Posted on: 21 February 2017
Plyboard, or plywood as it's sometimes called, is made from thin layers or plies of wood that are usually mixed with paper and adhesive. This type of board is much cheaper than a solid wood piece, but is still very durable and usable for a number of home projects; the best plywood can even be used to make cabinets and furniture. Note a few things to understand about plyboard so you know you get the right boards for any project you're considering around the home.
The grade of plyboard will tell you which type of project it can and should be used for. An A grade is the best quality plyboard with no defects on either side and is made from strong varieties of wood, so it can hold up as furniture and other such items. The inside of the plyboard will be made of the same materials and spliced together in a way so that when the board is cut, it will still give a uniform appearance to all pieces.
A 1 or 2 grade will be of less quality but can still be used for many projects including framing, doors, and other pieces that will be painted over. Shop grade refers to plyboard that is strong but does not necessarily have the best appearance; this would be used for subfloors, benchtops, and items like shelving, where they need to be strong but will also be painted to hide the appearance.
Remember when choosing the thickness of plyboard that you want something strong enough for the project you're considering, but don't want to spend too much time planing and sanding the material and don't want this added waste as well. Opt for the board just thick enough to provide the strength you need, especially in the middle of the board, but don't assume that you should get an overly thick board for cabinets, furniture, and the like, as then you'll need to trim it down once the project is complete.
Plyboard typically has a veneer, meaning a thin layer of a solid wood over the front. This gives it a nice appearance and may add to the strength of the front of plyboard. The veneer thickness should be noted on plyboard and you'll want to check this for any piece that may suffer some wear and tear on that front; a benchtop, for example, should have a thick veneer so that it doesn't get as easily chipped and scratched from food prep. A thin veneer may be used for decorative pieces or the outside of shelving, where you're only concerned about appearance but not the strength of the veneer.Share