Customers often ask ‘What is engineered wood?’. In essence its lots of small pieces of wood laminate together to make a whole board or profile.
There are two major advantages of engineered wood over solid timber:
1. It makes a very stable piece of wood that generally will not warp and twist. The outer layer will be quality veneer or thin strip and will appear just as a solid piece of wood. It is often used in stair components.
2. It is more environmentally friendly. For example in slow growing timber such as oak it means there is very little waste. The factories use sophisticated computer controlled machines that measure and cut every tree to make maximum use of it. The poorer quality timber that would have scrap is used to form the core of the profile. Even short pieces are finger jointed together to make longer pieces.
The major disadvantage is if the end grain is seen in the finished product then so will the core. This can often be made into a feature as all the different grains can make an interesting feature. It is generally not suitable for outdoor use as moisture can penetrate into the core more easily causing premature failure.