Wood Veneer Cuts

Plain Sliced

Veneer sliced parallel to the pith of the log and approximately tangent to the growth rings to achieve flat cut veneer. Plain sliced veneer can be cut using either a horizontal or vertical slicing machine or by the half round method using a rotary lathe.

Rotary Cut

The log is placed in a lathe and rotated against a stationary knife. This produces a more-or-less continuous sheet of veneer, similar to pulling a long sheet off a roll of paper towels. Often a characteristic of this veneer cutting technique is random wild grain.

Quarter Sliced

The quarter sliced pattern is first accomplished by cutting the log into four equal "quarters" and then slicing the quarter as shown in the graphic. It results in a fairly straight grain pattern. It should be noted that often times in quarter sliced oak a phenomenon occurs called flake. This is a natural product of the wood and is a function of the way it's sliced in relation to the medullary rays.

Produces a striped grain pattern, straight in some woods, varied in others. Veneer produced by cutting in a radial direction to the pith to the extent that ray flake is produced, and the amount may be unlimited. In some woods, principally oak, "flake" results from cutting through the radial "rays".

Rift Cut

Usually referring to veneers, but can be applied to solid lumber (usually as Rift Sawn), this method is similar to Quarter Slicing, but accentuates the vertical grain and minimizes the "flake" of the finished material. Veneer produced by cutting at a slight right angle to the radial to produce a quartered appearance.