Top 4 Best Glue for PLA Plastic – Reviews and Buying Guide
PLA plastic (polylactic acid) is one of the most sought-after 3D printing filament materials. This popularity stems mostly from the fact that PLA prints can usually be done without a heated printing bed.
However, that doesn’t mean PLA isn’t prone to the perils of an ill-prepared printing bed. We’re, of course, talking about inadequate build plate adhesion. If your 3D prints don’t adhere properly, they can get warped quite easily.
With the best glue for PLA plastic, though, these problems disappear. You can always opt for other adhesive methods such as painters’ tape or proprietary build surfaces, but we’ve found that using glue is one of the most straightforward and most accessible ways.
So here are our top 4 picks!
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4 Best Glue for PLA Plastic
Without the right glue for PLA plastic, you can end up with a print that is warped or curled. Choose from the four following selections for a beautiful, smooth print!
1. Magigoo MO2016 All-in-One 3D Printer Adhesive Glue
Our first pick also happens to be our most popular one. The Magigoo 3D printing adhesive has justly earned its right name, thanks not only to several impressive features but a dependable stick every time. Read on to find out more.
Above everything else, it's the effectiveness of Magigoo that makes it stand out. When using Magigoo, you won't have to apply it to the whole printing bed; instead, only the active spots. A little goes a long way because you can use this glue for more than 100 prints!
Ease of application is another one of the Magigoo's strong points. All you have to do is shake the glue stick and press it gently before application. And once the glue is on, it'll stick closely; however, when it's time to turn the machine off, it comes off just as quickly.
This is because this glue's consistency is such that it unsticks instantly from the 3D print once the build plate starts to cool down. Afterward, the residue is easily cleaned using nothing but hot water.
The only drawback is that this glue is quite expensive compared to other popular choices for 3D printing. However, given the ease with which it can be used, its efficiency, and safe usage (it’s completely non-flammable!), the high price is justified.
2. Gorilla 7700104 Super Glue Gel
In all probability, all lifeforms under the sun have heard of Gorilla glue or, in any case, their adhesive products as a whole.
Compatibility with a wide variety of surfaces and superior sticking power make this glue one of the most popular general-purpose glues. Still, it works perfectly for 3D print bed adhesion as well.
This is mainly due to the gel formula of the glue, which is easy to apply but retains a thick consistency that is ideal for medium- to heavy-duty printing jobs. Worries of warping will be a thing of the past, given the unquestionable strength of this glue.
We also love the tube it comes in, which makes the application relatively easy. However, given that the tube funnel is relatively skinny, you might have a bit of difficulty spreading the glue over the print bed adequately. Also, since it takes only seconds to dry, make sure you’re prepared before application.
Without a doubt, this is one of the strongest adhesives you can find for the price, and it’s quite affordable as well! What’s more, given its versatility, you can not only use it with non-PLA filaments but in other applications in your home and office as well.
3. ACEIRMC 3D Printer Glue Stick
If this article were a 3D printing glue contest with Magigoo as the top contender, ACEIRMC would be a close competitor. With superior adhesion and a design specifically suited to 3D printing hotbed applications, this is a glue that is well worth your consideration.
Packaged in a 24x98mm roll stick, this glue is a perfect size and weight for easy and quick application. Just pop off the cap, swivel the stick outward, and apply onto the printing bed, and you're good to go.
The texture and consistency of this glue are some of our favorite things about it. Moreover, the solid, dense form makes it ideal for use with any 3D printing bed, and not just because it sticks easily.
You can expect the adhesive to stay active for several printing cycles, a feature you can imagine the benefits of.
What's more, this glue is also super easy to clean, thanks to a water-soluble formula. So you'll never have to worry about a messy or annoying situation.
Furthermore, because this glue is non-toxic and acid-free, it's also safe to use. And should you choose to use this glue for other adhesive applications, you’ll find that easy to do as well!
4. Dap 00688 All-Purpose Adhesive Sealant
We're rounding off our list of the best adhesives for PLA plastic with an all-purpose sealant from DAP. Fully formulated from silicone, this is the strongest adhesive on our list, so we will only recommend this for you if you typically use your 3D printer for heavy-duty printing jobs.
What we love most about this adhesive is its super strong and flexible formula. That's what allows it to adhere to the printing bed quite easily and successfully keep your prints in place as they are being formed. As a result, you get a warp-free, smooth print.
Thanks to the easy-squeeze tube that this adhesive comes in, applying it is also reasonably easy. Evenly distributing it over the printing bed might take some time and patience, though, as the nozzle is small. But once it's on, you can expect it to stay on until the heating bed begins to cool down.
And as you might be able to imagine, the strength of this glue means that it can be used for many other applications besides just with your 3D printer. For whatever uses you might find for it around you, we believe this glue won't disappoint. That being said, do be careful with it as it's quite strong.
Before You Buy What to Look for
Buying glue seems like a pretty straightforward task. However, it’s important to take 3D printer compatibility into account. Here’s what to keep in mind before making your choice!
Although 3D printer beds are typically made of glass, it's not uncommon to see some made from acrylic, metal, or even stainless steel. As such, it's important to ensure that the glue you've chosen will be compatible with the construction material of the surface of your printing bed.
Ease of Use
Glue sticks are uncomplicated products as it is. However, considering that you'll be buying one for your 3D printer, you want to find one that will be relatively easy to use. A convenient design usually achieves this ease of application.
If you’re opting for a liquid glue, look for one packaged in an easy-to-use tube.
Ease of Cleaning
The residue from the glue stick should be easy to remove from the printing bed. This means that you should look for a water-soluble glue.
Even though you probably won't be using a heated bed with your PLA plastic filament, it's still good to ensure that the glue loses its adhesive property once the plate cools down, in case you use other filaments such as ABS.
Depending on the frequency and intensity with which you make 3D prints, you might need a glue that will allow you to make several prints in one go. One that does not have to be reapplied again and again when producing big 3D printed projects.
On the other hand, this can prove to be an inconvenience if you use your 3D printer infrequently. To inquire into your particular needs before choosing a glue. More on that below.
Choose from the following glue types according to your printing needs.
The easy application process associated with glue sticks is what mainly contributes to their popularity. That being said, for 3D printing, those with a firmer consistency are preferable to more lightweight ones. We would suggest going for a glue stick if you make small- to middle-sized prints.
Cyanoacrylate, more popularly known as super glue, is a popular choice for 3D printing bed adhesion for those who tend to make large scale projects. This is due to the superior strength and heavy consistency of super glue.
Similar to superglue is silicone sealant, which is also very strong. We only recommend this type of adhesive for large, high-intensity 3D printing projects that will use up a lot of filament and take many printing cycles to complete.
Frequently Asked Questions
Why do I need to use an extra adhesive on the print bed?
Without proper adhesion to the print bed, you can end up with a print that is wobbly, warped, shifted, or curled. PLA plastic, in particular, is prone to this.
How do print bed adhesives work?
The sticky layer created by an adhesive allows the prints to stick securely to the bed, especially in materials that take longer to cool down. Furthermore, the adhesive also protects the print bed.
What can I use other than glue to ensure print bed adhesion?
You can choose to use painters' tape, glass, stainless steel, or Kapton tape. Alternatively, you can use software like Ultimaker to build a brim. However, glue remains one of the easiest and simplest ways to create a secure adhesion.
How frequently should I reapply the glue while printing?
Depending on the quality of the glue, you can go up to 10 prints without reapplying. With low-quality glue, you might have to reapply after every print.
What is the best way to clean the print bed?
Using a microfiber cloth, clean the surface of the print bed with some rubbing alcohol. This eliminates potential contaminants that might prevent the PLA filament from sticking.
When it comes to 3D printing with PLA plastic, adequate adhesion of the build plate is crucial to success. We hope that you were able to find the best glue for PLA plastic from our selections. The Magigoo is easily our top pick, but the ACEIRMC is a great choice too.