Plywood Sheets

Plywood sheets are a strong, engineered wood comprising many thin layers of wood veneer sheets glued together with an adhesive and have a smooth surface. Sometimes referred to as plyboard, this is a multi-purpose sheet material which is an ideal solution for a wide range of commercial and domestic building projects. When manufacturing plywood, each individual adjacent layer is rotated from 45-90 degrees so the wood grain is going in different directions in each layer, which improves strength and prevents warping. This adds to the strength of the finished product and explains its enduring popularity as a building product. 8x4 plywood sheets are the industry standard (meaning 8ft by 4ft) and this is equivalent to 2440mm x 1220mm.

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Types of Plywood Sheets

Hardwood Plywood Sheets

As a popular plywood supplier in the UK, we offer the most commonly used type of plywood in the construction industry: Hardwood Structural Plywood. This is a strong, versatile plywood board that can be used in structural and exterior applications, provided it is properly sealed. Previously referred to as WBP plywood (WBP standing for Weather and Boil Proof), this terminology has now been superseded by the EN13986 and EN636 classifications. All of our general use hardwood plywood sheet materials (made from birch veneers) meet level 2 under these classifications, meaning that they are suitable for use in humid conditions, as well as sealed exterior applications. These hardwood ply sheets are the most commonly sold on the market, and offer unrivalled strength and durability. The most popular thicknesses are 9mm, 12mm and 18mm, all of them come in 8x4 sheets.

Marine Plywood Sheets

Marine plywood is a superior grade to standard hardwood plywood. It is manufactured using a waterproof glue, making it suitable for external applications. It takes its name from its regular use in the building of boats, and is the strongest and most durable type of plywood available on the market. As well as being weather resistant, it is also stronger than hardwood plywood, and can be used in any structural or load-bearing application. Because of this, it is more expensive than standard hardwood plywood, and therefore should only be used where premium ply sheet materials are required.

Frequently Asked Questions about Plywood Sheets

Can plywood sheets be used outside? 

Our hardwood structural plywood can be used as exterior and interior applications, provided they are sealed correctly. External plywood board is a versatile material, the layers have a negligible core gap which limits the amount of that can get into the plywood. It is moisture resistant and water-resistant and are perfectly suited for structural tasks. We also carry marine plywood on our site which is even better suited to outdoor use.

Marine plywood is more durable and better suited to bearing structural loads than standard hardwood plywood because it is made up of more thin layers of real wood, and this means a thinner sheet can be used than would be the case with regular hardwood plywood sheet materials. These have many benefits and typically include being used as a sturdy subfloor beneath heavy ceramic floor tiling. Marine plywood can also be used as a top surface, as it is smoother and more visually pleasing than regular plywood, with fewer knots. It also bends far more easily and is therefore much better suited to being cut into more intricate patterns than regular plywood. 

To give an idea of the water resistance levels of marine plywood, it is often used in the building of boats. It is safe to say that if it can withstand the sea, then a little rain in the UK isn’t likely to cause it any great trouble.

Can you paint plyboard sheets?

It is entirely possible to paint plywood, as long as the appropriate primer and paint are used to do the job. You should consider what you wish the outcome to be before starting. If it is to be something artistic then acrylic primer and paints should be considered but if you want to paint a plywood floor in your home, a heavy duty acrylic latex or oil-based paint should be considered. On the other hand, if it is only a small project, spray paint may suffice.

It may be worth choosing a roller if the area you intend to paint is a large one. Remember to ensure that the roller is one that is compatible with the type of paint and primer that you are using. It is also important to sand the plyboard smooth before painting it and you can get coarse sandpaper of around 80-100 grit or use a sanding block or machine to do this.

After the sanding is complete, you may notice that there are some obvious holes in the plywood that need filling and this can be done using wood filler and a putty knife, before sanding it smooth once it has dried in.

Before priming and painting, remember to mask off any areas that you don’t want to paint, so that there are no problems later on. 

What are plywood sheet sizes in the UK?

“How big is a sheet of plywood” is a common question we get asked, and it depends whether you mean plywood sheet thickness in mm or the dimensions in either metric or imperial. The standard dimensions are 2440mm x 1220mm or 8” x 4” respectively whereas plywood sheet thickness can vary.

Thin plywood sheets start at 5.5mm and large plywood sheets go all the way up to 25mm, depending on your requirements. We have a wide variety of different thicknesses to suit the type of job you need to do. It should be noted that Marine plywood, while thinner than our other plywood, actually has more density to it, so while the sheets can be thinner, they are actually more durable than a hardwood plywood sheet of the same thickness.

How much is a sheet of plywood?

Plywood sheets for sale vary by quality and supplier but if you are looking for good quality, cheap plywood sheets, you have come to the right place. Our sheets of plywood are high quality and durable and will be ideal for most construction projects that our customers are undertaking. 

The cost per sheet of plywood also depends on the type you are looking for. Marine plywood tends to be more expensive than regular hardwood plywood sheets as it offers a far greater degree of protection against the elements. Due to the minimisation of air gaps, the density of it and the waterproof adhesives used during the manufacturing process, marine plywood is much more water resistant than other plywood variants. Whatever your requirement, you’ll find a great plywood price here at Materials Market with the best and cheapest plywood sheets on the market.

When was Plywood Invented?

Invented in England in the 1790s in response to the level of demand for cheap but high quality building materials, plywood has been a staple of building projects ever since and gained immediate popularity due to the relative simplicity of the manufacturing process. Compared to many of the other building materials available at the time, plywood was revolutionary.

The inventor was Samuel Bentham, who shares a first name with one of the founders of Materials Market!