Until recently, my go-to glue-spreading tool for small joints was always a cheap nickel-plated steel brush with natural bristols. I still use these brushes, but ever since I discovered the flexible polyurethane paddles, AKA Glue Spreaders, they replaced the brushed and became my glue applicator of choice.
Plastic spreaders have two main advantages over small brushes. The first one is their low profile. They can be inserted into kerfs and smear their glue without peripheral smudging typical to brush use. Their other advantage is that you don’t have to clean them after use. Just wait for the glue to dry out, wiggle the paddle and scrape off the dried glue; because they are made of plastic, PVA adhesives will not stick to them. This last characteristic of the peddles is, in my opinion, their true breakthrough.
Here are some options for the same product that varies by package quantity and price.
Chipsfly’s 6 Glue Spreaders for $4.00
Lee Valley’s 10 Glue Spreaders for $7.90
TayTools’ 12 Glue Spreaders for $4.99
Here are some supplies and tools we find essential in our everyday work around the shop. We may receive a commission from sales referred by our links; however, we have carefully selected these products for their usefulness and quality.