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Hi!!

Is is possible to use 1/2" MDF for base cabinets?  I will be using 3/4" stock for the face frames. I have heard that 1/2" is not suitable, however I would like some comments and perhaps suggestions??

 

Thanks,

Janice in Sunny Stanwood, WA  

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I don't know why you couldn't. My kitchen cabinets are mostly 1/4" plywood skins with 3/4" face frames and internal bracing. I will say  the joinery is a bit more complex than pocket holes. The face frames are half-lapped and rabbeted into the sides. Joints in the bracing are mostly half-lapped or cross-lapped. House was built in the 40's.

Thanks for the reply.  I am heading out to the shop and I am going to dive into the 1/2" MDF and see what happens.  Since the MDF was given to me I don't have much to lose, besides at best it will add to my woodworking knowledge base.

 

Janice

Depends on size, location and usage of cabinet. For strong cabinetry it is best to use wood not MDF. the price difference is negligable when you consider strength, mounting, water exposure and life span.

Rick Sherman

Thanks Rick,

 

The cabinets are an upgrade for below my cutting table in the sewing room.  I worked in the shop yesterday and things are going quite well.  I made top and bottom inside frames which I am attaching the side panels to.  The frames are 1.5" x 3/4".  I tested some samples and came up with using the 5/8" setting on the Kreg jig on the 1.5" stock and then screwing it to the side panels.

 

These cabinets will be accessable from both front and back with doors, so they are not "standard".  Planning on making face frames............etc.  This project was a good start in learning the ways of the Kreg jig.

 

The mdf was given to me and I want to get it used up and give it a purpose other than taking up space in my shop.  My next project is base cabinets in my kitchen which will require purchasing materials. 

 

Thanks for the reply!!

Janice

The only good MDF is free MDF, and that is barely true. Use it since you have it. Don't buy it.

Hey Janice,

 

Free MDF is good, but I have built quite a few kitchens in my day and plywood is much better.  Once the MDF gets wet it's over with for starters, I'm not sure that it would support any type of stone countertop, trouble getting screws in the sides for slides etc.  Not saying it can't be used by any means, but my 2 cents.

The cabinets are for under my cutting table in the sewing room.  I really understand how MDF and particle board swell up when wet and turn back into sawdust, an aluminum sliding door proved that many a year ago.  Trust me I am just trying to use it up and give it a purpose other than outdoor firewood!!  But thanks for your input!!

 

Speaking of "cents", Canada has quit making pennies, hope the US follows suit shortly.

 

 

Yes you can get 1/2" MDF from 3/4" stock for your base cabinet.

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sign cabinets

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Sam Mathew said:

Yes you can get 1/2" MDF from 3/4" stock for your base cabinet.

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sign cabinets



Janice Holzerland said:

The cabinets are for under my cutting table in the sewing room.  I really understand how MDF and particle board swell up when wet and turn back into sawdust, an aluminum sliding door proved that many a year ago.  Trust me I am just trying to use it up and give it a purpose other than outdoor firewood!!  But thanks for your input!!

 

Speaking of "cents", Canada has quit making pennies, hope the US follows suit shortly.

 

I would not burn any treated lumber or glued up lumber as most treatments and glues have many toxic compounds when in an air born spray or gas. Burning my even create other dangerous compounds.

 

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