I have a well loved and well used Canon 550D. This has lost a couple of mostly inconsequential bits of rubber over the years, but recently the thumb rest has come off:

Canon 550D with missing thumb rest

Most importantly, this is a bit annoying but also having some extra open holes into the camera isn't going to improve the weather resistance if it does get out in the rain. Fortunately the thumb rest fell off into my camera bag so I still have the bit of rubber. The question is what should I use to reattach it?

Trivially available I have generic woodworking glue, rubber solution as used for fixing patches to bicycle inner tubes and a variety of not very sticky glues you would expect to find in a house with young children. If it weren't for the little holes (through which copper can be seen), I'd use the rubber solution but I'm just a little bit paranoid about getting sticky stuff into the critical internals of the camera. I suspect the answer is "use the rubber solution and be careful", but I also think it's worth checking first...


Both the official Canon replacement part and many of the third party replacement parts offered on eBay show 3M tape already attached to the back of the replacement grip.

I'd follow their lead as others have suggested and use 3M VHB, 3M 300LSE, or 3M 200MP (for other grips on the 550D), as it seems to be what Canon and third party makers use. Or you could buy a replacement grip with the tape already cut and fitted on the back of the grip for $5-20 USD. This listing even offers free plastic pulling tools to remove an old and cracked grip from the camera.

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There are also anecdotal comments posted in places like DPReview forums that super glue/gorilla glue works as well. With any liquid or gel type glue, one should take particular care to not allow any of the glue into the holes in the camera's body panel. All in all, though, adhesive tape seems to be the better solution.


Double-stick tape works well for this. Not even anything fancy — just the Scotch brand you can find everywhere. Trim to fit the body and press the detached bit back.

  • 1
    3M Scotch VHB is the best stuff as far as double-stick tapes are concerned.
    – Eric S
    Sep 3 '18 at 22:45

Do not use permanent glues, such as glues with "gorilla", "super", or "crazy" in their names. They will cause problems in the long run. The wood glue and rubber solution also sound like bad ideas.

These glues would make it more difficult to replace the grips in the future. They could get into the screw holes and into the camera, which could damage the camera or complicate any future repair efforts. Also, solvents in some glues could damage the camera body.

Personally, I would use a basic double stick tape, as mattdm suggests. Rubber cement may also work, since it may be easily removed if needed. Another option, depending on the condition of your existing rubber grips, is to purchase replacement grips for a few dollars. They should come with a suitable adhesive.

  • 1
    I'm not personally that bothered about complicating a future service; this camera isn't ever going to have a service as cost of service > cost of a replacement.
    – Philip Kendall
    Sep 4 '18 at 6:02
  • Though your question is specifically about an ancient Canon EOS 550D, some idi– person in the future, could wonder the same for a Canon EOS 1D X mark VI. Also, no point letting a super crazy gorilla ruin a perfectly good camera.
    – xiota
    Sep 4 '18 at 6:10

First, clean off all of the residue on the body and rubber piece. I don't think wood glue would work well in this application. Gorilla Glue would likely work very well and probably better than a "super" glue.

  • 1
    Don't use any permanent glue, such as glues with "gorilla", "super", or "crazy" in their names.
    – xiota
    Sep 3 '18 at 22:33
  • 4
    Gorilla Glue is probably about the worst thing you could use for something like this. It turns into expanding foam as it cures, pushing anything that isn't clamped out of place, and oozes into any available hole. It has its uses, but this isn't one of them. Sep 4 '18 at 8:02

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