This work produced particle boards from eight composites of sawdust (SD), corncobs (CC) and rice husk (RH), using polyester resin as binder. Each component material was dried to a moisture content of 12 % before mixing them to form the composites. They were mixed in varying ratios of 34% composite, while the binder was kept constant at 66%. Eight composite samples of varying compositions (A) 17% SD and 17% RH, (B) 17% SD and 17% CC, (C) 17% RH and 17% CC, (D) 22% SD and 12% RH, (E) 22% SD and 12% CC, (F) 22% RH and 12% CC, (G) 22% CC and 12 %RH, and (H) 22% CC and 12% SD were cast into boards, using a mould of 500 x 500 x 10 mm in a particle board press. The particle boards were subjected to tests of density, water absorption, thickness swelling, flexural strength and compressive strength. They were also characterized, using optical microscope to evaluate the surface morphology. The results, showed that the particle boards had mean density ranging between 800 kg/m3 and 860 kg/m3, water absorption between 5.44% and 47.97%, thickness swelling between 1.26% and 13.24%, flexural strength between 4.86 MPa and 14.78 MPa, and compressive strength between 1.16 MPa and 4.41 MPa. Optimal properties were exhibited by composite D, while the least was F. The microstructural analysis revealed that the composites A, and F showed fewer voids and fiber pullout. They had small discontinuities and non-uniform distribution. The other six composite boards compared favourably with the prescribed IS3087 Standard and they can, therefore, be used for general purpose requirements like paneling and partitioning.
Keywords : Agricultural Waste, Composites, Environmental Problems, Mechanical Properties, Microstructure, Physical Properties.