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Does Baltic Birch come in 5/8" Thicknesses?

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Forum topic by wilschroter posted 01-13-2022 10:44 AM 462 views 0 times favorited 15 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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wilschroter

179 posts in 1856 days


01-13-2022 10:44 AM

Has anyone found Baltic Birch plywood in a 5/8” thickness? I’m building some drawers and I’d love to use that thickness but can’t seem to find it anywhere. I saw some drawer companies that you can order direct from that seem to offer baltic birch drawers in that thickness but all I can find is 1/2 or 3/4.


15 replies so far

View Gene Howe's profile

Gene Howe

12469 posts in 4759 days


#1 posted 01-13-2022 12:32 PM

15 mm BB is available from Hood Distribution/Mc Ewan Group lumber yards. Don’t know your location but, they have several yards. Just google them.

-- Gene 'The true soldier fights not because he hates what is in front of him, but because he loves what is behind him.' G. K. Chesterton

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squazo

345 posts in 2976 days


#2 posted 01-13-2022 01:34 PM

the 3/4 I buy is actually 11/16. Which is only a 1/16 over 5/8.

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wilschroter

179 posts in 1856 days


#3 posted 01-13-2022 01:41 PM

Yeah I’m looking to get the 5/8 so that I can have something that’s thicker than the actual width of 1/2. When I built drawers out of 3/4” they were just too beefy.

I’m looking for someone that can deliver to Columbus, Ohio. Menards carries 3/4 and 1/2 but nothing in the 5/8 variety. Woodcraft also only has 3/4 and 1/2.

View johnstoneb's profile

johnstoneb

3190 posts in 3503 days


#4 posted 01-13-2022 02:15 PM

Given the quality and number of plies 1/2 Baltic birch is probably stronger and looks better than 5/8 fir ply. All plywood is measured in metrics for thickness 5/8 ply is actually 19/32 or less. i have used 1/2 Baltic. in drawers before and have been happy with them. They are lite and strong

-- Bruce, Boise, ID

View JIMMIEM's profile

JIMMIEM

245 posts in 2172 days


#5 posted 01-13-2022 02:27 PM

Try this place. They ship nationwide. I have bought from them several times and they have nice stuff.
https://www.boulterplywood.com/

View gdaveg's profile

gdaveg

459 posts in 533 days


#6 posted 01-13-2022 02:28 PM

Hood Distribution has a location in Kentucky, one state away.

https://www.hooddistribution.com

-- Dave, Vancouver, WA & Tucson, AZ

View DS's profile

DS

4041 posts in 3751 days


#7 posted 01-13-2022 02:33 PM

Baltic Birch is typically sold in metric units.
That is why it doesn’t fit nicely into imperical unit thicknesses.
And yes it is sold in various thicknesses including 15mm, although 6mm, 12mm and 18mm are more common sizes.

Most hardwood lumber suppliers will stock some kind of Baltic Birch.
I would start my search with my local hardwood lumber supplier.

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

View Lazyman's profile

Lazyman

8755 posts in 2718 days


#8 posted 01-13-2022 02:38 PM

In my experience, 1/2” (12mm) is plenty strong for making drawers, unless maybe they are really, really long. Because the sides are oriented vertically, they can easily handle the weight of even the heaviest drawers and if you attach drawers slides, that makes them even stronger and stiffer. Just make sure you use slides that can handle the weight you expect to put in them. And for drawers for really heavy loads they are usually deeper with makes the sides even stronger. For drawers that need to handle extra weight, it is mostly the bottoms that need to be beefier, especially on extra wide or deep drawers.

-- Nathan, TX -- Hire the lazy man. He may not do as much work but that's because he will find a better way.

View DS's profile

DS

4041 posts in 3751 days


#9 posted 01-13-2022 03:19 PM

View JackDuren's profile

JackDuren

1772 posts in 2290 days


#10 posted 01-13-2022 05:12 PM


In my experience, 1/2” (12mm) is plenty strong for making drawers, unless maybe they are really, really long. Because the sides are oriented vertically, they can easily handle the weight of even the heaviest drawers and if you attach drawers slides, that makes them even stronger and stiffer. Just make sure you use slides that can handle the weight you expect to put in them. And for drawers for really heavy loads they are usually deeper with makes the sides even stronger. For drawers that need to handle extra weight, it is mostly the bottoms that need to be beefier, especially on extra wide or deep drawers.

- Lazyman

1/2 is usually plenty.

View Dark_Lightning's profile

Dark_Lightning

5001 posts in 4439 days


#11 posted 01-13-2022 05:34 PM

Here’s a drawer with over 40 pounds of cast iron and a couple turning blanks. It’s made of 12mm Baltic birch, with those cheap nylon roller slides from Lowe’s (I think).

-- Steven.......Random Orbital Nailer

View therealSteveN's profile

therealSteveN

9380 posts in 1905 days


#12 posted 01-13-2022 08:49 PM

1/2” makes a fine drawer and is perfect for 1/4, 1/4. 1/4 locking corners. Makes a great, very strong drawer.

-- Think safe, be safe

View LeeRoyMan's profile

LeeRoyMan

2375 posts in 1057 days


#13 posted 01-14-2022 12:57 AM

I’ve made hundreds of drawers using 1/2 BB with 1/4” bottoms. Nothing wrong with it.

Now days though, I use 5/8 with 1/2” bottoms.
It’s not because of strength, although 5/8 will get you stronger joints,
drawers just look better, and with the 1/2” bottoms it gives you something to screw your undermount clips to instead of just angling them into the front. Better drawer. Most of the time 5/8” will be flatter also, of course depending on how the lumber yard stores it.

View BillInInd's profile

BillInInd

10 posts in 535 days


#14 posted 01-14-2022 08:18 PM

If you’re anywhere near South Bend, IN or Charlotte, MI, Johnson’s Workbench usually carries 5/8” Baltic (they call it Russian Birch—same thing). Good luck!

-- BillInInd

View Lumpy63's profile (online now)

Lumpy63

20 posts in 365 days


#15 posted 01-15-2022 01:28 AM

Our local place (a one off shop) sells what they call 5/8” baltic birch plywood, but I haven’t measured it to see what the actual thickness is.

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