OBJECTIVE: The purpose of this study was to measure the micro-tensile bond strength (microTBS) of two adhesives to dentin and to correlate this microTBS with the micro-tensile fracture strength (microTFS) of primer-adhesive mixtures of the two adhesives. METHODS: The three-step etch&rinse adhesive OptiBond FL (Kerr) and the two-step self-etch adhesive Clearfil SE Bond (Kuraray) were used to bond Filtek Z100 (3M ESPE) to twenty mid-coronal dentin surfaces. The microTBS was determined at 1 and 24 h after light-curing. In addition, the microTFS of primer-adhesive mixtures (primer:adhesive=1:3 by weight) and of the pure adhesives (controls) were measured after the same time intervals. RESULTS: The microTBS to dentin of OptiBond FL at 24 h was significantly higher than at 1 h and than the microTBS of Clearfil SE Bond at 24 h. The mean microTFS of the primer-adhesive mixtures was always lower than the microTFS of the respective adhesives. The highest reduction in microTFS due to mixing primer with the adhesive resin was measured for Clearfil SE Bond. Both the microTFS of the primer-adhesive mixtures and the pure adhesives of OptiBond FL and Clearfil SE Bond increased with time. SIGNIFICANCE: The early 1 h microTBS to dentin was lower than the 24 h microTBS for OptiBond FL, but not for Clearfil SE Bond. Differences in polymerization efficiency as well as in the resulting interfacial strength may explain such varying early bond strengths to dentin.