A Complete Guide to Particle Board Veneer Coverings

Particle board.
  • Beginner

Particleboard is a great material to work with. Made from sawdust and other wood waste glued and pressed together into large panels which are then laminated with wood veneer, they give the appearance of solid wood and can be finished as solid wood. It permits you to equip your kitchen with more affordable but expensive-looking cupboards and woodwork.

Manufactured from wood waste pressed tightly together with special adhesives as bonding agents, particleboard comes in different grades based on how much compression has been used in its manufacturing, that being the defining point to determine its density or hardness. A top-grade veneer is then applied to one side with a special adhesive, and "usually" but not always, a lesser grade of veneer completes the process laminates the backside. This balances out the stress applied to the finished panel caused by moisture variations, preventing excessive warping.

Importance of Veneer Coverings

Despite being environmentally friendly, a particleboard core is not as strong as hardwood or as resistant to moisture. It also does not take up painting well, let alone stain. It is because of these deficiencies that veneer lamination comes in. The particleboard is covered by veneer sheeting bonded to it with special adhesives. The veneer can make the particle board look like any type of wood.

Most particleboard uses are seen inside the house though. Veneer covered particleboard can be used for projects like building closet shelves — projects that won’t be exposed to a lot of moisture that is. Veneer covered particle boards don’t require painting and are pretty durable. The veneer coverings can hold up for years and years if the veneer is applied well in the first place.

Different Kinds of Veneer Coverings

Veneer coverings come in high-quality materials, making it a highly sought-after material for decorative finishes in wood projects. Veneers are created by slicing or peeling logs approximately 0.6mm in thickness. Their grain pattern depends on their cutting techniques.

Veneer’s two faces are usually developed in different grades. The veneer face is usually Grade A because it is the face that will be in contact with eyes looking for pleasing wood decoration and the back is usually of a rougher grade C or D. Grades are developed through variable sanding. And now with the option of designer veneers being available, the options for beautiful particle board coverings are increased too, ranging from earth-tones based on natural veneer species to new unique timber grains and patterns.

Using particle board with veneer coverings almost has no negative points apart from the fact that the particle board contains formaldehyde. This means that working on, and cutting particle board, can create a wood smoke filled with wood particles and can be really dangerous if inhaled. Particleboards with veneer coverings should be worked on in well-ventilated areas while wearing a particle mask or other breathing apparatus.