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Old 09-27-2015, 10:16 PM   #1
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Counter top trouble

The formica on our '09 19's counter top has begun to delaminate along most of the front and side edges, anywhere from 1/2" to 1" deep. We don't live in a hot environment, and the trailer is stored under a carport. We're also careful with water on the counter top. I suspect that the application of contact cement was a bit skimpy when the formica was laid.

How to fix? My initial plan (subject to advice from wiser heads) is to gently lift the formica with a small putty knife, hold it up with toothpicks, and use the putty knife to insert and smear contact cement along the delaminated edges. When the cement has set, press down hard. If there's a better, easier, or neater way to go, I'd sure like to hear about it.

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Old 09-27-2015, 10:26 PM   #2
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I'll be interested as well. I don't have a problem, but have in the far past in my home. It involved really sticky glue, a rubber mallet and lots of weight. Surely something better is available now.
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Old 09-27-2015, 10:50 PM   #3
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The only thing I can offer is that when we built a new table for our Escape we were careful to make sure the contact cement had lost all tackiness before we allowed the two surfaces to mate. Then we used a hard plastic hand held roller to work them down. Ok so far, but it's only been about six months. I attempted another application using a spray contact product attempting to glue a thick vinyl "decal" onto a metal background. It did not stick well at all, looking back, I know I did not wait long enough for them to set up properly. I would not hesitate to try to glue it up, just make sure you get it as loose as possible , probe with a kitchen knife or something like that, plenty of glue, and adequate dry time.
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Old 09-27-2015, 11:00 PM   #4
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I've had to fix counter-top in my home kitchen several times. Contact cement needs to be thinly applied to both surfaces and allowed to become tacky ( which is why to don't want to apply too much. I use pencils or bamboo skewers to keep the surfaces apart while they dry. Then you remove these spacers as you press down on the material.
I'd look up video instructions on YouTube since you don't get a second chance to position material.
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Old 09-27-2015, 11:17 PM   #5
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I think your idea is sound, Bruce. I would make certain you are exposing enough area to work with, even if it means peeling back a bit more in places to give near 2". The main thing is you likely want to ensure you do the full perimeter. Use a blow dryer to completely remove the solvent before allowing it to make contact. Even if there is a bit of a void near the inside of the repair, there is no problem, as having the edge bonded tightly is of primary concern.
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Old 09-28-2015, 12:49 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Bennett View Post
I think your idea is sound, Bruce. I would make certain you are exposing enough area to work with, even if it means peeling back a bit more in places to give near 2". The main thing is you likely want to ensure you do the full perimeter. Use a blow dryer to completely remove the solvent before allowing it to make contact. Even if there is a bit of a void near the inside of the repair, there is no problem, as having the edge bonded tightly is of primary concern.
Ditto

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Old 09-28-2015, 11:38 AM   #7
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If I were attempting this repair I would prefer to use a rigid set cement such as epoxy or super-glue and clamp the edge while it sets. Using the methods already described of inserting pencils or small dowels, inject some glue with a glue syringe, pull the dowels out and clamp. Clean excess glue before it sets using denatured alcohol.

This process might be easier if one were to remove the plastic edge T-molding which usually pushes in the edge of the substrate with a barbed tab on the molding. The risk there is that if the particle board substrate has gotten wet in the past then it might be compromised and some of the particle board may pull out with the edge material. You could then reapply the edge molding using an adhesive sealant such as Polyseamseal Adhesive caulk and clean the excess with water.

Good luck Bruce,
Allan

PS My wife and I signed off on the build sheet for our 17A due in December! Looking forward to seeing all of you on our travels.
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Old 09-28-2015, 11:52 AM   #8
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Thanks, folks. Good tip using denatured alcohol to clean. I've also emailed the factory, waiting to see what they say.

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Old 09-28-2015, 12:50 PM   #9
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Just to be clear....Denatured alcohol to clean off excess epoxy or superglue before it sets up. Lacquer thinner works well to clean off excess contact cement after it sets.
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Old 09-28-2015, 04:16 PM   #10
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Oh dear...can't wait for "doom and gloom" to see this post!


I would also use c clamps with a thin piece of 1/4 ply to make sure sets.
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Old 09-28-2015, 04:18 PM   #11
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A very long time ago I had a problem with some arbourite coming up . It was actually in a rental apt. So wasn't going to do much ... but heated the area with an iron , then applied weight for about 24 hrs ...it worked .
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Old 09-28-2015, 04:40 PM   #12
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Lacquer thinner for contact cement, got it. Thanks again.

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Old 10-07-2015, 09:59 PM   #13
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Fixed the counter the other day. Contact cement shot in with a syringe and a squashed piece of metal tubing, counter edges held up with toothpicks until the cement dried, then lots of small C-clamps. It went down well, can't tell if there was ever a problem.

Bruce

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Old 10-07-2015, 10:02 PM   #14
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Good to hear it went well, Bruce.
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Old 10-07-2015, 11:48 PM   #15
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Good news! What kind of syringe did you use? From a home improvement store or a drug store? Would be good to have a few around for small jobs.
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Old 10-08-2015, 12:16 AM   #16
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A 10ml syringe for kids' medicine from a drug store.
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Old 10-08-2015, 12:17 AM   #17
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Lee Valley sells small gluing syringes too.
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Old 10-08-2015, 01:27 PM   #18
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We used to buy mastitis syringes at the farm store, large volume was handy for when we routed park signs and filled in the letter cut outs with enamel sign paint after putting a good coat of paint on the flat areas. Saved the tedious trimming. Government employees aren't dumb, just looking to save time so they can take a longer break or lunch.
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