Please help: fixing defects in maple plywood

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I'm making a fairly big bookcase-like entertainment center from 3/4" maple veneer plywood, with maple banding. I will need to deal with imperfections in my technique, such as sanding through the veneer, and little gaps between banding and plywood. I'm considering using some wood filler to "fix" my inexperience (it's too expensive, and will cost too much time to redo these things - spouse is getting impatient).
Is Rockler's Famowood - shown here: <http://www.rockler.com/product.cfm?page 537&filter=wood%20filler> something to consider? Or is there something else that's better/easier? Or should this just show that it is "hand"made.
Thanks in advance for your advice!
--
Best regards
Han
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To start, what were you doing beltsanding the poor veneer in the first place?
Next time, don't use power and don't use anything grittier than 320 on veneer. (24grit boulder paper & belt sandahs are right outta there.)
RE: banding gaps, I use a handy Stanley #4-1/2 iron and slide it flat across the shelf at a 45 degree angle to the banding. This will cut the banding flush with the shelf. Now wipe/brush/spray on some finish. Only then do you want to sand, and then do it delicately. The finish will fill in the tiny gaps and hide them.

Especially if you're going to discolor (aka: stain) the wood, filler will never look good/never match unless you use an opaque finish.

There ya go. Best bet is to either replace the veneer plywood or live with it. I salvaged my current dining set. The oak veneer had come off on a couple curved edges and I was amazed at how the Behlen Rock Hard made the MDF hide against the oak veneer. You can't see it unless you are looking for it.
-- It could probably be shown by facts and figures that there is no distinctively native American criminal class except Congress. -- Mark Twain
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"Han" wrote in message
There is not a whole lot you can do here except cut it out and replace with a solid wood strip. Be careful when sanding veneer.
As far as gaps between your banding and the plywood edge, a trick I use all the time is to cut a relief cut on the good surface edge about 1/16" wide and 1/16" deep. I mostly do this to draw attention away to cross cut tear out on the end of a piece of plywood. Any way the wider appearance of a gap that the relief provides takes you eye away from the ill fitting joint.
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Thanks, Leon. It may be too late for that now ...
--
Best regards
Han
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"Han" wrote:

It's "Dutchman" time.
Think of it as a Dutchman for a Dutchman <Grown>. ---------------------------------

NO.
Lew
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Thanks, Lew. I guess I deserved that!
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Best regards
Han
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I wrote:
It's "Dutchman" time.
Think of it as a Dutchman for a Dutchman <Grown>. ---------------------------------
"Han" wrote:

The Dutchman idea was made a little tongue in cheek.
If you use a Dutchman, you will have to protect the veneer around the Dutchman while sanding the Dutchman flush with the veneer or you will just have a bigger problem.
Some masking tape over the veneer around the Dutchman will make your day.
Also, a detail sander such as a Fein Multimaster will be your friend.
The sander has to be smaller than the Dutchman to have a chance.
My personal choice for trimming edge banding is a 10" flat bastard file.
Push the file into the banding at a 45 degree angle in both the X-Y & Y-Z planes at the same time.
A trick taught to me by an old kitchen cabinet refinisher guy.
Slicker than frozen snot on a door knob; however, YMMV.
Have fun.
Lew
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L:
Among the uses for one of those cheap electic toothbrushes is as a sander. Cut off the bristles. Try modifying one of the stickier two-sided rubber squares used for mounting pictures on walls or a piece of rubber with the right two-sided tape. On the working side mount a piece of paper of the appropriate size and shape to the pad. Sand away.
Other points: 1. If you have a multi-speed brush, you have a multi-speed sander. 2. Some brushes have different motion patterns. 3. Sandpaper can be mounted right to the brush stem for some applications. 4.Shaping the stem would fit you into odd places. 5.I don't know how this would work with an ultrasonic brush. It would be worth the experiment. If your adhesives were as waterproof as your paper, there might be some discernible difference doing something wet (given the cavitation) or immersed (given the nature of the object abraded). Wood would not be the optimum candiate.
Regards,
Edward Hennessey
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Hanuman:
The title is because you monkeyed around, man. Who doesn't once in a while. Even Homer nods. The Greek Homer.
I'm doubling on the dutchman insert for large areas. Practice cutting and gluing on any similar scrap you have first. Use sharp tools. Clamp a guide on for the cut. Cut the patch a fraction large if you have trouble getting it dead on, then sand.And if you drink a lot of coffee, maybe wait until after the triumph.
Object restorers get very good at this. There are hard compounds that can be mixted with paints, pastels, dry glazes and other colorants or be layered on top of them. When properly done, detecting this work can be exceedingly difficult to indistinguishable without instruments, particularly in small areas. Should your match surface be minutely and intricately patterned, it will be challenging.
If I could see your problem spots, that would help but the eyesight isn't 20-3,000 miles at present. If you want to try compound fills anywhere, I will commend a color-mixing fan book to you by name. The structure is simplicity: 4 parts Color X + 2 parts Z +1 part Y=!. It will set you back some ten spots. Use it a few times and you'll be thankful.
Regards,
Edward Hennessey
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OH:
A water-soluble wood filler would work well with easily available pigments like acrylics and pastels if you need to tint your filler. Oil-based anything will take longer to set up and sometimes there is an incompatibility between the carrier oil in a paint and that in the wood filler.
In terms of durability, direct light, oxygen and time are opponents that will work a change, in that order of speed and magnitude. Harsh sunlight is the worst. Out of the glaring, a good repair should outlast our ability to talk about it.
IIRC, you were going to the blond side here? That part of the spectrum should be doable as far as areas that you decide to fill after reviewing all the good contributions you've had on the topic.
Regards,
Edward Hennessey
Regards,
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Can't suggest too much for sanding through the veneer except maybe to use some type of filler, sand it smooth and then stain it dark enough that the grain is not so noticeable which all but negates your use of veneered plywood in the first place. But, I can suggest a few fixes for your banding problems. Question, is how did you apply the edge banding and how did you attempt to trim it flush with the veneer?
When I use edge banding, I generally prefer to use the glue on type with carpenter's white glue, not the iron on type which has the glue already applied and the iron heats it up so it sticks. Both types work, but I believe the iron on type of banding is a little thicker with its preapplied glue and that thickness is more prone to being noticeable.
For trimming, I use two methods. My preferred method is a sanding block using 120 grit sandpaper. I simply sand the edging by hand to a uniform edge. Admittedly it's not the fasted method, but it meets my exacting requirements and it not as time consuming as one might think. The second method I use is some type of razor knife or an Xacto knife if you prefer. It's a little more prone to error depending on a slice of banding going in an unintended direction, but it's faster than than the hand sanding route.
I've always used one of the two above methods and have never even considered using some type of powered tool or a dedicated edge trimmer. I suppose a router or some type of sander could do the job properly with enough practice and set up, but when I first started out woodworking, those two power tools were not an option for me, so I've never considered them for this purpose.
When it comes to repair, if you've used the iron type of edge banding, you can heat it again with the iron and slice or scrape it off. It won't be near as easy as it was to put it on, but with effort you can get it off and then replace it. If you're really careful, you can use a router with a properly placed edge guide and guide bearing. A second option is to fill in any gaps with wood filler, then apply another layer of banding over the repaired one. It won't be perfect, but it will make for a better appearance than being able to view wood filled sections.
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wrote in message

Thanks for the advice. In the past I have used the iron-on material. This time I used 1/4" thick solid maple strips. Apparently in some cases, the edges of the plywood weren't quite square, and there are a few places with a small gap between the edge of the plywood and the maple strip. The maple strips were wider than the thickness of the plywood, and I used a router with a trim bit to get it level. This hasn't always worked perfectly. Some jigs just weren't quite compatible with me. I finally made this D-handled jig: <http://www.shopnotes.com/files/issues/sample/sample-18-19.pdf I added 2 strips of self-stick UHMW to the face resting on the plywood to make it move easier. This works now very nicely!!
I use my Festool Ro90 sander for further leveling, and that works now very nicely too.
As mentioned before, in some places mistakes happened and I trimmed or sanded some veneer off. I'm not going to replace the plywood, thank you, spouse will have to overlook that, but I'd like to make it as nice as I can. In addition, and this irks me most, there are areas where there is a half a hair's width space several inches long between the plywood and the 1/4" banding, as if I didn't have enough Besseys to clamp hard enough to close those spaces. For those I think now that I'll get some Elmers wood filler. It should be close enough in color to maple to fool spouse, mostly. She wants the whitest, clearest possible finish for this, but I think I'll cheat with just a bit of BLO to bring out the grain a bit. In contrast to better half, I don't want it to look as if painted <grin>.
Oh, yeah, for the future I am going to abstain from this type of banding, and switch back to iron-on stuff. Easier to repair.
--
Best regards
Han
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Something I've done when the mistake is of an appropriate size & shape, is glue a small hand plane shaving over it then sand down. Of course it can't be done for every mistake, but where it can work, it works pretty well if you can match the grain of the shaving to the plywood.
--
Better to be stuck up in a tree than tied to one.

Larry Wasserman - Baltimore Maryland - lwasserm(a)sdf. lonestar.org
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snipped-for-privacy@sdf.lNoOnSePsAtMar.org (Larry W) wrote in

Thanks, Larry, that's a great idea!
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Best regards
Han
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Everybody seems to forget that 3M Bondo is the sloppy (and even pro) woodworkers best friend. Get the white catalyst, as the iron oxide filled (purplish) stuff needs lots of stain to disguise the color. Both take stain as well as wood, and I have made some amazing 'saves' on projects where a misstep meant discarding hours of hand work. Best of all, the price is reasonable, the stuff will keep for years in the beer fridge (you have one, right?), it works up in half an hour and is very strong. Actually no downside that I can think of unless you find the styrene odor unpleasant until it cures. If your local Borg doesn't have it, body shop supply stores do, and better hardware stores.
Joe
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wrote:

Thanks, Joe!
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Best regards
Han
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wrote:

OH:
I use gallons of the Bondo repair compound. It is good stuff. And Joe speaks testament about it being quick with the right amount of catalyst. The resin/talc compound itself doesn't have an interminable shelf life. Yet Joe's advice about keeping it in a cool/cold place will do much to extend that. There are also some marine epoxy resins that make for an extremely hard repair at much, much greater cost. The fastidious way to apply these also calls for liquid resin coat to be applied first and dried to a very light tack before the finishing epoxy mix goes on. The liquid penetrates the bare wood, seals it and gives adhesion for the overcoat. But it can be done a simpler way with epoxy as with Bondo.
One bit of advice on any application worth mention is to provide a roughened surface in the wood for your fill to grab. On a larger area, the typical process is to roughen with 60 grit paper. Personally, I do that and use sharp tools to carefully incise the wood across the area at two different angles. Carefully again, I use the same small tools to cut a groove at an inward slope around the perimeter so the outward bottom extends under the undamaged surface. All these efforts add precious little time to the job. Once done, they also mechanically make the idea of delamination only a word.
Regards,
Edward Hennessey
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On Tue, 17 May 2011 20:06:49 -0700, Edward Hennessey wrote:

Bondo can be thinned with polester fiberglass resin and the thinned version seems to penetrate the wood fibers and make an idestructable bond.
basilisk
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This is all good information, but may not apply in my case. I am dealing with small hairline cracks between improperly glued banding and plywood, or very shallow divots through the veneer. I'll report later on how I solved after I try several of the suggestions.
Thanks for the help!!
--
Best regards
Han
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wrote:

B:
Soaking the wood with the mixed penetrating resin appropriate to the thicker polymer covering until the odor quits, you can fortify incredibly rotten wood for secondary polymer pours or putty fillings of optimal durability. All steps in the overall process benefit from heat and light which makes outdoor treatment time variable, especially since two soakings are smart.
The consensus choice her is epoxy for any structural application. As said, it's not the five and ten route. As proved by final results, the repairs have no parallel.
There is more than one manufacturer on this front but kick around this website:
http://www.smithandcompany.org /
Regards,
Edward Hennessey
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