Routing plywood

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wrmnfzy
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Routing plywood

Post by wrmnfzy »

Is there a good way to route an edge on plywood that will be painted and look good?
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reible
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Re: Routing plywood

Post by reible »

Cheap plywood will never have a really nice edge no matter how you cut it.

If you are using a high quality plywood then you can get a pretty clean edge with a router. You will need a good quality bit with a shear angle or spiral bit. If you want the best then you might want to find a compression spiral that will get clean cuts on both sides of the plywood if that is needed.

You will want to edge route and remove only what you have to of the edge to clean it up. If you are doing a straight run then an edge guide but for curved surfaces this becomes a lot more difficult. In those cases a pattern and pattern bit might be a better fit.

Even after all that you sill might need to do some light sanding. You have cross grain patterns and having some torn grain is just going to happen. This "fuzy" stuff can get to be a pain to clean up and it gets worse with dull bits.

Ed
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RFGuy
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Re: Routing plywood

Post by RFGuy »

Are you routing the edge because it is curved or can the edge be sawed? With a good quality plywood blade (70 tooth or more) you should be able to get a good enough edge on plywood for painting. Also keep in mind what type of paint you are going to use. Certain types of paints are self leveling which will help. I am no paint expert, but when I went to paint some rooms a while back, the guy at Dunn Edwards told me that for a given color that I had picked that I believe they had 5 different levels of quality for the paint. I didn't get the details, but I was surprised when I bought the higher quality paint that it did seem to self-level much better than the sample paint that I tried when selecting the color. For this case, it definitely may be worth spending more for a higher quality paint that self levels. Keep in mind that you will need to fill any voids in plywood layers visible in the edge before painting. Lastly, I assume edge banding is not an option or not preferred for the end result? Edge banding is an alternative to painting the edge.

Self Leveling Paint:
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bainin
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Re: Routing plywood

Post by bainin »

Iron on a veneer and paint that.

b
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wrmnfzy
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Re: Routing plywood

Post by wrmnfzy »

I wanted something other than a straight edge. I was thinking about rounding it. I do have some banding if I end up keeping it straight. If I do round what is best option. Coat with filler, wipe a glue coat, paint just edge, etc. then sand all these before painting with final coat. Whatever we come up with I’ll most probably try a scrap piece to see if I end up with banding.
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Re: Routing plywood

Post by Hobbyman2 »

If you were to add a banding strip around the edge you could router that and it would also protect the edge ?
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DLB
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Re: Routing plywood

Post by DLB »

IIWM and the look of the edge was important to the project I would join a 1 or 2 inch piece of solid wood to the plywood, matching the plywood veneer, then route the edge you want and paint that. Same as I would do for staining, essentially. Pros that are in a bigger hurry would use molding on the plywood edge for a similar result. Depends a lot on the project and your intent. Lumber core plywood might work for you, but it is harder to find than it used to be.

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Re: Routing plywood

Post by Hobbyman2 »

JMO banding would be the best way to go , the benefits are endless .
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wrmnfzy
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Re: Routing plywood

Post by wrmnfzy »

Thanks I’ll let y’all know which way I go.
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Re: Routing plywood

Post by cham-ed »

I use a lot of baltic birch plywood and all of what Is said above it true. but I will add one more thing the adhesive is tough on the on router bits. and of course with the multilayers in baltic birch it magnifies the problems. and with lesser quality plywoods voids appear on the edges.
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