When you want something incredible strong to hold your cosplay together, you have a few heavy-duty options to choose from. As far as intense, permanent adhesives go, E-6000 is a widely popular choice among cosplayers and propmakers. E-6000 is remarkably versatile, making a great choice for heavy and light materials, big and small applications, and almost anything else you need to bond in your cosplay. If you’re looking for a dependable glue you can be confident in, this might be the one. In this post, we’ll discuss the best times for using E-6000 glue for cosplay and explain the pros, cons, and safety precautions associated with using it. (Image: chadmagiera)
Best Uses for E-6000
E-6000, if you’re not familiar with it, is a solvent-based industrial adhesive that’s sold in a squeeze tube and is also suitable and recommended for a wide variety of craft and hobby applications. It’s a viscous, gel-like consistency that could be compared to maple syrup, and it gets tackier as it is exposed to air. Perhaps one of the most unique characteristics of E-6000 is that it’s equally good for both large and small adhesive applications. To give you an idea: some makers swear by E-6000 for attaching gems and rhinestones to their costumes, while others find it to be a perfect fit for assembling full armor and props. Because of its strength and versatility, E-6000 is a popular choice for a huge range of cosplay applications.
In fact, E-6000 can be used on both porous and non-porous cosplay materials. The list of applicable materials is a long one: leather and sturdier cloth, fiberglass, plexiglass/acrylic, metals, wood, paper, ceramic, glass, and craft/EVA foam, just to name some of the most popular. One note we want to include now, however, is that E-6000 does NOT work with insulation foam. As far as materials go, that’s about the only exception. In terms of specific uses, E-6000 is good for seams, attaching details, and for bonding weight-bearing pieces.
Benefits of Working with E-6000
There are a variety of reasons why E-6000 is a favorite glue for many cosplayers. Here are some of the benefits of working with it:
- E-6000 provides one of the most powerful holds of any glue. Once you adhere your materials together, they will not come apart without the use of a solvent-based glue remover.
- It’s relatively easy to apply straight from the tube or with a tool, like a brush or a toothpick.
- Because you can choose your application style and tool, you can be very accurate with where you apply E-6000.
- In general, E-6000 is available in three colors: clear, white, and black. This glue is also paintable, so you can cover it with the same paint as the rest of your cosplay or prop.
- The glue “sets” quickly, becoming tacky and gripping your materials together within minutes.
- E-6000 remains relatively flexible even when it’s fully cured.
- It’s chemical- and wear-resistant.
However, there are also some drawbacks to working with E-6000. Here are the adhesive challenges you should know about:
- E-6000 produces harmful fumes as you work with it. For your own safety, you should absolutely wear a respirator mask and/or work in a well-ventilated area or outside.
- E-6000 takes a lot longer than many adhesives to fully cure. For smaller applications, it can take 8-12 hours for a full cure, but larger projects can take up to 48 hours. But after that, you shouldn’t ever have to worry about your pieces coming apart, so if you have the time, it can be worth the wait.
- E-6000 can leave stringy bits behind, a lot like hot glue does.
- While E-6000 is similar in strength to contact cement, it’s sold in much smaller tubes.
- To reiterate, you CANNOT use E-6000 on insulation foam. It will melt and eat away at the material, and it just won’t end well in general.
Safety with Toxic Adhesives
As with any adhesive, you should always know what you’re working with and follow any directions and safety warnings printed on the package. For E-6000 specifically, it’s incredibly important to protect yourself while working with this adhesive. Like contact cement, E-6000 is a solvent-based adhesive that lets off toxic fumes as you work with it. Besides just putting off a strong, somewhat unpleasant smell, these fumes are really harmful to breathe in. Both short and prolonged exposure to E-6000 fumes can cause serious health issues, so please don’t ignore the warnings on the bottle. To protect yourself, always work with a respirator and/or in a well-ventilated area or outside. Your health and safety are more important than any cosplay.