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Shop Talk

Selecting Plywood for Panels

World Panel Products Supplies a variety of woods that may be useful to enthusiasts of wood-bodied cars and trucks. Primarily serving the marine industry with veneers and water-proof plywood, the cross-over to wood-bodied vehicles is easy to see.

Any plywood that has a marine grade glue line will prove to be longer lasting. No core voids or spliced faces in the grade that meets the marine industry BS1088 standard will also give you a greater piece of mind when undertaking your project.

We have kept a note of some of the customer requests recently in this field. The main interest so far has been with 'mahogany type' plywood, and this covers quite a few.

The first and most common has been our solid sapele plywood (also called sapelli by some). This meets BS1088 requirements, which basically means:

  • No core voids
  • Same specie of wood throughout
  • Whole piece of veneer on face and back.
  • Normally A/B grade

African Mahogany (Sapel) rotary-cut veneer marine plywoodNow, bear in mind that the faces will have a rotary look to it. Still nice on the eye, but certainly not giving any stripy, or 'go-fast' lines, that some people prefer. The durability of this wood is very good. Since sapele is African and closely related to genuine mahogany, it finishes close to the mahogany we are all familiar with.

We had a customer recently purchase two sheets which he was modifying further with an epoxy-resin. We think this was going to be exported, possibly for use on a vehicle similar to an Africar, like that used in the 80's expedition from the arctic to the equator.

African Mahogany (Sapele) ribbon veneer marine plywoodThe next popular plywood request is for our ribbon mahogany plywood, which has similar properties to the above, however, the faces are of a quartered, or ribbon striping, offering the lines along the sheets. It has to be noted that the face and back are composed of strips of this veneer, so it is not a whole piece facing. The core has a marine glue line, no core voids, and generally is an okoume specie. This specie is of African origin, lightweight but non-durable under the wood classification.

We have had a variety of customers call for this item, all going for repair/refits on the sides of their vehicles. The lines, they say, are the most important features, as they are trying to replace genuine quartered or Philippine mahogany, which offers similar features.

Our okoume plywood meets the BS1088 standard, but as mentioned earlier, it is a non-durable wood with a rotary finish on the face and back. The color of this wood is pinkish, but can be stained darker or bleached lighter if need be.

There are more plywood options viewable on our website www.worldpanel.com

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World Panel Products, Inc.
1750, # 1 Australian Ave
Riviera Beach, Florida 33404
Tel: 561-840 0500
Fax: 561-840 9945
Toll Free 888-836-3379

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