There's no point to this message, other than I need to vent somewhere...
I'm building a new entertainment center and just bought three sheets of
3/4" birch plywood and one sheet of 1/2" birch plywood from my local Home
Depot. This has to be some of the worst plywood I have ever purchased!
I didn't notice it till I got home and unloaded, but the faces of the
sheet had numerous blemishes and patches (both sides). I should have
looked it over better at the store, BEFORE I started cutting. :)
Thankfully, I managed to cut around the major blemishes, or hide them in
places where they can't be seen. Unfortunately, this left me a little
short, so now I need to pick up a quarter sheet to build the last two
The plywood is also riddled with numerous voids. I don't think I have
made a cut yet that hasn't had pieces of the core falling out.
Even the grain pattern of the sheets is less than attractive. I'm not
sure what kind of birch trees they got the wood from, but this stuff is
Perhaps worst of all, the surface veneers are extremely thin and fragile.
It appears to be thinner than a sheet of paper. I bought brand new saw
blades for making this project, and the chipout is absolutely horrible. I
also sanded a couple of pieces yesterday, and can sand through the veneer
in less than 20 seconds with 100 grit paper. Now my project is almost
finished, and I'm almost scared to sand it for fear of sanding through
the veneer and exposing the core.
Worst of all, I paid $40 a sheet for this stuff at Home Depot, and then
saw MUCH better quality lumber at Lowes (where I normally get my plywood)
for only $30 a sheet.
The plywood sucks, but a lot of the fault obviously lies with me. I made
the mistake of shopping on a weekend, when the rest of the DIY crowd was
crowding into the store. I thought the convenience of having my wife and
daughter there to help load the cart would be nice. But, in my attempt to
get in and out of the store, I didn't inspect the sheets closely enough.
Anyway, I'm almost finished with my entertainment center and am happy
with the way it is turning out. Despite the poor quality lumber, I have
managed to hide the worst blemishes. If I can pull off sanding the
project next week without destroying it, there's still a chance it might
turn out OK.
Live and learn...