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"Blondewood" Hardwood Ply @ Lowes

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  • "Blondewood" Hardwood Ply @ Lowes

    Lowes has 1/2" & 3/4" Blondewood(beech??) hardwood ply for $27 & $35 a sheet. It looks like good 13 ply, rotary cut veneer. Bought a sheet of each, still in the suburban(rain)! Curious to see how it compares to the $25 china-ply from HD. Used 2 sheets of that stuff making carts for the shop. Every time I made a cut, I never knew which way it would warp!!! Had to force it to stay square. Saved some of the worst for clamping cauls.
    \"He who dies with the most clamps, WINS!\"

  • #2
    Wouldn't 13 ply be Baltic Birch? Never seen anything called Blondewood before.

    Welcome to the school of life
    Where corporal punishment is alive and well.


    • #3
      A square, by definition, is a rectangle. But a rectangle may or may not be a square. Such is the fate of 13-ply plywood and Baltic Birch plywood. Baltic Birch plywood may have 13 plies, but that does not mean that all plywood with 13 plies is Baltic Birch.

      I believe Baltic Birch also comes in roughly 5' x 5' panels (metric dimensions for the panel and thickness).

      ~ Fred


      • #4
        menards near us sells baltic birch by the 4x8 sheet. at least that's what they call it. the lumbaryard sells BB by the 5x5 sheet as you mention.


        • #5
          Appleply is the U.S. equivilent to Baltic Birch. I think Blondewood is South America's attempt to compete in the same market. (13 ply; no voids, etc..)


          • #6
            I was looking at that last week. I need to clear floor space in the Playpen and was thinking about useing the 1/2" for wall cabinets across the back and down one side.
            Don, aka Pappy,

            Wise men talk because they have something to say,
            Fools because they have to say something.


            • #7
              Could you get the sku's next time around? My local blue doesn't have a clue about it.
              She couldn't tell the difference between the escape pod, and the bathroom. We had to go back for her.........................Twice.


              • #8
                Below is the best explanation I've seen as to why Blondewood is nowhere near the quality of Baltic ply.

                The writer below is correct, the glue layer for veneers is way more susceptible to delamination than the regular plies. I suspect that is the effect of absorbing humidity more easily and water content breaking down the glue.


                I've used blondewood from Lowes for cable cadillacs and didn't
                like it much. It DOES NOT have water resistant glue, the wood
                itself is very porous because trees near the equator grow VERY
                fast, definately not "Old Growth" dense like the cold climate
                Russian, Baltic birches; hence it warps quickly. It also has a
                veneer ply, unlike 13 ply birches. This is signifigant because
                when I tested 90 degree wood joints before I started this
                project, EVERY glue failure WAS a veneer failure! Even good
                old Titebond glue held better than the veneer glue. The only
                two glues to fail the plywood laminations were Gorilla glue
                and Marine grade epoxy. Also worthy to mention, blondewood
                failed miserably compared to birches. 35 ft lbs to break a
                blondewood joint compared to a whopping 335 ft lbs to break a
                Russian birch joint. This was all done with a calibrated
                torque wrench with a peak hold feature.

                If all the layers are hardwood, my rule of thumb may be broken but anything that is very heavy implies lots of resin and chips rather than wood. MDF is the perfect example, excessively heavy and no structural strength to speak of. Plys gain their strength from alternating layers of wood which has long fibers.

                A good gauge of strength/quality of ply is to look at a stack which has been open for a while. If the boards are warped and twisty it has little integrity. There is one sheet of 3-layer ply in my garage that was left over from a job 20 years ago and it is still flat. Rarely do you see sheets of 3-layer ply at HD or Lowes which are not warped. Younger trees is probably the reason, the fibers are nowhere near as long.



                • #9
                  ....thanks, JP, for the insite on that blonde ply from Lowes.......I was kinda hepped up, to get a couple sheets, but after reading the above, I think I`ll look around for some quality baltic birch......
                  I was real dissapointed at the `made in china` birch ply at the BORG.......And I just refuse to buy any wood ``made in china``.......
                  matter of fact, I try not to buy anything ``made in china``,,,,,,,,,I even order my boots from danner, in Oregon.........used to buy rockys, till they closed the factory up in Ohio.........Just my thing, I guess.......but when china takes over all the manufacturing,,,,,,,,, oh well, dont get me started..........


                  • #10
                    where on that web site was the "blondwood" article?
                    found lots of user forums but no way to search
                    Everything should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler
                    --Albert Einstein


                    • #11
                      Sorry, I'm a bit late to the party with this thread. It's only been 11 years. I like to resurrect the dead I guess. Anyway, my first post to this forum and I just purchased a sheet of this stuff. It's birch faced and I have no what other wood is between the outer layers. I'll try to keep tabs on this thread to report back how it works out. My intended use is for jigs and so on, perhaps some interior shelving around the shop. I wasn't aware it was even primed until I got it home and cut into 2 4x4 sheets. I flipped it over and the big fat label was staring back at me along with the primed side that at first glance looks like wood grain. The label is as follows : Certified quality (yeah ok) Top Choice premium hardwood plywood. Premium White Birch Face. Primed back ready for blah blah.. 100% plantation sustainable.. Intertek Green Leaf Certified VOC-free..No. GLF-07-Amer-14-0641.. sku 7858400202 .. 0.71-in x 4ft x 8ft Blondewood Primed.. I was more curious as to what others thought about this product after 11 years since the last post in this thread was once again 11 years ago. *So far from what I can tell it seems fairly void free with a few small assorted voids, but nothing horrible with just a single cut through the middle. *We'll see though. I'm probably only going to use this in the shop for jigs, fixtures and shelves, but I might find other uses. I'm certainly not throwing out the $50 bill plus the extra 6 or 7 and change..


                      • #12
                        Nothing like dragging up 11 year old posts! Well, welcome to the party. I hope you brought some refreshments.
                        Loring in Katy, TX USA
                        If your only tool is a hammer, you tend to treat all problems as if they were nails.
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