Author Topic: Solid hardwood or veneer?  (Read 2011 times)

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Offline Tom Gensmer

  • Posts: 621
  • Residential Remodeler in Minnesota
Solid hardwood or veneer?
« on: September 10, 2017, 11:26 AM »
Hi everybody! I am currently bidding a project where I've been asked to replace most of the millwork in the front lobby area of a local hotel. The existing wood work appears to be solid Maple with a dark stain, a mixture of 1x4, 1x6, 1x8, a handful of 1x12s, and some 1/2"x2.5" pieces. All told, I'll be replacing roughly 1,000 lineal feet of trim.

The reason for replacing the existing is because the woodwork gets beat up by guests banging into the woodwork with their rolling luggage.

While it was initially my intention to install solid Maple, I wanted to explore whether there was any benefit to using Maple veneered sheet goods, particularly on the wider  pieces. My biggest concern is the long term durability and performance. The material doesn't need to be bomb-proof, my larger concern is wider solid wood boards twisting or cupping.

If I go solid wood I will have my lumber yard mill everything to thickness, run through a time saver and ripped to rough widths. If I go veneer sheet goods, I have the full Conturo setup so applying edgebanding won't be an issue.

All staining and finishing will be performed by my painter.

Any thoughts?
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Offline Rollin22Petes

  • Posts: 162
Re: Solid hardwood or veneer?
« Reply #1 on: September 10, 2017, 05:07 PM »
Usually on all my commercial jobs the architect or designer determines the material to be used. Having said that I've done it both ways one thing to consider other than durability is with sheet goods your limited to 8' lengths but with solid your going to be able to get longer boards possibly up to 16' depending on your supplier. That's going to mean less cuts so you can get completed faster plus fewer seems to deal with.   

Offline Tim Raleigh

  • Posts: 3483
    • Oakville Cabinetry
Re: Solid hardwood or veneer?
« Reply #2 on: September 10, 2017, 10:57 PM »
Hi everybody! I am currently bidding a project where I've been asked to replace most of the millwork in the front lobby area of a local hotel. The existing wood work appears to be solid Maple with a dark stain, a mixture of 1x4, 1x6, 1x8, a handful of 1x12s, and some 1/2"x2.5" pieces. All told, I'll be replacing roughly 1,000 lineal feet of trim.

The reason for replacing the existing is because the woodwork gets beat up by guests banging into the woodwork with their rolling luggage.

While it was initially my intention to install solid Maple, I wanted to explore whether there was any benefit to using Maple veneered sheet goods, particularly on the wider  pieces. My biggest concern is the long term durability and performance. The material doesn't need to be bomb-proof, my larger concern is wider solid wood boards twisting or cupping.

If I go solid wood I will have my lumber yard mill everything to thickness, run through a time saver and ripped to rough widths. If I go veneer sheet goods, I have the full Conturo setup so applying edgebanding won't be an issue.

All staining and finishing will be performed by my painter.

Any thoughts?

Trim is usually solid (wood or composite) and one of it's purposes is to provide protection. Other than metal or PVC, hard maple is a good choice for this application. Sheet goods generally will dent and chip more easily than hardwood. Properly dried lumber should not twist after being milled and is a lot easier to work with than steel. I would check to see if the maple on the existing structure was a soft maple which is sometimes used over hard maple as it is more readily available locally. Hard maple trim is a better solution in a heavily trafficked area.
Tim

Offline escan

  • Posts: 27
Re: Solid hardwood or veneer?
« Reply #3 on: September 11, 2017, 09:08 AM »
Hey Tom, have you done any re-sawing and vacuum bag veneering? I don't think Maple is expensive enough to have it done for you but I could see myself thinking along the same lines you are about potential solutions.