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Thread: trimming laminate

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Location
    Richmond, MI near Port Huron
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    64

    trimming laminate

    Hi
    Now that the laminate is on my router top. I have an over hang of about an inch of laminate.

    Is it ok to use a trim bit that will have to cut both sides of the laminate? To explain more I have 1 inch over hang can I use a 1/2 inch trim bit in one pass? In other words a 1/2 inch kerf. Or do I have to cut down the over hang in multiple passes?

    Thanks
    Guy

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    N.E. Arkansas
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    374
    One pass should be fine. I normally use a smaller bit than 1/2" though but if that's what you got go for it.
    I once heard that cats and women will do darn well what they please and that men and dogs would do well to accept it and just go on.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
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    Richmond, MI near Port Huron
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    Thanks Jim

    All the router equip I have I inherited from my dad. He did a lot of laminate work for a man not in the business. As kid I didn't pay enough attention. enter biff to the head here.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
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    Between Aledo and Fort Worth, TX
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    I use a 1/2" trim bit all the time. No issue other than maybe a little more debris to pick up afterward. I use a fine hand file where laminate corners are after the trim bit just to soften the edge slightly. Otherwise it can cut you, or leave a very slight lip that eventually will catch on your clothing as you brush by it, tearing your clothing, or pulling the laminate loose even breaking it. Just a thought. Jim.
    Coolmeadow Setters...
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  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
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    Rochester Hills, MI
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    You'll be fine with that. But like Jim said, BE CAREFUL after trimming off the excess laminate. It is SHARP! One time I did a real number one of my knuckles that required a trip to the urgent care for stitches. Whenever I'm going to be doing laminate work, I always have a good fine file on hand. The very first thing I do immediately after trimming off the laminate is to carefully make a few passes with the file held at about a 45 degree angle to the corner and take the sharp edge off. Once trimmed, laminate is as sharp as a new utility knife blade!
    "The bitterness of poor quality remains long after the sweetness of low price is forgotten"

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Delton, Michigan
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    17,472
    just one more thing make sure it has a bearing on the bottom to keep you form marring the face of the edge.. no bearing DONT use it
    If in Doubt, Build it Stout!
    One hand washes the other!
    Don't put off today till tomorrow!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Location
    Richmond, MI near Port Huron
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    Thanks again

    Quote Originally Posted by larry merlau View Post
    just one more thing make sure it has a bearing on the bottom to keep you form marring the face of the edge.. no bearing DONT use it
    thanks

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Tampa
    Posts
    281
    I've been doing alot of laminate work these past few weeks and I have found that cleaning the bearing with DW40 helps a great deal. The adhesive tends to gunk all over the bearing and the bit. If you use DW40 on the bearing it helps to not pick up the adhesive that remains on the overhang portion of the laminate and it helps to glide the bearing over the edge laminate.

    I recently purchased a square Teflon bearing laminate trimmer from MLCS and it works great. It prevents any kind of scratching or marring of the edge laminate. I also tape all surfaces that will serve as a guide for the bearing before I spray adhesive on the backer material. Remove the tape before you place the laminate and you will have much less gunk getting in the way of the bearing.

    One of the most important things I have learned is to keep as little of the bit exposed. Even with the teflon bearing trimmer bit if I have too much of the bit extended it will scratch the edge laminate. Adjust the trimmer base so that only a tiny portion of the bit carbide is actually cutting. This will ensure that only the laminate you want to cut is cut.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    For me it was well worth the $20.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    So. Florida
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    268
    Quote Originally Posted by larry merlau View Post
    just one more thing make sure it has a bearing on the bottom to keep you form marring the face of the edge.. no bearing DONT use it
    There are trimmer bits that don't have bearings. They are called panel pilot bits. They come in a straight cut and a bevel cut. They work very well with a clean laminate edge to ride on, and don't mar the edge. These can be very useful in very tight areas, as they are very narrow. The only problem I've ever had with them is breakage, as they are solid carbide, and solid carbide is brittle.





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  10. #10
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    So. Florida
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    268
    Quote Originally Posted by Julio Navarro View Post
    One of the most important things I have learned is to keep as little of the bit exposed. Even with the teflon bearing trimmer bit if I have too much of the bit extended it will scratch the edge laminate. Adjust the trimmer base so that only a tiny portion of the bit carbide is actually cutting. This will ensure that only the laminate you want to cut is cut.
    Flush trim bits come with different lengths of cutting flutes. Since trimming mica only gets cut on a small section of the flutes, it pays to get the shorter bits. the longer bits with bearings are good for flushing out wood stock, so in essence there is a need for them too. For trimming mica, having the least amount of flute down past the trim edge can prevent cutting into the face edge. Doing that puts the bearing up close to the overhang, where it can pick up some glue. The face edge can get damaged easily if the router is tipped, which is more likely to damage the more the bit is exposed. Your worst nightmare is if the bearing comes off. It's usually too late to stop the damage, unless you are sensitive enough to some inordinate vibration. Ten to one, it'll happen before you know it.




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