Good Questions: How Do You Cut Laminate Without Splitting?

Good Questions: How Do You Cut Laminate Without Splitting?

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Maxwell Ryan
Apr 4, 2007

Hello AT,

I'm in the midst of prepping my apartment for a feline invasion. If you haven't had the pleasure of looking for a litter box let me clue you in: it's heinous. And finding a litter box cover (a piece of furniture to hide the clutter) that doesn't make your domicile look like a nursing home is equally challenging. There are options I love from Kattbank, but I don't want to pay $2000...

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So, here's my solution: I'm buying some low storage furniture (think West Elm/Ikea white laminate) and cutting a cat door in it before I assemble it to match as best I can the high-end kitty design products for a fraction of the price. My question is - where do I go to get a hole cut in a piece of laminate wood paneling before assembling the piece? Will that split and crack the white laminate outside? Has anyone done this?

Ahh!!! Grey Paint

Dear Grey P.,

We've never done it but it certainly shouldn't be hard to do. Here's some instructions we found at DIYNetwork.com:

"Use a circular saw when cutting laminate. A jigsaw will also work, but the jigsaw blade is less likely to produce a straight line. Before cutting the laminate, lay masking tape over the cutting line. This will protect the surface and also help prevent chipping. Apply a few more strips of tape on the laminate where the saw base will travel because it can scratch the laminate...." MORE

Of course, a hole is harder than a straight line, but a jigsaw, carefully guided, should do the trick (Start by drilling a hole, of course).

Anyone have first hand experience with this?

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