Making Plywood Safe for Kids

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Old 06-29-08, 12:08 PM
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Making Plywood Safe for Kids

I have an easel for my classroom that is made out of plywood. I haven't really used it because I am scared that a child will get a splinter from touching it.

How can I coat it (it's been sanded and sanded) so that I don't have to worry about any accidents? I'm looked into lacquer, varnish, and polyurethane but was hoping for an expert opinion. To narrow it down I won't be spraying, but applying by hand.

Thank you!
 
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Old 06-29-08, 03:20 PM
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A water-based poly like Minwax's Polycrylic would work. It's fast drying so you can put many coats on in a fairly short period of time. Generally your biggest danger of splinters would be the edges rather than the surface, so another alternative would be to edge band it with strips of solid wood. I'm actually building a teacher's easel right now that will go to our son's Pre-K classroom when school starts again, but it's solid hardwood vice ply.
 
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Old 06-29-08, 05:58 PM
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Making Plywood Safe for Kids

A lot of splinters come from the corners and edge. You can slightly ease the edges with a router unless you sanded the corners very well.

Dick
 
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Old 06-30-08, 06:36 AM
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Thanks for the advice! Will the Minwax's Polycrylic work on the edges? I didn't make the easel...I'm not sure that I would be able to do any of the wood working that you guys mentioned.
 
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Old 06-30-08, 07:16 AM
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Depending on the thickness of the plywood, you could get strips of "screen mold" cut to the right length at a box store, full service hardware or lumberyard. Most places would be happy to cut it for you if you bring measurements. It's 3/4"w x 1/4"t with rounded edges. Just spread some glue on the edge of the plywood, then tack it on with little brad nails. No real woodworking involved. You could even trim it with a boxcutter knife if needed.
 
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