Coloring glue

  • Advertise with us

« back to Woodworking Skill Share forum

Forum topic by rayn posted 12-02-2017 02:50 PM 795 views 0 times favorited 6 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View rayn's profile


192 posts in 4019 days

12-02-2017 02:50 PM

Topic tags/keywords: veneering

I want to attach a piece of marquetry to the matrix and I want to color the glue to emphasize some of the cut lines. I usually use Gorilla glue . I want to use either black or dark brown. What should I use as a coloring agent?

-- Ray,Iowa

6 replies so far

View Bill White's profile

Bill White

5294 posts in 4761 days

#1 posted 12-02-2017 03:51 PM

If you’re talking PVA Gorilla glue, I’d try some plain old food coloring.

-- [email protected]

View Kazooman's profile


1508 posts in 2753 days

#2 posted 12-02-2017 04:45 PM

I was curious, so I gave it a try. Titebond II tinted with Transtint (alcohol solution) or Transfast (water soluble powder), both black. The transtint gave an immediate uniform dark black color and the glue seemed normal. I used just a small amount of the dye powder and, as expected, it took a while for the color to develop with stirring as the dye dissolved. Nice even black at the end. What surprised me was that the glue treated with the dye powder really thickened up very quickly. Much more than I would have expected with the small amount of powder (as compared to adding sanding dust to make a filler paste). The glue got viscous and stringy. I can’t imagine using it on a piece I should try again with less of the dye or dissolving the dye in water and adding it to the glue.

At any rate, I glued a couple of pieces of scrap cherry together to see how it would go. The problem that I see for your application is that while the squeeze out of the glue line is nice and black it is certainly not uniform. I don’t know how you would approach this to get an even accent border. You would not be able to clean up the squeeze out since it will have stained the wood. My other concern, and part of the experiment, is that the dye will tend to wick up in the pores of the wood creating a mess.

How about a piece of contrasting veneer instead of colored glue?

View LesB's profile


2568 posts in 4244 days

#3 posted 12-02-2017 10:16 PM

Have you thought about coloring super glue (Cyanoacrylates). I tried it once with lamp black to fill small cracks and voids and it seemed to work fine. I used the medium thick glue. Use caution in mixing some colorants with super glue, it can cause a thematic reaction so test a small amount first.
You can even buy super glue it is some colors, including black from Amazon.
I just found a producer called StewMac that makes Black, white and amber super glue in medium thickness. It is made for musical instrument makers and repairs. It somes with long thin applicator tips.

-- Les B, Oregon

View shipwright's profile


8570 posts in 3599 days

#4 posted 12-03-2017 12:42 AM

I do a little marquetry. I use hot hide glue for the assembly and the same with very fine sanding dust for mastic (filler).
I wouldn’t recommend anything else for marquetry. If you need assembly time liquid hide glue is almost as good.

-- Paul M ..............the early bird may get the worm but it’s the second mouse that gets the cheese!

View rayn's profile


192 posts in 4019 days

#5 posted 12-03-2017 02:18 AM

Thank you all for your input….by the way shipwright I follow your work and I would say that it is more than just a little

-- Ray,Iowa

View shipwright's profile


8570 posts in 3599 days

#6 posted 12-03-2017 04:31 AM

Thanks, anyway my point was the fine dust. You can pick your colour, even add a little tempura powder sometimes.
The nice thing about hide glue in this situation is that it dries hard unlike pvas and so sands better.

-- Paul M ..............the early bird may get the worm but it’s the second mouse that gets the cheese!

Have your say...

You must be signed in to reply.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics