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I think I am basically asking to fix veneer here. Skipping the part of the conversation that this would be a waste of time (which I agree) I would like to know what would be involved in repairing a section of a single ply on a box top.

I suppose this would be like replacing a veneer but I don't know if plywood changes things. Here is an example of what looks like a water damaged box with drawers.

The box

Here is a zoomed in version if it helps.

Zoomed in box

The focus of this question I am not concerned with the appearance after the repair. Although welcome, I am not looking for advice on matching finishes or aesthetic issues that will arise from patching this (That is covered in other questions and is usually answered good luck).

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  • I thought this was a dupe but I can't find the question I was looking for.
    – Matt
    Mar 22 '16 at 20:57
  • 3
    That would be the question about using a Foosball table as a workbench?
    – Ast Pace
    Mar 23 '16 at 1:37
  • The real question, @AstPace, is can you get enough grip between the foosmen to hold the work piece while planing?
    – FreeMan
    Mar 23 '16 at 12:57
  • @FreeMan Yes, but only smaller work while planing parallel to the bars. There are better bench dogs
    – Matt
    Mar 23 '16 at 13:08
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Tidiest route would be to replace the entire top, or even just to fill the holes and layer another section of ply on top of the entire piece, and then round over the edges to make it look as part of the original.

Without replacing the entire top I think it would be hard to hide this repair completely, but if you're happy to see some glue lines....

...depending on the thickness of the original ply, you could use some 1/4" inch 3 ply with a grain pattern that matched as close as possible to the original.

The process would be much the same as patching any defect - route out the damaged section to give you a straight clean edge with an even depth, cut a section of new ply to match and glue in place.

If you can route out a full length section, running along a grain line as much as possible, this will help to hide the patch.

If the top is thin, you may need to find even thinner ply to do the patch. You can use a thickneser on ply to make it thinner, though it's not great for the blade.

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  • Starting with veneir is probably better than trying to delaminate/thickness-plane plywood to obtain veneir.
    – keshlam
    Mar 22 '16 at 23:41
  • for sure - if he can find a matching veneer in the same size. Looks like he's working with straight ply there though, so figured easiest to go down that route (particularly if he can just replace the whole top) Mar 23 '16 at 2:27
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Well, plywood is made of layers of veneir and furniture-quality plywood has one or both outer faces veneered with something prettier than the core. You could cutting/staining/gluing pieces of veneir to bring the low spots back up to roughly level with the rest of the table surface with a less-than-awful color match...

Or you could fill it with colored epoxy and sand level, which is probably the other Answer you were trying to find.

Or you could take this as an opportunity to play with decorative inlays, turning a bug into a feature.

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  • 2
    I like the idea of decorative inlay. I would route as stripe or two across the width, one of which is at the damaged location and then insert a contrasting wood.
    – Ashlar
    Mar 22 '16 at 21:51
  • turn a bug into a feature - do you work for Microsoft?
    – FreeMan
    Mar 23 '16 at 12:58
  • Any engineer or craftsman or artist, in any field, has to learn that skill.
    – keshlam
    Mar 23 '16 at 15:16

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