Bonding composites with industrial adhesives

Laurie Gibbons
Bonding Composites, Material Specific Adhesives
May 21, 2015

Why are there so many adhesives to choose from for composites?

Because there are so many types of composites and there are a variety of applications that involve different requirements, there are many different types of adhesives for composites.

Following are some of the adhesive types used.

  • Methyl Methacrylates

    • Methyl Methacrylates offer very high bond strength to composites and rapid strength development. Their strength and durability lend them to bonding fixtures, railings, nameplates, antennae.
    • They are also referred to as MMA’s and are two component room temperature cure adhesives that can be dispensed through a static mix nozzle to avoid manual mixing.
    • Surface Activated Methyl Methacrylates provide the strength and process versatility of minimal set time needed to work in field applications such as wire harness attachment within aircraft.
  • Two Component Urethanes

    • 2 part urethanes provide both strength and flexibility for bonding composites such as large carbon fiber applications found in car hoods.
    • Mix manually or via static mix nozzles.
  • Cyanoacrylates

    • These provide the ideal properties for quickly forming strong bonds between composites such as carbon fiber to foams and other padding on medical appliances.
    • Cyanoacrylates – also called instant adhesives because many achieve handling strength in less than 10 seconds.  High performance grades include high temperature resistance, low odor, non-blooming, and grades that will cure quickly on acidic surfaces.
  • Two component Acrylics –

    • No Mix Acrylic and Initiator provide structural bonds that fill and seal joints.
    • No Mix Acrylic and Initiator systems are non-flammable in the liquid state and can reach handling strength in as little as 10 seconds.
  • Epoxies

    • Epoxies provide the ultimate bond performance of high shear, impact strength, and environmental resistance. Ideal for applications involving composite bonding of bike frames, golf clubs, and other sporting equipment.
    • Epoxies are available in one and two components.  One component epoxies cure with heat.  Two component epoxies cure at room temperature. But can be heated to speed cure or, in some cases, to enhance performance properties such as strength and temperature resistance.
  • Modified Epoxies and MS Polymers also bond composites

    • These provide the flexibility and low shrinkage. These properties are needed to eliminate read through in many thin panel composite bonding applications. Examples include trucks, trailers, and planes.  The high elongation and excellent peel strength provide toughness and durability to joints.
    • MS Polymers are single component room temperature cure adhesives
    • Modified Epoxies are two component and cure more quickly than MS Polymers
  • If you’d like assistance choosing the best composite adhesive please contact us.




To determine the best adhesive for your application, contact an industrial adhesive specialist.

Let’s Discuss Your Project.

Find out more
Find out more
Find out more

Latest Posts