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Painting MDF

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Forum topic by COMO posted 563 days ago 1333 views 0 times favorited 15 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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COMO

25 posts in 912 days


563 days ago

I am getting ready to start a build for our office. It will involve a murphy bed, built in desk, and built in storage. My wife would like it to be white with wood tops. I figured since It will be getting painted MDF would be the best way to go. Does this sound ok? Also what would be the most durable way to paint the MDF. I was thinking of looking at the rustoleum cabinet kits.
Thanks
Garrett


15 replies so far

View a1Jim's profile

a1Jim

111999 posts in 2173 days


#1 posted 563 days ago

If you have the equipment spraying is the best way to go.

-- http://artisticwoodstudio.com Custom furniture

View Matt Przybylski's profile

Matt Przybylski

433 posts in 974 days


#2 posted 563 days ago

I’ve had good results with priming the MDF using Zinsser BIN and then used General Finishes Enduro Var Poly that was tinted white as the top coat. It came out great (look at my projects, well, the only one :)

As Jim said, I sprayed it through my Earlex 5500 (both the primer and the poly).

-- Matt, Illinois, http://www.reintroducing.com

View bondogaposis's profile

bondogaposis

2439 posts in 947 days


#3 posted 563 days ago

I’ve used General Finishes milk paint w/ good results on MDF.

-- Bondo Gaposis

View 489tad's profile

489tad

2204 posts in 1608 days


#4 posted 563 days ago

another tip. If any cut edges, bull nose, “end grain” will be exposed seal it first with a light coat of drywall compound. Just use your finger to rub it in then sand it smooth. It makes a nice finish.

-- Dan, Naperville IL, I.G.N.

View fuigb's profile

fuigb

164 posts in 1554 days


#5 posted 563 days ago

Murphy bed for the office. Good grief, don’t let HR know that you’re doing this!

-- - Crud. Go tell your mother that I need a Band-aid.

View Moron's profile

Moron

4666 posts in 2489 days


#6 posted 563 days ago

making a murphy bed from MDF ?……… poor choice as it doesn’t stand up to the stress/force of the hardware.

-- "Good artists borrow, great artists steal”…..Picasso

View johnstoneb's profile

johnstoneb

616 posts in 769 days


#7 posted 562 days ago

I just finished a murphy bed a few months ago. I would not use MDF. As moron says I don’t think it would stand up to the stress of the hardware.

-- Bruce, Boise, ID

View COMO's profile

COMO

25 posts in 912 days


#8 posted 562 days ago

Thanks for the responses. I was not specific enough. I was only going to use the MDF for the surround built in, shelves, parts of the desk, and cabinet. Maybe I should just use plywood for it all?

View Loren's profile

Loren

7223 posts in 2244 days


#9 posted 562 days ago

Plywood is stiffer in spans like shelves, holds most fasteners
better (I use confirmats in MDF and they are an exception),
stays less flat than MDF, and is lighter.

You can get some of MDF’s stability benefits in a plywood
by using the plywood that has 2 or 3 layers of 1/8”
MDF in it. I’ve used it and found it offered a good
blend/compromise of both materials.

Using MDF will save you some money and eliminate
some of the hassles of dealing with (especially cheaper
grades of) plywood.

-- http://lawoodworking.com

View NiteWalker's profile

NiteWalker

2699 posts in 1173 days


#10 posted 562 days ago

I would personally use plywood.

-- He who dies with the most tools... dies with the emptiest wallet.

View BLarge's profile

BLarge

115 posts in 1058 days


#11 posted 562 days ago

I just finished SMS cabinets for my shop. I used MDF as the panel inside all of my doors…. I primed it, sanded it flat with high grit paper, did a few coats of good white paint with flotrol and thinned at 75/25, then brushed on some poly thinned to 75/25…..

It cam out very flat and smooth…. I lightly sanded between poly coats, but only to get out dust and freakin cat hairs hat no matter how I tried could not keep then all out!

Itf you can’t spray I would try that…. Be sure to prime well and seal MDF end grain….

View Moron's profile

Moron

4666 posts in 2489 days


#12 posted 562 days ago

try throwing the cat outside

confirmats and associated hardware, as Lorne said, if properly installed into MDF, will last longer then you will

-- "Good artists borrow, great artists steal”…..Picasso

View NiteWalker's profile

NiteWalker

2699 posts in 1173 days


#13 posted 562 days ago

If you do decide to use MDF, I’ve found that with zinsser BIN primer, sealing the edges isn’t necessary. Just prime, lightly sand with 320, another coat of primer, lightly sand and you’re good.

-- He who dies with the most tools... dies with the emptiest wallet.

View Matt Przybylski's profile

Matt Przybylski

433 posts in 974 days


#14 posted 560 days ago

+1 to what NiteWalker said. I didn’t seal edges and did two coats exactly as he stated and it came out perfect.

-- Matt, Illinois, http://www.reintroducing.com

View shawn_s's profile

shawn_s

4 posts in 633 days


#15 posted 560 days ago

Like others have said, I have also had great success without sealing the edges. The key is a good primer. (zinsser, Stix, etc..) As far as the paint goes, I’m a big fan of the Benjamin Moore Advance. It flattens beautifly and once fully cured, it is very hard/durable. The trick to it is not to apply heavy coats. If you put it on too heavy you can end up with some nasty sags.

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