Iron On Veneer / PVA Glue Method
An alternative to using contact cement when traditional press methods aren’t available is this method using white or yellow PVA glue and a standard household iron. This process will help you achieve a better glue bond and allows for the use of 10 mil paperbacked or raw veneer which can save you money. Follow these steps for best results.
The surface or substrate you are veneering must be clean and flat. MDF, particle board or cabinet grade plywood are all satisfactory substrates. If applying veneer over a hardwood substrate, be sure all finish is removed and repair any gouges or scratches that might telegraph through the new veneer. It is not advisable to veneer over old veneer as the heat and moisture generated in this process may actually cause the old veneer to delaminate.
You can use either white glue or yellow woodworking glue. It is recommended when you use yellow woodworking glue to use a type of glue that has and extended open time. With a brush or roller coat the back of the veneer and the substrate with glue. If you are rolling the glue a foam roller applicator works well. In almost all cases you should apply two coats of glue to the substrate because some of the first coat will soak into the surface. Be very careful not to get any glue on the face of the veneer as this will surely be a problem during the finishing process. Once applied, allow the glue to "skin up" or dry to the touch. A standard yellow glue will dry quicker so glues with an extended open time will greatly improve your end results . An important thing to remember is to apply even, thin coats of glue. Generally speaking, you want to end up with approximately 6 to 8 mils ( 1 mil = 1/1000” ) of glue thickness.
Ironing Veneer to Substrate
Place the veneer on the substrate and position accordingly. Unlike contact cement which bonds on contact, the veneer can be allowed to make contact with the substrate while positioning. You want to cover the face of the iron so as not to leave any marks from the metal surface of the iron. A brown paper bag will work perfectly between the veneer and the face of the iron. An old bed sheet or cotton t-shirt work well for this purpose. With your iron set on a high heat setting, begin to iron the veneer from the center out using a slow and deliberate pace. Keep moderate downward pressure on the iron as you move it across the surface. Make sure you have covered every square inch of surface and examine the veneer for any loose spots that may not be bonded. If there are any areas that appear as though they aren’t bonded to the substrate, just go back over them with the iron. Allow this assembly to cool for 2 hours before trimming the veneer to finished size. Allow 24 hours for glue to fully cure before doing any finishing.
Veneer can be finished just like any hardwood. The first step is proper sanding starting with a medium grit paper followed by a fine grit paper. This can be done with an electric sander if you are confident enough or by hand if you are not. Remove all sanding residue with a brush or tack cloth. From this point you can either stain the wood or finish with a clear finish. For finishing tips consult our website at www.oakwoodveneer.co.uk or call with specific questions at (800) 426-6018.
Iron On Veneer / PVA Glue Method may be downloaded as a Microsoft Word document (28k).
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Information on some of our other veneers:
Alder Veneer, Beech Veneer, Birch (Red) Veneer, Birch (White) Veneer, Bubinga Veneer, Butternut Veneer, Cherry Veneer, Cypress Veneer, Douglas Fir Veneer, Carpathian Elm Burr, Hickory Veneer, Jatoba Veneer, Lacewood Veneer, Madrone Veneer, Makore Veneer, Maple Veneer, Padauk Veneer, Pearwood Veneer, Purpleheart Veneer, Red Oak Veneer, Sapeli Veneer, Sycamore Veneer, Teak Veneer, Walnut Veneer, Wenge Veneer, White Oak Veneer, Zebrano Veneer