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The Best RC Tire Glue (Which One You Should Use & How To)

RC tire glue is generally used to repair broken tires and joints that won’t allow you to race the car if damaged. It can also attach the tires to the rim. It has many uses for RC cars based on which part of the car needs to be repaired.

The kind of glue a person will want to use will depend on the need of the RC car. Some damage requires a thicker form of glue while others need only a thin layer to fix the problem. It all depends on the brand of glue and the part of the car that’s been broken.

Out of all the RC tire glues available some have to be better than others right?

The best RC tire glue is Team Associated 1597 Factory Team Tire Adhesive. It is a premium blend formula CA that is specifically formulated for mounting RC tires to the rims. 

You can purchase this RC car tire glue by clicking here. Since most RC tires have foam inside and not air then they are held onto the rim differently than tires on cars or other vehicles. 

RC tire glue and super glue can technically be considered the same thing. Super glue, Cyanoacrylate (CA glue), and RC glue are all different adaptations of the same adhesive- cyanoacrylate, which sponsors speed-based glues. 

Some cheaper superglues won’t hold as well as RC tire glues will but in general, they are about the same thing. 

If you need to glue your RC tires then you can certainly use super glue to do so but don’t expect the cheapest superglue to hold near as well as the glue that is designed for RC tires. If you purchase a bit more expensive super glue then the hold will be much more similar to RC tire glue.

It is always best though to use an RC car tire glue to hold your tire together rather than on something that isn’t designed specifically to work with RC car tires. 

How To Glue RC Tires Properly

There’s an old saying in racing: “To finish first, you must first finish.” There are many reasons why unfortunate souls go home each weekend with the dreaded DNF.

Inevitably, it’s always a rear tire that has come unglued about halfway through the race and left the driver stranded as he was no doubt having the run of a lifetime. How does this happen, and happen so often, when using glue is hardly rocket science? 

RC tires (especially rear tires) are subjected to extremely high side-load pressure, and that force makes quick work of weak glue bonds between tires and rims. Follow these steps to stuck-tire success, and your race machine or backyard bomber will never get a “flat” again.

Here are the steps to glue your RC car tires properly. 

Step 1: Prep the bonding areas

Proper prep is essential to stuck-tire success no matter which type of glue you use. Tires and rims are molded parts and coated with a slick mold-release agent left over after the manufacturing process.

To get them ready for gluing, all you need is some denatured or isopropyl (rubbing) alcohol. You can find the stuff at any pharmacy or department store, and as a bonus, it’s cheap. 

Other cleaners such as motor spray and nitro, brake cleaner, acetone, etc. may leave a residue that might prevent a strong bond. Use a paper towel and wipe the tires down until the towel stops picking up any grease, dirt, or residue. Thoroughly clean the rims’ mounting channels, too. 

If you run on an extremely high-traction surface, you might even lightly sand or scratch the mounting surfaces on the rim and the entire tire before cleaning them with alcohol. They will then bond very tightly.

Step 2: Test-fit

Now’s the time to trim the foam insert. Most people trim the outer and inner edges, but the current hot setup is to use full untrimmed inserts. Most stock foam inserts are so soft that trimming them does nothing. 

It’s much more important to make sure that the insert is centered in the entire wheel and that the tire is fully seated. It isn’t crucial to mount an off-road tire on a balancer, but you should make sure that it doesn’t wobble when you spin it or have any bulges.

If the tire does not seal properly, look for flashing on the rim and the tire, and trim it away with a hobby knife. When you’re satisfied with your test fit, run a rubber band around the edges of the tire to squeeze it tightly to the rim.

Step 3: Start gluing

Pull the tire sidewall just far enough away from the rim to allow the glue to reach the bottom of the tire-mounting channel; then put a drop of glue into the channel. Let the tire settle back in and seat the bead, and then repeat. 

Picture the rim as the face of a clock, and glue it at 12 and 6. Let that dry for a second and glue at 3 and 9. (If you can tell the time only on a digital clock, you probably just made a big mess.)

When it comes to tire glue, less is more. Thick spots of tire glue are brittle, and your tires will be much more likely to break free if you use excess glue.

After you’ve finished one side, wait a few minutes, and then flip the tire over and do the other side.

Step 4: Sidewall insurance

Gently tug on the sidewall of the tire to check for loose spots, and reglue as needed using only a dab. To seal the bead, place a full drop of glue between the tire and the rim using a small needle or applicator tip. Tilt and roll the tire a little to spread the glue around the entire bead. 

This will help to prevent the tire from pulling away from the rim and will prevent dirt from being packed between the tire and the rim. Make sure the glue has completely dried before you start on the other side. 

You will need to remember that “dry” and “cured” are very different. If you can avoid it, don’t run freshly glued tires until they have enough drying time where the glue becomes durable.

Best RC Tire Glue For Sidewalls Or Damaged Tires

If you find yourself with an RC tire that has been sliced on the sidewall you might be wondering what the best glue for this issue is. Obviously, you could replace the tire but if you can get a few more miles out of your RC tire that is certainly better.

But is there a specific type or brand of glue that will work best when gluing the sidewalls of your RC vehicle?

To repair your sidewalls or sliced RC tires the best glue will be the MXLR Elastic Tire Glue. This glue is designed to stay flexible even after drying while most RC tire glues will dry hard.

Since this glue dries with some flexibility to it you can use it for rips or tears in your RC tires without having to replace them. Exactly how well this RC tire glue will work will depend on where the split or tear in your RC tire is.

If your tire was damaged in the tread part that comes into contact with the ground it probably won’t hold up long enough to make gluing it worthwhile. However, if the damage is to the sidewall or another part of your RC tire then this glue should work perfectly in those instances.

How to Fix An Rc Tire

With RC vehicles, a situation that comes up quite often is for your RC tire to get damaged or to come unglued halfway through a race and completely ruin the driver’s fun. 

Why does this happen? Why do tires come undone so often?

Tires, and most often rear tires, carry extremely high side-load pressure. This high pressure pushes against weak glue bonds that might exist between the tires and rims. 

The force exerted against these bonds makes them come undone and consequently gives you a “flat”. Flat is in quotation marks since RC tires don’t technically go flat because of the foam in them. 

When they come loose from the rim they will act very much like a flat tire on a normal vehicle. In such events, what can you do to successfully put together your RC car and tire in a way that it never faces a “flat tire” again?

To fix an RC car tire, you will need to prep the tire, insert the foam, glue the tire, and wait for it to dry. Once it is dry you should pull on the tire to make sure the bond is tight and it will not come unglued again. 

Once you fix the tire, you will need to put back all of the items you used to fix the tire, and put the tire back on the RC car. After this, you can simply begin to put the tire back on the car and keep racing. 

The first time you try to glue an RC car tire may not work perfectly. This is why you should practice fixing a tire before you actually need to fix one.