PLV (parallel laminated veneer) vs ply?

Discussion in 'Wooden Boat Building and Restoration' started by srimes, Jul 22, 2014.

  1. srimes
    Joined: Sep 2008
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    Location: Oregon

    srimes Senior Member

    Anyone make a small boat out of plv instead of plywood? Any comments on design considerations?

    I figure it'd be 1/2 way between ply and solid boards. Size availability like ply, strength orientation like solid wood. This would be doug fir btw.
  2. SukiSolo
    Joined: Dec 2012
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    Location: Hampshire UK

    SukiSolo Senior Member

    I'm not sure there is much use for thin veneer, parallel ply, to be honest. You loose the benefit of cross grain 'load spreading' and still have not fully eliminated the splitting a solid board can suffer. There is nothing to stop you making your own ply, with veneers at any angle and/or number. Investigate cold moulding, a technique I have built in for very thin hull thicknesses - 2 to 3mm.

    If you start to get 'thick' which depends on you definition of 'veneer' then laminating to achieve curvature with minimum stress is beneficial. It is a technique I use for thwarts and other parts with thicknesses from 3 through to 8mm. A lot of laminated chair backs and arms use veneer from 1mm upwards with parallel grain. Often these are 10+ layers, not forgetting the old wooden propellors were not far off, but near solid resin by the time they were finished!.

    Do not ignore the weight of glue if the total weight of the assembly is important. Doug Fir is a bit heavy for planking, check the SG/SD of it, but is fairly durable. You need slow growth stuff for it to be much good at resisting splitting, and I would personally only use the heartwood (more pink).
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