Cranberry) Red Flexible Glue Gun Sealing Wax - 7 Sticks




Wax seal stamperInterested in making a wax seal stamper? I have a tutorial.

Make a wax seal stamper.




A glue pot is a nice option

I have a glue pot and it is a nice little alternative for hot gluing. It works by you cut up pieces of glue stick and put them in the pot. It heats up and melts the glue, keeping it liquid. So you can dip parts in it to apply the glue. Inexpensive and a good addition to a glue gun.


A glue pot

Darice DIY Crafts Glue Pot Hot Melt 40 Watt (1-Pack) 1155-62





Couple of things to note about hot glue and glue guns

It gets hot! LOL! I guess that is an obvious statement but keep the glue away from your skin when it comes out of the gun because it hurts! I have been burned by it many times. It can leave a red mark for a while.


Hot glue on styrofoam

Hot glue can melt your crafting materials. Here is a picture of how it affects styrofoam. It just melts right through it! So, if you have any question about how it will act on your project you should always test it first on a scrap piece of material.






Low temp hot glue on styrofoam

And here it the hot glue on styrofoam with the low temperature setting. It melts the foam a little bit but doesn't just melt a hole through it. So... test your hot glue and settings for the materials you are using if you have any doubt.






The Black Colored Hot Glue really came in handy for making this faux stained glass window

Faux stained glass windowMake a Medieval Stained Glass Window

Its not a real stained glass window. I use a sheet of plastic and glue sticks but it comes out great. This is a back lit project for the Dragon's Temple. I show you how to do this step by step. Make a Stained Glass Window




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