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Veneer over Plywood?

Veneer over Plywood?

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Question:

I am planning to apply veneer to a wall unit that is constructed of 3/4″ pine stock. The wood is very solid and I don’t expect any problems. However, there are several areas that are 32″x32″ of 1/4″ plywood. I cannot get to the back of the plywood. Will I have any problems applying 10mil paper backed veneer over the plywood with contact cement?

Answer:
There are some things you didn’t elaborate on that cause a few red flags. It sounds like you are veneering over solid pine. The questions this raises are:

  1. Is this finished or unfinished?
  2. Are you planning to veneer both sides of this?
  3. What method are you using to glue your veneer?

The next concern I have is I’m assuming the 1/4″ plywood is backing material in the back of the cabinet. You have to apply a great deal of pressure when using contact cement on veneer and you might end up pushing the back right out because these back panels aren’t usually held in by anything more than a few small finish nails. Also, we never suggest using 10 mil paperbacked veneer with contact cement.

I’m sure I’ve brought up more questions that you originally had but these are things that should be addressed or thought out before you start your project. You can always call the tech support guys at Oakwood to answer these and any other questions you might have.

Oakwood Veneer Tech Support
Your source for veneering information

Follow-Up Question:

Thanks for the response. The pine is finished with stain and polyurethane that is about 15 years old. I am planning to wash the surface with TSP prior to applying the veneer. I was planning to use contact cement for the 10mil paper backed veneer and 2″ glue backed edge banding for the narrow surfaces. The 1/4″ plywood sections are on the front surface of the cabinet. What do you suggest I use to apply the veneer to this surface? I cannot get to the back of the panels.

Answer:

As it was stated above we do not recommend using 10 mil veneer with contact cement, the reason being the 10 mil back is not stable enough for contact cement and you would most likely experience movement that will cause you problems after the piece is finished. At the very least you need to use either the 22 mil paper backed “BFV” or the phenolic backed veneers with contact cement. The back of the cabinet still is an issue as you are going to have a tough time getting enough pressure to seat the veneer without pushing the back out of the cabinet. Another possibility here would be to use the PSA veneers. If the finish is intact and in good shape, outside of cleaning the surfaces to be veneered well this veneer will perfectly.

Oakwood Veneer Tech Support

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