Gluebusters: The Case of the Cohesive Failures

May 28, 2024


If there are two things you should know about Chicago Glue &  Machine, it’s this: 1) We want to save you from a world without glue and machines gone bad and 2) We ain’t afraid of no glue failure. Do we like them? Absolutely not; who does? However, we have seen our fair share of (alleged) adhesive nightmares. With the CGM team on your side, you can be confident that no glue failure or misbehaving machine will ever be safe again.

When co-president Nirel Inman received a package from Nordstrom, she was eager to dig into the goodies she had patiently awaited. Instead, she discovered a ghastly scene: a glue failure and it wasn’t the first time. She knew what she had to do. Nirel picked up the phone and dialed her team.

“Drop Everything, CGM. We Got One.”

Armed with our extensive knowledge and experience, we assessed the seemingly innocent package. Slowly pulling the box flaps back, a shriek rang out at the spine-tingling spectacle that unfolded before us. Beads of adhesive with little sign of fiber tears stared back at us. It was clear a cohesive failure had occurred.

A telltale sign of cohesive failure is glue visible on each flap, indicating the box flaps were put together. The problem isn’t typically the adhesive, it’s the lack of compression. Maybe it wasn’t compressed long enough, or the compression bar wasn’t in the right place. Whatever the case, the flaps were not held together long enough for a proper bond to set up. Fortunately, one bead had signs of fiber tear, which was most likely the reason the box didn’t open.

In this case, calling the Gluebusters (aka Chicago Glue & Machine) for a simple glue audit would give the manufacturer the necessary answers to banish the packaging poltergeist and restore order to their shipments. Once the audit is completed, our team can use the findings to make necessary adjustments, like ensuring the compression bar is placed in the optimal position.

“We Both Have the Same Problem: GLUE”

Remember how we mentioned above that this wasn’t the first time Nirel had encountered a glue failure when receiving a package from Nordstrom? To be fair, glue failure isn’t really the correct word to use, as this incident was more of a glue-tastrophe.

When Nirel opened the box, she shrieked with surprise when she noticed how much glue was used. In the picture below, you can see the excessive smear of adhesive. While we appreciate a well-sealed package, the thought of manufacturers wasting their glue gives us the heebie-jeebies.


Just like in the previous case, we suggest starting with a glue audit to understand what is causing the glue catastrophe and what steps need to be taken to fix it. Analyze and optimize!

Who Ya Gonna Call?

If you find yourself haunted by a glue-mergency or machine gone bad, call the expert team at Chicago Glue and Machine at 1-(800)-419-GLUE or visit our website.