Specifying the Right Surface Material

Selecting between different laminated or veneer products depends primarily on the project conditions
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By Peter J. Arsenault, FAIA, NCARB, LEED AP
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Thermo-Fused Laminate (TFL)

Another widely used surfacing material is Thermo-Fused Laminate (TFL). This is a decorative product suitable primarily for vertical applications that is typically offered as a fabricated panel on the order of ½ inch thick or more. It is fabricated by using a core substrate such as particleboard or medium density fiberboard (MDF) or other available options. Then, a melamine saturated decorative sheet is applied to both sides of the core.

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High-pressure laminate (HPL) is made from multiple layers of different materials that are pressed and heated under high pressure to create a versatile and durable surface material. Thermo-fused laminate (TFL) uses a thicker core material that is covered with a decorative sheet on both sides.


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Originally published in Architectural Record
Originally published in June 2022