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Formica

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StevieB

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Having been inspired by Ian's router table in this months GWW, I fancy maybe having a go at building one myself. Question is, where do you get formica from? I have not seen it in the 'sheds' (although I havent looked very hard since I havent needed it before). Anyone know of a source?

A google search gives loads of info on formica, but not where to buy it Grrr! Should I be looking for plastics manufacturers, signmakers, or anyone else?

Cheers in advance for any info!

Steve
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Is it just me, or does anyone else find it annoying that google.co.uk still searches the entire internet by default?
 
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Hi Steve,

Formica is a trade name so the chances are you are only getting links to themselves.
Try Plastic laminates and see what that throws up.

cheers,

Andy
 

johnelliott

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I haven't seen the article (I don't do any good woodworking so don't need to read about it. However the best router table that I've made up til know (quite a few) I used a piece of 40mm worktop and machined a large recess in the underside to take the router. The top in that area is only 10mm thick. The advantage of this approach is that the whole top is nice and flat, and there are no steps which are difficult to avoid when using an insert plate. The disadvantage is that you need a router with a long plunge to be able to get at the collet nut when changing cutters
John
 

ike

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Steve,

BTW, Formica is a tradename for the the generic material 'Melamine'.

Ike
 

ike

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Steve,

BTW again! Severnply have sold melamine sheet 'cos I've seen it in their shop in the past. If you give them a call, even if they don't carry it as stock, I'm sure they'll point you to the right source as they're very helpful people. What they don't know about sheet product isn't worth knowing.
 

paisawood

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I recently made the drill press table in GWW and had a lot of difficulty getting hold of the formica/laminate sheeting.

I couldn't find anyone who sold offcuts, but eventually tracked down a wholesaler in Bristol who sold me a 10 by 4 sheet for £25 plus VAT. Bristol Decorative Surfaces 01179542120. They were listed in Yellow pages under kitchen furniture stores.

Good luck

David
 

gidon

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Hi
I bought some from Jewsons - they delivered free too. It's usually special order and cost me around 20-30 pounds for an 8x4.
Cheers
Gidon
 

Chris Knight

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Formica is a trade name for something I am not sure you can even buy anymore. In the halcyon days of yore when planes were made of wood and men were made of iron, it was a phenolic sheet a good 2 mm or more thick.

Last time I enquired a few years ago I was told a special order would be needed to get a sheet at about £160 per sheet.. Since then I read somewhere they had gone bust.

Suffice it to say - it was never like melamine being much thicker and stronger. There are now umpteen decorative laminates but haven't seen anything like "real" formica for years.
 

gidon

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Just been up to my shed to check what it was called exactly. It's made by Polyrey (Blanco Especial 030). It may not be called Formica but it's does a very similiar job - it's very tough and provides a nice smooth surface.
Pain in the neck to handle - especially since it comes rolled and even after a year still curls up!

John - that's exactly how I built my latest table. Together with the xtreme xtension quick change collet - I lose no reach and can change bits in literally seconds. £50 for the xx and offcut of worktop £3. Took < hour to make.

Cheers

Gidon
 

StevieB

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Thanks for all the info guys, seems like plastics is as confusing as wood to the uninitiated (I still have no idea what Deal is, or why it was all you could get after the war or why my grandfather used to rave about it :roll: )

Jewsons sounds a better bet as I can go there in person. Had thought of using worktop but rejected it on grounds of thickness, didnt fancy contiboard (too flimsy) and am erring to MDF trimmed with hardwood on the edges.

Not that I will be doing this anytime soon, but I can daydream until I have finished putting up the conservatory :)

Steve.
 

Adam

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StevieB":3tlki513 said:
I still have no idea what Deal is, or why it was all you could get after the war or why my grandfather used to rave about it :roll: )
Steve.
You haven't tried the search facility have you? :lol: :lol:

See this post... Cedar or Deal
 

Noel

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Just refurbished my temperory router table (built a temporary one in order to build a proper one, years ago...) and used 40mm worktop. The thickness is a bonus and with a phenolic insert no need for long bits.

Rgds

Noel
 

johnelliott

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StevieB":1i1gyqb2 said:
and am erring to MDF trimmed with hardwood on the edges.
MDF make a perfectly satisfactory surface for router tables, you can even wax polish it if necessary
I trust the hardwood edges will have neatly mitred corners
John
 

Johnboy

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My top is a double thicknes of 18mm MDF. I gave it a couple of coats of acrylic varnish. Nice and slippy and as tough as old boots.

John
 

Ian Dalziel

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Hi Stevie,
I,m glad to hear someone is going to tackle one of my workshop projects.
The 'Formica' top is Laminate which i pick up from my local kitchen worktop supplier, it is very brittle and he always has damaged sheets in stock. i used it on my router top as its smooth, i also use a wax on it to allow pushing workpieces through it without binding. it also allows me to spot my pencil marks if i need to do stopped mortises.
Pat Warner certainly seemed to like it, he seemed to be quite taken with the fact that i removed every drawback from a router table and made it so simple and cheaply
i'll look farward to seeing some pictures of it
kind regards
Ian
 

StevieB

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John - of course the corners will be mitred! Not saying they will all be at 45 degrees though... :roll:

Ian - afraid pictures may have to wait a while. The master plan (well SWMBOS plan anyway) is for me to finish the conservatory, lay a deck, finish the garden retaining wall and sort out the kitchen plumbing. Then if there is any money left from that set aside for the conservatory its mine! Thus my master plan is to get everything done by tools 2004 :twisted: I then plan to spend most of the winter in the workshop :D

Just a polite request - what with the superb bench and now the router table, any chance your next feature could be something I dont need so I can catch up :!: :wink:

Look out for pictures in the new year I guess :shock:

Steve.
 

Dewy

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ike":c68yrlmy said:
Looks as if we are fairly close Ike.
I get me birch plywood from Stonehouse.
Its only a few miles and a straight road from me apart from the holdups when they were rebuilding junction 12.
Get there when they aren't too busy and they will cut it to size on the panel saw so it will fit in the car. Just make sure you have a cutting list before going. It's a lot cheaper than getting it delivered.
 

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