Drying takes the largest share of energy in plywood production, and varying moisture content of veneers necessitates re-drying that often leads to over-dry veneers with deactivated surfaces, which may promote imperfect bonding. In order to decrease the drying time, reduce the need for re-drying of veneers, and improve the quality of plywood, birch and spruce veneers were subjected to pre-treatment by cold compression, incision, or a combination of the two. The effects of pre-treatment on the veneer and plywood quality were assessed by standard tests. Compression had a beneficial effect on water removal of the wettest veneers (spruce sapwood (SW) and birch), but some thickness reduction was observed in the veneers as well as the finished birch plywood. Compression led to thickness reduction of spruce veneers, but had no effect on SW plywood thickness likely due to higher viscoelasticity. Both compression and the combination of incising and compression levelled the moisture variation within the compressed stacks. Incision improved the modulus of elasticity of birch plywood, shear strength of SW plywood, and both bending and shear strengths of heartwood plywood. Higher surface pressure decreased the drying time of spruce SW in both plain compression and combined incision and compression pre-treatment.
- mechanical properties
- wood veneer