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View dfox52's profile

Gluing plywood

by dfox52
posted 01-07-2017 04:14 PM

12 replies so far

View waho6o9's profile


8539 posts in 2813 days

#1 posted 01-07-2017 04:37 PM

The “sizing” of end grain comes to mind;

Joint Sizing

Glue will soak more into the end grain of wood and can potentially result in starved glue joints. To help prevent this, you can “size” any end grain to be glued with a mixture of glue diluted with water. Dilute just so that when it is applied, glue drops don’t form at the lower edges of the wood. Another method, somewhat less effective, is to coat the end grain with full-strength glue, allow it to dry 5 to 10 minutes, then re-coat with glue and assemble.

From: ^^

View waho6o9's profile


8539 posts in 2813 days

#2 posted 01-07-2017 04:43 PM

Depending on the application biscuits would look cleaner than nails and glue alone should be strong enough.

View OCristo's profile


12 posts in 794 days

#3 posted 01-07-2017 05:22 PM

I do not like biscuit joint but it is one of the few cases I think biscuit joints is very welcome: to join plywood.

I have no dedicated tools for biscuits, I use my router with a channel bit and put biscuits side by side to make stronger the joint. It has worked for me.

All the best.

-- An Amateur Woodworker

View Redoak49's profile


3739 posts in 2225 days

#4 posted 01-07-2017 05:34 PM

When I glue just a 1/4” or 1/2” strip to the plywood, I do not use anything but glue. I will use tape to hold it in place and a few brands. I never have had a failure with this.

If I am going to use a wider wood piece, I use tong and groove.

View JBrow's profile


1366 posts in 1156 days

#5 posted 01-07-2017 05:34 PM


I think of the edge of plywood to be a hybrid of end grain and long grain would. The plys are glued to one another with the grain running perpendicular to one another in typical plywood. Therefore the long or short edges of plywood will offer some long grain that would bond well. The end grain plys will not bond quite as well. I have found that a simple but joint on ¾” plywood holds pretty well but stronger joints are available.

waho6o9’s joints would do a good job of strengthening the edge banding or splicing. Biscuits are similar to the spline joint shown but offers less strength. Nails could also work but may not have the bite to hold well and nails leave blemishes that then may have to be addressed. When joining plywood perpendicular, my preference is a tongue formed on one edge that slips into a dado in the mating piece, similar to the second joint shown by waho6o9.

View dfox52's profile


29 posts in 1930 days

#6 posted 01-07-2017 07:03 PM

JBrow, Yes… I started thinking about this after I posted the question. Plywood does alternate grain so it would have some amount of long grain for gluing. So unless there will be stress on the edge material, a glue bond should hold fine.

View TheFridge's profile


10815 posts in 1722 days

#7 posted 01-07-2017 07:27 PM

I’ve tried it on a bench with success.

-- Shooting down the walls of heartache. Bang bang. I am. The warrior.

View jerryminer's profile


944 posts in 1678 days

#8 posted 01-07-2017 07:47 PM

I glue solid wood edging to 3/4 plywood all the time. Glue only. Works fine. Been doing it for 40 years, no failures

-- Jerry, making sawdust professionally since 1976

View bondogaposis's profile


5150 posts in 2587 days

#9 posted 01-07-2017 07:52 PM

I glue solid wood edging to 3/4 plywood all the time.

Yah, me too. Never had a problem, the long grain ply’s provide adequate adhesion to hold edging in my experience.

-- Bondo Gaposis

View rwe2156's profile


3230 posts in 1717 days

#10 posted 01-07-2017 08:47 PM

It is a well known fact that gluing of end grain does not produce a strong joint. With that in mind, is the edge of 3/4 inch plywood considered end grain? When gluing nosing or an edge strip to plywood, is it advisable to strengthen the joint with nails or biscuits? Or will the glue alone make a strong enough joint? Thanks in advance for your input!

- dfox52

Actually depends on the # of layers. Every other layer will be endgrain.

For attaching edge strip, it depends on application. For shelves, I think you can get away with just glue. I like to make a rabbet in the bullnose to catch part of the surface of the ply.

If there will be stress on the edge then I think you need more than glue. Many ways: splines, dowels, biscuits, pocket screws, screws and plugs, etc. .

and never had a failure.

-- Everything is a prototype thats why its one of a kind!!

View a1Jim's profile


117417 posts in 3813 days

#11 posted 01-07-2017 09:43 PM

I agree with Jerry and Bondo an edge strip (banding) will be fine, if you want to take the extra step that’s in the (better) photo of Wahoo’s #2 post all the better but unless you have an unusual stress situation just glue and sizing the ply should work fine.

-- wood crafting & woodworking classes

View Woodknack's profile


12463 posts in 2616 days

#12 posted 01-07-2017 11:08 PM

I glue solid wood edging to 3/4 plywood all the time.

Yah, me too. Never had a problem, the long grain ply s provide adequate adhesion to hold edging in my experience.

- bondogaposis


Glue is very strong. Once I made a refrigerator cabinet that we ended up not using so I decided to knock the joints apart. It was built with glue and pocket screws, after removing the screws I couldn’t get the butt joints apart without splintering the plywood so I had to cut them.

-- Rick M,

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