AbstractIn this study, three different sealants (gelatinized starch (GS), gelatinized starch/wood flour mixture (GSWF), and soy-protein adhesive (SPA)) were used to seal the lathe checks in veneers before applying phenol formaldehyde adhesive. The shear strain distribution on the interphase of the lap joint specimens was measured by a digital image correlation technique. The results showed that the average shear strain along the bond line on the interphase was 1.94×10-3 when the specimen had lathe checks. Sealing treatment can thus reduce the average shear strain effectively. Soy-protein adhesive seemed to have the greatest ability to decrease the average shear strain along the bond line, from 1.94×10-3 to 0.94×10-3. In contrast, gelatinized starch appeared to decrease the strain slightly to 1.61×10-3. Average shear strain along the bond line of specimens treated with gelatinized starch/wood flour mixture was 1.00×10-3, which was between the values of the other two sealants. Dry shear strength of samples treated by GS and SPA increased from 7.6 MPa to 9.65 MPa and 8.85 MPa, respectively. The mixture of GSWF decreased the strength to 6.32 MPa. Wet strength of treated samples were smaller than untreated ones.