Edge banding a curved edge

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Forum topic by schuft posted 04-21-2011 11:57 PM 14665 views 1 time favorited 17 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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123 posts in 2569 days

04-21-2011 11:57 PM

Sorry for the noob question, but I’ve hunted online for a couple days and haven’t found a clear answer…

I’m making a pair of circular table-top lazy susans from 3/4” MDF with a radial match veneer on top. Basically each lazy susan consists of a 16” diameter round sitting on a bearing mounted swivel which in turn sits on another round underneath. Sort of like an Oreo cookie. The rounds are small enough that I plan to attach the surface veneer with PVA glue and clamped cauls. I think I can figure that part out.

It’s the round edges are bothering me. (When I say “round” I don’t mean they’re rounded over, I mean the MDF substrate is cut as a circle.) Right now I”m planning to use Sauer’s pre-glued edge banding. My question is this: How do I apply the edge-banding to the rounded edges? Normal procedure is to use an old clothes iron to activate the glue and apply pressure at the same time. Would that have any chance of working on a curved edge? I’m guessing not. I found one site that suggested using a heat gun to activate the glue and then pressing it with a hard rubber roller. Anyone have any experience doing it that way?

Or should I be looking at some other option altogether?


17 replies so far

View cabmaker's profile


1717 posts in 2771 days

#1 posted 04-22-2011 12:04 AM

Heat gun will work well. If you have problems it will be with trimming the edge. Your doing to edge first , right ? You probably dont have a virotex so a sanding block will work well also . Once the banding has been applied simply flat sand the tops perimeter with emhasis on the inword stroke. Other ways (depending on type of banding material) include : block plane, razor, pocketknife, beltsander, file. Good luck.

View cabmaker's profile


1717 posts in 2771 days

#2 posted 04-22-2011 12:08 AM

I just re-read y9our post and caught the part about the rotory grain indicating to me that that is your finish surface. T-mold would be a good choice to band with. If your banding last better forget the beltsander, plane. Fiille it or use laminte trimmer.

View Loren's profile


10242 posts in 3610 days

#3 posted 04-22-2011 12:28 AM

An iron works fine for edgebanding curved edges. Iron it down enough that
the glue melts in a short section, then apply pressure with a roller or block
until the glue cools and grabs hard. Then move on to the next section.

Pretty easy actually.

View schuft's profile


123 posts in 2569 days

#4 posted 04-22-2011 12:28 AM

Yeah, I’m planning to edge band last, was going to use an edge cutter to trim the banding, then sand by hand before finishing.

I want wood for the surface and edges, is it possible to fit wooden t-moulding around a round edge?

I think I’ll make a sample and give the heat gun a try. Thanks for your help!

View schuft's profile


123 posts in 2569 days

#5 posted 04-22-2011 12:29 AM


Ah, okay. I’ll give that a shot. Many thanks!

View cabmaker's profile


1717 posts in 2771 days

#6 posted 04-22-2011 12:46 AM

Schuft, most things are possable but some things are not quickly doable. By t-mold I mean the pvc or vinal type. Use to buy it in bulk rolls, not sure what availability would be in small quanities. You have quit a few options here. How bout a thin wood band ?

View schuft's profile


123 posts in 2569 days

#7 posted 04-22-2011 01:07 AM


The stuff I’m planning to use is essentially a thin wood band backed with a heat-activated adhesive. Sounds like either the iron or the heat gun will work, just a matter of trying them. I appreciate your help, LJ’s got a great forum.

View bunkie's profile


412 posts in 3109 days

#8 posted 04-22-2011 02:25 PM

The hot-melt glue on banding stays tacky for about 10 seconds after the heat is removed. If you work briskly, this is enough time to heat up a section of about five inches or so and then apply pressure using either a J roller or a pressure block of some sort.

The real challenge with edgebanding is trimming off the edges. The problem is that the veneer on your flat surface is all too easy to damage. here’s what works for me: I have an Olfa hobby saw with very fine teeth that cuts on the pull stroke. It has a plastic handle and a replaceable blade. I remove the blade which is absolutely flat (no flanges) and flexible. This allows me to get the blade flush with the flat surface and saw off the excess. Then a light hand-sanding finishes up the job.

I’ve had bad luck with the edgebanding trimmer. It tends to follow the grain of the edgebanding which pulls off part of the banding from where you want it. I’ve also tried using a bock plane, which can dig into the surface veneer.

-- Altruism is, ultimately, self-serving

View Al Killian's profile

Al Killian

85 posts in 2587 days

#9 posted 04-23-2011 08:46 AM

You can take blue tape and tape the banding onto the peice. This will do two things for you, first it will keep it alinged and second it will keep pressure on it. Then you can reove the tape and do any trimming.

-- Owner of custom millwork shop

View Chipy's profile


374 posts in 2555 days

#10 posted 04-28-2011 08:52 PM

I laminated about 2,500 counter tops in my time in cabinet shops. Don’t make too big of a deal it really is not that hard. I laminated 3’radia with Formica. veneer is much softer it shouldn’t be a problem. I would hold the table on edge use a regular house iron and a damp cloth. Slowly work your way around your table top making sure your melting the glue at the right temp for the pace your moving around your top. To finish let the veneer over lap and the two pieces at once with a real sharp razor knife

View schuft's profile


123 posts in 2569 days

#11 posted 04-28-2011 08:59 PM

Thanks everyone, this is great stuff. Now I just need to make time to get it done. I’ll post back with the results.

Seriously, thanks again everyone!

View patron's profile


13600 posts in 3303 days

#12 posted 04-28-2011 09:23 PM

i always do the edjes first
and sand inward
to keep from splintering the banding
the top last

that way as your arm or salt shaker comes off the top
it doesn’t catch any edge
and help rip it loose

-- david - only thru kindness can this world be whole . If we don't succeed we run the risk of failure. Dan Quayle

View grizzman's profile


7836 posts in 3265 days

#13 posted 09-11-2011 05:07 PM

i like using solid wood, that way there is no banding…just out of curiosity, why did you not use all wood for this, ive never liked using mdf or the likes if i have a solid wood option…what is the benefit of doing it this way, and how did this all work out and is it still holding up to the regular days uses…lots of questions…lol….i hope it did work out, but really , why not use all wood…thanks..grizzman

-- GRIZZMAN ...[''''']

View schuft's profile


123 posts in 2569 days

#14 posted 09-12-2011 06:13 PM

Hey Grizz,

I had two objectives with this project: learn some veneering, and make something useful for my wife. When I originally thought of a lazy susan, I was going to use solid wood. But I’m planning a couple large projects next year that will likely involve veneering, so I decided to give it a try on something small scale.

And it actually worked out fairly well. The MDF is very stable, with no worries about warp, and thanks to the advice in this thread I had no problem with the edge banding. Unfortunately I had one major screw-up: I sanded through the top veneer ;( Most people look at the piece and don’t realize that’s what I did, but it’s still pretty noticeable, and I grind my teeth every time I look at it. But the piece is functional and is holding up fine.

Thanks for the input.

View BigHead8's profile


1 post in 1845 days

#15 posted 03-31-2013 08:05 AM

I have solved the problem of putting iron on edging strip onto a concave edge of MDF. All that is required is a set of curling tongs used by women for their hair. The larger the diameter of the barrel the better. Also needed a small hand held roller. Simply use pieces of masking tape to hold the edging veneer in place then working with the curling tongs in the same way as an iron work the curling tongs on the surface of veneer allowing the heat from the curling tongs to melt the glue. Pressing lightly at first then remove tongs and roll down firmly with the hand held roller. This is a slow process where the distance worked each time is about 2 inches (50 mm). The surplus veneer protruding above the surface of the board can be removed by hand using abrasive paper. It is successful .

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