The top came out pretty flat. I trimmed it to size on the table saw and I realized it’s time to make a panel sled! The sides of the top are not perfectly square but they don’t really need to be for this project, however, I am going to build a sled before the next project that uses panels this size so I can cut them accurately. I cut the top undersized so I could add some maple edges. The edge is cut from 3/4” thick boards and after they are bonded on, the top will be slightly oversized. The idea was that I would run it across the jointer in order to get a perfect fit.
I left the edges long during the glue up and then came back afterwards and trimmed with with my Ryoba saw:
After trimming the edges to length I used a flush trim bit on my router to trim the edges flush with both sides of the top. I also ran the sides across the jointer to get a nice fit between the front and back rails. It’s “almost” tight:
The “rear” of the table is going to stay square since it will be up against the cast iron top of the table saw:
The “front” of the top will stick out past the side rails slightly so I wanted to soften the corners a bit. I took my largest roundover bit in the router and used it on the corners:
Now it’s time to cut the laminate to rough size. I wasn’t quite sure how to handle such a floppy sheet of material on the tablesaw and I had the wood for my workbench drying right next to be so I figured I would set up a cutting fixture on the bench and use my router. Using a 1/4” straight bit I sat the router on 2 6×6 with the bit in the middle and then used another 6×6 as a straight edge. Worked like a charm:
I haven’t even built my bench yet and it’s already making my life easier! It gave me a great place to put on the contact cement. So far this has been my least favorite part. I couldn’t take the smell and I am sure that the fumes are not that great to breath in. Even with the garage door open for ventilation it was too much so I wore a respirator. Here I have the top and the laminate side by side waiting for the cement to dry long enough before putting them together:
I don’t have a J-roller to roll out the top but I saw that the head of my dead blow hammer was round so I put that on some paper towels so it would slide on the top without marring the surface and use that to apply pressure from the middle towards the outside. The instructions said you need 25 pounds per inch and while I am not sure if I was doing it correctly I did hear some popping noises coming from under the laminate. That was either bubbles popping or me breaking something.
This was all the time I had for the day so this side gets to dry overnight before I trim the edges:
-- Good Judgement Comes From Experience. Experience Comes From Bad Judgement.