Nowadays wood can be altered to make it tougher, lighter and more durable.
An example is OSB or Oriented Strand Board. OSB’s lower cost (compared even to softwood ply) has, in the past, been misinterpreted as an acknowledgement of poorer quality. But this is far from the case; its low price is due to the fact that it is made out of forest thinnings – small-diameter logs that have few alternative uses. Instead of utilising expensive veneer sheets, as plywood does, OSB uses relatively small strands of wood which are layered in specific orientations and bonded together with a resin under high heat and pressure. This structure gives the board multi-directional strength and eliminates weak points in the resulting board. OSB has excellent impact strength and its construction means it holds screws and other fixings securely.