April 30, 2015

From Finland with love

… This was the pleasant heading of the article about VENDIA marine plank in Classic Boat magazine (March 2015) written by Scottish Adrian Morgan. Adrian first saw VENDIA on the Internet and was keen to try it, because, as he says himself, he hates ordinary plywood. He has been writing a blog about his project with the Gartside 16ft skiff Bob made of VENDIA. It has been pleasant to read about his project and his satisfaction with VENDIA.

Adrian started to build boats with his father when he was eight years old. Together they built several dinghies and a cruising boat, a plywood Waarschip 570. Two years ago after a career in journalism and working in a traditional boat yard in Ullapool, he began to build boats again himself. The first boat he built was a sjekte called FJ. With FJ he won the best boat at the Scottish Traditional Boat Festival in Portsoy. The boat was an 18ft clinker double ender with a Bermudan rig, designed by Karsten Ausland, who emigrated from Scandinavia to the US in the 1930s.

vendia, marine plank, wooden boat
Adrian Morgan
vendia, marine plank, wooden boat
The Gartside skiff Bob made of VENDIA marine plank.
vendia, marine plank, wooden boat
vendia, marine plank, wooden boat

Adrian has done a career in journalism, mostly writing about boats and sailing for magazines and newspapers. In March Adrian wrote an article about VENDIA marine plank to Classic Boat magazine. Adrian told that he doesn’t like ordinary plywood because it can’t be varnished, as it looks horrible. VENDIA looks like real wood and can be varnished. It is also nice to work, no splinters, planes well, smells good and most importantly comes in handy lengths… I can’t speak too highly of it, said Adrian.

Classic Boat article & Adrian's blogPHOTOS: Adrian Morgan

April 28, 2015

Pulling boat made of VENDIA marine plank

Designing of a more sporty, so called pulling boat, has started in Kuopio (Finland) by boatbuilding line of vocational school. The aim is to get a quick and sensitive boat to row. There will be three oarlock pairs, which makes the rowing possible also for two persons. The middle oarlock is for single rowing.

PICTURE: Veneopisto, Savon ammatti- ja aikuisopisto

The length of the boat will match with total length of two planks of VENDIA. The sides will be made of four pairs of VENDIA marine plank. Modelling of the structure has begun and there will be also an option for a slide seat. More pictures here >>

April 23, 2015

The MUF adhesive used in VENDIA marine plank

Phenol formaldehyde adhesive is the most commonly used glue in marine plywood. It is water-resistant and commonly used in plywood industry. Originally the phenol formaldehyde adhesive is colourless but effect of air and oxygen convert the phenol into brown. That is why the dark glue seams stand out in plank board joints and edges if wooden boat is made of normal marine plywood.

When developing VENDIA marine plank our goal was to create a marine plank that is beautiful and durable. We wanted to get rid of the dark seams of normal marine plywood. When we started to develop VENDIA marine plank, one of the criteria in addition to the water-resistance was that the glue should be colourless. Our choice was MUF adhesive because of its colourless feature, water-resistance and strong references. MUF adhesive is commonly used among high-quality marine plywood producers.

The MUF adhesive is a two-component glue including adhesive and hardener. It is Weather Boil Proof (WBP) glue and meets the requirements of British Standard 1088 for marine plywood. The glue has passed the boiling test, which means that the glue must withstand boiling of 24 hours. In addition to boiling test, we have also made the absorption test of impregnating agents. In the test we had Owatrol, Hempel and linseed oil mixed with zinc naphthenate and it proved that all these impregnating agents were absorbed well also through the glue layers.

April 16, 2015

Greetings from Kallavesj’ 2015 exhibition

VENDIA was on view in Kuopio, Finland at Kallavesj’ 2015 boat show on 10.-12.4.2015. There were exhibitors from the fields of boating, tourism and leisure time and during the weekend there were approximately 25 000 visitors. At the boat show we were together with Boatyard Aki Ruotsalainen, so the crowd also had the ability to see two boats made of VENDIA marine plank. The wooden boats and their smell attracted people to our presentation point, and it was nice to notice what kind of bustle the wooden boats and the smell of tar brought on alongside the modern fiberglass boats.

Like in Helsinki International Boat Show, VENDIA marine plank piqued lots of interest and the fair visitors were very interested in VENDIA’s technical characteristics. The fair visitors especially liked the high quality material of VENDIA, the beautiful and knot-free appearance as well as the structure that combines the good features of solid wood and plywood. One of the visitors commented: “This is just a incomparable material, a great invention!”

vendia, marine plank, wooden boat, boatbuilding

vendia, marine plank, wooden boat, boatbuilding
The Boat: Boatyard Aki Ruotsalainen, Nurmes

vendia, marine plank, wooden boat, boatbuilding

vendia, marine plank, wooden boat, boatbuilding
The Boat: Boatyard Aki Ruotsalainen, Nurmes

vendia, marine plank, wooden boat, boatbuilding
The Boat: Boatyard Aki Ruotsalainen, Nurmes

April 10, 2015

What is the difference between VENDIA marine plank and plywood?

There are certain similarities and differences between VENDIA marine plank and plywood. Few weeks ago we wrote (link) about the differences between sliced and peeled veneer. VENDIA is always made of sliced veneer and this is one of the most important differences between VENDIA and plywood. But there are also other differences, for example structure, glue, raw material, form of the final product, and finishing.


Glued structure is the common feature of VENDIA and normal plywood but there are also essential differences. Plywood is completely made of cross-laminated veneers, which means that every second veneer is lengthwise and every second is crosswise veneer. The idea of cross-lamination is to reduce the tendency of solid wood to crack and also to make the panel stiff across all directions. The crack resistance, longevity, and longitudinal stiffness of marine plank are important features when building a wooden boat. Many boatbuilders prefer VENDIA to the plywood because VENDIA has the maximized longitudinal stiffness whereas plywood is stiff across all directions. VENDIA marine plank has crosswise veneers only the amount what ensures the crack resistance of the marine plank. Depending on the thickness, there are 1-2 crosswise veneers in VENDIA. This structure ensures the crack resistance but keeps the other good characteristics of solid wood and increases the longitudinal stiffness of the marine plank. Plywood is made of veneers that have the same thickness, so after the calibration the face veneer will be the thinnest. Compared to VENDIA the normal plywood is harder to work with because of the thin face veneer and the crosswise veneer right below the face veneer. In VENDIA the face veneer is always the thickest. 

The structure: VENDIA on the left and softwood plywood on the right. (The picture on the right borrowed from: lahdenmaki.fi)


Commonly used glue in plywood panels is water resistant, brown phenol resin adhesive. In VENDIA we use water resistant, colourless MUF adhesive (melamine-urea-formaldehyde). MUF adhesive is commonly used for example in traditional marine plywood, so it is very suitable also for nautical environment. Clear advantage of MUF adhesive is its’ neutrality. When working with plywood the phenol resin adhesive appears as a dark seam in the edges and joints of the plank because of the plywood’s structure. Colourless MUF adhesive is in turn indistinguishable. 

birch plywood
Commonly used glue in birch plywood is brown phenol resin adhesive.

vendia, wooden boat, boatbuilding, marine plank, MUF
In VENDIA we use colourless MUF adhesive.

Raw material

Raw material of VENDIA marine plank is Finnish, old-grown pine butt logs, which means that the raw material is the same high-quality wood as traditionally used in wooden boatbuilding. The vast majority of plywood is manufactured from lower quality raw material, which weakens the longevity of plywood when considering boatbuilding. Wood species have also an impact on the longevity. Birch and Okoumé are faster decaying species while conifers are generally more resistant to decay.

Form of the final product

The fact that VENDIA looks more like natural solid wood and plywood doesn’t, results mainly from the differences between sliced and peeled veneer. Also the form of the final product affects in the appearance. Plywood is manufactured and sold in large sheets while VENDIA already in finished planks. Each VENDIA marine plank is handmade and sliced veneer is centralized in the middle of the plank according to veneer’s pattern. 

Spruce plywood on the left and Okoumé on the right.

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There is also a difference in the features of impregnation. In absorption test of impregnating agents, the absorption of impregnation agent was 1 ½-2 –fold better in VENDIA than in birch plywood.