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Forum topic by Lazyman posted 10-07-2016 06:52 PM 340 views 0 times favorited 7 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Lazyman

694 posts in 850 days


10-07-2016 06:52 PM

Topic tags/keywords: veneer glue contact cement pva clamping veneer question walnut plywood hardboard veneering modern

I am in the procsess of designing of a mirror frame to hang on the wall and I could use some advice. The frame is basically a square box with a round mirror inset about 3.5”deep in the middle. Dimensions are 40” square, 4” deep with a 31” diameter round mirror in the middle. The box will be made from 1/2” plywood, though I may decide to use 1/4” PW, lauan or hardboard for the front to reduce the weight a tad, and I intend to put walnut veneer strips on the visible surfaces that I will buy that are about 6” wide. The veneer will be placed so that the grain sort of forms a 6 sided pinwheel pattern so there will be no right angles in on the surface. I am still deciding what to do with grain pattern on the sides. The veneer has no adhesive backing and is very thin.

So I am weighing the options for how to glue down the veneer to the surface. Here are some options, thoughts and questions:

1. Contact Cement
  • I am a little worried that the lack of right angles and the need to butt edges at 60 degrees could be challenging since you only get one shot at it.
2. PVA glue
  • Will allow positioning after laying the veneer in place
  • I am a little worried that squeeze out could create sanding issues, since the veneer is so thin.
  • Will the moisture in the PVA cause problems, warpage or soak through?
  • Without a vacuum press or other advanced clamping tools, applying uniform pressure might be a challenge
  • I am a little worried that the lighter colored plywood might show through any seams that are not perfect, would a dark colored or even hyde glue help? I have also thought about using hardboard for the surface to provide a dark subsurface—will the veneer adhere to it using PVA?
3. Any other ideas?
  • I saw a demo recently where they applied PVA glue on the back of the veneer and the subsurface and let it dry overnight. They then put the veneer in place and used a standard laundry iron to activate the glue much like you would with a heat activated adhesive backing. It worked perfectly but the person doing the demo said it was best for small pieces like the lid of a small decorative box. Anyone tried this on a larger surface.

What would you do and why?

Thanks for your help.

-- Nathan, TX -- Hire the lazy man. He may not do as much work but that's because he will find a better way.


7 replies so far

View HerbC's profile

HerbC

1592 posts in 2322 days


#1 posted 10-07-2016 07:06 PM

LJ Shipwright can give you excellent advise. Look at his blogs, he has one about use of hot hide glue which is what I would recommend for your project.

Good Luck!

Be Careful!

Herb

-- Herb, Florida - Here's why I close most messages with "Be Careful!" http://lumberjocks.com/HerbC/blog/17090

View DrDirt's profile

DrDirt

4169 posts in 3205 days


#2 posted 10-07-2016 07:49 PM

Lots of options…

But whatever you do …. do NOT use contact cement.

Using PVA works, but you do still need to clamp it, but no the moisture doesn’t cause issues.
Great way to spread the glue is with a mastic spreader for doing vinyl flooring (2 bucks at the hardware store).
and only apply glue to the substrate, not the veneer. This controls mess, limits squeeze out.
If you put the glue on the veneer it curls up and is a disaster to try to get laid out.

Agree with Herb about PM to Shipwright….
Hammer veneer with hide glue is a solution for what you want to do as you don’t need clamps, the glue doesn’t cause any finishing issues

If it were me I would use PVA (WHITE glue not yellow) and a caul and have to do it in several steps to get all the surfaces.

Spread it on the surface – with the spreader which has ~1/16 teeth. lay the veneer on – - lay a few sheets of newspaper over it, and apply your caul
I would likely use a piece of melamine covered particle board.

WHen I have made panels – we always vacuum bagged.

-- 'Political correctness is fascism pretending to be manners' ~George Carlin

View Lazyman's profile

Lazyman

694 posts in 850 days


#3 posted 10-08-2016 03:06 AM

Thanks Guys. I checked out Shipwright’s tutorials and I think I am going to give hot hide blue a try. I’ve been curious about it and this looks like a good excuse to take the plunge.

I found another Youtube video while researching techniques that has what I hope is good idea for new or occasional users. You mix the glue in an old plastic spice bottle and submerge that in a glue pot or crock pot filled with hot water to “cook” it and keep it hot until you need it. That way you can mix small quantities for small projects and if you have leftovers you can just pop the bottle in the fridge and reheat the next day. This also allows me to use a crock pot that I already have as long as I can keep the temp in the right range. Of course if I do decide to do the veneer with the HHG, I will need a pretty large quantity and I may have to spring for a veneer hammer unless I can find a cheaper alternative like Shipwrights scrapper hack perhaps. I don’t need much of an excuse to buy a new tool of course.

-- Nathan, TX -- Hire the lazy man. He may not do as much work but that's because he will find a better way.

View shipwright's profile

shipwright

7168 posts in 2261 days


#4 posted 10-08-2016 04:53 PM

First of all thanks for the references guys, I’m flattered.
I would recommend that you do some experimenting with hammer veneering first and get a feel for how it works
Then you can lay one piece, overlap the next, cut both with a sharp knife and a straight edge, and remove the scrap edges, lifting piece two to get the bottom one out. The glue should still be hot enough to re- hammer the joint, then move on to the next piece. You should be able to get it all done at once. If something gets cool and doesn’t stick well, wait until it is cold and then go back and iron it gently to reactivate and press it.
Sorry this is way easier to do than to explain.
Another, easier way is to joint the pieces by clamping between two straight pieces and running a plane over the protruding edges of the veneer and then pre-assemble the whole with veneer tape. Then you can glue it all up in one go. I would still use hide glue but as you will now be pressing (clamping) you will have more time if you use a liquid hide glue like Old Brown Glue.
Hope this helps. PM me if you like.

-- Paul M ..............If God wanted us to have fiberglass boats he would have given us fibreglass trees. http://thecanadianschooloffrenchmarquetry.com/

View Lazyman's profile

Lazyman

694 posts in 850 days


#5 posted 10-09-2016 04:07 AM

Thanks for the tips Paul. I will definitely experiment before I try this one on the final project. I’ve got to get familiar with the glue before I work up to veneer. If I run into trouble, I may PM my questions.

On the second method you described, are you saying to basically tape 2 pieces of veneer together with veneer tape after you use the plane trick to get parallel edges? Then I assume that you would just brush or roll enough of the old brown glue to put the joined sheets in place and clamp?

I’m on the hunt to get the basic tools to give HHG a try.

-- Nathan, TX -- Hire the lazy man. He may not do as much work but that's because he will find a better way.

View shipwright's profile

shipwright

7168 posts in 2261 days


#6 posted 10-09-2016 06:20 AM

Yes that is what I was saying although I was envisioning more than two pieces per the original post if I understood it correctly.
The biggest problem most newcomers have with HHG a is that they get it too thick. If you are having problems hammer veneering that is the first place to look. The proper consistency for HHG will look pretty thin to someone used to pva.
There is no need to measure proportions when hydrating HHG. Just cover the dry glue well with water and let it sit until all moistened and then heat it. If it’s too thick add water. If it’s too thin (unlikely) let it cook a bit. .... Too easy!

Good luck with your experiments.

-- Paul M ..............If God wanted us to have fiberglass boats he would have given us fibreglass trees. http://thecanadianschooloffrenchmarquetry.com/

View Lazyman's profile

Lazyman

694 posts in 850 days


#7 posted 10-09-2016 03:59 PM

I should have posted a Sketchup drawing. Because the veneered surface will basically be a 40” square with a 31” circular hole in the middle, the width of the veneer will vary from about 5” to a little over 12”. The veneer is roughly 6” wide so the widest section might at most be 2 pieces wide plus a little due to trimming and the angles. There will be 6 sections applied around the circle at 60° angles relative to the adjacent sections. I will also experiment with these angles before I tackle the final project.

Thanks.

-- Nathan, TX -- Hire the lazy man. He may not do as much work but that's because he will find a better way.

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