Widely used and well known, Plywood is a really versatile material suitable to many applications and is increasingly popular in furniture, and is essentially it is a sheet material comprised of many thin layers of a base wood typically (birch or spruce). There are also cases where there can be a mixture of woods depending on what characteristics are required. Here we focus on Birch plywood.
Interior Birch plywood is made out of thinly cut wood from birch trees and urea-formaldehyde glue, which has limited water resistance, it has an attractive aesthetic end grain. Hardwood plywood is characterized by its excellent strength, stiffness and resistance to creep. It is joined together in thin layers or strips of wood, each layer is cross grained at 90 degrees in an uneven amount of layers, this is so the two facing grains always run in the same direction. It has a high planar shear strength and impact resistance, which make it especially suitable for heavy-duty floor and wall structures, as well as furniture. Birch plywood has excellent surface hardness, as well as damage/wear resistance.
There are many different types of plywood, coming in different quality grades and strengths. There are options for internal or external grade sheets that are constructed and coated with different glues and finishes, allowing a real variety of finishes and usage scenarios.
Generally the standard sheet size is 2440 x 1220mm, oversized also available, standard sheet thickness 3,6,9,12,15,18,21,and 24mm. In some cases there is also the possibility to cut 36mm.
Opendesk furniture is mostly spec’d for birch plywood (typically 18mm but sometimes 9 and 15mm).