Anyone have any good experiences with the new Chinese made so called
3/4" (11/16")oak plywood? Bought two sheets of what seemed to be flat
plywood but after cutting them to size I noticed the pieces began to
warp and twist very badly also after cutting the pieces and exposing the
inner cores there were a lot of unglued plies, man this stuff is junk.
Plan on taking this up with HD's management.
Not here -- but I've had some *bad* experiences with Asian-import plywood,
including a bad allergic reaction to the dust. Now, when buying ply, I look
for "Made in USA" or "Made in Canada" on the edge. If I don't see that, I
Doug Miller (alphageek at milmac dot com)
Nope ... AAMOF, I've gradually come to the conclusion that HD are nothing
but thieves in disguise (whose masks are quickly slipping off) who cleverly
market a ton of crappy merchandise to folks who either don't know better, or
don't give a shit ... and guess who's building your houses these days.
Save yourself some time and just go piss in the wind ... it'll actually make
you feel better, with the same results.
Besides, there is no "management" at HD store level. Manager's by
definition, can make exception to policy. You won't find anyone at store
level who can do that.
That said, not all Chinese plywood is as bad as what is sold at HD, who
apparently buys what no one else in the industry will take and sells it to
I buy a good deal of 3/4" Chinese birch for built-ins in new homes from a
local milling operation that supplies trim to the construction industry in
these parts. Good stuff, way above what the crap HD sells, and it's less
expensive to boot.
Hey, HD plywood is great for crating machines to export! And it's good for
shop cabinets. Not much more. If you want quality stuff, try elsewhere.
High quality North American Oak ply is around $75 a sheet here. --dave
Ex-CEO Nardelli is gone now so things should begin to improve. Ex-Marine
Nardelli was only interested in the bottom line at the expense of everything
When stock prices were going nowhere for HD, investors finally had enough.
*Maybe* there will be some improvement.
Max (with Lowe's stock)
"There.s a possibility that Home Depot shareholders will sue to get
the company to cancel its $210 million buyout golden - more like a
platinum - parachute to fired CEO Bob Nardelli. Anticipating that the
money will be returned, price changes are already showing up in local
Home Depot prices. The 99-cent air filter I bought last week for $22
is now on sale for $19.95." - Ted Sherman - Satirist
Sending unsolicited commercial e-mail to this account incurs a fee of
$500 per message, and acknowledges the legality of this contract.
Yep, ran into another bit of "value engineering" last week. I added
another outlet to the power pole so that each of the three tools around
that pole have their own plug-in. In the past, there was a threaded bus
bar to which one would attach the wire. The "value-engineered" versions
have a cheap, thin metal busbar and use a screw with a capture nut behind
that stamped bar. That leads to all sorts of fun trying to capture your
piece of wire while the screw is moving in and out of the hole.
Actually the real thief in disguise here is the out-going CEO who's
taking away $210 million while the stock has done nothing in the past 6
years, quality has gone down, and they have lost market share to Lowes.
Shoot, I'd retire if somebody gave me that kind of severance package,
matter of fact, I'd save them some money and take 10% of that.
I'm sure that they have lots of people who can apologize though.
If you're gonna be dumb, you better be tough
Like Swingman has indicated, not all Chinese plywood is the same. A local
and busy old fashioned lumber yard in SW Houston area has a big sign
advertising that they are now selling Chinese Plywood.
And you mentioned so called 3/4" (11/16") oak plywood. I have not seen
actual 3/4" plywood in years. Has what you have been buying lately actually
About 10 years ago, HD plywood used to be usable. It started slowly
Now it's pure crap. The last time I bought there (about a year ago), I
bought 4 sheets
of oak plywood. There were huge voids under the veneer (I remember one
being 5 inches long by about 3/4 inch
wide). And of course, some of these voids didn't appear until after
the bookcase was glued up.. I ended up filling the voids and just using
the bookcase as shelving in the basement. In short, it was impossible
to make a decent project out of it.
Haven't bought anything that I wouldn't use only as utility grade
since. It's sad, because back when they charged about $50 sheet for B
grade Oak, it was decent stuff. Now they charge about $40/sheet, but
it's crap. I wouldn't mind if there was a few defects that I could cut
around (I can live with some waste), but when they have voids all over
the place under the veneer, the stuff is not usable.
I've still got some scrap pieces of that in the shop from a project about 6
or 7 years ago ... notable for its difference in thickness and weight with
the stuff next to it. AAMOF, I built a couple of kitchen replacement
cabinets with that stuff and it was very useable @ $45 sheet.
I'm in the middle of a cabinet project now using HD 3/4 Poplar plywood
(made in China). NEVER AGAIN!!!
Chose this because cabinet exterior will be painted, doors will be
poplar raised panel and interior will be finished with shellac. At $33
per sheet compared with $43 for shop grade birch it seemed like a no
I should have inspected more carefully at the store. Got the stuff into
the shop and noticed that the edges were a little wavy. Look closer and
the plys are inconsistent thickness and overlap.
Face plys are basically transparent, touch sand and your through. Next
day sheets are starting to curl. When I started dicing it up I found a
couple of voids. WHAT CRAP!!
Kept going because it's good enough for what I'm doing, I can make it
work, and it's for myself. But would not have used for customer or if it
were to be used regularly by someone other than myself.
In the end you get what you pay for. I know better and have always said
that I would never buy lumber at HD and the like because there is a
difference. Since this project was for myself I made concessions only to
reinforce long held opinions. I've always used Shop Grade Birch from a
distributor who specializes in hardwoods and plywood for most of my
casework and it is a pleasure to work with.
Work with traditional lumber suppliers. You may pay a little more but
your getting a superior product and that makes the work SO much more
Cheap is aggravating.
OK, I have have bad experiences at HD like most of you. I am not here
to defend HD, no way. But... one thing about HD is that they have a
rather liberal return policy at least where I live.
If you were to return that material and ask for a full refund they
would not blink. They would give you an immediate refund or credit
even if a sheet was cut open. I see people returning warped boards, no
kidding. Try returning a warped board at your local yard.
So, if you don't like their product don't complain. Just get a full
refund. Then double your budget and go to a local vendor.
I've used chinese birch with good results. One home depot I went into
was really discounting a stack of chinese birch. I asked why and the
manager said that the stack looked really rough. At the corners some
of the veneer was delaminating. It was a good price though and it
looked like you could still use most of it. I've heard of people
having problems with the chinese birch. I guess it depends on the
batch you get.
Havn't heard of chinese oak.
We have a large hardwood wholesaler here, Austin Hardwoods, that sells
oak from China. It looks like red oak in color, has a tighter grain
like white oak, and the last shipment I saw them get in they had 3-4
lifts of this stuff in (planed S2S) 1X12X14.
Not a knot, not a rough spot anywhere. Six months ago it was $4.50 a
With the lifts still in the steel bands, it was all clearly marked
"Made in China".
I remarked on how clear and straight the wood was, and the manager
agreed it was the best supplier they had connected with in years. He
wasn't sure of the species of Oak, but knew it came from China, or was
maybe just milled in China an logged somewhere else.
Here's the kicker - they sell it as "Appalachian Oak". I never would
have thought to ask...
I remember that, but the only place I encountered that story was here.
I don't recall any hard proof, but that doesn't mean it wasn't/isn't
done. I am thinking of all the environmental characters that would
love to grab a headline by exposing a story like that, and I can't
imagine them not being all over it. Polluting water, stealing jobs,
selling our resources back to us... sounds like 60 minutes fodder at
least. Gotta be too much for a cub reporter to resist, and I am sure
if we know about it here, everyone else is bound to know.
Think of the logistics of running a full time mill with shipping,
receiving, loading, unloading, equipment maintenance, employee
transportation and logistics; it doesn't seem viable to me. I think it
is still cheaper to chop down the trees, load them on a truck and drive
them to the mill.
OTOH, I did run into a lumber guy a couple of years ago that told me
that he knew there was some species of oak that was in the east
somewhere that resembled our oak that would be coming our way soon.
According to him, our best large sized material for the highest end
consumer had been used, so now it made sense to charge more and ship it
in from wherever they could find it. I remember I laughed at the time
as I had never heard of "Chinese oak". He also told me there was an
oak type of wood from Chile that would be coming our way. Never saw
But did buy some of the Chilean plywood later, and it was some of the
best ply I have used in the last few years. It looked like a washed
out white oak on one side with absolutely no flaws. Two minor picks it
was A/B, and it either turned out to be A/A, or A/B-, with the backside
not always being the same material. The other nit was the veneer was
super thin - clean as a whistle, but reeeealy thin. It had minor open
grain and it sanded and finshed really well. Exceptional for built ins
and production work (which was what I used it for) as it had tiny or no
voids. I paid something like $38 bucks a sheet for it. But it hasn't
been available for over a year now and according to the lumberyard, may
not be again. They bid on containers of materials, and he said they
have seen nothing in the way of wood from Chile for a while.
> It might well be ... seems as if I recall something about shipboard
> mills, in International waters, that use timber from N America and
> right back here.
> ... or maybe I only dreamed it?
Sounds like a classic urban legend to me.
The cost of maintaining a floating manufacturing platform would far
out weigh any benefits.
The cost of just generating enough power to operate would make the
Fishing fleets often have processing ships at sea with the fleet, but
that is a different game since you are dealing with a perishable
product along with waste that is compatible with the sea.
Additionally, when the ship is full, they go back to port.
Just my $0.02.
Don't get me started on the topic of plywoods and veneers!!
These days manufacturers have perfected the process of depositing a one
molecule thick layer of wood over a crappy substrate. You cannot even
sand it with 600 grit sandpaper.
Go look at some old furniture and the plywood veneers. They used to
give you a generous layer of wood. You could see the thickness with
the naked eye and it was actually usable.
I don't even think of using plywood veneers anymore since they're total
garbage. It's unfortunate because they were a good idea. I could see
this with some exotic woods like teak or ebony but common oak or
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