I noticed too, that the price went up and quality went down on common
sheet goods. HD and Lowes has the 9-ply cabinet-grade ply (I think in
5x5-foot squares), no voids, no fills, no "footballs"--havn't checked
the price lately, but expect a high price.
On May 25, 11:53 pm, email@example.comNoOnSePsAtMar.org (Larry W) wrote:
I in Balto as well. The last batch of HD oak ply I bought (about 5
sheets) was horrible. Thin veneer as you said, but it seems to me
that the glue is crap. Unacceptable splintering on crosscuts (to the
veneer) and wonderful suprise voids. Recently I used Freestate
Timbers for solid hardwood. Who do you use for quality hardwood
Dave - Parkville
THD has a 30 day satisfaction return policy on just about everything. You'd
be surprised at what they will allow to be returned. You should have
returned the plywood when you noticed it was so substandard. They will also
price match, plus a 10% kicker on any competitor's like product.
I have a problem with all of the posts here about lumber that guys go out
and buy (... and select from the pile themselves), and then post complaints
about the inferior quality of such things as should have been obvious when
they were buying it. Plys are easy to see, right on the rack. Fills are
easy to see. Shame on you for not taking the time to look it over better,
but why post a vent about how crummy the product is when you are the one who
In my case, I knew I was buying lower quality at $40 sheet for oak
plywood. I was making a base for a workbench (someone gave me a solid
core door). I knew the veneer was thin, but this was OK for my
purpose. The biggest problem I had was with the glue holding the
veneer on. It seemed weak and I think contributed to the chipping on
the cross cuts. All in all my base is fine. The quality was just
lower than low. (not to mention the crappy looking dark wood mixed in
with the plys - but as you said, I saw that when I bought it)
I guess I figured wood was one of those "non-returnable" items. Like buying
anything electrical at an autoparts store. Especially after I have cut it.
In my case, it's not like I have many options. Home Depot or Lowes are
about it for cabinet plywood. There used to be a hardwood supplier in town,
but they closed down a few years ago. Some of the lumber yards "might" have
cabinet ply, but it's not typically out where you can see it. You usually
have to pay first, and hope there's something good when you drive back to
pick it up.
So, I guess I figured plywood is plywood, and would be about the same
everywhere. Like I said, live and learn...
In all fairness, I "did" examine the sheets in the store. I dug through
several sheets to find the best three in the stack. But even the "best" had
problems. I also didn't notice any real voids in the ply's on the edge.
Maybe one or two small ones, but I had no idea the whole sheet was filled
As for the thin veneer, it's not visible to the naked eye. What I
"thought" was the veneer layer on each side was actually just another core
ply. Even after cutting and intensely examining a small piece, I can't see
the veneer layer. It's that thin...
I also had no way of knowing the wood would splinter so badly when
crosscut, until I cut into it.
Use a zero clearance plate to support the board right up to the
blade. Make two
passes. First cut should be a light scratch to score the veneer,
followed by a
second, full thickness cut. That applies whether you're sawing cheap
ply or expensive furniture grade.
As we all would - based on what makes common sense. I found it quite
surprising when I discovered that one could buy something like piece of
plywood, and return it once we cut it up, but you sure can.
Hey Anthony - I might have been harsher than I should have been in my reply
to your post. I'm sorry for that. It's just that we see posts like yours
almost weekly here, and at a point you begin to think that no-one should be
surprised by what they get in a piece of plywood at THD at this point.
No problem, I realize I'm part of the overall problem. Haste makes waste,
But I appreciate your apology. These days it seems like newsgroups in
general have turned into an F-U mentality, so it's refreshing to see a
little common courtesy. Thanks!
Fri, May 25, 2007, 10:11am (EDT-1) firstname.lastname@example.org (HerHusband) doth
<snip> 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. <snip>
Going by your description, the lsst plywood I bought at Lowes,
cnstruction grade, for shop projects, was better then what you got, and
ran me about $13 a sheet - the good side actually was. I don't shop at
Home Depot, period.
What is life without challenge and a constant stream of new
- Peter Egan
I bought about the same kind of plywood as you did last summer. I had
two projects in line to do, I thought I could tackle them both lickety
split. Wrong! I did the one that didn't require the plywood, I used
the MDF I'd bought for the other (oval mirror.) Anyway, I noticed
during the construction of the other project, that the sheets of birch
veneer plywood curled. There's no way they're flat. Not even close.
I was wondering WTF went wrong. Yes, it's in my basement shop, but
still, I've got other sheets of veneer plywood that aren't doing that.
I was thinking of going to a traditional lumberyard in the hopes that
they'll have plywood that won't curl. Or have the defects you've
I finished sanding and staining my entertainment center yesterday, and I'm
happy to report it all worked out OK in the end. I managed to not sand
through the thin veneer in any place critical (I did expose the veneer in
one small spot on the back, but thankfully it won't normally be seen.).
The chipout that is still exposed (mostly on the ends of the shelves) is
barely visible once sanded and stained.
Thankfully, whatever the core ply's are made of, it seems to stain the same
color as the surface veneer. Both the chipouts and the exposed veneer on
the back almost disappear when the stain is applied. That was a huge
Since all of the plywood edges are covered or hidden, this turned out to be
not much of an issue.
I still think the 1/4 panel I bought is probably oak, but it seemed to
stain up the same color as the rest of the project. So unless someone goes
up and compares the grain pattern on the shelves, I don't think anyone will
ever know. If it bugs me too much, it would be easy to make a couple of new
shelves, but once the shelves have "stuff" on them, I doubt I'll even
notice what the grain is like.
So, today I'm going to start applying the finish coats of polyurethane.
That will probably take a few days to complete. I'll try to post some
pictures in the binaries newsgroup when I'm finished.
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