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View shankedup's profile

Making plywood

by shankedup
posted 06-05-2018 04:09 PM


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59 replies

59 replies so far

View dday's profile

dday

180 posts in 2479 days


#1 posted 06-05-2018 04:34 PM

Is plywood not available where you live? Unless you just want to do it for an educational experience or to make it out of some type of species that’s not readily available, I would ask why?

View shankedup's profile

shankedup

6 posts in 1040 days


#2 posted 06-05-2018 04:40 PM

I plan on making and selling plywood since I’m part of a construction business. We plan to sell as well as use our own plywoods

View John Smith's profile

John Smith

2885 posts in 1212 days


#3 posted 06-05-2018 04:40 PM

something is amiss here ~ ~ ~
if you are part of a construction business and you plan to sell as well as use our own plywoods
if you have to ask what wood to use for a project, something just doesn’t sound right about that.
many members here work with plywood daily. I don’t think any of them ever think about making
their own 4×8 sheets. wow – that would be a monumental undertaking for anyone.

not just the bandsaw – but – how will you compress it during the glue up ??
go to BORG and buy some door skins – and glue them together just for practice.
the different layers of plywood come from all over the world, so they could be anything.
the best wood for the internal plys is Grade 2 Alder.

please keep us in the loop as to your progress.

.

.

-- there is no educational alternative to having a front row seat in the School of Hard Knocks. --

View johnstoneb's profile

johnstoneb

3167 posts in 3222 days


#4 posted 06-05-2018 04:43 PM

Most plywood is cut using a rotary slicer. Cutting with a bandsaw is going to be very slow and very expensive.

-- Bruce, Boise, ID

View AZWoody's profile

AZWoody

1478 posts in 2274 days


#5 posted 06-05-2018 04:44 PM

Do searches on youtube. There are many videos showing the steps of making plywood. You will see it’s all very large and expensive machinery. Usually, it’s not cut with a bandsaw but with a log slicer and like john said, presses for the glue ups.

Then, they are cut to the finished size and squared up and it’s all done automatically.

Are you from another country and it’s hard to come by?

View shankedup's profile

shankedup

6 posts in 1040 days


#6 posted 06-05-2018 04:45 PM

No, but we just thought we might as well start the process for it too since it comes in hand with us doing construction. Noted that a log slicer and presses are needed. I just need to know what grade log I should be looking at so we have a better idea on how much these things would cost to make vs buying

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WyattCo

93 posts in 1154 days


#7 posted 06-05-2018 04:48 PM

SMH

View John Smith's profile

John Smith

2885 posts in 1212 days


#8 posted 06-05-2018 05:00 PM

you need big huge Alder logs and a pressure steamer than can steam the wood all the way
to the middle to 300 degrees F. then a big lathe that can spin and cut the slices off in 9’ sheets.
and a big overhead crane to haul all that stuff around.
not to mention a big building with a 20 foot ceiling.
dang – and the list goes on and on and on and onnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnn

THEN – have your accountant sit down and do the numbers of what it takes for you
to make your own plywood vs store bought from the finest wholesale hardware store in your area.
Georgia Pacific is looking for new high spirited entrepreneurs.

.

.

-- there is no educational alternative to having a front row seat in the School of Hard Knocks. --

View Ted78's profile

Ted78

415 posts in 3050 days


#9 posted 06-05-2018 05:03 PM

If your making it, you can probably make it out of whatever grade of log you want. Plywood comes it all sorts of grades. Maybe you are already aware but I have a hunch startup costs for machinery to make plywood, on any kind of scale that would make it worthwhile is going to costs tens if not hundreds of millions. I’d second AZWoody’s suggestion of watching some youtube videos, to see just what this entails. If this is something you end up doing, keep us posted. I think a lot of us Lumberjocks would be interested in learning about the process.

-- Ted

View shankedup's profile

shankedup

6 posts in 1040 days


#10 posted 06-05-2018 05:10 PM

That is true, it’s just when I am trying to get quotes for the wood, there’s a lot of specifications like grade, minimum height and width and what not and I do not know much about those and it seems hard to find information about it. John don’t worry, I have a yard and crane so should be no problem.

View JCamp's profile

JCamp

1307 posts in 1600 days


#11 posted 06-05-2018 05:20 PM

I don’t know what type of construction you do but if u do large commercial construction I’m sure there are legal liabilities associated with this. Such as in 5 years you find out all the plywood you had made and used was somehow made incorrectly you would likely have to go back and redo all your previous work.
I’m not saying that it couldn’t b fun to do and there would b a large profit margin in the long run expecially if you started logging or buying your own logs straight from a logger. There would b a very large risk involved in it tho so b sure to have a great lawyer on retainer
Also if u are dead set on it you might eventually get into doing stuff like mahogany plywood and other exotic woods like that

-- Whatsoever thy hand findeth to do, do it with all thy might

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jerkylips

495 posts in 3620 days


#12 posted 06-05-2018 05:29 PM

doesn’t plywood need specific ratings by standard agencies to pass inpection? If you built a house using “homemade” plywood, I suspect that at your first inspection, you’d be shut down.

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Rustbucket

2 posts in 2439 days


#13 posted 06-05-2018 05:42 PM

fish on

View EarlS's profile

EarlS

4392 posts in 3398 days


#14 posted 06-05-2018 05:50 PM

I spent several years working for a large chemical company that makes adhesives, formaldehyde, and such for forestry products. The folks in the lab had a small press that they used to make plywood, glue laminated beams, and other products to test new formulations. It was still a massive beast of a machine that had some serious hydraulic cylinders to press the mats, as well as steam injection for thermosetting. I was able to get a lot of hardwood plywood for free after they were done with their tests.

I’ve also been in the big GP and Roseburg mills and seen plywood, OSB, and particle board made commercially. I really have to question whether you think you will be cost competitive with the big boys. Additionally, the capital cost to get into even a small press will be extremely expensive. Based on your comments, I’m not entirely sure that you really understand what you are considering getting into. My back ground is in engineering with 30 years of experience in process, production, and project engineering.

-- Earl "I'm a pessamist - generally that increases the chance that things will turn out better than expected"

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Jeff

545 posts in 4244 days


#15 posted 06-05-2018 05:51 PM

What country are you in?

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ArtMann

1483 posts in 1866 days


#16 posted 06-05-2018 06:50 PM

Anyone who has to ask what grade of material is needed to make plywood is not anywhere close to being well enough informed to even contemplate doing it commercially. My advice is to stop wasting your time until you learn a little more about what you are asking.

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shankedup

6 posts in 1040 days


#17 posted 06-05-2018 06:51 PM

That’s why I’m trying to get informed.

View Ripper70's profile

Ripper70

1379 posts in 1958 days


#18 posted 06-05-2018 07:23 PM



So I plan to start making plywood.

- shankedup



-- "You know, I'm such a great driver, it's incomprehensible that they took my license away." --Vince Ricardo

View Loren's profile

Loren

11133 posts in 4698 days


#19 posted 06-05-2018 07:28 PM

Take a look at veneer slicers on Exfactory. It’s
all used stuff so you may be able to pick up one
suitable for cutting plywood core veneers for
less than a million bucks.

You’d need hot presses, glue spreaders and
lots of other stuff too.

Sounds like a tough business to turn a profit
in considering the competition, but it’s fun to
watch videos of how they make it.

View shankedup's profile

shankedup

6 posts in 1040 days


#20 posted 06-05-2018 07:38 PM

Thanks, I’ll definitely look into that.

As for the wood, when I ask a wood supplier for price quotes, they always ask for dimensions as well as how many side clear. Are those really a factor if my main goal is to use them for plywood?

View AZWoody's profile

AZWoody

1478 posts in 2274 days


#21 posted 06-05-2018 07:47 PM



Thanks, I ll definitely look into that.

As for the wood, when I ask a wood supplier for price quotes, they always ask for dimensions as well as how many side clear. Are those really a factor if my main goal is to use them for plywood?

- shankedup

Nice troll

View Loren's profile

Loren

11133 posts in 4698 days


#22 posted 06-05-2018 07:50 PM

I’ve never made it so I don’t know. Core veneers
are generally rotary sliced off logs and with the
better quality cores they punch the knots out
and fill them with football-shaped patches.

For finer grades of plywood surface veneers are
often sliced from finer cuts of wood with the knots
cut off. Center of the tree or something like that
I suppose. The substate the fine veneer is
pressed to has to be consistent so they may plane
or sand the core on both faces first. The veneers
are stitched with a veneer stitcher and it goes
back in the hot press.

That’s my guess. You might want to hire a
plywood industry consultant to really figure it out.

View Robert's profile

Robert

4519 posts in 2530 days


#23 posted 06-05-2018 07:53 PM

This one isn’t even worth the time to pop the popcorn…........................

-- Everything is a prototype thats why its one of a kind!!

View gargey's profile

gargey

1013 posts in 1825 days


#24 posted 06-05-2018 08:06 PM

Hey guys, I nail stuff together sometimes so I’m going to start making nails, and I’m gonna start selling nails commercially too.

Do you know what kind of steel I should buy for this?

View Ripper70's profile

Ripper70

1379 posts in 1958 days


#25 posted 06-05-2018 08:19 PM



Hey guys, I nail stuff together sometimes so I m going to start making nails, and I m gonna start selling nails commercially too.

Do you know what kind of steel I should buy for this?

- gargey

Well, it really depends. What kinds of nails do you intend to make? Finish nails, framing nails, roofing nails, masonry nails or flooring nails? Will they need to have flat heads, cupped heads or checkered heads? Do you need diamond points or blunt points? Smooth shanks or ringed shanks?

Can you post a picture of your work so we can have an idea of what kinds of applications you’ll be using these nails on?

How much space do you have to set up your manufacturing? Do you already own any nail manufacturing equipment?

If it were me, I’d get a bunch of these and melt them down and then make the nails to make sure that I was using the proper materials to make nails from.

-- "You know, I'm such a great driver, it's incomprehensible that they took my license away." --Vince Ricardo

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gargey

1013 posts in 1825 days


#26 posted 06-05-2018 08:36 PM

I’m not sure what kind of nails to make, maybe I will have several different product lines to see what sells best and then focus on those.

Do you know if there are any machines that can help with cutting the steel into nail shapes? Or is it more effective by hand? I will talk to Home Depot to see if they need more suppliers but I bet they have exclusive contracts :(

View Fresch's profile

Fresch

520 posts in 2970 days


#27 posted 06-05-2018 09:02 PM

What? What??
I think it would be easier if you bought plywood and put your stamp with Co. name and a fake inspection number on it. Marked it up 50% and made a killing that way.
You would only be out the cost of the ink pad, stamper, loading unloading shipping labor to stamp each sheet, insurance , healthcare, retiremen, biz lic., etc.

View ChuckV's profile

ChuckV

3369 posts in 4577 days


#28 posted 06-05-2018 11:10 PM

I go through a fair amount of water in a day between drinking, cooking, washing, flushing and so on. If I tried making my own water, what ingredients would I need? I have seen it made with hydrogen and oxygen. Is there a better way?

-- "Join the chorus if you can. It'll make of you an honest man." - I. Anderson

View 000's profile

000

2859 posts in 1949 days


#29 posted 06-05-2018 11:23 PM

Not going to make any snide remarks about it.

A guy in the shop behind me, in the same building, was making plywood.
I never saw his set up but his shop wasn’t huge as mentioned it needed to be above.
He has since moved into a larger building, but he started small.
I’m pretty sure he was making lumber core sheets with exotic veneers laid up on them.
I wish I would have gotten to know him before he moved.

View shipwright's profile

shipwright

8703 posts in 3848 days


#30 posted 06-05-2018 11:42 PM

Is it April again already???

-- Paul M ..............the early bird may get the worm but it’s the second mouse that gets the cheese! http://thecanadianschooloffrenchmarquetry.com/

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000

2859 posts in 1949 days


#31 posted 06-05-2018 11:46 PM


Is it April again already???

- shipwright


I don’t get it Paul, what are you saying?

View TheFridge's profile

TheFridge

10863 posts in 2536 days


#32 posted 06-05-2018 11:54 PM

Alder logs. The best strength to weight ratio among domestic hardwoods and readily available through all 5 major national suppliers and you can get better grades for your money than pine or birch.

Alder is what you should start with.

-- Shooting down the walls of heartache. Bang bang. I am. The warrior.

View Ripper70's profile

Ripper70

1379 posts in 1958 days


#33 posted 06-06-2018 12:52 AM


Alder is what you should start with.

- TheFridge

Then finish it off with a nice Douglas fir veneer. El perfecto!

-- "You know, I'm such a great driver, it's incomprehensible that they took my license away." --Vince Ricardo

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TheFridge

10863 posts in 2536 days


#34 posted 06-06-2018 01:16 AM

I think you’re on to something. Have some research to do.

-- Shooting down the walls of heartache. Bang bang. I am. The warrior.

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Aj2

3752 posts in 2848 days


#35 posted 06-06-2018 03:33 AM

Hilarious thanks a bunch.

-- Aj

View AlaskaGuy's profile

AlaskaGuy

6471 posts in 3359 days


#36 posted 06-06-2018 03:50 AM

Is it April again already???

- shipwright

I don t get it Paul, what are you saying?

- jbay

Sunday April 1, April Fool’s Day 2018

-- Alaskan's for Global warming!

View TheFridge's profile

TheFridge

10863 posts in 2536 days


#37 posted 06-06-2018 04:27 AM

You all should be ashamed of yourselves.

This man takes the time to join up. Asks a legitimate question. And you all try to send him on a wild goose chase.

For shame.

-- Shooting down the walls of heartache. Bang bang. I am. The warrior.

View TheFridge's profile

TheFridge

10863 posts in 2536 days


#38 posted 06-06-2018 04:28 AM

And we all know alder is the best candidate.

-- Shooting down the walls of heartache. Bang bang. I am. The warrior.

View jonah's profile

jonah

2136 posts in 4348 days


#39 posted 06-06-2018 01:31 PM

I clicked on this thread because I thought, “surely this has to be a joke.”

Then I found out, to my horror, that the original poster was quite serious.

Then the jokes came, and all was again well with the world.

Making your own plywood? Wow.

View GR8HUNTER's profile

GR8HUNTER

8337 posts in 1762 days


#40 posted 06-06-2018 02:48 PM

THIS IS A HUGE JOKE :<))

-- Tony---- Reinholds,Pa.------ REMEMBER TO ALWAYS HAVE FUN :<))

View MrRon's profile

MrRon

6005 posts in 4293 days


#41 posted 06-06-2018 03:20 PM

Making plywood is not a DIY project. If you could see how it’s done at a big plywood manufacturing plant, you would know that it requires a lot of specialized equipment, adhesives, presses ovens, etc. You can experiment making small pieces, but 4×8 sheets; no way.

View Robert's profile

Robert

4519 posts in 2530 days


#42 posted 06-06-2018 03:26 PM

Popcorn popping…....

I’m planning on making my own lumber, so last year I planted 4 maple trees.

-- Everything is a prototype thats why its one of a kind!!

View GR8HUNTER's profile

GR8HUNTER

8337 posts in 1762 days


#43 posted 06-06-2018 03:32 PM



Popcorn popping…....

I m planning on making my own lumber, so last year I planted 4 maple trees.

- rwe2156


ROTFLMAO ^^^^^^ :<)))))))))

-- Tony---- Reinholds,Pa.------ REMEMBER TO ALWAYS HAVE FUN :<))

View Ripper70's profile

Ripper70

1379 posts in 1958 days


#44 posted 06-06-2018 03:35 PM


...last year I planted 4 maple trees.

- rwe2156

Curly Maple?

-- "You know, I'm such a great driver, it's incomprehensible that they took my license away." --Vince Ricardo

View DS's profile

DS

3726 posts in 3470 days


#45 posted 06-06-2018 03:41 PM

Believe it or not, I have made plywood before.
It was only two sheets – and quite special at that. They were for a Jewish Temple.

They were also radius’d on the face with short-direction grained veneer on about a 3’ X 11’ panel.

I bought the individual plys, stitched my veneers and made a curved form and a custom vacuum bag.

They turned out gorgeous, but I doubt I could be competitive at about $1500 per two sheets.
I’ve got pictures somewhere, but, not to hand at the moment.

-- "Hard work is not defined by the difficulty of the task as much as a person's desire to perform it.", DS251

View AZWoody's profile

AZWoody

1478 posts in 2274 days


#46 posted 06-06-2018 04:53 PM


...last year I planted 4 maple trees.

- rwe2156

Curly Maple?

- Ripper70

If you raise a nest of woodpeckers in the tree you’ll have birdseye maple.

View GR8HUNTER's profile

GR8HUNTER

8337 posts in 1762 days


#47 posted 06-06-2018 05:30 PM


...last year I planted 4 maple trees.

- rwe2156

Curly Maple?

- Ripper70

If you raise a nest of woodpeckers in the tree you ll have birdseye maple.

- AZWoody


NO NOT WOODPECKERS :<))

-- Tony---- Reinholds,Pa.------ REMEMBER TO ALWAYS HAVE FUN :<))

View runswithscissors's profile

runswithscissors

3129 posts in 3075 days


#48 posted 06-07-2018 01:13 AM

Reminds me that some years ago, I was refurbing an old Thompson runabout. I needed 3/8” ply to repair a portion of the forward deck, but it needed to have the grain running for & aft, and the beam at that point was 5’ or so. So I bought a couple of mahogany door skins, and cut them into 3 pieces, with staggered joints to get the 5’ + width. Pressing them into a semblance of plywood required a lot of cauls and cement blocks. Turned out not too bad, and I was able to repair the deck.

A year later the crappy glue in the door skins had gone to hell, and it all delaminated. Not my glue joints, which were urea resin (Weldwood), but the glue in the deerskins.

-- I admit to being an adrenaline junky; fortunately, I'm very easily frightened

View TheFridge's profile

TheFridge

10863 posts in 2536 days


#49 posted 06-07-2018 01:39 AM

Bump :)

-- Shooting down the walls of heartache. Bang bang. I am. The warrior.

View Ripper70's profile

Ripper70

1379 posts in 1958 days


#50 posted 06-07-2018 05:30 AM

Making Plywood

-- "You know, I'm such a great driver, it's incomprehensible that they took my license away." --Vince Ricardo

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