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Thread: Delaminated plywood repair

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
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    Default Delaminated plywood repair

    I have a little delamination problem that I thought you all might have some advice for. I have a 2 foot x 1 foot section of counter top from my O'Day's galley that is made of marine ply, with formica laminate, and trimmed in teak. The marine ply has started to delaminate around 3 inches in from the edge on three sides. The wood seems intact and not rotted. Just delaminated. Is it possible to saturate the layers with epoxy or some other adhesive to repair this? The formica is no longer available so replacing the counter top isn't an option. Any suggestions?
    Thanks in advance.

  2. #2
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    Default

    Lightly thickened epoxy pushed into the ply would work. Be sure clean out as much of the gaps as possible.

    What you should try to do before all else, is try to seperate the plywood with a chisel or or some other wide flat object. It will be better to find out now if there is deeper bond failure than later when all of the edges are bonded leading to an eventuall blister.

    What formica pattern is this?.

  3. #3
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    Default

    I'm envisioning the case that the edge of a ply panel has delaminated, there's a formica laminate on top and you want to keep it, and the edge is accessible.

    It's a half-baked fix, but if your conscience can take it try the following:
    - With a feeler gauge, determine how deep the delamination extends.
    - Carefully drill up through the panel so that the hole penetrates the delamination void but not the top surface. If you drill through, go to PLAN B.
    - With a syringe, inject epoxy into the void.
    - Clamp by applying weights.

    Probability of long-term success is 50%.

    PLAN B:
    Replace the entire panel. The old laminate is probably looking tacky anyway.
    Last edited by JimConlin; 04-05-2007 at 07:13 AM. Reason: fat fingers

  4. #4
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    Default

    You could probably make a new top quicker than repairing the old one.

  5. #5
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    If you have delamination going back into the ply for three inches, I doubt that it is marine grade plywood. In fact I would bet that it isn’t. I suspect that you will not “cure” the problem until you replace the panel.

  6. #6
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    Wink

    Your exactly right, Jim. It's delaminating around two of the edges, the other two edges are capped with teak and are in good shape. Part of the problem (actually 2 parts), is that the color of the formica is no longer available (plain beige like color, and not too tacky yet ). The other problem is that the entire galley counter top has the same formica which would mean gutting the entire galley (I'd rather be sailing ;-). The piece I have to repair is about 10 inches by 23 and also serves as the deisel compartment access. So I think trying to repair it is worth a shot. I typically wouldn't think about doing a cob job, but in this case.... Is there any special epoxy I should use?

    Thanks guys

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
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    Default

    I repaired the front cabin top of a Cruisers Inc, Seacamper that has a plwood roof that was doing what you are describing. I cleaned out any loose particles and mixed a thin epoxy and injected it into the layers with a large syringe. I then used hand clamps to clamp it down all around curved edge. I used small pieces of trash bag plastic as a cover for clamp jaws.
    I was able to clamp tight enough to squeeze some out the edges. After that dried I filled some rough edges with thickened epoxy and sanded smooth, this surface was covered in deck canvas and finished out well.
    If you have laminate on one side then this should be an easy fix.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
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    Oh yeah, I used West system epoxy thinned with about 25% acetone, until its runny. Good luck

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Delaminated plywood repair

    Delamination is a common deck and hull problem that can get worse if left unattended. If you've found an area of delamination it's a good idea to carry out a solid repair as soon as possible. You may be interested in this article which explains how to make a high quality repair and protect your boat: http://www.epoxycraft.com/a-solid-re...-delamination/

  10. #10
    Join Date
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    2,292

    Default Re: Delaminated plywood repair

    There must be several ways to remove the Formica and reapply it to sound plywood.

    You could route or thickness plane most of the old ply off, then scrape and sand the remainder.

    Heat will probably soften the contact cement enough to allow pushing a drywall trowel into the seam thereby releasing the Formica. Maybe heat and lacquer thinner or acetone will work better, outdoors.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DRsNHMvPsX4

  11. #11
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    Default Re: Delaminated plywood repair

    My experiences with plywood that is "just delaminated" has been the most unenjoyable repair and rebuilding work I have been involved with. The moisture wicking ability in the ply cores almost guarentees the area of concern to be larger, perhaps considerably larger, than one would think. I haven't had much success with drying areas or injecting resins. Glass covered ply (and possibly Formica covered) is dreadful stuff to repair in my opinion. I will join with others who favor replacement rather than repair.

  12. #12
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    Default Re: Delaminated plywood repair

    The question here was posed in 2007. I suspect he's dealt with it by now with one approach or another.

    Cheers,

    Bobby

  13. #13
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    Default Re: Delaminated plywood repair

    West System International is still learning the ropes, I'd say. LESSON 12 - always check the date on posts before replying. I tend to check the name of the person to see if there has been any activity recently, seems the easiest way...
    "The enemies of reason have a certain blind look."
    Doctor Jacquin to Lieutenant D'Hubert, in Ridley Scott's first major film _The Duellists_.

  14. #14
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    Default Re: Delaminated plywood repair

    It is advertising...

    epoxycraft is the home of news, views and discussion on using epoxy in boat repair, maintenance and construction. It’s published by West System International, a division of Wessex Resins & Adhesives

  15. #15
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    Default Re: Delaminated plywood repair

    While I did not check the original date of this message, my response remains as true for me today as it did in 2007. Perhaps more so, as I am evidently a slow learner about repairing delaminated plywood! Cheers all.

  16. #16
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    Default Re: Delaminated plywood repair

    FarWest -- I think it is great to respond to these posts, as many new builders get their information by searching the Forum. I was just mentioning what West Systems did, as they did on at least one other ancient thread.
    "The enemies of reason have a certain blind look."
    Doctor Jacquin to Lieutenant D'Hubert, in Ridley Scott's first major film _The Duellists_.

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