Combination Core

Combination cores offer the smooth appearance of an engineered core while maintaining the strength and screw-holding properties of a veneer core.

Veneer core strength, composite core consistency

Veneer core hardwood plywood is ideal for its strength and fastener holding properties. However, the rougher surface and varying densities of the plies can create an uneven surface and cause "telegraphing", as these imperfections are transferred through the face and back veneers. This telegraphing becomes visible when the panel is painted and finished and can detract from the appearance. Combination cores combine the strength of a veneer core panel with the smooth surface of a composite panel to eliminate telegraphing and allow for a much smoother finish.

 Combination cores are constructed with a thin layer of MDF just beneath the face and back veneers, creating a smooth, uniform substrate for the veneer to lay on without sacrificing strength or screw-holding ability. Adding MDF to the construction gives combination cores the added benefit of increased flatness and more stability over time; these layers of MDF do add weight, but not as much as an MDF core. The combination of strength, smoothness, flatness, and stability make combination core panels ideal for custom cabinetry, casework, and furniture applications where a high-quality surface and a clean finish are important.

Paint grade and prefinished

Moore Newton stocks a wide array of combination core products in both prefinished and unfinished Maple plywood. Combination core Maple plywood is a best-selling product for paint-grade applications that require a smooth, consistent, flat panel that doesn't sacrifice strength and screw-holding properties, and doesn't add too much additional weight.

A1 panels made better

Nearly all of our high-grade A1 panels are available with a combination core option. Higher grade panels can be pricey, and are typically reserved for the most visible and important parts of a project; it is crucial that they look their best. Looking for something extra nice? Check out our premium architectural panels 

Platform blanks

Moore Newton stocks a range of dimensions in industrial platforms, or a combination core without face and back veneers. Platforms have become popular paint-grade panels for shops needing the smooth paintable surface of MDF, without adding too much weight, sacrificing strength or reducing screw holding ability. 

Thickness calibrated

Hardwood plywood varies in thickness, which can cause problems during cabinet assembly or installation. Calibrated combination cores are sanded to a 0.020" +/- thickness tolerance, offering consistency previously only found in composite products. Tighter tolerances allow for more accurate design, cutting and fabrication of cabinetry and furniture, ideal for shops using layout software and CNC cutting machines.


Moore Newton stocks a wide selection of calibrated panels in various species and dimensions, including Maple, Rift White Oak, and Walnut. Reducing thickness variation can add efficiency to your shop while improving the quality of your finished products. 

Moore Newton has dozens of combination core products in stock and available for free next-day delivery.

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