Producing veneer is the most effective way of developing high quality, genuine wood facing materials. It is both economical and environmentally sustainable. Using the latest production technology maximises the output of veneer; between 800 and 1,000 square meters can be produced from one cubic metre of lumber. No other timber process gives such a high yield.
There are various methods of slicing which give different surface effects to the veneer, this is taken into consideration in processing the log. For the slicing operation the flitches are planed on one or both sides to ensure the flitch lies perfectly flat on the slicing bed. There are two types of veneer slicing machines:
• Slicing machine, horizontal or vertical.
• Peeling machine, rotary cutting, eccentric peeling or stay-log.
Different results are achieved depending on the machine and slicing method used. Exact knife and pressure bar settings are very important for the quality of the slicing.
The first bundles from a log when sliced over the heart. Produces the so-called cathedral structure, which is the most sought after veneer.
The slicing is made perpendicular to the annual growth rings of the tree. This creates a straight grain appearance.
True Quarter Cut
The cutting of the log into four quarters. In the case of Oak this gives a higher portion of veneers with fine flakes. However, the yield is generally smaller than when converting in other ways.
Veneer cutting machine on which the log is clamped centrally when brought up to the knife while rotating so that the veneer leaves are peeled off spirally. Used for almost all burr veneers, Birdseye Maple or Birch.
Book Matching Veneers
This traditional method of matching is achieved by taking successive leaves of veneer and reversing each alternate leaf so as to bring corresponding opposite edges together in a mirrored effect. This produces a symmetrical balanced pattern of grain and figure.
Successive leaves are taken from the same stock or flitch of veneer and jointed without turningalternate leaves over as in book matching. This produces a repeat pattern which varies gradually across the panel. Most effective when straight grain veneers are used.
A traditional way of jointing veneers based on the nature of the growth of the tree from which the veneers are cut. A veneered panel is made up from four pieces which are book matched both from side to side and from top to bottom. Thismethod is useful in making up larger panels and when using species where only small leaves are available. It would normally be applied to butts, burrs and curls.
Veneers of the same species, but not necessarily from the same log, are deliberately mixed and mismatched to produce an overall grain effectwith no particular pattern. Butt or end grain jointing may be introduced in some leaves to add to the planking effect.