Should I seal my workbench/outfeed table?

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Forum topic by Sailor posted 07-18-2009 05:53 AM 1569 views 0 times favorited 3 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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543 posts in 2682 days

07-18-2009 05:53 AM

I am working on a workbench/outfeed table. The top consists of two layers of 3/4” MDF with a sacrificial 1/8” hardboard top. I would like to be able to replace the hardboard top someday if it becomes dinged and scratched. I also know that I should seal the MDF so that it doesn’t swell.

The top is edge banded with a hardwood.

Should I seal the entire top (hardboard and all)? Or should I remove the hardboard, seal the MDF with some poly then replace the HB top? Or something different?

What do you guys think…..?

-- Dothan, Alabama Check out my woodworking blog! Also my Youtube Channel's Facebook page

3 replies so far

View Myron Wooley's profile

Myron Wooley

226 posts in 3313 days

#1 posted 07-18-2009 07:01 AM

My outfeed table looks like a calico cat. I tend to test finishes and stains on it. Bad habit, but hey, it’s my bench…

It is built the as yours, so I’ll change the top when it gets ugly.

-- The days are long and the years are short...

View Kent Shepherd's profile

Kent Shepherd

2715 posts in 2704 days

#2 posted 07-20-2009 11:37 PM

I don’t know that I would put any finish on. Unless you plan on pouring water on it, I doubt that the MDF will swell. You could put a coat of paste wax on if you like. Then it slides better as an outfeed table. I have done that before. When I do any finishing on any of my benches, I use card board to protect the top. That way they stay in good shape a lot longer. I also have one bench covered with plastic laminate (Glue comes off easier) It all depends on how you will use the bench.


View Sailor's profile


543 posts in 2682 days

#3 posted 07-21-2009 12:52 AM

Thanks Kent,

I just picked up a large roll of brown paper the other day for $5 that I am going to hang on the side of the bench so that I can put some down when I am finsihing/painting or whatever. Sounds like I may not seal it then, but I might try that paste wax!

-- Dothan, Alabama Check out my woodworking blog! Also my Youtube Channel's Facebook page

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