Freres Lumber's massive panels get Canadian patent, pass fire safety test
February 7, 2019 | 11:04 am CST
LYONS, Ore. - Freres Lumber has just received a Canadian patent for its mass plywood panels (MPP). The panels have also passed fire safety tests.
Freres' massive panels, which Woodworking Network covered last year, are assembled by combining densely layered, extremely thin layers of Douglas Fir veneers. MPP would be used for floors and walls in multi-story commercial buildings, and they could be made to order. Panels can be as much as 12 feet wide and 2 feet thick.
Freres says there are many potential benefits.
Structures made of MPP could be made in days instead of months, says Freres, and use 20-30 percent less wood than cross-laminated timber. The lightweight nature of MPP could reduce truckload transport costs. Large format panels could be manufactured at a facility to include window, door, and all other required cut-outs – minimizing waste and labor on the job site.
Freres received its Canadian patent the day after receiving its U.S. patent in the mail, reports Wood Business Canada. The company has also received patents from Australia and New Zealand.
Fire safety certification was awarded by the Southwest Research Institute, who said MPP show necessary fire safety performance for single- and multi-family homes and buildings up to 18 stories.
At Oregon State University, MPP are being used to construct an advanced wood products laboratory.
Oregon State University's timber building
“The construction, look, and atmosphere of the complex will reinforce Oregon State University’s international status as a premier institution devoted to improving the health of our forest landscapes and ecosystems,” said Anthony S. Davis, interim dean of the Oregon State University College of Forestry. “We are dedicated to seeking out innovative partners like Freres Lumber, who want to develop sustainable solutions while also creating economic vitality.”


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Robert Dalheim

Robert Dalheim is an editor at the Woodworking Network. Along with publishing online news articles, he writes feature stories for the FDMC print publication. He can be reached at