Simple Facts about Hot Melt Glue
Hot melt glues are polymer based and are 100% solids, containing no solvents or water. Hot melt glues are also thermoplastic which means they are a solid at room temperature, but liquefy upon heating. While protein glues are normally applied at 150°F, hot melts are applied at a temperature around 350°F.
The lack of water and solvents allow hot melts to attain peak bonding strength very quickly. The mechanical bonds they create means that the polymeric components in the hot melt wet out and penetrate the bonding surface prior to solidifying as they cool down again. When adhering to thermoplastic surfaces (plastics, polyolefin laminates and some coatings), bonding is similar to welding due to the high temperatures of the hot melt glue during application.
Hot melts are used in a wide variety of industries, such as construction and electronics industries. Metals, plastics, and paper are a few of the materials to which hot melts work excellent with and provide great adhesion. They have also been used in some book binding processes.
Hot melt glues are manufactured in pellets, pillows and glue sticks form. The proper form depends on the application, the size of operation, and the function of the hot melt glue.
Obviously, there are several physical properties of hot melt glues:
1. Polymer: the component of hot melt glue that determines its strength, toughness, and flexibility.
2. Wax: waxes are selected for controlling the open time and set speed of the hot melt glue.
3. Antioxidant: they are added to improve the pot life (prevent charring and other oxidation reactions).
4. Plasticizers and/or diluents are sometimes also added to improve the flow characteristics and modify the viscosity and open time of the hot melt glue.
Generally speaking, the advantages of hot melt glue include aggressive bonds, reduced char, low or no odor, no stringing and tailing, increased mileage-reduced viscosity gain, light in color, and clean machining.
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