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tombo

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I thought a piece of kitchen counter top would be an ideal surface for my router table, and it was for about a month. But it has slowly been un flattening it self and now its sagged about 20mm in the center. Strangly i never left the router in place when not in use but it sagged anyway. So time for a Norm type replacement, mdf core, hardwood edges and a high presure laminate top surface. I have heard that to maintain flatness i need laminate on the bottom as well is this true? Also any tips for cutting a wobbly sheet of laminate before i glue it down?

Tom
 

Dewy

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Yes. Laminate both sides or it will sag.
You need to balance the finish on both sides similarly to painting where you should paint both sides.
 

pooka

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tombo, when I applied laminate to my router table top, I first cut the laminate to rough size using a hacksaw in one case and a jigsaw in another case. For one of the cuts (using the jigsaw) I supported the laminate on a piece of wood close to the cutting line, but for the initial cut (handsaw), I cut the laminate roll where it was standing from top to bottom (not to be recommended, but I was out of space and in a hurry). In both cases the laminate chipped a little, but because I cut it oversize that was fine.

Once glued in place, I trimmed the edge of the laminate using a router fitted with a flush trimming bit.

Oh yeah, I'm stating the obvious here, but beware when gluing on the laminate. I'm usually pretty careful with any chemicals, but I glued mine late at night. I can't have been thinking clearly 'cos I reckoned that the job would be quick enough that I could apply the glue, attach the laminate, and flee the room before the chemicals got to me. Dumb theory, even dumber in practice (made even worse by the fact that I had underestimated how long it would take to do the glue up). Everything seemed fine while I was crouched over the board, but when I went to stand up I found the world was spinning faster than it had been before I started. It took me a few minutes outside in the fresh air before I started to return to anything near normal. It's nasty stuff, that glue, and combined with stupidity it is dangerous too.
 

pooka

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One other thing too: as well as laminating both sides, apply a sealer to the edges of the core to prevent moisture getting in that way. I edged the plywood core of my router table with oak, although any wood would do, and applied varnish to the oak once the laminate was in place.
 

tombo

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Thanks dewy, seems a bit of a waste but if it keeps it flat its worth it. Still looking for the best way to cut the laminate before i glue it down anyone ever tried scissors?
 

RogerS

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In addition to all the informtaion and tips on this forum, there's also a good set of How To articles on the Wealden website for those building their table.

Roger
 
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