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Thread: Where to get veneer backer paper?

  1. #1
    Join Date
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    Where to get veneer backer paper?

    The title says it all. Typing 'veneer backer paper' into google hardly yields a thing. I'd like to find 30-40 mil if possible. Thanks for any leads.

    EDIT: I've just learned applying actual veneer backer paper requires temps and pressures no achievable by a home practitioner. So what other ways can I take a raw veneer and make it flat using modified urea resin glue (arriving soon)? I've been told using a cheaper veneer as a backer works as well. Any other paper-like options out there?
    Last edited by brad hays; 06-12-2024 at 6:02 PM.
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  2. #2
    What is your objective? Are you working with commercial sliced veneer? If you want to make paperbacked sheets you are best off going to vendors like Oakwood that specialize in making the stuff. Typically they sell material with a .010" backing and about .010" of presanded wood. They will work with you to meet specific requirements. If you want to make two-ply to stabilize burl or crotch veneer you can use a lower grade veneer for a backer.

    I have used Gatorply as a backer in the past. It's a dark brown resin impregnated paper about .015" thick and might work for you. https://www.gatorply.com/
    Last edited by Kevin Jenness; 06-12-2024 at 10:42 PM.

  3. #3
    I don't know how large of a panel you want to veneer, but one of the best ways to apply veneer is with a vacuum bag. There's a process. Your substrate needs to be smooth and flat, then you apply the glue to the substrate, lay the veneer in position, then put some plastic over it to keep any glue that might come through the veneer from getting to your caul. Then put a caul over the plastic.

    Place in a vacuum bag and pull vacuum. Leave in vacuum bag for whatever time is necessary for the glue.

    For millwork applications, there is paper backed veneer. You can apply that with contact cement.

    Mike
    Go into the world and do well. But more importantly, go into the world and do good.

  4. #4
    Kevin - thank you for that link!
    I usually use poplar or African mahogany for backers/crossbands for my small projects but there were times in the past that i, too, wondered where to get the paper stuff.
    I don't fully understand their caution against using gator-ply as a crossband for 5 ply? Yet they recommend it for 2 ply sheets. IOW, prep for later lay-up in panels. Should the caution be understood to mean you can use it for the backer ply on man-made boards, but not traditional 5 ply where the center core is solid lumber? I'm misunderstanding something.

    smt

  5. #5
    Stephen, I can't answer your question about 5-ply-you could query gatorply directly. Paper products like gatorply move isotropically in response to mc changes and are relatively weak compared to wood so those factors may be relevant.

  6. #6
    I've done a bunch of veneer work, on different substrates, without backer veneer. You need to consider how much that backer will move with moisture.

    Especially on small projects, I would not use a backer because the substrate is unlikely to move much. If you use MDF as a substrate you don't need a backer - MDF just doesn't move.

    Mike
    Go into the world and do well. But more importantly, go into the world and do good.

  7. #7
    Can't imagine using MDF for a project.
    Admittedly, i have used it to replicate corporate furniture for office expansions, where the originals were no longer available, and the originals had MDF elements such as desk tops and some doors, under the veneer.
    It is fast and somewhat easy, but, yeah, 20 yr 1/2-life thing again.
    Though admittedly #2 - that is where i got the notion that paper backers might be a decent option for bottom plies and such.

    I won't use MDF for custom work.

    smt

  8. #8
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    Is the issue that you have veneer that is curled and not flat? If that's the issue, then the solution is to flatten the veneer prior to applying it to the substrate. There are products such as Super-Soft 2™ Veneer Softener & Conditioner and https://www.vacupress.com/product/veneer-tamer/ you can buy or simply make a mixture of glycerin, denatured alcohol, and water. You spray the product on the veneer (both sides, stack the veneer sheets separated by Kraft paper, and press it either in a press or a vacuum bag. You'll need to change the paper periodically until the veneer is dry and flat. then you can move ahead with gluing the veneer to your substrate.

  9. #9
    There is always the old method of hot hide glue as it has been used for some hundreds of years. If you donít want to use that , powder
    glues work well. Put plastic covering over the work ,add some weight .

  10. #10
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    +1 for Mike's advice. Adding paper is just one more glue line to mess up.

  11. #11

  12. #12
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    I suppose you could experiment with this. I have no experience with it. https://www.uline.com/Product/Detail...yABEgJg1fD_BwE

  13. #13
    Is this for making a platen or something?
    There are cheaper methods, including steel......

    I use phenolic products for all sorts of machine parts and surfaces, production patterns, and for pool cue features and ferules.

    smt

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Richard Coers View Post
    I suppose you could experiment with this. I have no experience with it. https://www.uline.com/Product/Detail...yABEgJg1fD_BwE

    I used a lighter weight Kraft paper when I needed some smaller pieces of paper backed veneer to apply to Melamine with contact cement. I used shop sawn veneer that I sanded down to about 0.025", which is close to commercial veneer, and then glued on the Kraft paper with TB II using a vacuum bag. When I took it out of the bag after an hour or so, I clamped it between MDF platens to let it fully dry. The pieces were just about dead flat after they were dry. I used spray contact cement to glue the paper backed veneer to my Melamine sections. 5 years later and they look the same as when I installed them. I would not hesitate to use this approach on larger projects where I had to use contact cement. For normal work, however, I use typical taped up panels of shop sawn veneer directly on my substrate with TB II in a vacuum bag. I've never had a failure. On Baltic birch or MDF I don't see the need for a backer veneer, but my reference point is shop sawn veneer and perhaps there's a true need if using commercial stuff.

    John

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