Some finishing with laminate questions

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Brett_A, Jun 8, 2001.

  1. Brett_A

    Brett_A Stunt Coordinator

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    I am almost ready to start finishing my 81s and I choose some Formica(blue and black to match my 281s) Depending on how this turns out I will probably refinish them as well.
    I did some searches and didn't find all the answers I needed. First I will cut the laminate big on the edges and then cut it close with a router? I am going to need a bit for my router but which one(flush trim, laminate?) I am a little unsure on how to use the bits as well.
    Anything else I should look into buying to make my job easier? Do I need a mask for solvent based contact cement? How about any links. TIA
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    Brett
     
  2. Hank Frankenberg

    Hank Frankenberg Cinematographer

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    Brett: cut your laminate pieces at least 1/2" oversize if this is your first time (maybe 1" over). Decide in advance the order in which you will apply the pieces (I believe someone gave you advice in another thread). You don't need a mask, just good ventilation in your work area - garage with open door is good. Get a laminate trimming bit with bearing. Have you used a router before? If so, you know which direction to move the router so it remains under control. For final edge smoothing, use a fine file and file on the downstroke only so as not to lift the edge of the laminate. You can also use super fine grit sandpaper for this. Practice on a piece of scrap MDF. That will really give you confidence.
    Post pics for us to see the results [​IMG]
     
  3. Shade Watson

    Shade Watson Stunt Coordinator

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    Brett,
    I like to use a flush trim bit with a bearing to get close. Then I switch to a bevel bit with a bearing. If you don't use the bevel bit, you will have to do a lot more filing to get a nice edge.
    When you use the flush trim bit, don't extend the blade out to far. Make sure that the router base is in perfectly flat contact with the top surface, otherwise it can cut into the side piece if you accidentally let it rock over.
    You will need a practice piece to adjust the height of the bevel bit. If you get it adjusted well, you will then just have to touch the edge with a file to finish the job.
    Otherwise, you will have to do more filing, and you can cause permanent damage with a stray file stroke.
    Just be careful and take your time, because mistakes are permanent.
     
  4. Brett_A

    Brett_A Stunt Coordinator

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    Advice soudns good. I am confident with my router after my 281s and numerous custom car installs. I will definately use a test piece so I don't screw anything up. If you guys have seen my mains these should look identical but finished in formica instead of paint.
    What about finishing the formica>? Do I need to coat it at all or put a protectant on it?
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    Brett
     
  5. Shade Watson

    Shade Watson Stunt Coordinator

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    Just remember, sticking on the laminate and flush routing it is the easy part, finishing the edge with the bevel bit and file is the harder part.
    You definitely don't need any protective coating. It will be very water and stain resistant. If you want it to be scratch resistant also, don't buy the gloss finish.
     

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