Metal to glass holds fast

How to glue glass to metal: Best adhesives for superior results

We’ll show you how to glue glass to metal in this brief guide. The key is choosing an appropriate adhesive for the situation. Get the details below.

Can you glue glass to metal?

Glass and metal can definitely be glued together with the proper adhesive. Selecting the right glue is determined by considering the conditions the object will be subjected to and a few other variables. 

The three main types of adhesives used to glue metal to glass are super glue, glass glue, and epoxy. Each has its advantages and best use cases.

Super glue is quick and easy for smaller jobs and minor repairs. A small drop has incredible holding power and dries in minutes. Just remember that there are many varieties of super glue, so check the label to make sure you use one compatible with your project.

Glass glue is a specialty item that is designed to bond well to the smooth hard surface of glass. Most glass glues will also work with metal, since it is a non-porous surface. Again, check the label to be sure.

In cases where you need to fill a gap between the glass and metal, or an extremely hard and rigid bond is desired, epoxy will be the best choice. Epoxy hardens into a very durable material that can be sanded, drilled, and machined and then painted. 

What is the best adhesive for glass to metal? Three scenarios

The key to a successful job starts with selecting the best glue. Let’s look at how to use each of the above-mentioned adhesives.

How to stick metal to glass with super glue

When using super glue, a little will go a long way. Place a drop or two on a clean surface and bond the glass and metal together. Hold the item still until the bond sets, then allow it to stay undisturbed until the glue is fully cured. (See the label for timing.)

How to glue glass to metal with glass glue

Glass glue is similar to super glue and is used much the same way. It is a special formula that bonds particularly well to non-porous surfaces. Glass glue is recommended for larger applications, repairing glassware (such as broken wine glass stems or knick-knacks), and similar projects. It’s nearly invisible once dry. Here are a few tips for a successful bond:

  1. Clean the surfaces. Ensure both the glass and the metal surface are clean and free of dust, grease, or anything that may inhibit the bond.
  2. Apply the adhesive. Apply a small amount of glue to one surface.
  3. Press the surfaces together. Immediately join the parts, ensuring they are properly aligned. Hold the parts still for at least one minute or until a bond begins to form.
  4. Allow the adhesive to fully cure overnight before using the item.
  5. Clean up your tools and work area. Wet adhesive can be wiped away with a damp cloth or paper towel. Remove cured adhesive with a razor blade, then wipe away residue with acetone and a paper towel.

How to glue metal to glass with epoxy

Using epoxy is very similar to using the above adhesives, with the additional step of mixing. Epoxy is a two-part adhesive consisting of a resin and hardener. Once mixed, you have limited working time before the epoxy hardens into a very rigid and durable substance. Most epoxies come in a dual syringe, making it easy to dispense equal amounts.

  1. Prepare the surfaces. Ensure both surfaces are clean and dry. This is also a good time to pre-fit the pieces.
  2. Open and mix the epoxy. Remove the plug and cut the syringe tips off. Flip the container upside down, draw back the plunger, and then press it forward to remove air bubbles. Apply the same amount of resin and hardener to a disposable surface like cardboard. Mix for one minute, then clean the syringe.
  3. Apply the epoxy. Place a small amount of the mixed epoxy to both surfaces and press them together. Ensure the surfaces are pressed together for 10 minutes.
  4.  Let the epoxy set. After sitting for one hour after application, the object can be used. Twenty-four hours is required for the epoxy to fully cure.
  5. Clean up. In a timely fashion, remove excess epoxy with acetone and a rag. If the adhesive has cured, you can carefully remove it with a sharp blade. When you are finished working, wash your hands to remove any residue.

Always work safely in a well-ventilated area and wear appropriate safety gear. Nitrile or latex gloves will prevent getting glue on your fingers as these are powerful adhesives that can bond to exposed skin. Although glue can be removed from skin, why not avoid the problem? Also, wear safety glasses if there is any danger of getting glue in your eyes. 

How to glue glass to metal: product recommendations

Your go-to product for gluing glass to metal is Loctite Super Glue Glass. It bonds to all types of glass, metal, and other non-porous surfaces. It dries crystal clear in just seconds. 

For small repairs and jobs that are subject to frequent vibration or stress, try Loctite Extreme Gel. Its revolutionary Flextec formula is higher in viscosity than most super glues, and it stays flexible to withstand vibration, impact, and wide temperature variations. It is UV light and moisture resistant as well.

If you need to fill wide gaps or machine the finished surface, you’ll want to use Loctite Epoxy Gel. Once mixed, this formula will create a rigid, high-strength bond in six minutes. The gel consistency means no drips or runs, so it’s easy to work with. It won’t shrink and can be tinted to match surrounding materials.