From beech log to finished design
Positive material properties of shaped wood
Product cradle beech forest
At the age of about 120 years, the beech logs are harvested. Forests in Germany have been managed sustainably for more than 300 years. This means that only as much wood is felled as will grow back.
Advantages of beech wood
Beech trees provide splinter-free, impact-resistant hardwood with high tensile, compressive, bending and shear strength. The beech veneer is durable and robust and can be glued together very well with precious veneers and laminates. Countless variations of the design can be produced, for example, from a shell press mold. Molded parts made of Becker Incendur® meet the requirement set R1/R2/R6 for hazard level HL2 according to DIN EN 45545-2:2020-10.
Molded wood production:
From veneer to your desired product
Becker Brakel has a wide range of processing machines and stations to efficiently implement your product requirements:
We are specialized in the production of high quality veneers and offer the complete know-how with regard to logistics, technology and quality:
- Timber storage for 15,000 solid cubic meters of beech logs
- Large damping capacity
- own veneer production on a fully automatic high-performance peeling line
- Peeling of four veneer thicknesses as standard
- electronic veneer sorting with eight quality levels
- more than 100 flat, two-sided and three-sided presses
- high output rates and precision due to aluminum press tools
- Guaranteed high dimensional accuracy due to induction-heated pressing tools
- Use of high quality specific adhesives, depending on product requirements
- 19 CNC machining centers
- In-house fixture construction with maximum flexibility
- wide range of contour variants
Becker Brakel has a wide range of proprietary hardware solutions that are used in combination with our molded parts. At the customer’s request, shaped wood surfaces are protected by oiling, varnishing or pressing on melamine layers. Printing with logos etc. is possible, furthermore decorative laminates (HPL/CPL) are available.
Database with all relevant pressing tools
From an inventory of 1,400 pressing tools, we produce customized plywood and laminated wood moldings. Whether seats, shells, backrests, radius or U-shaped parts, frames, trays, table legs, armrests or chair spars: You will find a detailed overview of shapes here. Some of the molds shown are owned by customers, so we may press molded parts from them only with prior approval. However, if you are interested in one of these forms, we will be happy to arrange the rights of use for you. A tool usage fee must be additionally agreed with the respective owner.
Project examples shaped wood
Furniture, decoration, art and more: highlights of our forming technology.
Interesting facts about shaped wood
Concentrated Becker know-how.
Do you have questions about the production, processing or material properties of shaped wood?
Here we have compiled the most important answers and information for you.
Tools for shaped wood: We know more!
Can I order a molded part from the molded wood compendium “Der Becker” or the Becker product overview as a sample?
Generally, you can get samples for prototypes. If we have individual blanks in stock, we can deliver them to you at short notice at cost price. Incidentally, our press tool database will inform you about our manufacturing program and the wide range of technical production possibilities. It also includes molded parts from tools that are owned by our customers and from which we cannot press parts without permission.
When should you choose an aluminum tool over a wooden tool?
An aluminum tool is to be preferred if the blank is to be strongly deformed, a particularly high precision is required or if high production numbers are planned.
What does a pressing tool cost?
The price depends on the size, type and complexity of the molded part. The cost of a wooden press die with aluminum heating plates is 3,000 euros upwards, for an aluminum press die around 7,000 euros.
Why do you prefer electrically heated tools for pressing?
Electrically heated tools are particularly precise because they produce a very controllable, uniform heat distribution. This enables us to achieve greater dimensional stability.
To the point: shaped wood production
What is the expected delivery time?
Due to the three-stage manufacturing process (veneer production, pressing, machining) and order-based production, a delivery time of around four to six weeks is common. A shortening of this delivery time is possible through our Flex-Order-System with appropriate order sizes.
What is the minimum order quantity?
A minimum lot size of 250 pieces is necessary for economical production. In individual cases, however, a lower number of pieces per order can be agreed.
Can you also supply ready-painted molded parts?
If the customer wishes, we can also offer molded parts painted and ready-made.
Which paint finishes are possible?
To protect the wood surface, the moldings can be painted opaque or transparent with water-based varnish. Through the use of stains, a variety of different shades are possible (e.g. maple, cherry, mahogany). In addition, the veneer can also be oiled and/or waxed.
Is it possible to press precious veneers?
Precious veneers (such as maple, cherry, oak, walnut or many other types of wood) can usually be pressed well. They are often used as sliced veneer for decorative top layer. The inner layers are then made of beech rotary cut veneer.
What are the largest dimensions for molded parts?
We can peel up to a veneer length of 2,220 mm gross. The width is limited by the size of the presses. It is 1,300 mm.
What is the smallest radius possible?
The thickness of the veneer determines the radius. With a veneer thickness of 2.3 mm, the smallest inner radius is 28 mm, with 1.5 mm it is 25 mm, with 1.1 mm it is only 18 mm, with a veneer thickness of 0.8 mm it is only 12 mm, with a veneer thickness of 0.5 mm it is even only 6 mm.
Can the glue you use meet the E1 standard?
Yes: Our gluing system is well below the limit specified in the E1 standard. Compliance is regularly verified by an independent auditing institute.
Can you combine shaped wood with other materials?
Yes: Molded wood can be directly pressed with laminate (HPL/CPL), decorative papers, primer foils, aluminum and similar materials.
What is the difference between manufacturing tolerance and shape tolerance?
The manufacturing tolerance describes the dimensional deviation resulting from machining of the part (milling, drilling, grinding). It is usually very small, in the range of tenths of a millimeter. Shape tolerances, on the other hand, are caused by changes in humidity in the room climate. This can cause opening angles to change or flat moldings to warp. This must be taken into account in the construction and design of molded parts.
How long does it take to press a molded part?
To achieve good bonding, the part must remain in the press under pressure and heat for a sufficiently long time. The following rule of thumb applies: Thickness of the part in millimeters divided by 2 plus 4 minutes.
Why do logs need to be steamed for 48 hours before peeling?
The wood must be sufficiently pliable for the peeling process, which we achieve with steaming. For this purpose, the logs are fanned with hot steam for two days in special steaming pits. In addition, this electronically controlled process produces a uniform tint to the wood. With our process, we can thus guarantee a uniform wood color all year round.
Development of shaped wood parts – basic info
Can you produce prototypes?
Thanks to our many years of experience in prototype construction and the development of molded wood for a wide range of applications, we can also build models at short notice. For this purpose, we maintain a dedicated development workshop with ten qualified carpenters and master model makers. Samples, prototypes and other devices are created here. By using our unique seat simulator, we are able to create “ownable” chair models in a matter of hours and in collaboration with you.
Why should the supplier be integrated into the development process at an early stage?
Experience shows that, especially at the beginning of a development, the decision on execution and design have a significant impact on the cost of the final product. With our many years of know-how, we can help to set the course for an optimal price-performance ratio at an early stage.
Which drawing formats can be processed in your design department?
Our designers are specialized in Rhinoceros 7 (.3dm), AutoCAD LT2020 (.dwg and .dxf), Creo 6.0 and Mastercam. In addition, we can read and process all common file formats such as .step or .iges.
Molded wood material: wood species, heaviness, veneer thickness and more.
What are the applications for shaped wood?
The diverse material and design advantages mean that the main application is in furniture construction. In addition, shaped wood is also used for toys, vehicle construction, interior fittings, for musical instruments, for accessories and in technology (cable drums, transport tubs, etc.).
Why do you actually take rotary cut veneers?
The production of rotary cut veneer is significantly cheaper and thus more economical than sliced veneer, because this veneer, due to its relatively narrow strips, must always first be joined and glued together to form a sufficiently large veneer sheet.
Why choose beech wood?
Due to its toughness, flexibility, machining and forming capabilities. In addition, we are convinced by the very good price-performance ratio of beech wood.
Can molded wood be manufactured to be flame retardant?
Yes: With our Becker Incendur® process, we produce flame-retardant molded parts that meet internationally applicable standards. These are used, among other things, for train seats and airport seating.
How thick is the veneer you make?
We produce three standard thicknesses: 1.1 mm / 1.5 mm / 2.3 mm. In addition, there is the special thickness of 0.8 mm. This allows us to produce parts that require very tight radii.
What is the difference between plywood and plywood?
In laminated wood construction, the veneers are all placed in the same grain direction and glued together. This achieves a very high tensile strength – just right for spars, armrests and the side parts of cantilever chairs. In plywood construction, the veneers are laid crosswise (“blocked off”). This gives high dimensional stability for flat parts, such as seats, backrests and seat shells.
How heavy is beech per cubic meter?
Beech raw wood weighs on average 680 kg/m³ (at 12% moisture content).
Where do you get your beech logs?
Our purchasing regions are right on our doorstep: we source our wood primarily from North Rhine-Westphalia, Lower Saxony and Hesse.
How is stemwood availability from local beech forests ensured?
The roundwood we use comes exclusively from sustainable German forestry. Sustainability means that only as much wood is cut as will grow back. Due to the strict law of sustainability, the supply is also secured for future generations. German forests are certified according to the ecological quality seals “PEFC” (“Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification Schemes”) and “FSC” (Forest Stewardship Council). Both organizations are committed to the sustainable management and conservation of forests with their multiple functions. In Germany, 1.35 million ha are currently certified according to FSC and 7.6 million ha according to PEFC. We are certified as a “Chain of Custody with both organizations.
What is the general eco-balance at Becker Brakel?
Our entire manufacturing process is focused on sustainability:
Starting with the very short transport distances of the certified beech logs of max. 60 km from the surrounding domestic forests, the wood residues resulting from peeling are delivered to the particleboard industry for further processing. Other wood residues generated during the manufacturing process are fed into the company’s own heating plant, which is equipped with extensive filters, so that we achieve considerable savings in primary energy: The energy from our heating plant feeds the steaming pits, the large veneer dryer, and our own heating system. In addition, we supply leftover process heat to a company in the neighborhood via a local heating pipeline.
The binding ofCO2 in all our products, such as molded wood shells or laminated wood logs, is maintained during many years of use. If the products are finally utilized for energy, heat and electricity are generated.