16 October 2016

Hot Glue Cable ManagmentLet’s say you’ve got ethernet cables running all over the floor because you don’t want to use WiFi.

Or maybe you want to install another phone jack, but you want to route the cable nicely along the baseboards.

Of course, routing cables inside the walls is always the prettier option, but it’s also not easy to do in a finished house.

Well, I have a new friend, and she’s a hot glue gun. As her name implies, she’s rather attractive – and very handy when it comes to routing those cables in no time flat!

Traditionally, people run ethernet, phone, or other cables with little clips that have a nail in them. They might look something like this:

cable clipAttaching a cable with clips ends up looking like this:

cable with clips

Yeah, not very pretty…

You also have to attach the cable to wood or some other surface where the little teeny nails will actually hold. Plus, unless you use a ton of these clips, the cable will sag.

You might also try U-shaped staples, but it doesn’t seem very wise to use a gun that fires sharp metal projectiles near, say, an ethernet cable.

Enter hot glue

Everybody knows about hot glue guns. Unfortunately, they are mostly associated with arts and crafts. When it comes to running cables, nobody ever thinks, “Yeah, hot glue!”

But it turns out that this is the absolute best way I’ve found to route ethernet and phone lines around the house. Like so:

cable with hot glue

There are plenty of advantages:

  • Hot glue guns are cheap
  • It’s much quicker
  • You can glue the cable down at many more points along the way, which means no sagging cables
  • With a standard hot glue gun, you won’t damage the cable
  • Hot glue sticks to just about anything
  • It dries clear
  • Want to remove it later? No problem! Just pull it off.
  • You can glue other broken stuff together along the way! Loose baseboard? Glue it!

How to hot glue a cable

This part is really easy:

  1. Get a hot glue gun and some glue sticks (if the gun has 2 power settings, pick Low)
  2. Get your cable ready by unrolling it
  3. Squirt a short line of glue on your baseboard (or wall, or whatever you’re routing the cable on)
  4. Press the cable into the still-mushy glue
  5. Hold for 5-10 seconds, depending on how quickly the glue hardens
  6. Goto Step #3

In no time flat, you’ll have a beautifully routed cable.

Don’t get any hot glue on your fingers, because it’s hot! Also, don’t touch the tip of the gun to the cable itself.

Other uses of hot glue

It seems that hot glue, or hot melt adhesives (HMA) are used for darn near everything!

Book binding, gluing cardboard boxes shut, model rocket building, gluing styrofoam, electronics manufacturing (standard hot glue is an insulator), and even woodworking!

A hot glue gun can be very useful in the workshop to hold 2 pieces of wood together until you can get a screw or nail in there.

So there you have it: pretty cables, and a whole lot more!

Run cables the easy way: with a hot glue gun
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