The Mdf Vs Plywood For Kitchen Cabinets has a good layout for the Kitchen Design in your home. No probs screwing into MDF here..If you try and screw into the side of it (thickness wise)- forget it, but otherwise it will hold the screws in pretty safely. We found the best way to avoid nail heads from telegraphing is to first use high quality MDF materials. In my experience MDF sounds better, as it is more uniform, but it’s also much heavier and much more prone to damage from gigging (if it’s dropped on the corner, etc). The problem is that is is actually mdf, and the top piece (which feels like it weighs 100 lbs by itself, very thick piece) immediately bowed under the weight of a 50 in plasma TV. THis was for TV’s up to 55 or 60 in I believe.
Some people confuse big box mdf with the better grade stuff that is sold through cabinet ply suppliers. MDF as I understand it isn’t used in making cabinet carcasses – not sure why we keep talking about it. MDF doors, sure (I have them) but not boxes. I haven’t experienced any problems with MDF swelling with just a humidity problem. If you’re really paranoid but want to be frugal, get plywood for sink cabinet and anywhere you might maybe have a big water leak and MDF elsewhere. It also does not expand and contract with the humidity as much as plywood does.
The downside is that MDF is not as stiff as the plywood of the same thickness, ergo will need more support than the plywood would. At least with the MDF that I have access to here, it swells much more than I would have expected. If you can get away with it I would stick with glue joinery on MDF and stay away from mechanical fastening as much as possible. Particleboard is made with large wood particles, pressed together and bound with glue, making it coarse and it is generally not as strong as MDF. Learn about the differences between particle board, MDF and Plywood Kitchen Cabinets from NJ experts at Ace. I just had granite put on my cabs and could not believe the boxes were not real wood.
Note to the consumer If cabinet company offers a plywood cabinet cheaper than a particle board cabinet, ask about the origin of the plywood and make an informed decision with all of the facts in hand. What I meant, and evidently didn’t quite convey, is that with MDF, it’s much easier to strip a screw hole, and/or if you need to back a screw out and put it back in, the MDF isn’t as stable as the OSB from the aspect of a fastener. Importantly, plywood and particle board can vary greatly in quality, making it hard to say that one is always better than the other. One big concern for me would be the structural integrity of hanging an MDF upper cabinet.
Furniture board is what is used in cabinet boxes, and if it’s a good grade, there is no reason it cannot last many many decades. It is true that plywood is thicker so I sacrificed a bit of space, but still wouldn’t go back to MDF. They are worlds apart and TaylorCraft Cabinet Door Company does not use particleboard in the construction of our cabinet doors.
The consistency and smoothness of MDF allows for easy cutting of detailed designs (such as scrolled or scalloped designs) using a scroll saw, band saw, or jigsaw. It really comes down to what you are building and the conditions the material will be used in. When building cabinets you can use any three of these wood composites. Hence, use MDF as a good starting point and spend the extra money (saved vs. ply) on additional damping. I’m dealing with a cabinetmaker I like and have used….but bearing the location (laundry room base (basement) cabinets if not cabinets in the basement, I sorta mentioned I would prefer plywood for this application.
PLUS – these cabinets came with a disclaimer: The doors WILL warp at some time. Cabinet makers can buy plywood that is sealed from the factory with a very tough sealer. Yellowing – As the vinyl coating ages, white thermofoil cabinets sometimes develop an unattractive yellow cast. If your cabinetmaker wants to charge you the same ( or nearly the same ) price by substituting MDF for cabinet grade plywood, then look elsewhere for your cabinets. MDF being and engineered wood that are quite heavier and expensive than other woods. MDF consists of very fine wood fibers and glue joined together under pressure to form a strong bond.
In many uses, especially structural, and in fastening, particleboard will greatly outperform MDF. I just did our kitchen and had exactly the same additional cost for plywood, and would do it again at 3x the cost. Having been a woodworker since my teens and now a general contractor, with a number of years spent working in a small lumber yard that catered to cabinet shops and custom wood workers; my vote for carcass material is lumber core (LC) material.
The best oriented strand board is as good as the best plywood and may be better for certain reasons. However, I will say that some very high end drums that have beautiful tone are built out of high quality plywood. I would suggest not to get MDF shelves if any are going to be very long though. Combination Core can be used when the project calls for consistent flatness and good screw-hold ability, without the weight of a MDF or particleboard core. Any formaldehyde left over in the MDF probably comes out at too-low a concentration to do true harm to your body. Medium-density fiberboard and plywood serve as two of the most common types of sheet wood used for constructing cabinets.
The higher grades of plywood (stain grade, cabinet grade, etc.) are much prettier and smoother.Â Unlike MDF, they have consistent wood grain showing and generally lack knot holes and other major imperfections. Some said it doesn’t matter, MDF is as durable as whole tree or sandwich boards. If the cabinet is large and going to be hung, plywood may be the better option because it is lighter. Some other pluses are the Plywood is stronger and will hold up the granite better without sagging.
There are usually two options for cabinet box construction: plywood and particle board. It isn’t often used for cabinet sides because it doesn’t take fasteners well at all and it weighs a lot. So, I must assume a volume manufacturer may get a similar volume break procuring carbide blades and bits but the casual” designer/builder must invest in expensive tooling just for the few times they must deal with MDF. The particleboard holds screws and other connecting fittings well; on the other hand, MDF has a smoother finishing and is more water resistant.
This isn’t the first time the 3/4 and MDF vs ply discussion has come up; won’t be the last -keep beating the drum of quality construction, guys. I agree that good quality plywood is superior for speaker cabinets, not only for durability, but for easier and stronger joints. It’s basically intended for furniture or cabinets at that point, and the quality matters.
Plywood is much lighter than MDF and plywood has better holding power with screws and nails. Another better alternative to MDF and plywood that is usually readily available in big box stores…MDO. MDF works well for both square and round post because of its easy painting, machining and I think superior glue hold with brad nails. These tipically have various grades of interior material filler, You can get different grades of partical board, coarse to very fine, a genuine plywood core or a lumber core. Green Benefit – Monarch Kitchen and Bath Design will be spending a great deal of time devoted to this subject.
As I Mentioned earlier that MDF comes pre-laminated and finished, it is still not enough for fine finish painting. For the best quality cabinets, Consumer Reports recommends choosing plywood for cabinet boxes, doors and drawers. MDF is great as a consistent substrate for wood veneers or for paint grade work, but I do not get why one would build cases with it. We don’t know enough about how these cabinets are made to give you any particular help.
Plywood is def stronger, but the question is do you need it. For doors i prefer MDF becuase it doesn’t warp once you paint both sides. We can speak of custom cabinets and best quality materials, but the fact remains that custom cabinetry sales do not exceed those of stock or semi custom cabinets. MDF gives me the good finish and the option to router edges; Is it possible to get a good paint finish on plywood without spending a long time sanding it?. Thermofoil is also sometimes applied to existing cabinets as a refinishing technique.
The consistency and smoothness of MDF allows for easy cutting of detailed designs (such as scrolled or scalloped designs) using a scroll saw, band saw or jigsaw. Also, it won’t be worth putting a lot of effort into quiet cabinet structures if the contents will be bouncing around insider the drawers and cabinets. Plywood grades are affected by many variables including the type of wood ply, thickness, adhesive, and manufacturing/compaction process. Raw mdf – forget it. Laminate or melamine or catalyzed lacquer, sure – as long as it;s a good quality sheet to begin with.