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Thread: HD Purebond Birch Plywood?

  1. #1

    HD Purebond Birch Plywood?

    I'm considering using the Birch 3/4 inch plywood that Home Depot sells that's made in the USA. It's called Pure Bond. (

    Any experience with it? I decided on domestic birch plywood for a built in bookshelf project. A lumber yard has domestic birch, I don't know what it looks like, it's a drive and it's $67 a 4x8 sheet. I was at HD this morning and they have the above product, which looks good, is made in the USA, and is $47 a sheet. Plus, it's a short drive and I can get a bit of a discount.

    Any experiences or thoughts?


  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Southern California
    I have used the HD 'birch' plywood recently. Be prepared for lots of nasty splintering no matter how you cut it. The 'birch' veneer is so very, very thin and you will find voids on cut edges that are not there on Baltic Birch. I have not tried domestic birch whatever that is.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Chagrin Falls, OH
    I'd be interested to hear some real life experience with this too. Assuming this is different from the horror stories that have been talked about on SMC in the past about BORG plywood, let's not bring that up and stick to just this american made one.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Redmond, OR
    Even the pictures they show on the link above show voids in the panels. Look at the stack of shelves half way down the page to the right of "Cut-to-size & more" and notice all the black lines. I have never been happy with Home Depot wood and usually go to a local lumber yard.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Seabrook, TX (south of Houston)
    Blog Entries
    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Schuch View Post
    Even the pictures they show on the link above show voids in the panels. Look at the stack of shelves half way down the page to the right of "Cut-to-size & more" and notice all the black lines. I have never been happy with Home Depot wood and usually go to a local lumber yard.
    Yep, when you can see the voids in the pictures they use to promote it, makes you wonder what you'll see when you are there live.

  6. #6
    I have bought 40+ sheets of american made BB ply from my local hardwood supplier over the last year or so. think it runs in the high $50's/sheet. it is a huge step up from the BORG BB. Flat and have yet to see the first internal void - there are internal knots so you see a color discontinuity on visible edges but no voids.

    FWIW I started buying the american BB because it comes in 4x8' sheets - while I do have a full sized truck it has a camper shell and 5x5' euro BB was a pain to transport

    I have found it great for casework and drawer boxes. for me, who does this because I enjoy the satisfaction of a finished product I created, life is way too short to use cheap materials

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Conway, Arkansas
    I used 2 sheets of the pure bond stuff not long ago. I didn't run into any voids and the material hasn't warped on me. It did however take a lot of digging to get 2 sheets that didn't have quite a bit of wood filler filling in voids on the faces.
    One purchase helps keep HF in business, the other helps keep LV in business.
    Those two outcomes have different values for me. - Chuck Nickerson

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Kapolei Hawaii
    I think you have to compare apples to apples and oranges to oranges. I don't think HD markets thier BB ply as "cabinet grade" which means no voids. There is a reason the HD ply is 10 bucks a sheet cheaper. You pay for what you get. IMO it's fine for base cabinets and shelves, since I face frame the exposed sections on the ply ends anyway.
    The quality of the veneer is a completely different story. I sanded through with 220 grit and a block, so it should not go anywhere where the ply face shows.......

  9. #9
    Let's not confuse anything American made with "Baltic birch".

    That Purebond stuff is not what I would call "good". My local supplier would sell it as what we call "shop grade". Good enough for upholstered furniture frames, laminated stuff, etc, but not cabinet grade.

  10. #10
    I've used the Purebond HD birch plywood. It's made by Columbia Forest Products, a few reputable lumber suppliers in my area also sell Columbia plywood products. The HD stuff is grade C3, the domestic birch priced at $67 in your area is probably an A grade on the good face. I think the C3 would work in your application, you need only one good face for a built in book shelf, and most of the rest of the cabinet is covered with books and stuff. I'm using it now for kitchen cabinets, sorted through and found some straight sheets, the good face is good enough for me, how often do you stand around inspecting the inside of kitchen cabinets? (unless of course you're a woodworker) You might have to sort through some sheets to find the best C - face.
    Here's a link to Columbia, explains plywood grades, kinda handy.

  11. #11
    Thanks for the replys so far.

    Buck-any issues with it splintering as descripted in the first few responses? That's my biggest concern so far. I'm going to be routed dados for 7 shelves on each side of three cases, I don't want it to tear out or anything.

    Right now I'm planning to go to HD first thing in the morning and look at it again and then go to the lumberyard. They're usually cheaper for dimensional lumber, so I have to go there anyway and then I'll decide.

    Based on my schedule I have to decide tomorrow and, if getting at the lumberyard get it as their hours are more limited.


  12. #12
    At the minimum, I would buy shop grade Birch plywood at at good lumber supplier. I looked at the HD plywood and it has very few plys compared to shop grade.
    Good Luck:
    Don Selke

    Julius A. Dooman & Son Woodworking
    My Mentor, My teacher. "Gone but not forgotton"

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Southport, NC
    I have looked at this product in three Home Depots. I never saw any voids in any of the stacks. It's all good looking stuff. It's made by Columbia Forest Products. Columbia Forest Products is North America's largest manufacturer of hardwood plywood and hardwood veneer products. They make innovative and top quality plywood. I suspect what you are seeing in the photos are something else, not voids. The Purebond is their formaldehyde free plywood.

  14. #14
    Jerry, I haven't had an issue with the veneer splintering, or tear-out, if that's what the other posters are referring to. I break the sheets down with the EZ Smart track saw (60 tooth carbide blade), which has kind of a zero clearance splinter guard. Table saw cuts are made with a Freud 60 tooth carbide blade, and dadoes are cut on the table saw with a freud stackable dado blade. I've experienced no veneer tear out problems. I think blade quality and a zero clearance inserrt in the table saw certainly helps.

  15. #15
    Thanks again.

    I looked at HD this morning. No voids, 5 plys. The birch said USA made but the red oak said Eucador. I didn't see any spots filled in and I looked at three top faces and two bottom.

    The lumberyard said theres was B2 and I didn't see a difference in look, more plys though. One was domestic one imported, the picker didn't know which was which. One had difference grain patterns, I think five ribbons the length of the piece.

    I'm going to try the HD purebond. I'm thinking since I'm using oak for the face frames I should use Oak faced ply? I'm thinking if I can find it made in the US. I might call another HD to see. If not I'll go with the Birch faced.



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