View Full Version : Cutting Veneer?

Matthew Poeller
09-03-2008, 10:17 AM
I was wondering is veneer can be cut on a laser and what the implications are. I am going to be using some PSA (pressure sensitive adhesive) backed veneer and I would like to cut the shapes out prior to putting in on the project.

I am pretty sure that a laser can cut veneer but I am not sure if there are any problems with cutting veneer with the PSA on the back.

I do not own a laser and this project is for work. I am looking for something that will be higher volume than cutting this by hand.



Joe Pelonio
09-03-2008, 10:20 AM
No problem at all, I mostly use veneer with no adhesive but I also cut other materials with adhesive. Veneer cuts like butter on a laser, the only problem is holding it flat if the laser has no vacuum table. Most of them can be taped on the edges to a sacrificial piece of MDF or other material.

Mark Winlund
09-03-2008, 5:12 PM
I second the notion about a vacuum table. It is essential for veneers. You can make one easily... lots of self-contained Gast vacuum pumps on ebay.


Matthew Poeller
09-03-2008, 6:17 PM
Thank you both. I am going to be contracting a local laser owner for this and I hope that he has a vacuum table. If it does not work out with the local guy I might be asking around here. Once the product goes into the catalog though we might be looking at some pretty high volume work.

When we get to the point at work where we can justify the cost of the laser I may be picking some more laser brains around here.

Again, thank you very much.

Mitchell Andrus
09-03-2008, 8:42 PM
I make intricate designs in veneer all the time, got it down to a science. Click my name to get to my site. I'd be glad to cut some samples for you, no cost - just send a few pieces.... I live for the challenge! If you have a cut file, I'll give that a shot too.

Darren Null
09-03-2008, 9:47 PM
A vacuum table is desirable, but not absolutely necessary- I hold my veneer in place with a bunch of tiny rare earth magnets, with the bottom ones glued to little blocks of marble (they were free). Then once you lay out your veneer on a grid of blocks, put the top magnets on to hold the veneer in place. I got the magnets delivered from the US for not much money at all.

Lee DeRaud
09-04-2008, 1:15 AM
The PSA veneer works great:
The peeling can be a chore though: there was one piece I had to delay assembly a couple of days because I had just trimmed my fingernails and couldn't get the backing off the pieces of veneer.

Matthew Poeller
09-04-2008, 6:55 PM

That is pretty funny. I have tested some PSA veneer on our product (powder coated metal) and the adhesion is top notch. I have decided on Veneer from FormWood Industries because they have the option of using the 3M PSA 468 that works better for my application. We have a hefty warranty on this product.

To all that contacted me:

I will try to contact each of you. As I am sure most of you can understand I will be contacting some people locally first. I like to try to support the local economy. Thank you.


Lee DeRaud
09-04-2008, 10:53 PM
I have decided on Veneer from FormWood Industries because they have the option of using the 3M PSA 468 that works better for my application.That's what's on the Rockler stuff, seems to be the standard for this application.

But I would get also samples of every species of wood you plan to use, as they seem to vary in thickness species-to-species, supplier-to-supplier. That's something that can really screw up your productivity if you're mixing species and need a smooth surface. (E.g. from Rockler, the walnut is always thinner than the others, I have no idea why. From my other supplier, the maple is thicker than the others.)

Matthew Poeller
09-05-2008, 4:16 PM
I did not realize that they used the PSA 468. Poeple should say that on their websites and what not. I went with this formwood place because they give you the option of the two different ones. There is a lesser 3M adhesive that is used for wood applications. PSA 468 is best suited for adhering to metal and such.

Thanks all for all your help.

Nancy Laird
09-05-2008, 5:04 PM
Matthew--if you don't have any local luck, we could cut your veneer. We cut PSA 10mil veneer regularly - in fact I'm in the middle of a job now rastering and cutting 1500 decals for a customer.