Specifying and Technical

How to Specify…

Apart from specifying the species, substrate and grade, the dimensions of the veneered board should be ordered “length by width by thickness”. The nominated dimension specifies in which direction the veneer grain runs, e.g. 2400 x 1200 – the veneer length is 2400mm long and can be referred to as long band. Nominating 1200 x 2400 indicates that the length of the veneer is 1200mm – this is referred to as cross band where the length of the panel in the grain direction is less than the width of the panel. The above represents the practice in Australia – some countries do specify differently, so it is always recommended that where doubt may exist, the grain direction should be clarified before ordering.

To ensure your veneer project meets your expectations it is important to specify the following items:
1. Name of veneer species.
2. Type of cut e.g. crown cut, quarter cut, rotary cut.
3. Veneer supplier and contact details.
4. Log or batch number (if natural veneer selected).
5. Matching type e.g. book match, slip match, random match
6. Sequence matched (not required for reconstructed veneer).
7. Direction of grain – long band or cross-band. (if applicable) – as shown on drawings.
8. Substrate e.g. MDF, particleboard, plywood.
9. Edging type and thickness.
10. Polish type and gloss level – open or filled grain.
11. Contractor to supply indicative finished samples of selected veneer prior to manufacturing.


Particleboard, being strong, stable and inexpensive, is an excellent substrate for veneered products.

Medium Density Fibreboard (MDF) is used as a substrate for timber veneers, particularly for applications where it is desirable for the edges to be moulded and exposed. Fire retardent MDF is also available.

Plywood is constructed from three or more layers of veneer bonded together and is often used as a substrate to apply face veneers for special applications.

Blockboard is a composite panel comprising a core of wood strips bonded together as a slab, faced on each side with two layers of wood veneer. Blockboard is mainly used in the manufacture of solid core doors.


Pressing is the process of bonding veneer layons to substrate using specialised pressing equipment which generally applies heat and pressure. Most products are supplied, trimmed and sanded, however this is optional.