Resin 3D printers achieve a smooth surface finish with remarkable detail. However, resin is brittle, snaps easily, and can break if dropped or handled roughly. This makes glue essential for reinforcing and repairing resin creations – and it’s key to choose one that bonds resin strongly without damaging the material. So, here’s our top picks for the best glues for resin models and miniatures:

Overall, the best glue for resins I recommend is Gorilla Super Glue. It’s ideal for quick repairs and for securing cracks and breaks in an instant.

03/07/2024 01:24 pm GMT

Gorilla 2-Part Epoxy is best for the most heavy-duty bonds to create permanent repairs that withstand heavy stress.

The Gorilla Dual Temp Mini Hot Glue Gun allows fast, versatile bonding perfect for non-load-bearing assembly like adhering resin scenery and props before play sessions.

We also discuss the reasons you’d need to use resin glue, how to prep resin parts for gluing, how to glue resin miniatures, and how to use UV resin glue cured with an LED light for seamless mends.

Best Glue for Resin

1. Super Glue / Cyanoacrylate

Best Glue For 3D Prints
Gorilla Super Glue, 20 Gram, Clear, (Pack of 1)
$7.98 ($11.24 / Ounce)
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03/07/2024 10:49 am GMT

Pros

Readily available, cheap, and convenient.

Strong and sturdy.

Long lasting, even through wear and tear.

Cons

Hard to bond fiddly pieces together.

Super glue is the go-to adhesive for many people. It’s readily available, cheap, and convenient. It is the glue most people reach for when they are looking to fix broken pieces in a pinch. 

In my experience, Gorilla Super Glue forms incredibly strong, durable repairs on resin models. The fast-drying formula resists impact, vibrations, shock, and stress so repairs withstand normal wear. I’ve used it to flawlessly mend broken swords, arms, armor, and other delicate parts on countless miniatures.

The problem with super glues is holding tricky pieces together long enough to cure.

A quick spray of the Starbond accelerator solves this – it makes the Gorilla glue set nearly instantly. I’ve bonded tiny detached claws, swords, and other fiddly resin pieces in seconds with the Gorilla + Starbond combo. No need for clamps or waiting around.

Starbond Instant Set Accelerator - Activator for CA Super Glue
$22.00 $17.49 ($2.19 / Fl Oz)

 Activator for cyanoacrylate (CA) super glue in a pump sprayer bottle (8 Ounce)

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03/07/2024 02:35 pm GMT
Super glue on blue background

Safety

Always use super glue in a well-ventilated area. 

Super glue dries quickly, especially when used with an accelerator. Always wear gloves to make sure you don’t super glue your fingers together and protect your skin. 

If you accidentally get super glue on your skin or another unintentional surface, buff it off with acetone nail polish remover and a cotton ball or clean cloth.

How to use

  • Prepare all bonding surfaces by sanding and cleaning.
  • Line up the surfaces before you begin. 
  • Apply a thin layer of super glue to one surface and a layer of the accelerator to the other. 
  • Press tightly together for one to three seconds before you release.
  • Be confident and press the parts together correctly the first time. They will fuse together almost immediately, so a precise hand is important. 

2. Epoxy

Gorilla 2 Part Epoxy
$14.99 $11.41 ($6.71 / Fl Oz)

Sets in 5 Minutes, .85 Ounce Syringe, Clear, (Pack of 2)

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03/07/2024 01:24 pm GMT

Pros

Matches the texture of resin plastic very well.

Dries hard.

Can be used as a filler if you find any small holes.

Cons

Can be messy to work with.

Two-part epoxy matches the texture of resin plastic very well and is great for places where you need a hard bond, but don’t care about the look of the seam.

If you find any small holes, seams, or imperfections on 3D printed parts that you don’t want to be there, epoxy can also be applied as filler for smoothing surfaces.

I highly recommend Gorilla 2-Part Epoxy, which dries into an incredibly hard, durable repair that withstands stress and impact.

Most two-part epoxies can get messy, but Gorilla makes it easy with its well-designed syringe dispenser and mixing tray. Just remember to follow the precise 1:1 ratio timings.

Two-part epoxy getting mixed on a plate

Safety

Epoxy is toxic and should not be breathed in. Proper ventilation is essential while working, but a good respirator is also a great idea. Gloves should be worn to protect the skin.

How To Use

  • Epoxy can be tricky to use at first. There are two types of chemicals that need to be mixed at a specific ratio. First is the epoxy resin itself, then also a hardener that will trigger the chemical reaction that allows the epoxy to set. You need to get the proportions right, and once mixed, it needs to be used within a few minutes.
  • Carefully read the directions that come with your epoxy resin to make sure that your bond is successful. 
  • To use epoxy as a resin adhesive, simply brush a thin layer onto one bonding surface. Press together.
  • If possible, clamp for at least 30 minutes. Up to 24 hours for the full cure time. 

3. Hot Glue Gun

Gorilla Dual Temp Mini Hot Glue Gun Kit with 30 Hot Glue Sticks
$17.99
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03/07/2024 10:09 am GMT

Pros

Does a good job when gluing resin models down to a stable surface.

Common and easy to use.

Cons

Not the strongest bond on this list.

While not the strongest bond, hot glue is perfect for adhering resin models to terrain or bases when they don’t need to withstand much stress.

I use the Gorilla mini glue gun to rapidly secure trees, rocks, furniture, and other scenery pieces to game boards and dioramas.

The mini size gives me precision control for gluing small parts, while the dual temperature setting lets me dial in lower heat for delicate materials.

For non-load-bearing resin assembly, a hot glue gun is a great quick and easy fix!

Hot Glue Gun and glue sticks on a green background

Safety

The nozzle of a hot glue gun gets very hot. Be careful not to touch the nozzle to avoid burns. Keep hot glue away from skin and clothing. 

How To Use

  • Prepare all bonding surfaces by sanding and cleaning.
  • Heat up the hot glue gun. 
  • Apply a thick layer of glue to one bonding surface.
  • Press the other surface to it. 
  • If possible, weigh pieces down or clamp until set. 

4. Resin Welding

Budget Pick for Curing Resin
UV LED Black Light Clamp
$13.99

An affordable, super adjustable lamp that holds itself in place.

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03/07/2024 03:44 pm GMT

Pros

Gives the most seamless look possible.

Convenient, as you will already have the resin.

Cons

Toxic fumes.

Resin 3D printers work by depositing a thin layer of liquid resin from a vat, then curing each layer with UV light.

So by brushing on UV resin glue and spot-curing with the UV light, you can flawlessly mend broken resin models.

The key is matching the resin glue to the resin print material. I use the same resin the part was originally printed with. This gives the closest color, texture, and hardness match for invisible repairs.

With my flexible UV clamp light, I can easily direct beams to cure the glue precisely where needed.

For seamless, strong resin repairs, a UV light and matching resin glue can’t be beaten.

You can read more in our article on the best UV lights for curing resin models.

Steps for a successful resin welding
Steps for a successful resin welding. Source: Youtube

Safety

Resin fumes are toxic. It can be a dangerous material to work with. Always work with resin in a well-ventilated area, and wear a respirator. Wear gloves to protect your skin.

How To Use

  • Apply a small amount of resin to the bonding surface with an eye dropper or a paintbrush. 
  • Use a UV lamp, or prop up a small UV flashlight to cure the resin while you hold the pieces together.

Which Glues WON’T Work On Resin?

Making a mistake and using the wrong kind of glue can make a bad situation worse, and might even ruin the part completely. Don’t use these glues on your resin 3D prints and creations:

1. Plastic Cement and Plastic Glue

Products that claim to be “Plastic Glue”, or “Plastic Cement” are only formulated to bond polystyrene plastic. So, even though the resin is a type of plastic, it is not the kind of plastic that can be used with plastic glue or plastic cement. 

These products work by dissolving a layer of plastic, then allowing the plastic to reharden when the pieces are pushed together. They can’t “melt” resin, so the bond will not stay. 

2. Acetone

Pronto-Pure-Acetone-

Acetone welding is a popular method to bond PLA and ABS plastic filaments. Similar to the plastic glue and plastic cement commercially available, acetone works as an adhesive by melting a layer of plastic. 

Two pieces can then be joined together, and when they reharden they will stick. Acetone will not melt resin, so it can’t be used as a resin adhesive. 


How To Glue Resin To Plastic

If you 3D print with multiple materials, you might run into a situation where you need to glue resin to another type of plastic – like PLA or PETG. This could also happen if you need to glue models together that you purchased separately. 

Super glue is the best choice to join resin to other types of plastic. Using an accelerator is a good idea if the pieces are small or finicky. Be sure you give both pieces a quick sanding for some texture before you apply the glue – that will help give you the strongest possible bond. 

How to prep resin pieces for gluing

Sanded resin print
Examples of sanded resin prints. Source: Imgur

To ensure a successful bond, you will need to prep the resin bonding surfaces before you start gluing. Remember, some glues dry very quickly, so it’s important to be totally ready to go before you begin. 

For pieces with enough surface area, the best way to prep the pieces is by giving them texture for the adhesive to stick to. Rough up the bonding surfaces with a bit of fine grit sand paper until you can see and feel a coarse texture. The little nooks and crannies in the resin will give the glue a place to hold on to. That will give you the strongest hold possible. 

Some surfaces, like a broken sword blade, arm, or gun barrel, might be too small to sand. In that case, just skip it and move on to the next step.

Whether or not you are able to sand the bonding surface, it needs to be clean for the glue to be able to hold. Wipe the surface down with a damp cloth and a little bit of dish soap. You can also just use clean water. The important part is that the surfaces are free of any dirt, debris, or waste from the sanding process.

Other plastics can sometimes be wiped down with rubbing alcohol. Do not use rubbing alcohol on cured resin pieces. It will erode the plastic and could ruin the model entirely. Alcohol breaks down resin, so it should never be used on finished pieces. But is the best choice for cleaning up any resin messes or residue if you run into that problem.

Gluing Resin Miniatures

Since resin is ideal for small details, it is often the material chosen to make miniature figurines and terrain. 

Tabletop games like Warhammer and Dungeons and Dragons have been popular among gaming enthusiasts for almost 40 years. Games like these often use miniature figures of soldiers, creatures, or characters. They also use prop items and terrain for the characters to interact with. 

Fixed broken resin print part
Before photo of resin print shows broken staff and a photo showing glued up parts.

In the past, most players purchased these mini models from game stores. Now some players are turning to resin 3D printing to make their own figures at home. Making figures yourself gives you total control over the design and position of the figure. At a high enough scale of production, it is also less expensive than buying many figures individually.

How to glue resin miniatures

Multipart Nazgul designed by Guilherme Santos and actual resin print from Reddit.

Some things can’t be printed in a single piece. For example, a crafter making an intricate model train set may choose to glue a bench seat prop down to the train station platform. 

After the resin surfaces are properly prepared for bonding, the pieces can be glued. Each type of glue has a certain way it needs to be used. Always follow the instructions on the package. But there are a few general principles to consider when gluing resin. 

Dry fitted 12-piece multipart print
Dry fitted 12-piece multipart print. Source: Reddit

No matter which product you choose, the resin glue needs to be applied to the surface, the pieces put together, and then they need to stay put while the glue sets.

Sometimes this is simple – two large flat areas can easily be clamped until the glue is fully cured. But for more delicate pieces like miniature figurines, it can be complicated to find a way to keep the pieces together until the glue dries. 

Always figure out how you are going to keep the pieces together before you apply the glue. Many figurines can be kept in place with a pin vice. You can also bend a paper clip to the shape you need to hold a small piece up. Whatever method you use, be sure to set it up before you start gluing.

Frequently Asked Questions

What glue is best for Warhammer? 

Warhammer figurines can be glued together with super glue. Fixing broken pieces from a detailed Warhammer miniature figurine might be easier with a super glue accelerator. A super glue accelerator will be helpful if the pieces that need to be glued are small and spindly. 

Can I use Gorilla Glue on miniatures?

Gorilla Glue can be used on miniatures. Mini figurines that are made with resin or other kinds of plastic and be glued together or repaired with Gorilla Glue, or any other kind of cyanoacrylate super glue. A super glue accelerator can also be used to help the glue dry quicker if the pieces are too small to be clamped together.

What is the best glue for miniatures?

The best glue for miniatures is cyanoacrylate super glue with a super glue accelerator. The cyanoacrylate is strong enough to bond plastic pieces of miniatures together. A super glue accelerator can help the glue dry quickly enough that the pieces don’t need to be clamped together.

What’s Changed?

October 12th 2023 updates:

Based on reader feedback, I’ve updated this guide to prioritize glues that are easy to precisely apply to detailed miniature prints.

I’ve also added recommendations for glues suitable for assembling terrain pieces and game surfaces.

Plus, I shared my recommendation for a UV lamp that can be used for resin welding – this provides a super strong bond when used properly.

Jan 2024:

  • Updated pricing information for 2024.

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