Looking for Baltic Birch or an Alternative Wood For Jigs

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Forum topic by Mike Turner posted 12-21-2016 02:03 PM 3160 views 0 times favorited 13 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Mike Turner

48 posts in 2358 days

12-21-2016 02:03 PM

I am looking for 3/4” baltic birch or some kind of alternative wood for jigs for the shop.I cant find BB so far anywhere close to Laurinburg NC 28352.Any recommendation? Don’t want to use MDF …makes a mess and formaldehyde.

-- Mike,North Carolina

13 replies so far

View WhyMe's profile


1073 posts in 1763 days

#1 posted 12-21-2016 02:13 PM

I’ve used this from Lowes and seems to do well.
Top Choice Blondewood 3/4-in Birch Plywood . It also comes in 1/2”.

View brtech's profile


1052 posts in 3124 days

#2 posted 12-21-2016 03:17 PM

My local hardwood supplier will order me any kind of ply I need. They happen to stock BB but if they didn’t they would get it for me. I’ve also asked my non-chain lumber yard if they would special order me some ply and they said they would, so ask.

View Loren's profile


10477 posts in 3850 days

#3 posted 12-21-2016 05:00 PM

Go down to the library look up “plywood”
in the b2b phone directory. You may find
a commercial dealer that doesn’t normally
deal with the retail public in there. They’ll
sell to you, they just don’t advertise to
the public.

I’ve found some great dealers this way.

View waho6o9's profile


8523 posts in 2779 days

#4 posted 12-21-2016 05:04 PM

View hairy's profile


2782 posts in 3734 days

#5 posted 12-21-2016 05:14 PM

When I get free shipping from Rocklers I stock up on bb plywood.

-- My reality check bounced...

View dschlic1's profile


442 posts in 2171 days

#6 posted 12-21-2016 06:02 PM

Home Depot has birch plywood approaching the quality of imported BB Plywood

View RandyinFlorida's profile


257 posts in 2269 days

#7 posted 12-21-2016 06:31 PM Eazy-peazy. 2 day delivery. Order filled by Woodcraft. You can also get it with one side phenolic.

-- Randy in Crestview Florida, Wood Rocks!

View DS's profile


3033 posts in 2622 days

#8 posted 12-21-2016 06:55 PM

MDO is my preference for jigs, (if we are staying away from phenolics and metals.)
Most plywood suppliers carry it. (Including Home Depot)

It is primarily used for road signs and has a weather-resistant resin overlay surface – super stable.

-- "Hard work is not defined by the difficulty of the task as much as a person's desire to perform it.", DS251

View Mike Turner's profile

Mike Turner

48 posts in 2358 days

#9 posted 12-21-2016 07:08 PM

Is the MDO a cleaner product than MDF? probably not even in the same category (I hope). MDF works good,just a nasty product to work with.

-- Mike,North Carolina

View ChefHDAN's profile


1193 posts in 3051 days

#10 posted 12-21-2016 08:11 PM

DS, totally agree with you for MDO, I scavenged a bunch of it from an unnamed location where I worked whenever they broke down an exhibit. They would buy it by the truckload, and I’ve been trying to source it through HD because YES they show it on the sites, but they don’t stock what they show, they have a primed sheet single sided with MDO on one side and it’s CRAP mostly just suitable for outdoor painted applications for lower window covers fascias etc…. and don’t get me started about the looks I got when I went to the Pro Desk to ask questions…

I have found it at specialty plywood dealers, but the minimum order is WAY more than I need.

-- I've decided 1 mistake is really 2 opportunities to learn.. learn how to fix it... and learn how to not repeat it

View Redoak49's profile


3664 posts in 2190 days

#11 posted 12-21-2016 08:13 PM

Aruaco Plywood is very good quality and I get mine at a Menards

View DS's profile


3033 posts in 2622 days

#12 posted 12-21-2016 09:25 PM

Mike, MDO is veneer core plywood. It machines and behaves just like plywood except it is strong and weather/damage resistant. (Yes, cleaner than MDF)
I get mine through my local hardwood/plywood supplier. (About $60 per 3/4” 4×8)

The surface is smooth and paintable due to the resin paper layer on both sides.
I never even looked for it at HD, except it showed up on a google search so I added the link.

-- "Hard work is not defined by the difficulty of the task as much as a person's desire to perform it.", DS251

View bruc101's profile


1260 posts in 3744 days

#13 posted 12-21-2016 11:00 PM

We’ve been making all of our jigs out of MDO for many years and keep a couple of sheets in stock for that very reason.

-- Bruce Free Plans

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