Contact Adhesive for Attaching End Panels in the Field

Some installers swear by spray contact cement, but roll-on waterbased also works well. February 11, 2009

A client (old neighbor) wants me to stain and install 1/4" oak ply over their cabinet end panels since their current end panels don't match in color. They mentioned using a spray adhesive (possibly a 3M product) to adhere the panels. Does anyone know of such a spray adhesive that would work? My thoughts were to use construction adhesive but I have some thoughts that the thickness of the construction adhesive would cause the panels not to fit flush/flat.

Forum Responses
(Cabinet and Millwork Installation Forum)
From contributor M:
You can use contact cement in the can.3M makes one. Also, con-bond may work. Now I use a spray can from Wilsonart. Spray both sides and let it dry and stick it!

From contributor J:
If these cabinets are still installed then brush on contact cement. The spray could make a mess.

From contributor C:
You can use spray glue. Just hold up a shield to catch the overspray. Hold it at the edge of the wood and follow the spray as you go. You can use cardboard or a sheet of paper or whatever you have that is disposable.

From contributor D:
I agree with contributor J. If you mask, use a shield and direct the spray properly - there is no mess with spray contact. It's way faster, and it flashes off almost immediately and bonds better with very little smell.

From contributor T:
Is the Wilsonart spray strong enough to hold the end panels in place while drying without the use of clamps? Do you also use the Wilsonart spray if veneering with 1/4" on the face frames? If so, won’t that cause a mess especially if the homeowner still has dishes and cups inside the cabinets? If not what type of roll on contact cement would you recommend? Do you also need clamps to temporarily hold the contact cement during drying? Regarding both spray and roll on contact cement - should one apply a coat of adhesive (spray, contact cement) on both the veneer and cabinet side for proper bond strength?

From the original questioner:
I ended up using water based contact adhesive. I roughed up the cabinets sides with sandpaper to give it some tooth and rolled the adhesive on both the new panels and cabinet sides. After ten months, they're still stuck on tight.