Flattening Veneers

Only experience will tell whether a buckled veneer can be laid satisfactorily without preliminary flattening. A good veneer-press, whether screw operated, hydraulic or vacuum, will flatten most stubborn veneers, but it may be at the expense of extensive splitting and cracking; therefore badly crumpled or spiteful veneers should always be flattened, using either water alone or a weak solution of glue size (one part glue to five parts water). The veneers

should be thoroughly moistened and flattened between warm boards with light cramping/ clamping pressure or weighted down. They should be turned occasionally to prevent them sticking, and pressed individually and not in a pack unless interleaved with cellophane or waxed hardboard. Oily woods such as rosewood and satinwood do not require moistening and can be flattened with heat alone. Either hide glue or a very weak mix of resin glue and water can be used for size, for resin glue will take over either, and the flattened veneers must be dried thoroughly before laying, keeping them between weighted boards until ready for use. If the veneers have split open during the flattening—and strong burrs and curls are sometimes prone to this—only actual experience will tell whether the split can be pulled together and taped in position. Usually it is advisable to accept the split, slit the sheet through and joint together or patch the gap, for if a stubborn sheet is arbitrarily pulled together it may buckle further up during the pressing. If the splits are wide open they can be covered with gummed paper strip on the face and filled on the underneath with Brummer stopping. which will prevent the glue forming a glass-hard filling in the crack. The Brummer can then be scraped out in the final finishing, and the crack patched or filled with suitable filler.

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