Removing oak veneer on solid oak shelf

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Oakley213

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Hi folks! I hope I've posted in the right place. I've just bought a secondhand solid oak bookcase. When it arrived I saw that there are obvious strips of veneer all over it, which I'm not really liking the look of. I was told that the whole thing's make of solid oak though. So I guess I have two questions. Is there a way to tell if it's a solid wood core or MDF underneath the veneer? Because, if it's solid wood, I'm wondering if I can remove the veneer to expose the end grain underneath? Here are photos of the edges where the wood surface has chipped away slightly. Let me know if you need any more info or photos. Thanks for your help!

Edit: some typos.
 

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Oakley213

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Oh no, is it very likely that it's MDF underneath? :(

Edit: it was so heavy too, we nearly got crushed by it taking it up the stairs...
 

Droogs

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heat an edge at the corner with a non steaming iron and lift the edge with a knife. You will soon know what it is and can iron it back down. But just from the pics it is 98% not solid.

edit on looking at 3rd pic, it looks like the veneer is on with cascamite so will probably be chipboard underneath. Take it back for a refund.
 

Distinterior

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The grain directions are all over the place and not consistent with a "solid oak" bookcase......I'm sorry to say, but it appears that none of the pictures you've posted so far would suggest that there are any solid oak pieces....😧
 

Oakley213

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Oh my god, and I had it delivered too... argh...should have come to you guys first.
 

Oakley213

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heat an edge at the corner with a non steaming iron and lift the edge with a knife. You will soon know what it is and can iron it back down. But just from the pics it is 98% not solid.

edit on looking at 3rd pic, it looks like the veneer is on with cascamite so will probably be chipboard underneath. Take it back for a refund.
Thanks, is that the white residue on the edges? I'm trying to make a case for my return (It's through eBay too...). Hard lesson learned.
 

Adam W.

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If it's through ebay and you paid through ebay too, you should be covered if he said solid oak in the description or in an ebay message. Don't take the veneer off, as he'll argue that you have damaged it. Just say that it is veneered chipboard when you make the claim through ebay buyer protection.
 

Oakley213

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Many thanks for your reply. I did pay through eBay via PayPal & credit card. He said he had no idea as he's not a wood expert, and has accepted the return and is making arrangements for Shiply to collect (I also got a RM returns label from eBay for a 2kg item, lol). I guess I'll lose out on the £60 shipping fees that I'd arranged for Shiply to collect after the purchase, but I really hope the collection and return process will go smoothly. I've really put myself into a mess!
 

Adam W.

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I think you need to use the ebay return label. You should really make sure with ebay that you are covered using his return shipping, as you could loose all of your money otherwise.
 

Oakley213

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Thanks, I'll give eBay a ring. How does this work though, if they're sending out Royal Mail labels for 2 kg items? This thing is probably over 70 kg.
 

Owd Jockey

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I suspect that it being solid oak is a cherished fantasy of the previous owner ....
This is very true, and in most cases the seller or donator believes the wood to be "solid oak" or had been told so by the previous owner. In 99% of the pieces that I handle, the veneer covers chipboard, mdf or some form of particle board. Its quite deflating really for the owner to be told this.
 

plum60

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Veneer is put on top of a cheaper material underneath to make it look richer for the consumer. Cabinet edges are usually solid oak teak or whatever because if the edges were not solid it would make the structure too vulnerable to damage and be harder to fix/glue parts together so the edges are probably solid but inside if you sawed through it it's chip or mdf etc. Sorry but next time you will know if it's veneer its almost 100% not solid, why else use veneer on a nice solid wood ask yourself.
Ebay are crazy sending a post label out, must be nutty desk people behind the scenes. Ask for the courier fee back, insist.
 

Oakley213

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Veneer is put on top of a cheaper material underneath to make it look richer for the consumer. Cabinet edges are usually solid oak teak or whatever because if the edges were not solid it would make the structure too vulnerable to damage and be harder to fix/glue parts together so the edges are probably solid but inside if you sawed through it it's chip or mdf etc. Sorry but next time you will know if it's veneer its almost 100% not solid, why else use veneer on a nice solid wood ask yourself.
Ebay are crazy sending a post label out, must be nutty desk people behind the scenes. Ask for the courier fee back, insist.
Thanks for explaining, I know better now. Yeah, I think the Royal Mail label was generated automatically. Spoke to an eBay customer rep, who made a record that the seller will be using Shiply for the return, and that the chat dialogue between driver, myself and the seller can be submitted as evidence once it's been collected. He says to deal with the £60 courier fee (the one I booked for the initial delivery) separately after the return of the shelf has been completed. Anyway, this has been so nervewracking. Really hoping that it all goes smoothly, still waiting to hear back about a collection date.
 

scholar

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You probably know all this, but the guidance from eBay regarding returns and associated postage costs is quite helpful (I recall it used to be less so).


In particular, it states this (having said that if the goods do not match the description, the buyer is responsible for return shipping):

Tip
If the seller is responsible for return postage, it's important that they cover the costs. If they don't provide a paid method of return postage, or if they don't offer to reimburse you for return postage, let us know by asking eBay to step in.

I would think you should cancel your Shipley booking and get that refunded asap - eBay won’t help you with that.

Good luck with the return.

Cheers
 

Oakley213

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You probably know all this, but the guidance from eBay regarding returns and associated postage costs is quite helpful (I recall it used to be less so).


In particular, it states this (having said that if the goods do not match the description, the buyer is responsible for return shipping):

Tip
If the seller is responsible for return postage, it's important that they cover the costs. If they don't provide a paid method of return postage, or if they don't offer to reimburse you for return postage, let us know by asking eBay to step in.

I would think you should cancel your Shipley booking and get that refunded asap - eBay won’t help you with that.

Good luck with the return.

Cheers
Hi thanks for the notice! Sorry, I wasn't clear, it's the seller who will be booking the Shiply return. I meant that the customer representative advised that my original Shiply fee - that I booked to have the shelf delivered to me - should be dealt with after the return has been completed. It would be dealt with by eBay's courtesy team, so it's on a case by case basis, I think.
 
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