Laminating different species

In a triple lamination, it's OK to use two species of lumber, given a few conditions. 1998.

by Professor Gene Wengert

I am laminating three layers of 3/4" stock. Since only the exterior layers of the lamination are visible, I'm considering using poplar for the center. My question: is it all right to face glue different species in lamination? This piece will be placed in Tucson, Arizona.

It is okay to laminate different species so long as the top and bottom are identical thickness and species. It is okay to laminate under any conditions if the MC will never change--it is only when the MC changes that the different shrinkage could (but not always) cause a little warp.

Professor Gene Wengert is Extension Specialist in Wood Processing at the Department of Forestry, University of Wisconsin-Madison.

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The comments below were added after this Forum discussion was archived as a Knowledge Base article (add your comment).

Comment from contributor A:
When laminating 3 pieces, the 2 outside pieces must be of the same species and should be of same cut (plain sawn or quartered). The center core must be of a low density and not prone to a lot of movement. I do not think poplar is a good choice, as it is not very stable at various moisture levels. A better substitute would be pine, cedar or fir.