Veneer Cores

Veneer Cores are comprised of an odd number of wood veneers laminated in alternating grain directions to achieve the desired panel thickness. A thin panel may consist of one core veneer, while a very thick panel might have 23 or more veneers. Core veneers may be softwood or hardwood and the grades may vary significantly. While they will be balanced from the center out, individual core veneers may be of varying thickness.

Generally, the higher number of plies used, the better the core. In addition to the specie, grade and number of core veneers used, how the cores are assembled affects the finished panel quality and costs.

Veneer cored panels are light in weight, high in dimensional stability and bending strength and hold screws better than most other substrates. They are less uniform in surface flatness and thickness, and edges are generally not attractive. Veneer cored panels are typically Class "C" fire rated, and can be made with no-added urea-formaldehyde adhesives.


1 Step Veneer, or Conventional Construction is the least expensive way to manufacture a veneer core panel because all laminations including the face and back veneers are assembled and pressed at one time. The drawback to this method is that imperfections in the core veneers can transfer to the surface as high or low spots on the face and back.


2 Step Veneer, or Calibrated Blank Construction is more costly because it takes more time to construct. Core veneers are assembled and pressed without the face and back. The resulting "blank" is then sanded to a calibrated tolerance before going back to the press with face and back veneers applied. The resulting panel is smoother and has better tolerances.