The Essentials of Plywood

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Plywood has many applications in construction. It is essential to understand the width of plywood you need for an application, however. If you select the wrong width of plywood, you may have wasted your time and money only to end up with a job that is a failure. If you aren’t sure, double check with the vendor like plywood products Melbourne


What makes plywood one of the strongest woods used in construction? The answer is the way it is formed. It is made from layers of wood grain laid perpendicular to each other and glued under high pressure. This makes plywood virtually split proof and depending on the wood used extremely strong. 

Typical Construction Uses for Plywood 

• Interior Walls-Plywood can be used temporarily to stabilize Wall Studs before the drywall is applied. 
• Flooring-Plywood is often used to form subfloors in new construction. 
• Plywood sheaths roofs and forms the under-layer of homes before the final roofing material is applied. 
• Exterior Wall Sheathing-Plywood frequently is applied to the exterior layer of new construction before the final siding is applied. 
• Plywood is often applied to the backs of furniture, while the finer higher-grade woods are used for the top, front and sides of the piece. 
• Cabinet builders use plywood to make the sides and backs of the unit. 
• Plywood is commonly used to build ramps, sawhorses, dog houses, workbenches and storage bins. 

Different Types of Plywood 

Plywood is made from different types of wood for different applications. Hardwood plywood makes up the sides and back of cabinetry. The most common hardwood used include red oak, birch, mahogany, ash, maple and cherry. Sheets of hardwood plywood can be purchased in sizes of 48 to 96 inches and in thicknesses of 1/4, 1/2 or 3/4 inches. Softwood plywood is made from fir lumber. It is strong, but often marred so it’s not appropriate to use for cabinetry. Using it in construction where it will be covered with paint or plaster is its common destination. When used for concrete forms or building forms, stair risers or industrial flooring, plywood of one-inch thickness is the only choice. Sheet sizes are the same as hardwood plywood and more thicknesses are available in 3/8 and 5/8 inches. Exterior plywood is made with water proof glue and composite plywood is composed of a thin veneer of hardwood plywood over fiberboard. It’s used exclusively for furniture. 

Plywood Strengths 

One inch thick plywood has the maximum strength and a 3/4-inch-thick panel 12 x 36 inches will hold 50 pounds. When the thickness is reduced to 1/4 inches, it can only hold five pounds. The other factors that must be considered when selecting plywood are the species of hardwood or softwood, the glue used and the purpose for which it is used. A soft plywood is far stronger when applied over a roof where flexibility is mandatory. So, its application is an extremely important fact that must be factored in when making your choice. 

Plywood has become an essential element in constructing buildings and furniture. There are many important facts that should be learned before you choose plywood. Learn those facts before you embark on your project.


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