Hand Application of Veneer to Curved Wood Substrate

Using wood glue, heat and pressure to hand-iron veneer onto a curved substrate in place. August 31, 2009

I am restoring an old travel trailer for a customer and I have a question about veneer stock. I have a few cabinets in this trailer that have curved corners that will not work with 1/8th ply. They are all finished and have a fairly good foundation. I am a little worried about using peel and stick because this is a travel trailer and it will be subject to temperature and humidity variation. I do not want to have the veneer peel, buckle, or bubble. Going to a glue type situation may be tough because some of these cabinets do not allow me to apply and keep pressure on a surface for long enough to dry. What would be my best bet for use in this type on environment? Will peel and stick work?

Forum Responses
(Veneer Forum)
From contributor V:
Apply PVA glue to surface to receive veneer. Apply PVA to veneer to be used on surface. Let both dry until glue is transparent. Heat up an iron and reactivate dried glue with iron. Move the iron around fairly quickly, or you will burn the veneer. Use a hard block with a rounded end to put pressure on the veneer until the reactivated glue cools down. I have used this method to wrap Zebrano around a 3/4 radius on a boardroom table. The only issue you run into is the veneer splitting along the grain due to shrinkage, if the glue isn't dry enough before you start. Spots like that can have slivers glued in after.