Water-Activated Glue Dowels

A user testimonial for a convenient product. February 28, 2006

I have been getting some RTA dowelled drawer boxes with water activated glue on the dowels. I'm not real familiar or comfortable with the water activated glue, so I've been using Titebond to glue them up just to be safe. Is the water activated glue alone as strong? How much water and how do you apply it?

Forum Responses
(Cabinetmaking Forum)
From contributor W:
I would use caution in one regard. When using two different glues in one joint, there is a risk that you will not get a bond between the two glues (the Titebond and the dry glue on the dowels). It has always been my belief that putting glue in a joint with old dry glue doesn't give a good bond even if it's the same glue, so to me it stands to reason that the two glues you have in your RTA joint may react the same way. As for the water activated glue on the dowels, I have never used them, so I can't comment on that.

From contributor P:
I was skeptical at first, but trying to disassemble a case we'd built with the water-activated dowels made me a believer! For small volume, give a quick spritz with a spray bottle, shake out any standing water in the holes, and you're good to go. I've destroyed test pieces dowelled with preglued, preglued-with-Titebond-added, and Titebond-on-unglued dowels, and couldn't pull any of them apart - the substrate failed before the glue joint in all cases.