How to Bond Aluminum With Aluminum Epoxy

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Aluminum can be bonded securely using a two-part epoxy.
Aluminum can be bonded securely using a two-part epoxy. (Image: Jupiterimages/Photos.com/Getty Images)

Aluminum is a relatively soft, malleable metal with a range of commercial and industrial applications. Electrical conduits, soda cans and outdoor paneling are all made from the metal. Though aluminum is typically joined with other metals by welding, an epoxy may also be used to create a firm, lasting bond. Proper surface preparation greatly increases the epoxy's adhesive properties.

Things You'll Need

  • Cloth
  • Dishwashing liquid
  • Fine-grit sandpaper
  • Epoxy
  • Plastic spreader
  • C-clamp

Wash both pieces of aluminum with a cloth and a solution of water and dishwashing liquid. Any dirt, oil or residue on the aluminum will weaken the adhesion of the epoxy.

Rub the bonding surfaces of the aluminum lightly with a piece of fine-grit sandpaper. Wipe away metal dust with a wet cloth.

Mix your epoxy according to the instructions on the container. Most commercially available epoxies are two-part, meaning the resin must be mixed with the hardener to become effective.

Spread a thin layer of epoxy onto each piece of the aluminum using a plastic spreader. Avoid applying too much epoxy, as the excess will weaken the bond.

Fit the two pieces of aluminum together as desired and hold them firmly for two to three minutes. Place a C-clamp over the pieces and tighten it to hold the assembly together. Only tighten the clamp firmly enough to hold the pieces together.

Allow the epoxy to cure undisturbed for the time suggested on the container.

Tips & Warnings

  • Work in a bright, well-ventilated area to avoid fumes emitted from the epoxy.
  • Do not allow children or pets near your work area.

References

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