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Use of Old Brown Glue and Hot Hide Glue.

Just place the bottle in hot tap water until it gets liquid.

It is best used at 140-160 degrees F.

Do not exceed 180 degrees F.

Do not microwave.

Use it as any other glues.

We tested Old Brown Glue with multiple freezing and thawing cycles and detected no change in its quality.

Liquid Hide Glue is not for hammer veneering. It is also not recommended for rubbed joints. If you want to hammer veneer we also sell granulated #192 gram strength Hot Hide Glue.

Using a toothing plane is part of the traditional process of working with Hide Glues.

A toothing plane levels the surface, cleans the wood and increases the glue surface area.

It is recommanded but not required.

We guarantee Old Brown Glue for 18 months from the date of manufacture.

Refrigeration will extend the shelf life, but is not required.

Old Brown Glue is not affected by freezing.

W. Patrick Edwards developed Old Brown Glue to use in his restoration business over 20 years ago, and it has become the principal glue in the shop for furniture making and restoration.

The Hot Hide Glue is still used for rubbed joints, quick repairs, hammer veneering and marquetry on an assembly board.

OBG penetrates deeply into the wood fibers on end grain, since it remains liquid and has a high water content.  Therefore, we would normally add the glue (hot and liquid from the bottle), wait a minute or so and repeat the application as necessary until there remains a visible layer of glue on the surface.  Clamp it right away, do not wait for the glue to gel, as that would not produce a good tight joint.

If it is modern glue you need to remove it completely to the bare wood. If it is hide glue, bare wood is preferable. Hide glue is the only glue that bonds to itself so it will bond to the old hide glue if you reactivate it with moisture.

How Strong Are Hide Glues

The independent testing done by Fine woodworking in the article “How Strong Is Your Glue” showed that Old Brown Glue was overall 3% stronger than Hot Hide Glue. Only Old Brown Glue was tested for the Liquid Hide Glue therefore we do not know about the strength of other brands.

Old Brown Glue dries as hard as Hot Hide Glue but it takes longer.

Old Brown Glue cures by loss of moisture over time.

Inside the joint, the wood absorbs the moisture and the glue drys hard.

On the surface it take longer for the moisture to evaporate and the glue remains gummy. This allows for an easy clean up with cold water.

The Article by Fine woodworking “How Strong Is Your Glue” shows that Old Brown Glue is comparable to Hot Hide Glue in strength.

We have done multiple freeze and thaw tests on our liquid Hide Glue and found that freezing does not affect the properties or strength of Old Brown Glue.

Hot Hide Glue dries by loss of heat then moisture, Liquid Hide Glue cures mainly by loss of moisture. Any blob of LHG will take several days to lose the moisture as the film formed on the outside does not permit the moisture to escape.

On a tight joint well clamped, there is only a thin layer of Old Brown Glue and the wood absorbes the moisture.

Old Brown Glue is not a gap filler, and is better used on tight clean joints.

Advantages and techniques

Old Brown Glue is reversible as is Hot Hide Glue.

You can reverse protein glues by adding moisture and heat to the elements, this will bring back the protein to a liquid state.

You can also use steam.

If the glueing is recent and the glue has not fully cured OBG can be reversed with only heat. If it had time to cure, heat and moisture are needed.

How and When

We use United States Postal Services, USPS, Priority Post.

If you have an account with another company, contact us for details.

How long can I keep my glue

We guarantee Old Brown Glue for 18 months from the date of manufacture.

Refrigeration will extend the shelf life, but is not required.

Old Brown Glue is not affected by freezing.

Extensive testing has shown that all liquid animal glues have a shelf life.

Therefore we mark each bottle with a "best before use" date so you can be sure of its quality.

Old Brown Glue has an 18 months shelf life. Like Hot Hide Glue, Liquid Hide Glue loses strength if the protein starts breaking down.


The indicators of protein breakdown are:

Extremely liquid (runny) at normal room temperature. 

Strong ammonia smell.

Indicators of surface mold.  


If in doubt, do a test on scrap wood.


Our shelf testing has shown that OBG remains good for over 18 months in all storage conditions.  It lasts longer in the refrigerator.  We have some bottles which still test good at 2 years or more, but we only guarantee it good for 18 months. Expiration date is on label.

How to

We use PayPal because it is one of the safest payment systems available. An account is not mandatory, a personal credit card can be use through Paypal.

You may also call us directly to order by phone (619) 298-0864.