Keeping Veneer From Slipping

Pros explain how they hold veneer in place during glue-up and vacuum bag pressing. December 30, 2007

How do I keep the veneer from slipping around as it is put in the vacuum bag and pressed? Flat doors veneered on both sides. On the last job the doors were oversize and we stapled the veneer in place around the edge and then trimmed the door down to size. I would like to avoid this on the next job. Any suggestions?

Forum Responses
(Veneer Forum)
From contributor R:
Masking tape, thumb tacks, office staples.

From contributor W:
Masking tape can emboss in some veneer. I use veneer tape, two pieces in each corner, an additional piece or pieces on long edges. I try to cut the cores 1/8 inch bigger than the veneer so the veneer doesn't fracture when I stretch the tape.

From contributor T:
Did you ever hear of veneer pins? Or a 23 gauge pinner?

From contributor F:
When I do pressings I typically make the veneer layup and the substrate larger by one inch than net size. Never had a problem with that. When a mitered cross band is used, the substrate is larger than the veneer by one inch both ways.

From contributor R:
Yes, contributor F, thanks for adding that. It is especially tough to keep things from moving when doing a curve that is not equal on both sides. Veneer tends to want to slide downhill and my experience has been it is tough to stop it, even with tape tacks or those fancy veneer pins that contributor T recommends, especially if his pinner drives them all the way through the thin veneer layer as they tend to do. When I use the pinner I hold the nose above the surface so the pin sticks out, and then bend it over and cover it with tape so it does not harm the bag. With any luck you can pull the pin when finished. Anyway, leave yourself plenty of material, then trim it off if possible.

From contributor X:
I haven't tried this with the exact application you are asking about, but I have used a hot-melt glue gun to temporarily stick other things that I am gluing. A couple of dabs around the edges, or even under an edge where you have cleared the other glue, would keep the veneer from sliding without risking damage to the bag.

From contributor P:
Here's how Martha Stewart would solve this problem. First, plug in your hot glue gun. After your veneer skin has been laid up, place it face down on the bench. Locate your substrate exactly where you would like it to finally adhere. Now take your glue gun and glue small locater blocks to the oversize veneer skin, around the perimeter of the substrate. These blocks get trimmed off when you cut off the overhanging veneer. No slipping or sliding of your veneer when it's in the press. And that's a good thing.

From contributor O:
Try sprinkling a small amount of glitter in the glue.

From contributor V:
I use veneer tape - it works best!