Gluing Veneer To Radius Box Parts, "Made Easy"

  • Advertise with us
Blog entry by Dennis Zongker posted 08-31-2009 04:48 PM 8466 reads 11 times favorited 31 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Gluing veneer to hardwood can actually be a good thing. As long as the hardwood has the proper moisture content, which is between 6 to 8 percent. Also, the smaller the piece of hardwood the better. Wood only expands and contracts, the width of your board. Also I like to veneer both sides, to balance the hardwood.

In the old days when furniture reached a zenith in Europe, between 1700-1900. Most of the highest quality pieces of furniture had veneer glued to the legs & aprons, which were made out of hardwood. On the tops and bigger pieces, they would glue up their own plywood, because of wood movement.

Also by using hot animal hide glue, to glue on you veneer & marquetry. It’s a much better glue, because hide glue moves with the wood & is much stronger then modern day synthetic yellow glue.

An easy way to glue veneer or marquetry to your radius parts.

In the very beginning when cutting out your parts on the band saw.


By using 8/4 are 12/4 thick stock, and cutting out on your band saw. Cut out your box parts which are centered on the board. By cutting clean and straight as you can. And plan it out to where each cut-off piece of wood, will also be cut into a clamping caul, for gluing and clamping.


Every single cut off part can be used for a clamping caul. For gluing on veneer.


On the clamping caul. I glue a piece of thin foam. This is so when I’m gluing on the veneer, there won’t be any voids.


Brushing on the hot animal hide glue. On to the Marquetry Veneer.


Gluing the Box side.


Clamping the marquetry, veneer to the box side. By using the clamping caul.


Clamping the marquetry, veneer to the box side. By using the clamping caul.


You can also use the clamping cauls to clamp the box together.

Thank you for looking.

-- Dennis Zongker

31 comments so far

View Patti Zongker's profile

Patti Zongker

209 posts in 4501 days

#1 posted 08-31-2009 05:00 PM

Very well explained…. Nice job Dennis

-- Follow your passion, and success will follow you.

View a1Jim's profile


118161 posts in 4652 days

#2 posted 08-31-2009 05:13 PM

A big help thanks for the info.


View Rj's profile


1047 posts in 4706 days

#3 posted 08-31-2009 05:30 PM

When you mention hardwood what type do you suggest ? do you also use hide glue when gluing the box together?

Great Info Dennis Thanks for posting this!!

-- Rj's Woodworks,San Jose & Weed Ca,

View mmh's profile


3684 posts in 4797 days

#4 posted 08-31-2009 05:56 PM

How timely! My husband is attempting to repair an old chest that his mother was given for her wedding. The walnut veneer has warped, buckled and peeled from years of abuse and he is hoping to restore this family heirloom.

Is it possible to salvage the buckled veneer or should he remove all the damaged veneer and start anew?

He’s asking me to find him a tutorial, so any directions are appreciated!

-- "They who dream by day are cognizant of many things which escape those who dream only by night." ~ Edgar Allan Poe

View patron's profile


13718 posts in 4416 days

#5 posted 08-31-2009 06:04 PM

thanks for the tip , dennis .

always good to know how the pro’s do things !

how are you felling lately ?

-- david - only thru kindness can this world be whole . If we don't succeed we run the risk of failure. Dan Quayle

View MaxS's profile


46 posts in 4269 days

#6 posted 08-31-2009 06:28 PM

That’s great. Nice job and good photos. Many thanks.

-- Socrates: "I drank what?"

View Dick, & Barb Cain's profile

Dick, & Barb Cain

8693 posts in 5374 days

#7 posted 08-31-2009 07:49 PM

A great tutorial Dennis,

This is something I’ve never tried.

I have a friend who restores pianos, & he always uses hide glue.

He removes old veneer thats been glued with hide glue with a steamer type tool.

-- -** You are never to old to set another goal or to dream a new dream ****************** Dick, & Barb Cain, Hibbing, MN.

View Dennis Zongker's profile

Dennis Zongker

2852 posts in 4667 days

#8 posted 08-31-2009 07:57 PM

Thanks Patti & Jim for your complements.

Hi RJ, I have used all types of hardwood & never had any troubles. I use hot animal hide glue on everything, it’s works incredible on any type of joint.

-- Dennis Zongker

View Dennis Zongker's profile

Dennis Zongker

2852 posts in 4667 days

#9 posted 08-31-2009 08:12 PM


How has life been treating you? It looks like you have been busy making a bunch of canes. Keep up the great work.

As far as fixing veneer on a piece of furniture. It would depend on how much that piece is worth, and how much is it worth to you and your family.

If it is worth keeping it’s original value, I would try and save the old veneer. If it was glued up with hide glue. Then I would try to heat the veneer with a small steam iron. To remove the veneer and then re glue it back on.

-- Dennis Zongker

View Dennis Zongker's profile

Dennis Zongker

2852 posts in 4667 days

#10 posted 08-31-2009 08:15 PM

Hi Patron
Thanks for the kind words,

I have been feeling good. Knock on wood. lol I’m back to working full days & woodworking all weekend.

Hi Dick,

Thank you sir. Looks like you have been having fun with those ant’s.

-- Dennis Zongker

View Lee A. Jesberger's profile

Lee A. Jesberger

6874 posts in 5054 days

#11 posted 08-31-2009 09:49 PM

HI Dennis;

Great write up.

You didn’t mention the smell though. Yuck!!! LOL

Your project looks beautiful !


-- by Lee A. Jesberger

View Dennis Zongker's profile

Dennis Zongker

2852 posts in 4667 days

#12 posted 08-31-2009 10:18 PM

Hi Lee, Thank you sir!

Yes, I forgot to say that hot animal hide glue is very Yucky smelling. But in time, one can get immune to it!

-- Dennis Zongker

View daltxguy's profile


1373 posts in 4989 days

#13 posted 08-31-2009 10:20 PM

Nicely explained, Dennis.

Thanks for the tutorial and the tips.

It’s looks easy when you do it!

-- If you can't joint it, bead it!

View Kent Shepherd's profile

Kent Shepherd

2718 posts in 4361 days

#14 posted 08-31-2009 10:57 PM

Great information Dennis. I hope to be able to use it soon.



#15 posted 08-31-2009 11:41 PM

Congratulations for the so nicely explained content of your las posting.
More than a real pro you’re an excellent teacher as well.
Best of all is know,ing that you are completely sound and working normally.
thanks for sharing your knowledge with us.


showing 1 through 15 of 31 comments

Have your say...

You must be signed in to post the comments.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics