Palaces For The People
Thursday, October 09, 2003
10.6.4 Hardboard and Fiberboard Manufacturing
10.6.4.1 General1 -
Fiberboard is a low-density insulation board used for housing, roofing, and office furnishings.
Hardboard is similar to fiberboard, except that hardboard is more dense than fiberboard. Hardboard is
used for applications in housing (e.g., exterior siding, garage doors, and interior door facings), furniture,
store fixtures, automotive interiors, and toys. The most frequently used raw material for production of
fiberboard products is wood chips which are first softened in a pressurized steam vessel (digester) and
then refined or pulped into wood fibers. The fibers may then be mixed with resin, formed into mats, and
pressed and/or dried to form panel products. Other materials may be added during manufacture to
improve certain properties such as stiffness, hardness, finishing properties, resistance to abrasion and
moisture, as well as to increase strength, durability and utility.
Hardboard/fiberboard manufacturing falls under the Standard Industrial Classification (SIC)
Code 2493, for “Reconstituted Wood Products”, which also includes oriented strandboard, medium
density fiberboard, and particleboard. The North American Industrial Classification System (NAICS)
Code for hardboard/fiberboard is 321219, for “Reconstituted Wood Product Manufacturing”.
10.6.4.2 Process Description1 -
Hardboard products are manufactured through dry processing, wet processing, or wet/dry
processing. Fiberboard products are manufactured by wet processing. Dry processing involves dry mat
forming and pressing, while wet processing involves wet forming and wet pressing. Wet/dry processing
involves wet forming followed by dry pressing. Resin is used in wet hardboard and dry hardboard
processing. Resin is not used in wet/dry hardboard or wet fiberboard processing.
The following sections summarize dry process hardboard manufacturing, fiberboard and wet
process hardboard manufacturing, and the wet/dry hardboard manufacturing process.