painting formica table

I have a 60's or 70's era kitchen table with a formica top that looks like the inside of a lemon. I cant afford to buy a new one and was wondering if there was a way I could paint the top. Does anyone have any suggestions or lessons learned from doing the same. There would be no problem painting legs, metal.
Thanks for the info and advice.
Deb
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I would expect almost any paint to bond rather poorly to the formica and have a tendency to chip off. And the paint will not be nearly as tough or easy to clean as the formica. What you propose is not as good an idea as just going to some garage sales until you see something you like better than your table. You can probably buy a different table that way for less than the cost of a quart of high quality paint (which would pretty much have to be oil-based enamel or epoxy paint).
If you do try to do this, be sure you sand the formica thoroughly with 120 grit paper.
Other possible solutions: contact "paper", really vinyl, which you replace when it starts to peel or you get sick of it.

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If you are going to paint over laminate tops, I would sand with about 60 grit paper to get the sheen off all over. I would then buy epoxy enamel to paint it.
You'll have limited colors because it's usually used to refinish appliances, sinks, tubs & such.
Tom J
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t burrow wrote:

primer, alkyd semi-gloss over it. The primer includes Formica in the suggested uses, so it should work. My cabinet gets no wear and tear, so I can't speak about how it holds up. For what it would cost to buy paint and brushes, you can probably have a simple table top made of wood or laminate, remove the old one and screw on the new. Check with a cabinet shop unless you are handy with wood working.
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If the table has a metal edge, she could just lay another piece of laminate over what is there. Or buy a slab of pretty plywood and some wide trim, and make a top to lay over it. (Or maybe just a pretty tablecloth?) Best suggestion is to hit thrift shops and garage sales- tables are a common cheap item. If table is in good shape, OP should take some pictures of the 'fruit' pattern and post on e-bay. There are people out there who chase that retro stuff. If top is hollow, and the metal legs come off, it should get small enough to ship easily. In general, paint on Formica, Doesn't Work.
aem sends....

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t burrow wrote:

that way you can cover the table and not have to worry about paint...
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