BURLINGAME, CALIF. - Entrepre-neurial contractor Jim McMahon and chemical consultant Joe Grasty have figured out a way to apply an epoxy coating to plywood, multiply the building industry's use of each construction form and reduce landfill disposal needs. The coating eases plywood's separation from concrete.A builder may get two or three uses from a typical $23 plywood sheet, McMahon said in an interview at the Wilson Forum in Burlingame.
He envisions selling an epoxy-coated 4-by-8-foot sheet for $50, with a guarantee of at least six and possibly 10 uses.
A second-generation version with a coating of continuous fiber reinforcement would sell for $60 per sheet, McMahon said, but yield many more uses.
He will begin production in April on a new custom-made plywood processing machine in a 15,000-square-foot facility in Santa Paula, Calif.
A Los Angeles-area firm built the machine.
The new venture, Panel Tech Plywood Coating Inc., shares the site with McMahon's InjecTech operation, which injects urethane grout on-site to seal cracks in concrete blocks, foundations and slabs.
McMahon said he believes he could recycle the epoxy coating and sell the plywood for more conventional uses, such as sheeting for roofs or floors, or sheer walls.