Where are you buying your plywood??

Discussion in 'Materials' started by CatBuilder, Feb 22, 2011.

  1. CatBuilder

    CatBuilder Previous Member

    I know PAR has quoted some prices on plywood that have me scratching my head. My prices are double what he talks about. :confused::confused:

    I currently need 20 sheets of 12mm, best quality Okoume (with verifiable Lloyd's certifications).

    Where can I get this?

    I see it for about $100/sheet.

    Anyone know where to get a better deal, but still have it be extremely good quality?

    These are my bulkheads, so it goes without saying - no voids allowed.
     
  2. PAR
    Joined: Nov 2003
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    Location: Eustis, FL

    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    Florida is the USA's largest plywood user, so we get the best pricing, but 12 mm, 7 veneer, BS-1088 stamped Okoume (Joubert) is about $115 at full retail. At wholesale pricing you'll pay about $75-$85, in large enough quantities, as low as $60 a sheet. At 20 sheets, expect a 15% discount from most suppliers, making them about $100 a sheet.

    Allied Veneer - (Nationwide) 800-540-7040
    Almquist Lumber (CA) - 707-668-5652
    Atlantic Plywood (Northeast USA)- 800-937-6700
    Boulter Plywood (MA) - 617-666-1340
    Chesapeake Plywood (MD) - 410-244-0055
    Connecticut Plywood (CT) - 860-953-0060
    Crosscut Hardwoods (OR, WA) - 503-224-9663
    Houston Hardwoods (TX) - 800-606-6176
    MacBeath Hardwoods (CA) - 510-843-4390
    MacBeath Hardwoods (UT) - 800-225-3743
    McEwen Lumber (NC) - 800-662-7468
    PlyTac (WA) - 800-468-6848
    Rare Earth Hardwoods (MI) - 800-968-0074
    Riverside Lumber (LA) - 800-669-6624
    Roberts Plywood (NY) - 631-586-7700
    Russell Plywood (DE, MD) - 800-787-7355
    Whittelsey Wood Products (FL) - 305-621-4242
    West Wind Hardwoods (Canada) - 800-667-2275

    Consider BS-6566 for your bulkheads to save money. A 12 mm meranti, 7 veneer, BS-6566 sheet (Aquatech) will be about $65 at full retail, with similar price reductions (15% or $56 per) at 20 sheets. The construction of 6566 is less critical then 1088, but for bulkheads this isn't as big an issue. The last batch (half a pallet) of 6566 I got was nearly void free, and those that turned up during inspection where easily filled or cut around during use. Naturally, the meranti is a little heavier (about 20% more the okoume), but again, bulkheads usually don't account for a very high percentage of the hull weight.
     
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  3. CatBuilder

    CatBuilder Previous Member

    That is one of the most useful posts I've ever seen.

    Thank you very much, PAR. Now I understand the plywood market.

    My build location is in FL, so there might be some local hope yet! :)


    Some of the plywood is for bulkheads that act as cross beams (main strength bulkheads) and keep the catamaran from folding up, so I'm pretty set on getting the best I can for a fair price.
     
  4. PAR
    Joined: Nov 2003
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    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    Meranti is stronger then Okoume. A BS-1088 sheet of 12 mm meranti is about $80.
     
  5. rberrey
    Joined: Oct 2010
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    rberrey Senior Member

    You might also look at baltic birch, it will be heaver but stronger and cheeper. You might be able to get a good price on it at Mid South lumber. rick
     
  6. PAR
    Joined: Nov 2003
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    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    Baltic birch isn't stronger the meranti pound for pound, though it is heavier. I've never seen a BS-1088 or any other Lloyd's rating on a Baltic birch sheet. On average it costs slightly more then a BS-6566 meranti sheet and it doesn't bend worth a damn, so Baltic birch should be relegated to bulkheads and interior furniture facings only.
     
  7. Steve W
    Joined: Jul 2004
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    Steve W Senior Member

    I agree with Par, meranti marine ply probably offers the best "value" available in the US as long as weight is not critical, it is strong, moderatly resistant, consistant quality and reasonably priced, cant ask much more than that. Baltic Birch has a place though as it can be bought at many local lumberyards and is a nice light color for interiors.
    Steve.
     
  8. tom28571
    Joined: Dec 2001
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    tom28571 Senior Member

    Absolutely, I'd use more meranti if weight was not one of my major constraints. The surface veneer is sometimes not very pretty or finish as well as occume but that may not be an issue. If you know how to inspect the panels for any defect, BS6566 is a good buy also. BS1088 is the best but may not always be perfect either. The British Standards still exist on paper but are no longer supported by source inspection or any other enforcement. Its just a stamp. You are always bound by the trust you put in the supplier's quality control. Buy only from reputable dealers that back up the sale.

    As Paul said, $100 is not exorbitant for 12mm 4 x 8 marine plywood.
     
  9. PAR
    Joined: Nov 2003
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    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    The real key is personal inspection of the panels. Once you learn how to spot the flaws, you can reject lesser panels. I've purchased stacks of BS-6566 that rival BS-1088 in every regard with at least a 40% price difference. It's also important to establish purchasing power, possably with a coop and buy from wholesale suppliers. As far as finish, plywood is almost always sheathed, so the point is moot and a veneer is a fairly easy thing to apply, if you want a custom panel look on a 6566 sheet. In small craft, weight is a big issue, but it's not so much in larger craft. You still want to save weight in a 26' power cruiser for example, but the half a ton of iron V8 and transmission used to propel it offsets a huge portion of the plywood choice differences.
     
  10. hoytedow
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    hoytedow Wood Butcher

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  11. Dirteater
    Joined: Oct 2010
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    Location: Canada

    Dirteater Senior Member

    Hi Par,
    Some tips on what to watch out for would sincerely be apprieciated.
    perhaps thats another post?

    thanks,
    DE
     
  12. CatBuilder

    CatBuilder Previous Member

    I'd like to try to take a stab at this (and possibly be corrected):

    You can look at the edge of the stack to see if there are voids. I had a batch come on a truck from a FL supplier and it was junk. Voids 1/2" to 3/4" on almost every sheet. I refused delivery.

    I'll say that stuff I got from Boulter Plywood was void free, though.
     
  13. Steve W
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    Steve W Senior Member

    Agreed, personal inspection is the last line of defence against a crappy panel, however as Tom pointed out you need to be able to trust your supplier, especially when you cant buy locally, shipping is very expensive and its just not practical to have to return sheets.
    Steve.
     
  14. PAR
    Joined: Nov 2003
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    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    Yep, I watched the STS 133 from my front yard (as usual) with my pair of binoculars. I don't need the binoculars, but it makes the shuttle look bigger and better. I've seen most of them go up, including the Challenger explosion. If you have an opportunity, get down here for the last couple, it's sight you have to experience at least once as an American. If possible, get onto the NASA guest tour and watch from their grand stands. You'll realize what it means to be American after one of these puppies lights up.

    I was fortunate enough to be in the stands for Apollo 16's launch (the spring of 1972). You haven't seen **** unless you've seen an Apollo launch. The STS program is a fart in a gas station toilet in comparison to the Apollo launches. First of all your were a lot closer then the stands they have now (post Challenger changes), the ground shook, the roar, the smell, the heat, the huge smoke plume, a real sight.

    Over there in Pasco county, above Tampa, I'm surprised you could seen much of the shuttle Hoyt? She must have been nearly horizontal in flight configuration by the time she was high enough for you all to see her over there.
     

  15. hoytedow
    Joined: Sep 2009
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    hoytedow Wood Butcher

    The smoke trail left a 60 to 45 degree mark in the sky between 2 different cloud masses. I could clearly see the bright flame at the top of the smoke column. I saw the Challenger explosion from St. Petersburg. I'll never forget what I call "The Devil's Pitchfork" as the parts went roaring off in different directions. Shocking sad day that was. That day was much clearer than yesterday. Yesterday the column angle was about like : \, maybe a little more but not much.
     
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