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How to bend laminate

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Many modern kitchen counter designs, especially those utilizing granite, can have clean rounded edges that many find difficult to duplicate using laminate materials. However, bending laminate isn’t impossible. Based on the size of the curve and the type of laminate you use, you can still create a rounded counter design using laminate.

  • You can think of the point of intersection as the point where you’d put the pin of a compass in order to trace the edge of the curve. [2] X Research source
  • The larger the radius of the curve, the gentler the bend. If the radius is three inches or more, then you can attempt to cold bend your laminate.
  • If the edge is not perfectly square, then you can smooth down the vertical surface with a belt sander to finish preparing it for the laminate. [5] X Research source
  • A J-roller is a roller with a rubber head that allows you to roll any bubbles out of the laminate without damaging the surface. You should have one handy for all laminate projects.
  • Once the entire strip is in place, you want to continue making several more passes across the entire thing with your J-roller to ensure that you don’t have any bubbles or gaps. [9] X Research source
  • Another option if you cannot find vertical grade laminate in the finish you need is to thin your standard grade laminate by hand. Using a belt sander, carefully sand down the application side of the laminate across the area of the strip that you need to bend. [10] X Research source Be extremely careful and sand the portion to be bent to a thickness of approximately 0.7mm
  • Heat only the section you need to bend and keep the heat gun moving over that section without focusing on one spot too long.
  • A temperature gun is recommended to verify your heated temperature. In excess of 170 °C (338 °F), your laminate can begin to warp or bubble and your application J-roller can begin to melt.
  • Depending on the manufacturer and grade of laminate used, this method can yield curved bends around a radius as small as 5/8” or 9/16”

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  1. ↑https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qjv33xGRXxs
  2. ↑https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qjv33xGRXxs
  3. ↑https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qjv33xGRXxs
  4. ↑https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qjv33xGRXxs
  5. ↑https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qjv33xGRXxs
  6. ↑https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qjv33xGRXxs
  7. ↑https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qjv33xGRXxs
  8. ↑https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qjv33xGRXxs
  9. ↑https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qjv33xGRXxs

About This Article

To bend laminate, you’ll first need measure the radius of the countertop’s curve to see if it is gentle enough, meaning three inches or greater, to cold bend laminate. If so, next check that the edge is square with a T-square, and smooth it down with a belt sander as necessary. Then, you’ll need to get a strip of laminate that’s about 1/2″ wider than the width of the counter edge. Starting on one of the straight sides, you can use laminate glue and a J-roller to slowly attach the strip, and trim away any excess. For more help, including how to heat bend laminate tighter radius curves, read on!

I’m building a kitchen countertop. It is 1 1/2 in. thick (2 layers of 3/4 plywood) with laminate on the top. The edge will also be laminate (90 deg edge) The sink is a farm sink and the edge of the countertop is cut to match the curvature of the sink. The rear corners of the sink cutout (the front of the sink is exposed so there is no countertop at the front) have a radius approximately that of a soda can.

How can I bend the laminate so it will fit into the curved corners? I tried using a propane torch and I’m sure if I work slow and am careful it will work but is there a better way. How do the pro’s do it?

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If sawdust were gold, I’d be rich!

Byron Trantham
Fredericksburg, VA
WUD WKR1

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Fred:
A heat gun is what I use, never tried a torch , and I wouldn’t be temped to. Keep the heat gun moving and don’t get in to big a rush. You can bend as you go, but it heats up the contact too much and takes forever to cool down and hold. Best is to put some hash marks on laminate and substrate, heat , bend to your substrate–get it all ready — then do you glue up, putting the laminate back on, using the hash marks to put back on to exactly where it was when you did the bending, using the roller as you go — then just do the triming.
On thing that is important is to get it on straight and even, as if it starts to go up or down it will be a problem as you get farther along. What I do is put substrate on a flat table ( workbench ) with some 1/4" ply underbeath, and laminate riding along bench, do corner and work out to both ends.
I use std. ( The thicker– countertop ) laminate and find a 1 3/4" rad. makes a good looking rounded corner. The corner is best made using template and long flush bit to make the corner, as if corner isn’t perfectly 90 degrees to top, laminate will run up or down as you go out.

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I’ve used a heat gun and even a hair dryer for larger radii. However, I wonder if a torch could ignite the contact adhesive if it is the solvent based type. egats!

Most tight Formica curves are formed during the manufacturing process since it’s difficult to bend and shape manually. However, it is common to make small bends during installation so that you can create neat detail work. For a gentle curve, you won’t need to use heat, but for a tighter curve, heat with be necessary.

Can laminate be rounded?

However, bending laminate isn’t impossible. Based on the size of the curve and the type of laminate you use, you can still create a rounded counter design using laminate.

Can you roll up Formica?

It is not recommended that you leave Formica rolled up for extended periods of time. If you’re working on a project in your shop and you need to roll up a sheet of plastic laminate to take out on a job, you can roll it up so it fits in your delivery vehicle.

Can you bend Formica around edges?

Can you sand the edge of Formica?

Attach 120-grit carbide sandpaper to an orbital sander. Hold the sander at a 45-degree angle pointing down toward the ground. The downward angle will prevent the laminate from lifting from the counter. Sand the laminate to smooth the edges.

How thick is vertical laminate?

1/16-inch
The 1/16-inch thickness is a general-purpose laminate. The thinner, 1/32-inch sheets are called vertical-grade laminate and are for use as facing for blacksplashes, drawer fronts, doors, and cabinets. Vertical-grade laminates are too thin to be used for countertops.

How to bend a piece of Formica with heat?

Bending Formica With Heat 1. Smooth and clean the surface of the curve. Set all nails so that they are flush with the surface. Use sandpaper to… 2. Cut out the piece of Formica that you will bend. Measure the curve you want to cover with a flexible measuring tape. 3. Apply the adhesive to both …

How are curves formed in a Formica countertop?

Curving Formica eliminates the sharp edges often seen on countertops that are usually the first place where Formica countertops begin to chip. Most Formica curves are formed during the manufacturing process as it is difficult to bend or shape manually.

What’s the best way to heat Bend laminate?

Heat Bending Laminate Measure the radius of the curve. Purchase the correct grade laminate. Make sure the edge is square. Heat the laminate with a heat gun. Apply laminate glue. Attach the laminate carefully. Trim the excess.

What do you need to know about Formica laminate?

Learn more… Formica is a plastic laminate used widely for countertops and cabinet doors. It is made by bonding layers of paper together with a plastic resin under high heat and tremendous pressure to create a single, solid layer.

Is Formica waterproof?

The formica / plastic laminate material is waterproof. It’s fully impregnated with a plastic resin. I think the problem your inspector is raising is that the joints need careful attention to detail, and if they leak then there is potential for water damage to the hidden wall structure. “When asked if you can do something,…

What is Formica counters?

A Formica® countertop is a type off plastic laminate countertop that became quite popular during the 1950s. However, Formica® actually was invented much earlier — originally as electrical insulation. This countertop became popular later on because it was heat resistant and spill resistant,…

What is Formica material?

Formica is a brand of composite materials manufactured by the Formica Corporation. In common use, the term refers to the company’s classic product, a heat-resistant, wipe-clean, plastic laminate of paper or fabric with melamine resin .

Bending laminates is not possible. Based on the type of laminate and size of the curve, you can still create rounded counter design using laminates. Measure the radius of the curve: If the radius of the curve is 3 inches or greater, you can cautiously bend the laminate sheets without heating.

Can laminate countertops be curved?

Laminate worktops are stylish, affordable and durable but are they versatile? Many of our customers ask, “can laminate worktops be curved”, and the answer is yes.

Can Formica laminate be bent?

Most tight Formica curves are formed during the manufacturing process since it’s difficult to bend and shape manually. However, it is common to make small bends during installation so that you can create neat detail work. For a gentle curve, you won’t need to use heat, but for a tighter curve, heat with be necessary.

Can you bend laminate paper?

However, bending laminate isn’t impossible. Based on the size of the curve and the type of laminate you use, you can still create a rounded counter design using laminate.

Can laminate countertops be recovered?

If installing new sheet laminate over old laminate, material, first thoroughly sand and clean the old surface. During the course of a recent kitchen remodel, I recovered a laminate countertop with newer, more brightly colored laminate sheeting with a granite-type pattern.

Bent Lamination

21 related questions found

How thick is vertical laminate?

The 1/16-inch thickness is a general-purpose laminate. The thinner, 1/32-inch sheets are called vertical-grade laminate and are for use as facing for blacksplashes, drawer fronts, doors, and cabinets. Vertical-grade laminates are too thin to be used for countertops.

How do you straighten Formica?

You just have to make sure that it’s pressed down firmly by pushing it down by a towelling covered pad or a covered block and a rubber hammer. yes, I mean Formica laminate.

What is the best glue for Formica?

Contact cement is used to glue Formica to a counter top. If you’re starting from scratch assembling counter tops in a new home, or if you’re remodeling an older counter top with new Formica, you will need contact cement.

How do you fix a warped laminate countertop?

  1. Coat one side of a putty knife blade with polyurethane glue.
  2. Slip another putty knife blade under the lifted or warped edge of laminate, fitting the blade between the laminate and the countertop underlayment.
  3. Raise the warped edge of the laminate by lifting the putty knife handle.

How much do laminate counters cost?

According to Better Homes and Gardens, laminate countertops cost between $20 to $60 per square foot. It’s one of the least expensive countertop options available and is far less expensive than other countertop materials. Prices can vary based on pattern and color selection.

Can I bend laminate flooring?

Bending laminates is not possible. Based on the type of laminate and size of the curve, you can still create rounded counter design using laminates. Measure the radius of the curve: If the radius of the curve is 3 inches or greater, you can cautiously bend the laminate sheets without heating.

Can you do a waterfall edge with laminate?

Waterfall kitchen countertops are pure luxury. . This illustrates another benefit of using lower-cost countertop materials such as laminate. Running the laminate down the side is far less cost-prohibitive than with more expensive materials.

Does Gorilla Glue work on laminate?

But in the last two years, I have been using Gorilla glue for bent laminations with good success and without excessive foaming. . Plastic resin glues cure to a hard glue line, but they require a minimum temp of 65 F, and are very temperature sensitive. At 70 degrees, it takes about 12 hours to cure.

What kind of glue do you use on laminate countertops?

Contact cement is the best glue to use to glue laminate because it will only stick to itself. Therefore, brush the cement onto the existing countertop and to the back of the laminate pieces. Let the cement dry a bit, say 15-20 minutes.

What is the best glue for laminate?

Step 3: Liquid contact cement is the best adhesive for bonding plastic laminate. Apply a thin, even coating of cement to both the substrate and the laminate using a foam paint roller. Allow the adhesive surfaces to dry to the touch. It takes about 20 minutes.

How do you straighten laminate sheets?

Place a sheet of oven paper over the top and a couple of other sheets of thick card over that. Check it’s OK frequently. If it’s warped in only on direction (a curve) then it’s best to iron the inside of the curve, because that’s the side that needs to expand in order to flatten it all out.

How do you keep laminated paper from curling?

If your laminated item is curling up or down after it’s gone through the machine, check your user manual for instructions for “film tension.” You’ll need to adjust either the top or bottom tension to correct this problem (typically, if the film curls upward, you’d adjust the bottom tension; if the film curls downward, .

How thick is Postform laminate?

Typical results for Wilsonart® Postforming Grade 350 (HGP) Laminate is 9/16″ (14.3mm) outside and 3/16″ (4.8mm) inside radii.

How thick is a laminate countertop?

Laminate countertops have a standard thickness of an inch and a half, though fabricators can produce various thicknesses. Some homeowners prefer a thicker countertop to mimic stone.

How thick is standard laminate?

Standard Grade, also called Horizontal Grade is the usual choice is most frequently used for work surfaces on counters, islands, vanities, desks and tables. The most commonly used grade, recommended for applications where maximum impact resistance and durability are required. Specs: thickness: . 048”/1.2mm.

Can you lay new laminate over old laminate countertops?

Yes, you can glue new laminate over old laminate countertops, as long as you prepare the space properly. You will need to remove the finish on the old material, and cut the new laminate to fit over the countertops. Then, use contact cement to bond the new surface to the old one.

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