Can I remove Desk Top Laminate?


Have an executive desk, which has some ring stains on the top that I would like to refinish, top only. It is a very heavy/solid piece of wood but it seems to have a thin sheet of laminate on the top since I can see an edge on the side (very thin). Is this something that can be removed? If I would take an electric sander to it would it come off? What is the best way to strip the top of this desk.
Wish I could provide more intelligent information of what I have, does this make sense?
Thanks, Al
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It can be sanded, yes, or planed or... but I assume you want the job to be finished this year? <G>
This is the method we use when repairing modern kitchen laminates; whether it'd work in your case depends on the glue used, which depends on the age & quality of the desk. The older the desk or to a lesser degree the higher the quality, the lower the chances... the method would still work but you'd have to find an appropriate solvent.
Partially fill a squirt bottle (fine-spray) with acetone. Using a paint scraper, *gently* pry up a corner (you may need to use a slicing motion to get it started) and give a squirt underneath. Wait for 30 secs and repeat, gently prying more and more of the laminate as the glue softens. Done carefully, the laminate can be salvaged intact and reused in other projects after a wipe of acetone on the back to clean off old glue.
Be warned: don't use too much spray at first, take it slowly and patiently, else the excess acetone may seperate any edge laminate as well! Any overspray also tends to ruin most finishes...
--
- Andy
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On Thu, 14 Jul 2005 10:29:17 +1000, "Andy McArdle"
Use a WELL ventilated area. Outside is good. Acetone is a great solvent, but not nice stuff.
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I have used hot air heatguns to start the stripping of laminate. Then I would turn the work piece in such a way that I could trickle lacquer thinner in between the laminate and the substrate. Make sure that the heatgun hasn't left any glowing embers behind. Regardless, it's still an outside job, but not as nasty as acetone. I always wear an appropriate mask and gloves.
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If it's dark colored laminate, putting it out on a black top driveway in the sun may be all you need... I've seem laminate literally lift and curl up off the substrate under those conditions.
John
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Everyone is talking laminate. Sounds like veneer to me as he described it as wood.

the
off
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Andy forgot to remind you that acetone is flammable. Best if you can do it outdoors.
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On Wed, 13 Jul 2005 15:51:48 -0700, "Al Franz"

is the thin top layer high pressure laminate (formica type stuff) or wood veneer (a paper thin layer of actual wood)?
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Appears to be a a paper thin layer of actual wood, with a gloss finish? Not a thick laminet like a formica counter top?
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On Wed, 13 Jul 2005 15:51:48 -0700, "Al Franz"

What do you plan to do once you get the top off? Chances are if it has a laminate or veneer on the top, whatever it's glued to is not going to be too pretty. If you are going to put another laminate or veneer on anyway, you may be able to go over what you have.
Mike O.
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I have no idea what happened with the previous message...
Mike O.
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Just go over the existing top with new laminate. I did it on a kitchen countertop and it turned out great. Just sand the current surface with course sandpaper to help the new glue adhere, roll or brush on contact cement, put on new laminate that matches or is complimentary to the finish you want, and voila, new top. You can trim with router and formica bit.
More info at www.formica.com
RonT
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On Wed, 13 Jul 2005 15:51:48 -0700, "Al Franz"

What do you plan to do once you get the top off? Chances are if it has a laminate or veneer on the top, whatever it's glued to is not going to be too pretty. If you are going to put another laminate or veneer on anyway, you may be able to go over what you have.
Mike O.
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