Holdfast in MDF bench top

  • Advertise with us

« back to Hand Tools forum

Forum topic by Christian Holihan posted 10-30-2013 05:11 PM 1990 views 0 times favorited 11 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View Christian Holihan's profile

Christian Holihan

85 posts in 1219 days

10-30-2013 05:11 PM

Topic tags/keywords: workbench holdfast

I have a laminate bench top of 3 1” MDF boards. Is it beyond foolish to drill a hole for a hold fast? Is there enough strength and thickness for the holdfast to work properly?

Here is a good shot of the bench when is was new and clean.

Any advice would be welcome.

-- Nobody deserves particle board |

11 replies so far

View bondogaposis's profile


3969 posts in 1772 days

#1 posted 10-30-2013 05:30 PM

You could give it try, I can’t say if it would work or not. I would recommend that you chamfer the hole to avoid tear out.

-- Bondo Gaposis

View Deltarich's profile


23 posts in 2909 days

#2 posted 10-30-2013 05:35 PM

I would consider one of these vs a traditional hold-fast for mdf to help reduce tear out from pounding.,41637

View Kaleb the Swede's profile

Kaleb the Swede

1720 posts in 1390 days

#3 posted 10-30-2013 05:35 PM

How about a T-track with hold downs. I use them in my work bench and they are indispensable. All you would have to do is rout a groove for the t-track and screw them in. The hold downs can be taken out when not needed

Something like this

-- Just trying to build something beautiful

View Don W's profile

Don W

17877 posts in 1988 days

#4 posted 10-30-2013 06:15 PM

I’d look for something along these lines.

-- Master hand plane hoarder. -

View Tedstor's profile


1625 posts in 2053 days

#5 posted 10-30-2013 06:35 PM

I have one of these. They take a minute to install and remove after each use, but nothing too tedious.

View Fred Hargis's profile

Fred Hargis

3844 posts in 1914 days

#6 posted 10-30-2013 06:45 PM

Just a guess, but I’d bet it would work. But maybe only for a while, I’d think the holes would get misshapen and worn out form continual use.

-- Our village hasn't lost it's idiot, he was elected to congress.

View GrandpaLen's profile


1643 posts in 1693 days

#7 posted 10-31-2013 12:25 PM

Try it in the MDF, if that fails you could enlarge the hole to 2” to 3” and fill it with a hardwood dowel turned on a lathe, a short section of hardwood hand rail, an ash or hickory baseball bat, and then rebore a 3/4” hole.
Could also be replaced with square stock.

...just a thought FWIW.

Best Regards. – Grandpa Len.

Work Safely and have Fun.

-- Mother Nature should be proud of what you've done with her tree. - Len ...just north of a stone's throw from the oHIo, river that is, in So. Indiana.

View 489tad's profile


3083 posts in 2432 days

#8 posted 10-31-2013 01:05 PM

I have a laminated plywood with a hard board top. I put an oak board on the underside where the hols are. So far so good.

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

View Wdwerker's profile


333 posts in 1654 days

#9 posted 10-31-2013 01:33 PM

I would coat the inside of the holes with some finish to harden and waterproof the MDF. I bet a small foam brush would do the trick.

-- Fine Custom Woodwork since 1978

View Christian Holihan's profile

Christian Holihan

85 posts in 1219 days

#10 posted 10-31-2013 10:47 PM

Tons of solid advice from everyone. Thanks!

-- Nobody deserves particle board |

View Shawn Masterson's profile

Shawn Masterson

1294 posts in 1369 days

#11 posted 10-31-2013 11:54 PM

i believe it would work for a while. I think the problem would be the long run. the whole would wollar out pretty fast from repeated use.

Have your say...

You must be signed in to reply.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics