What do you do with Plyboo Bamboo Flooring and Plywood?

April 18, 2011 in Interview

From time to time, we receive images of projects and installations of what individuals build with Plyboo’s plywood. It’s inspiring to see so much talent and such a diverse set of applications. Bamboo is such an incredible material, and very appropriate to utilitarian and aesthetic ends. Today’s post focuses on an incredible craftsman: Miro Buzov.

Plyboo: Miro, so that you know, I’m a huge fan of yours. I saw a photo of the wine rack and the cut-outs repurposed for coasters. Wow! Was it your original intention to do that?
Buzov: Nicole, thank you it means a lot to me. Yes it was my original intention to do that. It actually serves several purposes, the cut outs can be used as coasters but also give the guest of the cafe the option to touch and look at the material used for the cabinet. Another thing about this is, I always respect the money my customers invest in a project. In case of the cabinet which the referred wine rack is a part of, Durapalm was used and at it’s price point I feel my customer should get as much of the material they paid for.

Plyboo: Are there any designers in particular that you keep in mind when designing?
Buzov:I was born, raised and educated in Germany, there are many who influence my designs but not really anyone in particular. Generally said I prefer modern European designs and bamboo gives me the option to introduce warmth to designs which by others not familiar with this style often are referred to as minimalistic and cold. I find bamboo products to be the perfect medium to break through this barrier. And yes come to think of it, there is always Michael Cheng.  Love his stuff, not to mention what he does with concrete.

Plyboo: What attracted you to Plyboo’s materials?
Buzov: Gosh, I have to think back a long time. I don’t want to give false dates but it really all started sometimes in the early to mid 90′s when Plyboo introduced (or at least I found out about the company by then) flooring in Germany. I used Plyboo back then for flooring and early on I actually made my own plywood out of the flooring boards, as sheet goods where not offered at this time. I just simply love the look and feel of it. It machines well with any equipment I have, it finishes up with as little as just some oils if needed and is super durable. For sure, sustainability was a major factor as well, even so many years ago.

Plyboo: I saw what you did with the bar/cafe with the alternating color bands. Seriously, how did you do it? I’m in awe!
Buzov: I always keep every single little bit of material, so often I consider some waste from other jobs for new projects. I have been making counter tops and cutting boards for years using left over Plyboo plywood strips. So, for the drum design I decided to go into my stash of goods. We build a tapered form and individually glued on 3/8″ thick bands alternating amber and natural Plywood. It also took a lot of sanding to get it all to look right. Here again the strength of the material itself allowed us to build it this way.

Plyboo: Do you typically work with bamboo, or do you use other materials like metals and plastics?
Buzov: I work with all media. Wood, metal, plastic, glass, acrylics and concrete as well. In a nutshell anything out there can be turned into something, new or reclaimed it does not matter. I do however prefer to use Bamboo and wood. That said, for a long time there was not a big market for bamboo plywood, for example it was hard to turn customers onto something new. That likely also has something to do with the are of North Carolina I operate in. Some things just take a little longer to get here if you know what I mean.

Plyboo: Back to repurposing, do you typically use waste or design using as little material as possible?
Buzov: I don’t particularly design projects with using as little as possible in mind, often it is just simply not possible in order to create the right look. However, since I always use everything which is possibly usable. You could say it is a little of both.

Plyboo:Do you have any other projects in mind using Plyboo?
Buzov: Currently I am in the process of designing a Sushi bar as well as a Banquet/Event hall. Plyboo like always is my first choice of materials presented to my customers. I hope to be able to use it for both projects in some way or the other.

All photos were taken by Miro Buznov

Wine Wave and CabArt with Plyboo Bamboo Plywood

April 1, 2011 in Admin

Last winter, student Stefan Schildge at Savanah College of Art and Design presented to his class a beautifully modern, eco-friendly “wine shrine” using Plyboo Materials. He made it in a class focused on wood bending techniques from Michael Thonet’s steam bending and laminating to the ancient and modern uses for plywood, both bent and flat. He designed his Wine Wave with famous designers such as the Eames, Gustav Reitfeld, Sori Yanagi, Marcel Breuer, and Alvar Alto and their use of plywood, wisa board, and veneer in mind. Schildge chose Plyboo because it is a natural material made with sustainable practices.

“Bamboo’s natural characteristics, especially its flexibility, lend themselves perfectly to the large curve of the Wine Wave, both in function and aesthetic, ” say Schildge. He wasn’t the only designer to be inspired by two natural beauties, wine grapes and bamboo, HandsOn Woodworking, designed a functional and highly aesthetic WineSlide, the initial wine art offering from CabArt.

“’CabArt’ has been a wine art design concept in my mind for years. The designs have a heavy Scandinavian Contemporary Art Design Influence due to my numerous visits to Norway,” says designer Liz Rui. The WineSlide is a 15″ x 30″ x 6″ wine cabinet made entirely with eco-friendly materials and finishes. HandsOn Woodworking‘s WineSlides are available and can be reserved by phone at 704-892-7720 or online at www.handsonww.com.

Schildge is still a student at Savannah College of Art and Design and expects to graduate in Furniture Design in Spring of 2012. He chooses environmentally sounds solutions whenever possible and is currently experimenting with other materials such as plastics and metal. He doesn’t presently have a website (but I’ll post it as soon as it’s available).

Both Schildge and HandsOn do a great job of exploring equally functional and beautiful uses for Plyboo’s bamboo plywood. “Upon discovering Plyboo”, says Schildge,” “I learned of all the new methods for manufacturing and using bamboo, such as plywood production, flooring and veneer. Plyboo’s use of isocynate-based 0-VOC adhesive makes it an even more ideal material.”

Update: Stefan Schildge now has a website. Please visit stefanaugustus.com!

The Plyboo Difference = NO ADDED UREA FORMALDEHYDE, Period.

March 15, 2011 in FAQ series

If you’ve given any thought to green building, you probably already know there’s so much information to sift though to make and informed decision. Here’s an infographic to explain what makes Plyboo different along with a few things to consider in the floor buying process.
Click image to enlarge

To buy flooring with Smith&Fong Plyboo now, click here.

FSC-certified PlybooStrand plywood and flooring will make its debut at Greenbuild 2010

November 14, 2010 in Uncategorized

An interior material popular among architects and designers for its incredible beauty,  durability and compatibility for commercial installations, PlybooStrand flooring and plywood is now available FSC-certified and will be officially launched at Greenbuild 2010 this month in Chicago.

“Strand bamboo has long been popular with the architecture and design community for its performance, aesthetic and environmental qualities,” according to Smith & Fong’s president and founder, Dan Smith. “Adding FSC certification enables architects and designers to potentially capture even more points with an already LEED-rich product.”

Strand bamboo is different from conventional bamboo products, both visually and structurally: flooring planks and panels are manufactured through a process in which bamboo strips are compacted into a super-dense block. The composite material is then milled into planks and panels. No urea-formaldehyde is used in the production process. Its average hardness rating is 3,000 lbf—more than twice that of red oak—making the flooring ideal for high-traffic and commercial installations.

PlybooStrand varies in aesthetic from a traditional hardwood flooring to an exotic feel like Smith & Fong’s popular Neopolitan product, which brings to mind zebrawood.

The company is offering PlybooStrand panels in 3/16” x 30” x 72” single-ply and ½” and ¾” in a 4’ x 6’ three-ply construction. The flooring is available in the same styles in 3/8” and 9/16” thicknesses.

FSC PlybooStrand plywood and flooring are both PlybooPure urea formaldehyde-free. The plywood is certified Indoor Advantage Gold® and the flooring is FloorScore®-certified.

Potential LEED-credit contributions:

MRc6: Rapidly Renewable Materials
MRc7: Certified Wood
IEQc4.3: Flooring Systems
IEQc4.4: Low Emitting Materials (No Added Urea Formaldehyde)

Green building products popular for college construction projects

June 29, 2010 in Uncategorized

UCBerkleyAsianStudiesLibrary
Perhaps nowhere else has the green-building movement achieved more traction than in institutional construction projects on university campuses. According to green-building consultant Jerry Yudelson, principal of Yudelson Associates and author of 12 green-building books, U.S. campuses now account for about 15 percent of the total LEED projects in the country.

Architects working in the institutional segment are on the lookout for sustainable, environmentally healthy building products, and bamboo fits the bill in many ways. It’s not only rapidly renewable; Smith & Fong’s
UCSFmedicallibrary Plyboo bamboo and palm plywood and flooring products are urea formaldehyde-free and meet both CARB Phase II and LEED IEQc4.4. indoor air quality standards. And Smith & Fong obtained the very first non-wood FSC-certification on the planet for its bamboo resource and manufacturing operations.

“With some of the brightest minds in the sustainability movement studying and teaching at North American universities, it’s no wonder the facilities are being designed with that in mind,” Smith & Fong president and founder Dan Smith said. Aside from prominent installations at Yale, UC Berkeley, UC San Francisco and Syracuse University, the company has seen recent projects using Plyboo and/or Durapalm products at Amherst College, University of Oregon and Vanderbilt as well.
Amherst