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  1. #1

    Leveling maple plywood - help please!

    I just built my first large project out of high quality (supposedly) 3/4” maple plywood. After I got the top built which is 18” x 76” including a 3” solid maple edging, and lightly sanded, I noticed some slight waviness in the plywood surface. Apparently I didn’t notice that sheet of maple plywood had the waviness in it – pieces from another sheet are fine.

    I was planning on finishing the wood with General Finishes Satin Gel Topcoat. Is there anything I can do to smooth out the surface? The waviness is slight – probably about 1/64”. I doubt I could sand it out without going thru the veneer. Is there any clear finish, compatible with the oil based urethane finish, that would level it out – like self leveling?

    Any help or ideas would be greatly appreciated! Thanks.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Napa Valley, California, USA.
    Yeah---veneer core plywood. They don't make it like they used to ---or maybe I didn't used to notice. These days I usually buy "combination core" plywood in order to avoid that "waviness" issue (it has a layer of mdf under the hardwood veneer, so it is smoother and flatter).

    I would try some judicious sanding, with a flat block, to help level out the ply. Then build up the finish. A liquid poly will build faster than a gel. Then you can rub out the finish as needed. A lower sheen will not highlight any residual waviness as much as a higher gloss. Good luck


  3. #3
    Thanks Jerry.

    I think I'm going to try the liquid poly method. If I ever try a plywood project again I'll have to see if the local wood dealer has any of that combination core.


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