What glue to use with Flex Ply?

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Forum topic by miserybob posted 11-28-2010 04:54 AM 2878 views 1 time favorited 5 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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88 posts in 3071 days

11-28-2010 04:54 AM

Topic tags/keywords: flex ply

For those who have used flexible plywood before (this was my first time – it was a mixed success!), what glue did you use? There were too many plys (Four 1/8” thick flexply and one veneer) to use titebond – not near enough open time.

I used epoxy – West System (until I ran out!) which is very fluid and seemed to soak right into the plywood, so I had to switch to System Three (which I had never used before) which was like rubber cement – thick and sticky.

The resulting piece will be fine, I think, since it will not be load-bearing and will be reinforced. However, when I sawed about an inch off the bottom to clean up the base, I was easily able to break apart the plys on the offcuts.

Any advice? Thanks!

5 replies so far

View mfike's profile


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#1 posted 11-28-2010 10:14 PM

I use Ultra cat from veneer supplies for flexeble ply and solid wood bent laminations. It’s a plastic powdered resin veneer glue that has long open time and dries very hard so you dont get any creep. It’s a powder so you do have to mix it with water and you have to let it sit clamped over night. The most important things in my opinion doing bent panel work is good glue coverage and good clamping pressure over all parts.

View miserybob's profile


88 posts in 3071 days

#2 posted 11-28-2010 10:53 PM

Thanks mfike! Do you use a vacuum press, or some combination of clamps and straps?


View shipwright's profile


7992 posts in 2825 days

#3 posted 11-29-2010 10:04 PM

Epoxies in general don’t like high clamping pressure. That makes them not too suitable for some laminations. With epoxy you will get a massively strong joint as long as the area between the pieces is filled with glue. It will gap fill (with appropriate fillers and / or thickeners) like crazy but if you squeeze it too hard you will drive it out of the joint and have a “dry” joint. Not good with epoxy. My choice for hard laminated curves that will be clamped tight is urea formaldehyde.

-- Paul M ..............If God wanted us to have fiberglass boats he would have given us fibreglass trees.

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100 posts in 3693 days

#4 posted 11-30-2010 07:40 PM

miserybob, I use a vacuum press most of the time. There are situations though when I can’t use the vacuum press then I just use some sort of a platen like hardboard or 1/8” bending poplar with as many clamps as I can get on it. I’ve even used a pillow case filled with playground sand to add pressure in hard to reach areas. There’s no right or wrong way as long as you get adequate pressure to all parts.

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5664 posts in 3794 days

#5 posted 12-01-2010 08:13 PM

Try this

-- "Hold on to instruction, do not let it go; guard it well, for it is your life" Solomon

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