Understanding Wood Veneer Cuts and Limitations




PLAIN SLICED veneers are cut along a log’s growth rings and typically present a cathedral grain pattern and pieces of veneer or “flitches” 6′′ to 12′′ wide.

Plain Slicing produces the highest yield and is generally the least expensive slicing method. Half Round produces a similar pattern and size.


ROTARY CUT veneers are peeled from a log like paper coming off of a roll, though the veneers are not truly continuous. This method produces large pieces of veneer with very flat, random grain patterns and

sapwood to heartwood which can be very different in color. Heartwood and sapwood may be combined in one piece of veneer. The disadvantage is that rotary veneers can have a bland appearance and may vary widely in color within the same panel though this can be specified out. Not all species of wood produce logs that can be rotary peeled and decorative softwoods are rarely rotary peeled.


QUARTER SLICED veneers are cut

perpendicular to a log’s growth rings and

generally produce straight grained veneers. In many species this will reveal decorative figure in the wood like flake patterns in white oak. Quarter slicing produces smaller veneer flitches

and is more expensive.




RIFT CUT is general reserved for oak

and is intended to produce a straight

grain without exposing the flake pattern.

Rift cutting is at a tangent to a log’s growth rings.






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