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Christina is a Christian, gamer. She enjoys playing a variety of tabletop games. Some of her favorite games are Myth, Sentinels of the Multiverse, Pathfinder Adventure Card Game, MERCS Miniatures, and Lord of the Rings The Card Game.

Discoveries on the Miniature Assembly Line


“Grrr!!! I want to throw this miniature across the table! The glue won’t hold this little tiny piece on!”

This is a typical statement you’ll hear from me while I’m gluing miniatures however I don’t actually throw them. I love to paint miniatures and when I complete a miniature I feel accomplished at my hard work. However, gluing miniatures is a step I would prefer to skip in the whole process. I’ve read many tips on how to glue minis. A lot of people suggest washing the minis before gluing, some suggest a light sanding to cause an abrasive surface which helps the parts to actually stick to each other, and some suggest that certain types or brands of glue makes the difference. In my experience I found my own miracle for gluing completely by accident.

I was trying desperately to glue the Behemoth model from Mercs’ USCR faction. I tried to clean the surface and sand it but the glue wouldn’t stick. I kept applying more glue which only worsened the situation since that was more glue that I had to wait to dry. I tried sitting in front of a box fan hoping the air would quickly dry the glue but that didn’t work either. I finally came to the realization that I had too much glue on the figure and needed to start over. I went to the sink and ran hot water over the part I was trying to glue. To my surprise it didn’t wash the glue off but instantly hardened it. Then a lightbulb went off in my head. I sanded off the excess glue, put more glue on the piece, held it in place, and then asked for my husband to turn on the hot water. I held the mini under hot water for about 30 seconds or so. When I pulled the mini out of the water the piece was glued on there. Victory!


Now I must caution if you use this trick keep a couple things in mind. First, plug your sink! I can’t stress this enough. Sometimes its hard to hold pieces in place since they are such small pieces and just imagine if you dropped that piece down the sink? Sorry soldier it looks like you lost your hand before the war even began! My second tip, is to be sure you put a small amount of glue on the piece you are trying to glue. The glue will naturally expand and the more glue you have the more it will run out of the cracks. If you have any excess just give it a light sanding and that should do the trick.

My accidental gluing miracle has made gluing minis more tolerable…I still don’t enjoy that part of the process though. However, it is great to know that I can get the assembling done quicker so I can move on to the best part, painting!

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3 Comments on “Discoveries on the Miniature Assembly Line”

  1. Itsacoyote Workshop (@itsacoyote) August 29, 2013 at 11:55 AM #

    Water is an accelerant to cyanoacrylate glue, but do be careful as it could cause the glue to become brittle in it’s setting. Chemical accelerants also make the super glue brittle (more so than water). To limit the amount of water for accelerating the glue setting, you could dab super glue on one side and water on the other, so as you put the two together, it will cause the bonding to happen quicker without too much water running through it. Another option you can do is breathe onto the parts as you hold them together. It’s a slower process, but it’s a little quicker than letting it sit and ensures you get a good bond in the end :)


  1. Painting Miniatures: My Tips for Beginners | Initiative : Tabletop - January 28, 2014

    […] to gluing miniatures. You can breathe on it while holding it to get the glue to dry quicker or use my water trick. You can use the needle file to sand the ends that are being glued together to create a better area […]

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