Veneering

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I am about to make new cabinets for the kitchen. I am thinking of all drawers for the bottoms, with the drawer fronts being applied veneer. Each bank of drawers would come from the same veneer piece with the grain running vertically so the grain will be continuous. The veneer will be glued onto the substrate with a vacuum press.
My problem is that I have rather limited experience with veneering and have a few questions.
What kind of veneer would be appropriate for this? Should I use paper-backed, 2-Ply veneer or something else? I am thinking that I would purchase 4x8 veneers.
I will be using glue-backed tape for the edges. Will the paper in the paper-backed veneer show along the seem with the tape?
Which would be better for the backing - MDF or Birch ply? I think for doors I would use MDF, but for drawer fronts do I need the extra strength of ply?
Am I correct in thinking that it would be best to veneer full sheets of plywood before cutting?
I will also need to veneer some end panels on the cabinets. The carcass will be made of 3/4 birch. Do I really need to veneer both sides of these panels?
Are there any sites you would especially recommend - or books for that matter?
Thanks for the pointers, Harvey
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eclipsme wrote:

In a kitchen use plywood or Extira. Ordinary MDF swells when you just let it _look_ at water and it's inevitable that stuff in a kitchen will get wet. Extira should be OK but it costs about the same as Baltic Birch. MDF with a good veneer job and a good heavy finish _should_ be OK but if it does swell all your hard work is gone to waste.

Not necessarily. If you cut first you can cut to optimize use of the panel, then veneer the pieces to get matched grain.

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On 2/16/2010 6:04 PM, J. Clarke wrote:

Good thoughts.

I assume that you must apply a slightly over-sized veneer to do this. How do you stop that overhang from breaking off in the vacuum press?
Thanks, Harvey
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eclipsme wrote:

Good question--I've not done veneering with a vacuum press so so any ideas I come up with are likely to be off base.
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If you use the paper-backed veneer, use contact cement. No vacuum pressing required.
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On Tue, 16 Feb 2010 19:52:01 -0500, eclipsme wrote:

I suppose you could use scraps of the substrate positioned to support the veneer, but you will have to figure out how to keep everything in place until the vacuum is fully applied, and you will need to put packing tape or plastic on them to keep glue that is squeezed out from sticking to them.
I've always made the substrate a bit oversize and cut the veneer to match. After the glue-up is complete, I trim to size. But I haven't done anything like what you're contemplating.
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Art Greenberg
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On Mon, 22 Feb 2010 17:12:55 -0600, Art Greenberg wrote:

One other thing. You can (and should, if the substrate is flat) use a solid platten on both sides of the assembly. If the platten is thick enough, and larger than the veneer, you can use veneer that overhangs the substrate by a small amount.
If the substrate is curved (e.g., you are making bow fronts for drawers), then you'll be using a "soft" platten, and the veneer really should not be larger than the substrate.
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On 2/23/2010 7:41 AM, Art Greenberg wrote:

Thanks Art. That clarifies it for me. I wasn't thinking of the plattens, but of course!
You sound like you have done this a time or 2. I haven't. Am I about to go off the deep end with this project? Seems so from what others have said. I am thinking it might be smarter to start with a smaller project than an entire kitchen. Thoughts?
Harvey
Harvey
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On Tue, 23 Feb 2010 08:41:46 -0500, eclipsme wrote:

Harvey,
I've done a few veneering projects. My first one was a large, curved fireplace mantel. I guess you could say I jumped in with both feet ... have a look at http://www.artg.tv/fireplace-mantel-pix.html
I built the pump setup, and I made the bag using sheet stock and glue.
I guess I should put up a few photos of the completed mantel ...
Before attempting that project, I'd watched every episode of David Marks' "Wood Works" TV show where he did a laminating or veneering project at least a few times. That, and reading on the Internet and a few questions posted here as you are doing, was my entire education in the process up until that point.
It so happens that I'm very much a hands-on learner. I can read about stuff like this and watch others do it, but the best way for me to learn how to do something is to just do it. I figured it wasn't rocket science, and at the very worst I'd have to do it over until I got it right at the cost of my time and whatever I'd spent on the materials. It turned out just fine on the first try, and in the process I did learn a bit more.
My advice would be to play if you can, but not too much. Then go for it.
By "play" I mean do a few small glue-ups so you know how to set up a job for your press, and how to run the press.
If you have a large bag that you're going to use, just try getting a large set-up (without any glue) into the bag. Then pump down the bag and see if it holds, and if it does not, fix it (better to do that in a dry run!).
Use the some of the veneer and the glue you intend to use in the kitchen so you get a feel for how much glue is necessary and how to spread it, and you can see if you'll need to tape the assembly together to keep the veneer and platens from sliding around and if the glue squeezes through the veneer (on highly figured veneer, it probably will).
After a dry run and a few smaller glue-ups, you'll probably feel a lot more comfortable going forward.
I'm happy to answer your questions here (better than direct email as I'm sure there might be others who can add to the discussion). If you prefer, email is fine.
And I hope you'll post some photos of the work in progress and write about your experience. We all can learn from that, I'm sure!
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Art Greenberg
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On 2/23/2010 9:16 AM, Art Greenberg wrote: <snip for brevity>

Art,
Thanks for your extensive post and encouragement. I have still not decided on which course to pursue. I'll let you know!.
Harvey
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On Tue, 23 Feb 2010 08:41:46 -0500, eclipsme wrote:

One thing I haven't seen mentioned yet is the old fashioned method. Hide glue and a veneer hammer. No clamping required. It does take a bit of practice and hot hide glue does have a definite odor, but it works fine and has for centuries. Or use yellow glue and an iron as shown in:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v
*n-k5P_n7k
But that doesn't work very well on curved surfaces.
--
Intelligence is an experiment that failed - G. B. Shaw

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Wow! That's an eye opener for sure. I'm gonna have to have a think on this one.
Thanks, Harvey
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Is there some reason you wouldn't use plywood that already comes with the appropriate veneer applied. I mean it is pretty much available in any species you might want.

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"SonomaProducts.com" wrote:
Is there some reason you wouldn't use plywood that already comes with the appropriate veneer applied. I mean it is pretty much available in any species you might want. ---------------------------------- You are much too cotton pickin logical.
Lew
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On 2/16/2010 7:32 PM, SonomaProducts.com wrote:

Is it? Small town. Anything I get will have to be shipped in. Still, I am looking into this. Perhaps the other question I should be asking is are there any places to purchase in Florida?
Harvey
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"eclipsme" wrote:

----------------------------- Start with a Google, "plywood distributors florida".
Should keep you busy for a few hours.
After that, finding the hardwood suppliers to go along with the plywood should be a breeze.
Lew
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Shouldn't be too hard to find. What wood are you wanting? If you want plain sawn red oak then just go to home depot. Just look in yellow pages or online for hardwood lumber and they will likely sell veneered plywood also. It is the standard in the cabinet industry and that is everywhere.

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Thanks. I am looking. Harvey
On 2/16/2010 11:23 PM, SonomaProducts.com wrote:

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eclipsme wrote:

Veneer, supplies and info... Constantine's Wood Center of Florida Inc 1040 E. Oakland Park Blvd. Ft. Lauderdale, FL 33334 http://www.constantines.com /
Ply, many including... Hood Distribution in Jacksonville, Tampa, Orlando & Delray Beach (others throught the East) http://www.hooddistribution.com /
Their domestic ply... http://www.hooddistribution.com/products/mcewen/domestic_plywood.html and import ply http://www.hooddistribution.com/products/mcewen/import_plywood.html
--

dadiOH
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On 2/17/2010 11:08 AM, dadiOH wrote:

Thanks! At first glance seems a bit limited, but I will explore some more.

Yea, these guys got bookmarked! Thanks.
Harvey

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