What is Wood Veneer?

By Peter Rodgers | Posted: 03/29/2013 10:38AM


Wood veneer is an extremely thin slice of wood that is applied to a surface to give the appearance of a solid piece of wood. A sheet of flexible wood veneer is created by piecing together several flitches (small slices of raw wood) to create a sheet of various sizes.  A standard size of wood veneer is a 4' x 8' or 4'x10' sheet, but many other sizes are available.  This raw sheet of veneer is then bonded to a backer, 10-mil paper, for example.  Other backers include a two-ply 22-mil paper back, phenolic back and a wood backer. The sheet is then flexed, sanded and trimmed to its standard size, making it ready for the carpenter or installer.

Furniture and fixture makers, as well as musical instrument, automotive, yacht, and recreational vehicle manufacturers use wood veneer because it is significantly more economical than solid wood of the same species.  Also, a much wider variety of species and cuts is available in wood veneer as opposed to solid wood choices. When properly applied with wood veneer on both the face and back of each board, wood veneer is more durable than solid wood, as it is not at all likely to warp or crack. Flexible wood veneer bends easily around rounded corners and surfaces, making installation an easier proposition.

Wood veneer is more eco-friendly than solid wood, as less wood is used for each project.  Inexpensive, highly renewable wood can be used for the core panel, while the more exotic and rare veneer sheets can be used on the surface---for maximum visual effect and minimum environmental impact.  


About the Author

Peter Rodgers

Peter Rodgers is CEO of Oakwood Veneer Company, the largest in-stock supplier and manufacturer of flexible wood veneer products in the US. Rodgers was formerly in the kitchen refacing business and started Oakwood Veneer Company as a small venture in 1986 as a result of buying wood veneers in bulk for his own business use. Oakwood Veneer Company now manufactures and stocks over 300 species and varieties of wood veneer in a comprehensive complement of sizes and backers housed in a 45,000 square foot warehouse and manufacturing facility in Troy, Michigan.

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