Glue for laminating veneers on hull

I am in the process of completing a Star45 and intend on using raw wood maple and mahogany veneer on the outside of the hull. The inside layer is 1/32" bass wood strips. Which glue would you recommend to use to attach the veneer to the bass wood? I was thinking of using contact cement as the instant grip would ease my clamping of all the bent pieces, but perhaps an epoxy such as west or system 3 would be best? The hull will utlimatley be finished in a thin layer of glass and resin, in a clear finish so the wood should be water tight.

Thanks in a dvance for any replies,

I’d stick with the tried and true – West System epoxy.



For a hard chine hull, the contact adhesive and resaeving the epoxy for the final glassing sounds simpler.

I would do the same; west system, or system 3 with a fast hardner.

When I did a cold-mold of a Mistral hull, I used the real wood veneer that has adhesive on the back. Laying strips at an angle, I used a clothes iron to “tack” the strips in place. The glue adhered to the longitudinal stringers. Once in place, I was able to trim along the gunwales. The small gaps between strips were easily closed with thickened epoxy (WEST) and then the outside of the hull covered by thin .75 oz. glass cloth. The photo shows the hull with stations still inside, but before glass cloth. Masking tape held bow pieces in place as my small clamps were too big to fit. By the way - I used mahogany for most of hull, but the bright birch strip near the bow was intentionally done as an accent.

Once the hull was glassed, I added some thwarts at gunwales to secure the beam size at the deck, and then the stations (cardboard) were pulled. A coat of epoxy inside gave a bit of reassurance from leaks.

After glassing, the boat found it’s way to a new owner in Michigan for completion, but he hasn’t finished it, :confused: so no sailing photos - only building shots - sorry. Was nicknamed the “Cosmic Woodpecker” and wasn’t intended for racing - just day sailing at his cabin.

I am going to use epoxy. Dicks photos has got me inspired to try some inlay in the veneer. I wonder if a laser cutter could cut the veneers tight enough so there would not be too muck of a gap?

See attached ideas I am thinking about


Unless you have the hull form in n appropriate computer readable form, laser cutting just makes the errors more precise. If you have an accurate computer representation of the hull shape, you can make sections of skin very accurately - jiust like in the book in how to build plank on frame models. Otherwise you’re paying a lot of money to do what a craft knife can do perfectly well.

Angus, I think you misread my post. I intend to laser cut the graphics, not the entire sheet.

I’ll try to post my first pass at the mermaid graphics in pdf. Of course, this will be laser cut. My first thought was to use mohagany for the hull color and maple for the graphis, but now I am thinking of rotating this. I really just want the maple on the deck, the hull, I can live with either.

Sorry - did misread/misunderstand. However. do remember tha you are talking about a complex curved shape. I can see that it might work, but I’d make up a trial piece first.