Laminating table surface

I am in search of any laminating table surface experience. Been using horizontal formica for years and really have no problems with it. But at the same time I am interested in knowing what other options there may be.

 

BalticBandit

Super Anarchist
11,114
34
I am in search of any laminating table surface experience. Been using horizontal formica for years and really have no problems with it. But at the same time I am interested in knowing what other options there may be.
I use a polyethylene folding table. Not 100% flat but enough so that flat molds don't need shims. 9' long and epoxy doesn't like to stick.

 

teamvmg

Super Anarchist
1,972
104
Old dining table with a sheet of chipboard screwed to it, electric under floor heating loom and then two 700mm x 2400mm sheets of conti board/ melamine.

Tape the melamine screw holes and join with brown parcel tape

remember where the heating loom is before you screw the melamine down!

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baccara

Member
52
0
I am in search of any laminating table surface experience. Been using horizontal formica for years and really have no problems with it. But at the same time I am interested in knowing what other options there may be.
Steel (thicker than, say 2,5 mm) works also fine, provided you'll be using peelply against the mold surface. Steel surface will be usable for many years provided that one uses proper mold release. However, steel is quite heavy, and there must be adequate support beneath it so that the surface will remain straight so if you are looking for a "portable solution" this might not be best option especially if the table should be a very large one. On the other hand, other table materials will not be very lightweight either if the table is going to be a large one and should last long time (ie robust and straight).

I've been using 3 mm thick 150 x 300 cm steel table in making bulkheads using infusion. One should keep the surface dry at all times to avoid rust and pitting if the steel is not stainless (which is unnecessarily expensive). Degreased steel works very well with sealers and release agents and infrared heating can be placed under the table so that the steel plate gets warmed.

 
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ScowVegas

Reporters
4,417
7
Chicago
I use a combo of 4x8' sheets of melamine - and 4x4' sheets of 1/4 tempered glass - If you can get a glass surface and semi-permanent mold release (like zyvex), that provides a great finished surface - ready for paint or clear. A 10" dry wall knife makes clean up of cured stuff a breeze.

 

CAsailor

Member
228
0
CA
Just make sure it is well supported. I had an issue with a table where it was super straight ( measured to confirm) but when stacked with weights it sagged just a little. Drove me a bit insane having slightly crooked parts come out...

 

greenbank

Member
67
0
Try an old shop window, usually heavy duty glass plate, but put it on top of an old door/sheet of plywood to strenghten it and stop it shattering. An alternative is a sheet of mdf but load it up with tons of mould release wax, this can be sped up by applying heat with an iron and polishing with a buffer.

 

JimConlin

Anarchist
+1 for melamine board. I have a permanent vacuum tap in one corner of the table.

The surface is also good for a glass cut-out table. At the end of my table, I have a rack for the rolls.

 

dacarls

Anarchist
602
10
FL
I got 2 discarded glass fume hood doors, 4 ft x 5 ft.

Unfortunately I didn't get my homebuilt molds flat enough on their bottoms....and cracked both glass doors with my homebuilt Ford air Conditioner compressor and 60 year old electric 1/4 hp motor.. Still using them tho for CF foils.

 




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