Choosing The Right Glue Gun and Stick by Size
We often get questions from customers about the differences between the glue stick sizes accepted by glue guns and how to make sure the glue stick you're purchasing will work with your glue gun. To help make the shopping process less confusing, we have put together this guide to break it down.
5/16" Mini Hot Glue Guns
This is a typical craft store glue gun size. It uses a 5/16" X 4" mini glue stick. With 'mini' glue sticks, options are usually limited to low quality (weak bonding) adhesives and other very specialized products like funky colors or glow in the dark. We recommend spending a little more for a 1/2" glue gun. With a 1/2" glue gun you’ll get way more adhesive options, a gun that will likely perform a lot better and last a lot longer. For a low-cost glue gun that works significantly better than a craft store glue gun, we recommend the Infinity Bond Mojo, which uses 1/2" glue sticks. If you want to stick with your existing 5/16" glue gun, our Infinity Melt Little Joe glue sticks will work.
1/2" (12mm) Glue Guns
This is the most common size glue gun and gives you the most glue stick options. It is a great glue gun size for applications ranging from crafting to light industrial and packaging applications. 1/2" glue guns are a great option for most applications, providing the most adhesive options as well as the most competitively priced glue sticks.
There is a wide range of glue guns to choose from if you're looking for a 1/2" glue gun. For light industrial use, the Infinity Bond Scout is perfect. It has a powerful 200-Watt heater while still having a lightweight design to keep it portable and easy to use. For more industrial purposes, the Ranger Pro will be able to keep up with your demands. It has a 330-Watt heater and temperature adjustment between 265 and 445 degrees Fahrenheit.
5/8" (15mm) Glue Guns
Similar to the 1/2" glue guns, the 5/8" size gives you higher output for more demanding applications and still offers a lot of glue stick options. The ⅝” glue sticks are also larger so you get more adhesive dispensed with each trigger pull and have to ‘reload’ the glue gun less often. ⅝” glue guns are a great option for people who need a little more output than a standard ½” gun offers or for those who just want to reload their gun less often.
The Infinity Bond Brute is a powerful and heavy-duty glue gun to keep up with your industrial demands. It has an incredible 500-Watt heater, adjustable temperature control and weighs just over 1.5 pounds, so you can use it all day.
1.75” (43mm) Glue Guns
There are only a couple of manufacturers who make glue guns in this size but they are a darling of industrial users everywhere. The large 1.75” X 1.75” glue slugs that these guns use make them great options for high volume and industrial applications. These guns are available in all-electric and pneumatic versions. That means they can be used as a traditional glue gun with just a cord or connected to an air compressor for effortless dispensing.
These are also some of the only glue guns that offer sprayable versions that can dispense long open time glue slugs in spray form. The downside of these guns is that they are typically pretty expensive and are a little bulkier than smaller stick sized guns. One of our popular pneumatic spray guns is the Power Adhesives TEC 6300 which is made for industrial projects that require a large surface area to be covered. It can dispense 10 pounds of glue per hour and the is low fatigue even with extended use.
If you have an industrial application or just want a gun that is going to hold up in the long run, this is a great glue gun size. They also offer a lot of options (like spray) that no other glue gun can match. One of the lowest cost options for a glue gun using 1 3/4" glue gun is the Power Adhesives TEC 3400. It's able to dispense 8.5 pounds of glue per hour, without pneumatic assistance.
3M TC ⅝” X 2” Glue Guns
The 3M Polygun LT Glue Gun is a 3M only size glue gun that takes 5/8" X 2" glue sticks and is fed by the user's thumb, not a trigger. It is a popular gun and there are a lot of manufacturers who now make sticks in this size so there are quite a few adhesive options. If the lack of trigger is an issue, this may not be the best glue gun for you.
3M TC ⅝” X 8” Quadrack Glue Guns
The 3M TC glue guns with Quadrack converter are similar to the standard 3M TC glue guns above but include a trigger mechanism and take a ⅝” X 8” ‘Quadrack’ glue stick made by 3M. It offers a good output and durable design.
3M PG 1” X 3” Glue Guns
The 3M PG II and PG II LT are pneumatic glue guns (LT is the low temp version) that have been around forever. These glue guns are industrial powerhouses and great for high volume applications or if you want to mount a glue gun and attach accessories like a foot pedal. They are the only manufacturer who makes guns in this size but a number of people now make adhesives in the PG glue stick size. This means there are a lot of adhesive options and they are reasonably priced. It's great for high volume industrial use but probably overkill for the average user.
Questions? We Are Here to Help
With all of the different size glue sticks and glue guns, you want to be sure you are purchasing the correct sizes so they are compatible. If you have questions about which glue sticks will work with your glue gun or if you want to consult an expert about a complete setup, contact us. One of our knowledgable team members will be happy to assist you.