What are the advantages of LVL over other wood-based products?

LVL has a number of advantages over other wood-based materials:

  • Small logs can be made into large dimension LVL products.
  • Long lengths of LVL are available; up to 12m ex stock from merchants (or 18m by arrangement).
  • The wood resource can be optimised by grading and selecting veneer for different parts of an LVL cross section and making a range of products with different properties.
  • Structural properties of LVL are very uniform because the randomised layers of thin veneers are pre-graded for stiffness (coefficient of variation for modulus of elasticity less than 5%).
  • LVL members have high strength because of the low variability and randomised wood properties in thin layers.
  • LVL can be cut and machined with normal woodworking tools.

LVL is often used to complement the use of sawn timber in domestic construction. In commercial or industrial structures it is often used as a wood-based alternative to structural steel or reinforced concrete. Generally LVL becomes attractive when sawn timber is not strong enough to do the job, or long lengths are needed.

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