Adding a veneer to wooden kitchen table?

My parents have a wooden kitchen table that has a very durable white veneer glued onto its surface. The nice finished wooden edges extend out from the veneer and thus, the veneer only sits on the actual flat area of the table.
I have a kitchen table that we really like and is fairly new but had gotten some water damage from a leak we had to fix a year ago. I'm not wondering if there's a way to add a veneer, after market, to such a table and where I'd go to get it done. I called my local furniture store and they said no way, that it had to be done at the factory.
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Formica and contact cement and your in like flint. Prep the surface like the contact cement and Formica/plastic says to do. A router or a really sharp knife to trim the edges.
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You think it's that easy to cut it such that you wouldn't be able to see screwed up edges? You're braver than I am. I know I wouldn't be able to cut an edge anywhere near as cleanly as what I saw on my parents table. It was flawless.
If I can find a place that can cut it cleanly I might try that. I certainly wouldn't do it with a knife. I could rent a router but even that would be a possible problem. I could C-clamp it to the table (I'd hate to glue it before I know it's right) and then cut it up to the center breaks (including the leaves) and once done, glue it in place.
Certainly worth thinking about. Thanks!
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wrote:

I have a few router bits that would do the edges of Formica as clean as its from the factory assuming I don't screw up. As for a sharp knife on Formica, no way I could do this. I've seen people use belt sander or a file to trim the Formica edges but that requires some high skill level for a factory like finish. Router is the best bet for mortals.
As for veneer there is a hand trimmer that would put a nice finish edge on it.
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wrote:

If the present top is wood, you can replace it with new wood, or get formica/plastic. The cost of the materials will not be that much different.
Using a router takes a bit of practice. But it's not an impossible skill to learn.
There are a few good "woodworking" shows on tv that you can watch, one on PBS called "router workshop" is usually on weekends.
If you never tried a router before, you may want to practice a bit on some sacrificial projects, and expect to screw a few things up. Once you learn all the ways you shouldn't do things, you should know what TO DO.
But as routers and bits can get quite expensive, (even for rentals) for only the one project, you may be better off to bring the top to a professional "furniture restorer/refinisher" for a quote first. The "pros" will even have planers to take off the old veneer first. And they can show you finished jobs to let you see if you want to trust them to do your job properly.
Most should be more than happy to cut the price a bit if you are willing to do the finishing (stain urethane) yourself, or they can do the whole job.
And if you can find an honest one, they will even tell you if it's just cheaper to buy a new table, or completely replace the top, unless it really has sentimental value.
Or just ask a neighbor or friend who can show you finished work to prove they know what they are doing, to do it and give them a few bucks for their time.
BTW, make sure if there is a leaf, to get that done at the same time.
AMUN
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Rich Heimlich wrote:

1. The laminate is cut over size
2. It is applied to the substrate
3. The excess is trimmed with a router bit that has a bearing so that it follows the edge and trims the laminate flush to it. Flawlessly.
If your table is wood - real and solid wood - forget laminate.
-- dadiOH ____________________________
dadiOH's dandies v3.06... ....a help file of info about MP3s, recording from LP/cassette and tips & tricks on this and that. Get it at http://mysite.verizon.net/xico
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wrote:

It is. I've thought about sanding it down and re-finishing it but frankly, I'm tired of constantly worry about people sitting wet glasses down on it and the like.
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If the wood is oak and the stain is black try some oxalic acid to reverse the stain. Suggest use a polyurethane for the top as it is tough. Also tough to touchup small scratches.
On Sun, 04 Sep 2005 21:37:38 -0400, Rich Heimlich

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I have a table that was handed down from my parents. It was bought new around 1970 (the manufacture date is on the bottom of the table). It has a dark wood appearing laminate surface and after over 35 years of daily use (and abuse) it is still in awesome shape. The bottoms of the legs are faded from mopping around the legs but it the surface is still good looking (no scratches or nicks) and it doesn't wobble at all. I still am using the original chairs that came with it and they are all in excellent shape, too. They don't wobble and never have. The table's look is outdated but I am scared to replace it because I doubt I could find a table that would be good!
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<snip>

From your follow up post we can assume that you don't have the tools or the experience to do this to a satisfactory degree. Afterall, the laminate or veneer is *not* cheap and a screw-up while learning could be pricey. So, get it done professionally at a cabinet shop. This would be the folks who build kitchens and not the furniture people who know very little about the actual process.
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wrote:

Thanks. That's one of the pieces I was looking for. Who to call in the event of my not being comfortable doing it. A cabinet shop. That makes total sense.
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