Author: Ernest Davis

Ultimate Guide To What Is Solid Timber

What Is Solid Timber?

Solid timber is simply a term used to differentiate between ordinary timber and engineered timber, as well as structures that lack hollow spaces. Solid timber is quickly becoming rare and costly due to logging and the many years it takes for a lot of trees to grow. There is plenty of timbers in the market today that vary widely in strength, characteristics, and price.

Timber can be divided into two different categories: hardwoods and softwoods. These two have major differences in their woods micro-structure; these determine their strength and density. This timber is the most suitable option for any woodwork. However, if you’re considering a good quality timber that has little flaws, get ready to spend more money. Timbers that are relatively low in price such as pine could be good but would never compare in quality and aesthetics to high-priced timbers.

If you would ask me, solid natural timber is the ideal type of timber for furniture use and cabinet making because it has excellent characteristics and features. Manufactured boards are also worth considering, but nothing is as good as solid natural timbers.

Engineered timber products are made from binding together veneers, fibers, or wood strands with adhesives to produce a composite material. A few examples of engineered timber include fiberboard, oriented strand board (OSB) and plywood. The fact that a specific product is made from solid timber is usually recommended in advertisements. Despite that fact, using solid timber has its share of advantages and disadvantages.

What Is Solid Timber vs Engineered Timber?

One of the greatest advantages that solid timber has its that the timber cut is the same length all the way through. This means that repairs are significantly easy. On the other hand, repairs to veneer tend to be more challenging and impossible at times.

Furniture made from solid timber tends to be strong enough to meet every furniture application easily; it can also last for many years. Society is still in doubt if furniture constructed from plywood, usually constructed from pine, can endure for that long. Plywood, as well as other engineered timber products used to build furniture, are usually covered with a veneer like Cherry.

Today, it wouldn’t be a surprise to see furniture retailers and manufacturers advertising this veneered plywood furniture as being created from wood solids together with cherry veneers. A lot of customers tend to think that indicates solid planks of lowly-priced timber such as poplar, etc. with highly-priced timber such as cherry meant for veneers. These wood solids are typically plywood or some other engineered wood product.

What Is Solid Timber vs Hollow Timber?

Hollow core doors are one of the most commonly hollow timber structures. Compared to solid wood doors, hollow core doors tend to be lighter in weight. Hollow core doors are also easier to install and cheaper than solid timber doors. However, sound tends to travel more freely through hollow core doors, which can be an issue to a noisy house or if the occupants want some more privacy.

Another point to consider, hollow core doors are not that suitable to be doors leading outside since they tend to be easy to break and the robbers like taking advantage of that. Solid timber doors are to some degree more fire resistant because fire has to get through more material. On the other hand, making use of a steel door would maximally increase fire resistance.

Advantages of Solid Timber

  • When it comes to aesthetics, solid timber gets it right.
  • There is a large variety of solid timber types such as Jara, pine, and Tasmanian oak.
  • Solid timber can endure for very many years.
  • It is most suitable for all kinds of woodwork joints.
  • Finishes well and takes adhesives.
  • Solid timber exists in different types of colors, grains, and textures.

Disadvantages of Solid Timber

  • Solid timber can cost you a lot of money.
  • It has natural flaws such as knots.
  • When you are searching for solid timber, it can be very challenging to find exactly what you are looking for.
  • It can swell, twist, shrink, or even warp.

Reasons to Consider Solid Timber for Construction

  • It is natural, beautiful and welcoming

Solid timber buildings are stable, maintain their value and satisfy the harshest demands on ecological sustainability, cost-effectiveness, and quality.

  • Air quality and coziness

Solid timber represents living comfort and well-being. The huge variety of design options available for the architect is surely one factor to make sure of this.

  • Lightweight and slim designs that have a high degree of prefabrication

This shortens construction time while always ensuring high quality. Also, constructions of solid timber have a good ratio of gross and net living space than other conventional methods.

  • Eco-bonus wood

Wood is a natural material has many advantages compared to all other conventional building materials.

Engineered Timber Flooring Is Just as Elegant as Solid Wooden Flooring Though It is Cheaper and More Durable

Trees are natures bounty and have always been used by humanity to build houses, make tools, and also for flooring. Scientific engineering has found a way to make timber floors that have greater strength, beauty, and are more durable. Flooring that is made by using various engineering technologies has managed to combine technology with the highly desirable features present in natural wood. Engineered timber flooring gives many advantages over solid wood flooring and allows this flooring to be superior in performance.

Wooden floors have always added elegance to homes and are considered sophisticated floors that give any home a mark of distinction. They add significantly to the decor and can set the tone for the rest of the house when they are used in living rooms. Solid wood does have some limitations and can warp when it becomes wet or when it is exposed to the rays of the sun. The hardest of woods can be dented or marked by sharp objects, and the most common of these are the stiletto high heels worn by women. Hardwood floors are expensive and do require them to be protected and preserved with frequent attention to their care.

Engineered timber flooring, on the other hand, will provide a floor with all the advantages of a hardwood floor, while greatly diminishing any of its disadvantages. Engineered flooring goes through a process where a natural hardwood layer is glued to underlying plywood that then gives the finished product the reinforcement needed to give it added strength. The plywood layer is sandwiched between the top hardwood layer and another base layer of plywood. The grains in the plywood are made to run in opposite directions, and this greatly adds to the strength of such engineered flooring. The use of plywood whose manufacture goes a long way in conserving forest resources makes this flooring more appealing as nothing is wasted when it is used.

Engineered timber flooring can be made to resemble the hardwoods that are the most popular with homeowners, such as hickory, oak, walnut, maple, and bamboo. The top hardwood layer is prefinished and therefore does not require any other sealing. You can use an engineered floor as soon as it is installed. Once the floor has been used for several years, homeowners often decide to sand and polish it to make it look fresh again. Engineered floors take quickly to this redoing, as the top layer is of hardwood. This action can be done a number of times depending on the thickness of the hardwood layer.

Engineered wooden floors are less expensive than solid wooden floorboards, as the overall thickness is made up of cheaper plywoods that add great strength to the boards. They are easily installed on subfloors made of concrete. In case of solid hardwood, it is often necessary to create a plywood layer over concrete before installation of the floor.

Solid wooden floors are made up of timbers that are high value, like oak or walnut, which are not only slow growing but also relatively rare, which significantly adds to their cost. Thicknesses of these boards have to be a minimum of 3/4 inch to 1 inch so that there will be the least warping. The hardwood layers used in engineered timber flooring are a little over a quarter inch thick at the most, and this leads to considerable savings in these rare resources. Costlier varieties of engineered floors will have top layers that can be as much as 5/8 of an inch. The rest of the thickness is made of plywood, which as we all know is made from cheaper timber that grows quickly, and most plywood manufacturers are using timber from captive plantations thus completely negating any impact of their action on the depletion of natural resources. These engineered products come with guarantees that can vary from a minimum of 10 years to a maximum of 30 years.

The top hardwood layers in engineered wooden floors are prefinished at the time of manufacture and go through as many as nine finish coats. You can get brushed finishes that highlight the grain texture of the hardwood layer or other finishes that will give the floor a vintage look. Surface treatments can vary from matt lacquers that will give a very natural look to the floor or oils that will accentuate the wood grain. These oil finishes require more care and maintenance. Satin lacquers will increase the durability of the wooden surface while adding a sheen to it.

When you order engineered wooden flooring make sure you add at least 10 percent more than the calculated area of the room, as there will be some wastage, as boards come in fixed widths and lengths that may not exactly match your room, and will require some cutting to size. As these boards are engineered it is easy to make them with tongue and groove joints that make them very easy to assemble and put together on the floor.

Engineered wooden floors first made their appearance in the 1960s and the technology of manufacturing them has led to constant improvement in both performance and appearance and now make for a substantial percentage of the wooden flooring now being instaled in homes. The factory finish on modern-day engineered floors will outlast the finish applied to solid wood floors. This pre-finish also allows the floors to be put to use as soon as they are installed.

Maintenance of these floors is fairly easy and besides the usual vacuuming and brooming can be easily mopped with cleaners for wood floors and microfibre cloth. While you can use them in basements, you must be sure that there is no dampness, as even though these boards will have a reduced tendency to expand and contract, they will still suffer. The lesser thickness of these boards makes them ideal for use in areas where there is a lower ceiling height.

Costs of engineered flooring can vary greatly depending on the top wear layer thickness, the number of plies in the core, and the number of finish coats.