Plywood or boards?

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Forum topic by RussellAP posted 01-29-2015 08:26 PM 1040 views 0 times favorited 7 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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3104 posts in 2487 days

01-29-2015 08:26 PM

The upright part of the shelves in the picture could be boards or plywood.
My question is which is better? It’s not going to have a back, client wants the walls to show through.
It won’t be painted, it’s poplar with a very dark stain.

Should I used boards glued up or plywood. Without a back, my concern is that it might wobble with plywood. I’ll have a permanent shelf in the middle and the top will have that curved piece and it will attach to the lower cabinets.

So what do you think?

-- A positive attitude will take you much further than positive thinking ever will.

7 replies so far

View JesseTutt's profile


854 posts in 2311 days

#1 posted 01-29-2015 08:32 PM

If you can use a face frame or something to cover the edges of plywood I would go with good quality plywood like Baltic birch.

-- Jesse, Saint Louis, Missouri

View RussellAP's profile


3104 posts in 2487 days

#2 posted 01-29-2015 08:36 PM

I have to use poplar because the mantle and other woodworking is poplar. I have some 3/4 poplar ply though, should be just as strong as any ply. It will have a face plate.

-- A positive attitude will take you much further than positive thinking ever will.

View agallant's profile


551 posts in 3087 days

#3 posted 01-29-2015 08:36 PM

Plywood would be better if you can cover the edges. Boards can cup and warp over time.

View OSU55's profile


1966 posts in 2190 days

#4 posted 01-29-2015 09:26 PM

one will be as strong and rigid as the other. If either choice will have a face plate, ply will go quicker. Properly finished and in a controlled environment like a house, one is as stable as the other.

Regardless of material, the design will be a bit wobbly w/o a back, unless you will be going to the ceiling like in the pic. If so, tie off the top to studs or ceiling joists. Just a couple of screws.

View AlaskaGuy's profile (online now)


4787 posts in 2510 days

#5 posted 01-29-2015 09:30 PM

I can’t think of one good logical reason to take the time to mill and glue up pine board when you can use sheet goods.

You could even use MDF as I did in the project in the picture. Built that 10 years ago and it’s good as new.

It’s basically MDF (comfirmat screw work great on MDF) All edged with hard maple. The raised panel door are MDF with hard maple frames.

-- Alaskan's for Global warming!

View Redoak49's profile


3663 posts in 2189 days

#6 posted 01-29-2015 09:54 PM

I would use plywood.

However, I thought that you posted that you “Cant’t Stand Plywood”.

View ric53's profile


194 posts in 1720 days

#7 posted 01-29-2015 10:10 PM


-- Ric, Mazomanie

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