I teach K-3 and when supply orders came around last year one of the need-to-buy items for me were kid-friendly glue guns. Well, low and behold I discovered the Cool Shot Super Low Temperature Glue Gun by Surebonder. I was thrilled when I read the product description:
Super low temperature mini glue gun is ideal for crafts, art and school projects. Operates at a lower temperature than most other low temperature glue guns. Glue dries in seconds. Insulated nozzle is safer and helps prevent burning of finger tips. Bonds to paper, ribbon, lightweight fabric and other delicate materials.
Now, my oldest students are 10-years old which is four years younger than the product description recommends. That being said, I purchased about five in the hopes that I could train some of my more advanced kids to handle the responsibility.
Unfortunately, it seems, I was the one who couldn’t handle the responsibility!
The glue gun itself is sleek with a built-in stand so you do not need to leave it on it’s side or propped-up somewhere between uses. The stand is integrated into the plastic housing which is a nice touch since it stays out of the way. While this is a mini-glue gun, I had no problems using it as it fit comfortably in my hand.
Regarding working temperature it is wonderful and lives up to its ‘cool shot’ name. I deliberately touched the glue gun tip only to find that it was hot but not unbearably so. If I had touched the nozzle on a regular glue gun, I would have had a blister form if I didn’t act fast. This glue gun posed no such problem. So, Whoo hoo! to you Surebonder for getting it right on for two product highlights:
- “Operates at a lower temperature than most other low temperature glue guns.”
- “Insulated nozzle is safer and helps prevent burning of finger tips.”
Unfortunately, there ends the positive things I have to say about the Cool Shot Glue Gun.
I used a couple of these glue guns when completing the Abstract Expressionist Symmetry Masks. First problem is that, yes, the glue dries fast. Sadly, a little too fast! We were gluing paper to paper so this should have a been a no-brainer and super easy-peasy, right? Wrong!
With a regular glue gun I can feel the glue squish down as I press together the two items I’m gluing. With the Cool Shot Low Temperature Glue Gun, I felt the glue hardening nearly immediately. That means there is no room for error; not something a human being who is working with kids wants to hear!
Next, these glue guns used up quite a bit of glue that it became challenging to keep it going once your glue stick reached a certain point. I’m assuming this is due to the lower running temperature. Regardless, how can I expect kids to use this—even within the age appropriate as listed on the packaging!—when it takes incredible dexterity (and larger hands) to pull the trigger and press in another glue stick into the chamber to keep it shooting out glue?
Lastly, the Cool Shot requires special glue sticks. I do not know about you, but I do not like it when I am tied to the original manufacturer for replacement parts. From what I could tell, no one has jumped in to try to produce third-party glue sticks either.
In the end, Boo hoo! Surebonder for failing to uphold your end of the bargain by having a product that so inconsistently “bonds to paper, ribbon, lightweight fabric and other delicate materials.”
The Final Word
Sorry, I would pass on the Cool Shot Super Low Temperature Glue Gun by Surebonder. I got my five glue guns inexpensively so it did not hurt my Art budget. I would stick with a traditional glue gun and just monitor your student’s use very closely.