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Christy

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Reply with quote  #1 
I'm NOT a professional woodworker.  I am a reluctant woodworker with some skills at best.  I am working on a Singer #68 Featherweight cabinet and want to patch/repair the veneer as best I can.  I've done only a bit of work with veneer in the past.

For starters when I measured the thickness, I wasn't finding pieces of maple veneer thick enough for my project so rather than go too thin, I bought stuff that is too thick and will have to sand it carefully to match. 

Question:  Does anyone know if the veneer Singer used was thicker than what we typically buy today?  Or am I just really bad at measuring?

In all my research on how to apply it they do wonderful videos on how to cut and shape the veneer.  Then they mention using wood putty to fill any gaps but never show this step so I have no idea what they are using.  I can find Painter's Putty and I can find Wood Filler.  I tried buying Ace brand Wood Filler to test and it took the stain much darker than the wood.  That would just make a dark outline around the patch and draw attention to it.  Any idea of what I am supposed to use?

This is the underside of the top that supports the machine.  I am filling in a couple areas that are missing here to get practice before I try to repair the top.

IMG_2199 (750 x 563).jpg 


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Ericka

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Reply with quote  #2 
Christy, I'm trying to remember what wood putty I used when I refinished my FW card table.  It seems like I was able to get a putty that was a close match to what the wood looked like after it was sanded.  It's been quite a while, though, and I don't recall if we also might have tried to mix some stain into the putty before we applied it to the wood and stained over the whole thing.  It came out well enough that you don't even notice the putty.

And, for my #68 cabinet, I haven't even tried to do repairs to the veneer on the feet.  Fortunately for me, that's the one spot that the veneer is having issues.  I know I remember seeing a thread someplace where a person had replaced the veneer on the feet and did a really great job.  Maybe that was on the NeedleBar site.  Maybe I can access the forums there and see what that person did with their veneer job.  Hopefully somebody with better woodworking skills than mine will reply with better info.

Ericka

Well, just checked the NeedleBar forums and couldn't find the thread I'm thinking of.  It must've been on one of those Yahoo groups and all of that info seems lost forever now [frown]
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Chaly

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Reply with quote  #3 
I've never had much luck with using any wood filler or "putty" on furniture repairs that require staining because the stain take up is different than the wood and the repair is more obvious. 

Here's a link I saved for when I was doing my featherweight table.  I ended up just sanding the areas to smooth and stain over -the missing veneer part - much less obvious than using a filler that would stain differently.  This probably wouldn't work for your issue though.

The idea would be to use slivers of wood for fill:

https://www.woodmagazine.com/woodworking-tips/techniques/finishing/gap-filler
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Christy

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Reply with quote  #4 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ericka
Christy, I'm trying to remember what wood putty I used when I refinished my FW card table.  It seems like I was able to get a putty that was a close match to what the wood looked like after it was sanded.  It's been quite a while, though, and I don't recall if we also might have tried to mix some stain into the putty before we applied it to the wood and stained over the whole thing.  It came out well enough that you don't even notice the putty.


I can see why you'd want to try and add the stain first.  I haven't had luck on my test samples with the stain taking well for a good match.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chaly
I've never had much luck with using any wood filler or "putty" on furniture repairs that require staining because the stain take up is different than the wood and the repair is more obvious. 

Here's a link I saved for when I was doing my featherweight table.  I ended up just sanding the areas to smooth and stain over -the missing veneer part - much less obvious than using a filler that would stain differently.  This probably wouldn't work for your issue though.

The idea would be to use slivers of wood for fill:

https://www.woodmagazine.com/woodworking-tips/techniques/finishing/gap-filler


I don't think the wood slivers will work in this case.  The sewing surface already have a few areas that need patching and my goal is to keep as much of the original finish as possible.  I'll be happy enough if the surface comes out smooth but it may also be a little quilt-y looking and I think that's ok by me.

I ran into another issue today that I am trying to sort out and that is that the edges of the sewing surface are flat on top but angled underneath so clamping is a bit tricky!  I'll need to figure out what I can do here to get some decent and consistent clamping pressure.

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Cecilia

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Reply with quote  #5 
I’m planning to fill using a mix of epoxy and sawdust.

(I know the colour won’t match.)

Christy do you want to show us photos of the clamping issue?

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Christy

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Reply with quote  #6 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cecilia
I’m planning to fill using a mix of epoxy and sawdust.

(I know the colour won’t match.)

Christy do you want to show us photos of the clamping issue?


This is what I am talking about.  I hope you can see it.   DSC_0001 (750 x 499).jpg One side is flat and the other is an angle.  Most of the veneer is separating at the edges and needs to be re-attached.  I think I can use these orange clamps.  The rubbery surface is grabbing just enough (I hope) to hold the edge.  A lot of other clamps just slide off since it's narrowing towards the outside edge.  


DSC_1136 (750 x 499).jpg But, I still need to figure out a way to get good clamping pressure on points farther in like this:   DSC_1132 (750 x 499).jpg  I didn't remove the tape to take the photo because I am trying not to loose anything until I decide what I can glue down and what I will cut away and replace.  I tried using shims to counteract the angle but they keep squirting out from the clamp.


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Cecilia

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Reply with quote  #7 
For my current steam ironing of a bubbled cabinet top,  I used heavy objects on top as weights.

Ideally you might put a board and then heavy objects, to distribute the weight a bit.

Put wax or parchment paper between wood and whatever board or weight you use.

Here is how my treadle top looked under weight:

0B3DEBAA-19FA-4B61-A46E-D3B10B04DAC9.jpeg 


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Kitcarlson

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Reply with quote  #8 
About applying clamping pressure.  I use a backing board on both sides to sandwich the work, along with deep reach clamps.  With backing board sightly larger than work piece, clamping is done on convenient flat surfaces.  The deep reach clamps can reach 4" in, and up to 3" thick.  Screw clamps easily produce greater pressure compared to spring clamps.  The oak board shown, is as pressure bridge to place pressure in the middle of a wide surface.  I have many clamps, and backing boards, yet need stage work, for enough on large projects.

The backing boards are shelf boards with hard coat finish, they clean easily with a scraper if glue leaks on them.  I keep one side for veneer only.  The small 1/8" boards protect backing boards from clamp dents.

20200628_191208.jpg


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Kitcarlson

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Reply with quote  #9 
On a Singer treadle table, very top where machine goes, can be removed to harvest good veneer chips, in an unseen place.  There is one hidden screw in the middle drawer guide, and spring balance screws removed also.  There often is no prying involved, if there is, check for more screws.  It is also a good place to see original finish, preserved from sunlight and wear.  Do not harvest under hinge section, someone may see it when it is open.  I often use similar new veneer to repair harvest section.  It is important for match, to keep the same direction, and side of harvest parts. Be a surgeon with sharp trusty knife or cutting tool.  Flipping a part in direction or side, will reflect light differently.  Choose aspects of grain to match, in available area. The harvest wood is from same vintage, and perhaps even same tree... A paper/pencil tracing of original area, serves as templates.  Make harvest parts at least a pencil width larger. sandpaper is used to fit and feather mating edges.
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Cecilia

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Reply with quote  #10 
CA5045EE-D117-48C2-B9E8-12CAD058F616.jpeg 

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Christy

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Reply with quote  #11 
That's a good amount of weight!  I might be able to do something like that but I'd have to give more support to the underside.  The bottom is the part with the angle--think bowl shaped kinda.  So if I were putting weight on the edge of the top, the bottom would rock to the side unless I padded it with something.

I watched a cool video on clamping odd shapes together using a bicycling inner tube.  After using a bit of painter's tape to secure what you are glueing, you wrap the innertube around it like a giant rubber band.  https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=3&v=8sVBw8EHL38&feature=emb_title




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Kitcarlson

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Reply with quote  #12 
Christy, Yes that top part is removed. It is also good to have it off, to clean, prep, and finish separate. It helps with clean look, were pieces meet.







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pgf

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Reply with quote  #13 
Christy -- I use the same technique Dave does to press the flat areas -- get two strong scrap boards, and use long reach clamps to clamp them on the two sides of the piece being repaired.  If there's a slight bow to one of your boards, put the concave side to your piece, and let the clamps flatten it.  A layer of wax paper ensures you don't accidentally glue your clamping boards to your new veneer.  :-)
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swyper501

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Reply with quote  #14 
About veneer thickness - I got a patch thickness to match my Singer treadle veneer using the little 8x10 hobby sheets of veneer at Hobby Lobby.  The very thinnest plus the next thinnest, iirc, first laminated those, then cut the patch.  The Singer veneer seemed to be made in two layers itself.

I made a pattern for the patch by laying thin paper over the gap and rubbing with chalk, then laid that chalk side down on the back side of the material (to reverse the pattern) and traced it, so the the chalk outline transferred to the patch material.  I cut the patch a bit bigger than the gap, and trimmed and sanded to get a pretty good fit.  I used wood filler, too, in some gaps.  I had a color-match type wood putty that did not seem to harden, no idea what the use of it should have been.  This was some years ago, I hope my comment is of some interest still.
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Christy

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Reply with quote  #15 
Quote:
Originally Posted by swyper501
About veneer thickness - I got a patch thickness to match my Singer treadle veneer using the little 8x10 hobby sheets of veneer at Hobby Lobby.  The very thinnest plus the next thinnest, iirc, first laminated those, then cut the patch.  The Singer veneer seemed to be made in two layers itself.

I made a pattern for the patch by laying thin paper over the gap and rubbing with chalk, then laid that chalk side down on the back side of the material (to reverse the pattern) and traced it, so the the chalk outline transferred to the patch material.  I cut the patch a bit bigger than the gap, and trimmed and sanded to get a pretty good fit.  I used wood filler, too, in some gaps.  I had a color-match type wood putty that did not seem to harden, no idea what the use of it should have been.  This was some years ago, I hope my comment is of some interest still.


It is thank you!  We have no Hobby Lobby nearby and I didn't see anything thick enough on eBay, so I ended up buying 1/16th inch craft veneer.  It's far too thick, but I'd rather have to sand it down than have it too shallow.  I won't really know how it's all going to work out until I get it sanded and stained.  I can understand why you layered it.

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pgf

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Reply with quote  #16 
You might want to try and get at least some of the thickness sanding done before gluing the piece in place -- it will be hard to sand it down to the level of the surrounding original veneer without also sanding that original veneer.  Might be tricky to do, I realize.  If you do all the sanding after gluing, you could cover the original veneer with a sacrificial layer of masking tape, to protect the wood while sanding.
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Ericka

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Reply with quote  #17 
I've been doing some patent searches recently and happened across this one that was assigned to Singer and patents the process of coloring wood veneers and the like.  Apparently, they had problems with getting veneers to be consistent throughout.  I know it doesn't really help with your project, but if you want a quick giggle, go here:

http://www.freepatentsonline.com/2042825.pdf

Ericka
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