Plywood is not a product you purchase daily. You need ply boards only when you are planning to design your new house or looking to renovate the existing one. There are various categories of plywood available in the market open in variable thickness and dimensions. Since you are a newbie, it’s not easy to go ahead and purchase the best plywood in a single visit. To save your time and unusual problems, we have compiled a list of parameters to look for while buying plywood.
1.) Look for Core Gaps & Overlappings:
The plywood you are choosing shouldn’t have any core gaps (tiny gaps in between layers of the core). You can look for these in the side outline or at the corner of a panel. Perfect plywood should look like the layers going straight in parallel lines without leaving any gaps.
Always ask for full core panel plywood manufactured with full core and not with “Falli.” 1mm – 2mm gaps left intermittently for a few instances. Anything more than that hurts the fundamental integrity of the plyboard panel.
Make sure there is not too much overlapping of those layers of plies while casting. Different layers on the corners of plywood should be moving straight. If somehow, they overlay each other too much, it’s not considered good.
Remember, higher the weight of the plyboard, better is its density, and therefore better its strength and greater its performance. A regular full red core plywood made of Eucalyptus timber ideally weigh around 39+Kgs for a 19mm 8×4 Plywood Sheet. Alternate grade plywood made of mixed layers of Eucalyptus and Poplar timber must weigh around 32+Kgs for a 19mm 8x4ft Plywood Sheet.
3.) Prefer Buying Plyboard made from Eucalyptus Timber (red Core):
The marketplace is full of a myth that Gurjan is the most premium wood used to manufacture plyboard. Well, that’s not exactly true. It has somewhat higher density, but it doesn’t have any substantial advantage over Eucalyptus when we compare the performance but costs a hell lot more than the one made with Eucalyptus! Eucalyptus plywood gets the job done and serves the purpose your ply is designed to sustain for a lifetime. So better go for Eucalyptus rather than the Gurjan plyboard.
4.) Nail Holding Capacity:
The real strength of a ply board panel is predicated by its ability to hold a nail while using for furniture design. Before purchasing a ply, ask your plywood dealer to hammer in a nail into the corner profile of a ply board you selected. If the layers separate or develop a crack on nailing, the bonding between the layers isn’t strong enough and will not work well for furniture work.
5.) Certified Test reports:
Any certified company would have industry lab test reports as well as third-party test report of their ply board panels. Make sure you ask for these certifications from the plywood dealer before purchasing. A genuine manufacturer usually also offers a guarantee on the ply board panels, remember to ask for a certificate if they have one.
6.) Choose Correctly:
Lastly, make a purchase according to the purpose you need it for. Like, for interior furniture, which isn’t exposed to water much, prefer using MR grade ply board (moisture resistant). For any furniture which has a possibility of getting in contact with water or moisture often like the kitchen furniture, prefer using BWP (boiling water resistant) / Marine Ply.
You can also test a marine ply to verify its waterproof property by taking a small sample and boiling it in a pressure cooker till 7 whistles. The layers of the ply will not separate in a genuine as per official marine ply. If it separates, it’s probably not a marine plyboard.