Understanding Wood Veneer Part II

Matching Veneer Leaves The relationship one leaf of veneer has to its adjacent neighbor can be shown in two ways - book match and slip match. The method in which the individual cuts of veneer are placed next to each other when faces are fabricated will affect the overall appearance of the doors.


Book Match
This is the most commonly used match in the industry. It occurs when every other leaf of veneer is turned over, like the pages of a book. Visually, it offers a symmetrical pattern and it also yields maximum continuity of grain. Book matching is used most often with plain-sliced veneers.

Slip Match
It is similar to book match except that every piece is simply “slipped” off the stack and joined together with its neighbor, always with the same side up. Visually, it shows the grain figure repeating, but the joints will not show a mirrored effect. It is a pleasing appearance and offers uniformity of color. This type of matching is often used with quarter sliced and rift cut veneers.

"Barber Pole" Effect with Book Matched Veneer:
Barber Pole is a noticeable color variation between the individual leaves in book matched veneer. The side of the veneer leaf that was in contact with the knife as it was being cut is called the loose side (L). It contains cutting checks (lathe checks) because of the bending of the wood at the knife edge. The side of the veneer leaf farthest from the knife as it was cut is called the tight side (T). It contains no cutting checks (lathe checks). When book matched, the tight and loose faces alternate in adjacent pieces of veneer and will reflect light differently due to the lathe cuts. Barber poling is only eliminated when leaves are slip matched and all tight sides or all loose sides are facing up. The Barber Pole effect is not considered a defect and does meet AWI and WDMA standards


Slip Matching “Leaning” Effect:
Because grain patterns are rarely straight, the grain pattern can run off the edge of a leaf and make the door appear to be "un-square" or "leaning". A “leaning effect” can vary from face to face, and from cut to cut.

Last updated on July 02, 2018


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