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Wood Edging on Laminated Tops Burlington VT

To trim off a whisker, try this: With the miter saw off, drop the blade down and push the mitered end of the edging up against the teeth with enough pressure to ever so slightly deflect the blade. With a tight hold on the edging, raise the blade back up.

The Home Depot
(802)872-0039
759 Harvest Lane
Williston, VT
Hours
Mon-Sat: 6:00am-10:00pm
Sun: 8:00am-8:00pm

Lowe's
(802) 318-9052
189 Hannaford Drive
South Burlington, VT
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M-SA 6 am - 10 pm
SU 8 am - 7 pm

University Mall
(802) 859-2000
155 Dorset St
S Burlington, VT
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Sears Stores
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Mon:9.5-21
Tue:9.5-21
Wed:9.5-21
Thu:9.5-21
Fri:9.5-21
Sat:9-21
Sun:10-18.5
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Mon:9.5-21
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Russell Supply
(802) 863-1177
9 Gregory Drive South Burlington, VT, 05407
South Burlington, VT
 
Lowe's of Essex
802-662-9131
10 Sussie Wilson Rd Essex Junction, VT, 05452
Essex Junction, VT
 
Bibens Ace-Burlington
(802) 862-6068
Ethan Allen Shopping Ctr, 1127 North Ave
Burlington, VT
 
Bibens Ace-So Burlington
(802) 864-1847
1961 Williston Rd
South Burlington, VT
 
Lowe's of South Burlington, VT
802-318-9052
189 Hannaford Drive South Burlington, VT, 05403
South Burlington, VT
 
Bibens Ace-Colchester
(802) 863-4910
713 W Lakeshore Dr
Colchester, VT
 
Essex Equipment
(802) 879-0767
26 Kellogg Road
Essex Junction, VT
 

Wood Edging on Laminated Tops

Wood Edging on Laminated Tops

5 steps to align and finish wood edging on a plastic-laminated surface.

by Bruce Kieffer

Most woodworkers cringe at the thought of applying wood edging to a plastic-laminated top. Unlike wood veneer surfaces, you can’t sand this edging flush without scratching the laminate. Over the years, I’ve discovered a few tricks of the trade that will help you avoid messy glue-ups and misaligned edging. 

Even after you’ve successfully applied the trim, you still face a woodworking conundrum: applying finish to the wood edge but not the laminate. I found a special automotive masking tape that works better than I could imagine. Applying any type of finish is now fast and clean. Just follow these easy steps for a clean-looking, hassle-free top. 

Cutting the Miters

The first hurdle is to cut your edging pieces’ mitered corners to fit exactly—you can’t get away with being a hair short or long. Start with the two long trim pieces. Use a short piece of edging with a mitered end to test-fit the long pieces. Leave the end pieces about 1/16 in. long; they’ll be trimmed to fit later. Finish-sand the top edges of the edging pieces before you glue them on. You don’t want to sand the top of the trim after it’s applied and risk scratching the laminate. After the long runs are glued in place, you can cut and fit the end pieces for airtight miters. 

Photo 1: Use biscuits to avoid alignment nightmares. You’ll never have a wood edge dip below the laminate surface if you cut the slots so the wood edge sets just a smidgen above the laminated top. To do this, cut the slots in the wood edging first. Then use the same setting with a sheet of paper under the fence to cut the slots in the laminated top. Use No. 20 biscuits and set the slots 4 in. to 6 in. apart. 

Photo 2: Glue on one piece of edging at a time. Glue-up disasters often result from attempts to glue everything at once. Start with the long edging pieces. After they’re set, trim the mitered end pieces for an exact fit (see Photo 3). To eliminate squeeze-out on the laminate surface, apply glue only to the inside of the biscuit slots and a bead along the edge below the biscuits. 

Photo 3: The end pieces are cut slightly oversize and then trimmed to create a tight joint. To trim off a whisker, try this: With the miter saw off, drop the blade down and push the mitered end of the edging up against the teeth with enough pressure to ever so slightly deflect the blade. With a tight hold on the edging, raise the blade back up. Turn the saw on and slowly make the cut. This will take the lightest shaving off the end and allow you to work your way to the perfect fit. 

Photo 4: Get a clean crisp finish line using 3M’s Scotch Fine Line Tape (see Source, page 62). This is truly a “magic” masking tape!

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