No conjecture, please.
Client is considering using "plyboo", or "plyboo pure" for a new kitchen
cabinet job. Any woodorker here used it, touched it, cut it, glued it,
stained, or otherwise finished it?
Any experience with this material welcome.
Even Coonasses got links, cher! :)
No one I know has even touched or seen the stuff, and I was hoping to find
someone who had used it on a project. The client is very eco/conservation
minded and is adamant about using something "green" for the material in her
One of the issues of likeminded folks with regard to interior materials
seems to be the formaldehyde used in the glue during the manufacturing
process. All data I've found thus far indicates that any exposure is only of
concern to the workers during the plywood manufacturing process, and that
My initial point was that "plyboo", which is likely manufactured the same
way (especially in China where this stuff comes from), would have the same
risks, but that has now apparently been addressed with a product labeled
While this would seem to be an ideal material for the required spec, I
can't, in good conscious, put my blessing on something without knowing how
well it may stand up to the intended task. The ads/info sheets, etc. all
have the blurb (regarding the glue used in manufacture) "no added
formaldehyde", which is like saying "no added sugar", which doesn't
necessarily mean there is none, or how much, of either.
Some are also touted as being "urea-formaldehyde free", but, from what I can
determine, all this stuff is "Made in China" and we've seen what that gets
you with regard to the veracity of ingredients.
In short, and needless to say, I'm skeptical of ANY new materials on $60K
projects with "something not added" to the glue that holds the damn material
Even though there is obviously no "test of time" available with a relatively
new product, I was hoping some wrecker had firsthand experience/use with the
material, and that use/impression could provide some clues as to whether its
suitability is OK to assume in this particular case.
That said, I suppose my other option is just to tout the "green" aspects of
a good cabinet grade plywood. :)
... hell, I'm trying! :)
The first is to put something together that indicates china produced
products are not all that green, regardless of what the marketing sheet say.
I have a hard trusting a system that allowed melamine to be added to milk.
The other is to use more "traditional" green products. Part of being green
is not using glues that outgas. Isn't applyply from Denmark? the gold
standard for an outgas free plywood?
About 5-7 years ago here in SoCal, plywood from China was relatively
new and known for TWO(2) things:
1) Low Price
Maybe things have changed, but I wouldn't want to be the guinea pig in
Houston to verify that change.
As noted, all I have is the experience/impressions recounted in FHB
article on using it. I wasn't muchly interested so remember little --
do recall it was used in the particular project for precisely the same
reason(s) but don't recall anything about the adhesive debate
specifically mentioned. AFAICR(emember), the guy liked the material
itself but don't the finishing used can't recall.
I asked one of the two locals here when I ran into him at the donut shop
a couple hours ago--he's not had any call for it, so no input there,
Thanks ... I do appreciate your effort. Mighty nice of you.
The saving grace ... One thing I've learned when dealing with customers and
green building materials the last few years is how you can gauge their
commitment to same by how long it takes them to utter the fatal, to the
"Can we find something a bit cheaper?"
Just got off the phone with a supplier in CA who sells a urea-formaldehyde
free, bamboo plywood like the customer wants ... $290/sheet for 3/4" x 4' x
8', plus shipping, and it weighs in at +/- 85lb a sheet.
We'll see .... <eg>
Was no trouble and glad to do it...was curious (marginally :) ) about
the answer if he had had any experience. He just finished a contract
job for us on the church parsonage--nothing fancy there; we're about
broke and if had known what was coming in the markets would probably
have held off doing anything...
Fortunately, the green theeng hadn't yet risen it's head to any
significance before I quit the remodel/refurb stuff and what we were
doing (antebellum restorations from dilapidated rentals back to single
or at most two-family residentials) the work called almost exclusively
for traditional construction/styles. Not to the extent for most of
having to live up to National Register standards, but did a couple of
I don't think I'd have the patience for the current customer for the
most part...Despite grain markets' recent retrenchment, think I'm better
off back on the farm. :)
Good luck w/ it--be interesting to hear what you think if it were to go
Here's something for Kermit to ponder ... apparently ALL of Columbia Forest
Products plywood, the supplier for Home Depot last I heard, is now
I'm assuming they have a higher grade plywood than that sold in HD and have
a call into one of the three local suppliers to assess that (other than HD,
which may be able to order it).
If this is indeed the case, and since the client has subsequently advised
that they are most concerned about out gassing over sustainability, and
since they have bamboo, along with her fallback wood choices, we may be
looking at a fit somewhere.
... besides, it'd be a real hoot saying the plywood for this project "came
from HD." :)
It costs about $6000.00 to ship a container from China to the US. How many
sheets of plywood can you get in a shipping container? I would say shipping
is rather cheap. I'd also say that the importer is making a killing if this
U.S. Forest Products
Annual Market Review and Prospects,
James L. Howard
"Hardwood plywood production, including core material such as softwood
plywood and OSB,
was estimated at 1.6 million cubic meters in 2007, down from 2006
plywood imports increased 13.8% in 2007 rising to 4.8 million cubic meters
Softwood plywood production was 10.8 million cubic meters in 2007, according
Engineered Wood Association (2007). This level of production was 8.8% below
volume of softwood plywood production fell throughout the 1990s, and the
continued through 2007. Softwood plywood production for the first 5 months
of 2008 decreased
by 14.7% compared with the first 5 months of 2007. The APA-The Engineered
Association's forecast that plywood production would decrease in 2008 is
supported by the
decline in production during the first 5 months of this year. Softwood
decreased in 2007 by 41% compared with 2006 data, while softwood plywood
the first 5 months of 2008 by 40.3%. Plywood exports to Canada increased by
60% during the
first 5 months of 2008 compared to a year earlier, and plywood imports from
35%. Apparent consumption of softwood plywood is expected to decrease in
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