Wood door cuts and veneers

Wood Doors: Grains, Cuts, and Veneers


Wood doors, they seem simple enough, right? Perhaps not. We walk through them every day but don’t generally put much thought into them. When it comes to wood door selection, there is much to learn and understand! Things like “log cut”, “flitch”, and “veneer” can seem confusing, but LaForce is here to help you understand every aspect of wood doors and help our customers understand exactly what they are selecting!

Log Cut

First, is the “log cut”. This is pretty straightforward as it is the way in which a log is cut in relation to the annual rings on a log. This cutting method has the largest impact on the appearance of the veneer on your door face. There are four individual types of log cuts.

Rotary Cut

The first one is the rotary cut. This cut will follow a log’s annual growth rings, so there is a “peeling” motion. This gives a bold and random appearance. Typically, this provides a wider pattern and is recommended for birch veneers.

Plain Sliced Cut

The next cut is the plain sliced cut. This cut is done by cutting a parallel line through the center of the log. Each individual piece is kept from the cutting process so there is a very natural appearance to this veneer.

Quarter Sawn Cut

The third cut is the quarter sawn cut. In this cut, you cut the wood from the center and then outward which produces vertical stripes for the grain pattern.

Rift Cut

The final cut is the rift cut. This cut is done by slicing across the darkened lines that radiate from the center of a log. It looks a lot like spokes on a wheel. This creates a rift appearance to the wood.

wood grain cuts

As you can see, each cut provides a different look to a veneer. So, it is important to consider what type of style you want when ordering your doors.

Veneer Matching

We are also able to provide veneer match options. There are two major ways in which LaForce can match your veneer.  This matching, combined with the cutting method of the log (shown above) are what gives the combined appearance of the door face.

Book Match

The first type of match is the book match. This is the most common type of match. It can also be used with any type of cut veneer. For a book match, every other piece is turned over. This helps provide a mirrored effect to the veneer. It looks like an “open book” due to the symmetrical pattern.

Slip Match

The second type of match is the slip match. This is when pieces of a veneer are placed in sequence, but are not turned over. The grain then repeats, but there is no mirroring effect. This is most often used with quarter sawn and rift cuts.

Book match and slip match grain patterns

There are other veneer matches available as well!

We can also provide a variety of wood door face sheet options.  See below for some of the stainable, paintable, or man-made alternate face options.

Stain Grade Veneers

  • White oak (plain sliced)
  • Red Oak (plain sliced, rotary cut, or rift cut)
  • Natural Birch (Plain sliced or rotary cut)
  • White Birch (Plain sliced or rotary cut)
  • White maple (Plain sliced)
  • Cherry (Plain sliced)
  • Honduras Mahogany (Plain sliced)
  • Many other veneers also available

Paint Grade Face Options

  • Medium Density Overlay
  • Primed headboard
  • Flushed and paneled hardboard
  • Paint grade birch

Plastic Laminate/Impact Resistance Vinyl

  • Durable and easy to clean
  • Solid colors or wood grain pattern

With all these options, any of your door needs can be met!

All of this combined: by the selection of the cut, veneer, and face sheet, help provide you with the best, most aesthetically pleasing door. Whether it be a hospital, school, office building, or anything else, LaForce is able to help you find the best wood door for your needs! Our knowledgeable sales staff are able to guide you through the process and help you understand exactly what you’re buying based on your budget and desired appearance.

Please contact a LaForce representative if you have any further questions or if you are interested in working with LaForce!

Special thanks to Bruce Massey, Wood Department Manager, for providing expertise for this blog!