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Sticking adhesive backed letters to waxed surface?

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bp122

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I am making a few personalised xmas presents for my family.
They are small tea light holders, as this is my first year of making things out of wood :)
My wife had the idea of sticking adhesive backed wooden letters on the surface, which I liked very much, as it gets me out of carving them (which I am way too inexperienced to do)

So we bought a couple of packs of letters from Hobbycraft.
Only now the thought entered my head that if I finish the tea light holders in wax / Osmo polyx and buff them, will the adhesive backed letters stick to the surface?

I don't know what sort of adhesive it is on those letters, but they are too small to fix using nails, so adhesive is the only way.

Should I use some sort of epoxy to stick them or just use regular PVA on top of the adhesive it comes with?

Please share your thoughts.

Best regards
B
 

AndyT

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I've not used those letters, but I have used Osmo Poly-x. The surface it gives isn't waxy like it would be if you used paste wax polish on it, so I reckon that would be ok, but give it enough time to fully cure. (That's possibly a bit tight for Xmas but if you keep the tealights in a warm place for as long as you can it should be ok.)

An actual waxy surface would be hopeless - just like the backing paper the stickers will come on.
 

ED65

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Pretty sure adding glue wouldn't help with this, because of both surfaces. Obviously wax is a release agent but the underside of the letters is a problem too. Epoxy for example doesn't bond to the sticky side of any adhesive tapes, which is why we can use tape as a dam for epoxy fills, and I presume the letters use the same sort of thing as double-sided tape.

What I would do is somehow mark the position of the letters and scrape back to bare wood within the outlines. Just approximately, doesn't need to go all the way to the edges. Then the letters get stuck directly to wood at least over some of their area.
 

Trevanion

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Ahah! You're in luck! I stuck a sticky backed plaque to a memorial table finished with Polyx about a year ago and it's still stuck on fine. As Andy said, it's not as waxy as traditional wax if that makes sense.

I'd be tempted to sand where you plan to put the letters since Polyx repairs over itself very easily, take the adhesive backing off the letters back to bare wood and stick them down with wood glue, wood to wood. Once dried re-finish with Polyx and it should look great and there won't be a shadow gap underneath the letters where the sticky back is holding it off the base timber.
 

ED65

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Trevanion":ovhhga60 said:
...take the adhesive backing off the letters back to bare wood...
I didn't want to suggest that cos dead fiddly :D
 

bp122

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Thanks, fellas. That really helps.

I shall try the methods suggested. See how it comes out!

Best regards
B
 

Trevanion

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ED65":1otfwv0t said:
Trevanion":1otfwv0t said:
...take the adhesive backing off the letters back to bare wood...
I didn't want to suggest that cos dead fiddly :D
Razor blade or very thin piece of metal dunked in acetone or similar and work it underneath the stick tape :)
 

ED65

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Oh with a lot of this type of stay-tacky adhesive wiping a couple of times with plenty of white spirit will easily remove it, still fiddly though for small letters. That's not to say your suggestion isn't the best way to go however! I'd much prefer to rely on a 'proper' glue for a trustworthy long-term hold.
 
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