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Repairing rot in a plywood sign?
#733742 Mon Aug 05 2019 05:08 PM
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...I just got a couple of plywood advertising signs that were originally used on a large highway sign/billboard, circa the late 1950s-mid 1960s...I'm guessing the plywood is some sort of marine plywood (thin but very rigid), faced with a laminate on two sides: one side, some sort of Scotchlite reflective sheeting; the other side, a solid color...

...90% of the sign edges are fine, but there is rot along one edge on both sections...it appears to be where the sign made contact with the floor/ground during storage...I'm not interested in trying to 'restore' the sign, but I want to stabilize what's there, so I'm not chipping large pieces of Scotchlite off the edge 😕...the laminate is solid on the face, but very brittle on the edge...basically, some of the plywood has been hollowed out along the edge, with some soft wood remaining as well...

...a Google search of 'restoration of rotted plywood' revealed what might be just what the doctor ordered: a product called CPES (Clear Penetrating Epoxy Sealer)...looks like a lot of boat guys swear by the stuff, for fixing plywood and wood trim on boats...apparently it's used on window sills on old houses...anyone here have experience with the product? Mainly concerned if it works - or might work too well, what effect it would have on the laminated surfaces, if any, etc...

...can't post pics until tomorrow - but I'm guessing most of us have seen plywood where one edge has rot...figured I'd check here before I bought/tried anything...any wisdom would be appreciated...thanks!


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Re: Repairing rot in a plywood sign?
gulfiend! #733762 Mon Aug 05 2019 11:40 PM
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I had my talented carpenter friend repair an original plywood tire cover for a Corvette that was missing or had a bad edge. He straightened out the cut then cut a matching piece but somehow cut the replace part to have a spline on the edge butting up to the good piece and cut a groove in the covers edge to accept this piece. Once glued in place and painted black it was not hardly noticeable. And very strong.


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Re: Repairing rot in a plywood sign?
gulfiend! #733765 Tue Aug 06 2019 03:20 AM
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https://www.lowes.com/pd/minwax-woo...HngWjhhx8xoCr-EQAvD_BwE&gclsrc=aw.ds

I have used this stuff with good results. Experiment first. You can use fine sawdust as a filler. This stuff pours like water and has good penetration. Let us know. Good luck. Dave

Last edited by Catauladave; Tue Aug 06 2019 03:20 AM.

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Re: Repairing rot in a plywood sign?
gulfiend! #733767 Tue Aug 06 2019 05:56 AM
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I am a professional furniture restorer. The epoxy approach is what I would take. Clean out the edges, get rid of all rot. Build (clamp) some forms lined with wax paper to the edges. (The forms will sandwich the plywood.) Pour in your epoxy. I use the West System epoxy available through: https://www.jamestowndistributors.com/userportal/main.do .They also have a fiberglass filler for the repair if it is large.


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