Timber based Manufactured Boards

These are boards used in the building industry and are produced by gluing wood layers or wood fibres together. These boards often made use of waste wood materials and have been developed mainly for industrial production as they can be made in very large sheets of consistent quality. They are available in many thicknesses and have the following properties;

·         Often made use of waste wood materials

·         Saw dust is used make MDF and hardboard

·         Boards are inexpensive so are often used instead of real wood

·         The saw dust is held together with glue

·         They do however do not look as good as real woods look

·         Often covered with a thin layer of real wood which is called veneer; this improves their appearance.

The following are the main types of manufactured timber boards in the construction industry;

MDF (Medium Density Fibreboard)

This type of board is smooth with an even surface. MDF boards are easily machined and painted (veneered) or stained. They are available in water and fire resistant forms and are mainly used for furniture and interior panelling due to its easy machining qualities.


This is a very strong board which is constructed of layers of veneer or piles which are glued to 90◦ to each other that will retain its shape and not have a tendency to shrink, expand or distort. It consists of an odd number of thin layers of timber with their grains alternating across and along the panel or sheet. They are available in interior and exterior grades and also for boat building. Plywood is used for strong structural panelling and furniture making.

Laminated boards

These consist of strips of wood which are laminated together and sandwiched between 2 veneers. The width of the strips varies with each type of board.


This is manufactured mostly from soft woods and is also known as particle board. It’s made up of a mixture of wood chips and wood flakes, which are impregnated with resin. They are then pressed to form a flat, smooth-surface board. Usually veneered or covered with plastic laminated; used for kitchen, bedroom furniture, shelving and general DIY work.

Block board

This is similar to plywood but the central layer is made from the strips of timber. Good for shelves and worktops and mainly used where heavier structures are needed.


These are manufactured from pulped wood which is mixed with an adhesive and pressed into sheets to the required thickness. They include; hard boards and insulating boards.

·         Hard boards are also known as high density fibre boards. They have a very cheap particle board which sometimes has a laminated plastic surface. It has become less popular over recent years due to new environmental targets in the Construction Industry to produce more sustainable temporary protection materials. It’s produced in either a wet or dry process. The wet process, known as the Mason Method, leaves only one smooth side while the dry processed hard board is smooth on both sides.

Fibre boards are used for; furniture backs, curved surfaces and door panels.

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