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Author Topic: Best wood screws and wood glue for MDF?  (Read 15543 times)

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DataWest

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Best wood screws and wood glue for MDF?
« on: March 30, 2011, 02:07:29 pm »
What are the best wood screws and wood glue for MDF?

Just wanted to hear all your opinions.

D_Harris

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Re: Best wood screws and wood glue for MDF?
« Reply #1 on: March 30, 2011, 03:48:40 pm »
That depends on your application.

Wood glue generally doesn't vary very much. (Just pick up a bottle of Titebond or Elmers).

Screws in MDF is generally not a good idea.

Darren Harris
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« Last Edit: March 31, 2011, 03:49:37 pm by D_Harris »
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Woodshop Flunky

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Re: Best wood screws and wood glue for MDF?
« Reply #2 on: March 30, 2011, 04:21:23 pm »
This glue is tough as nails: http://www.rockler.com/product.cfm?page=1414

Don't use tapered wood screws on MDF.

You may not need everything in this kit, but the screws are made specifically for this type of material.
http://www.mcfeelys.com/product/5040-CSP-A/5-x-40mm-Connecting-Screw-Starter-Kit

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pharoah007

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Re: Best wood screws and wood glue for MDF?
« Reply #3 on: March 30, 2011, 08:54:03 pm »
Glue and a nail gun/ Brad nails Is always a option.

What are everyone's opinions on this?

I have seen Midway construction videos (San Fransisco Rush Cab) where all they use is glue and brad nails.

DataWest

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Re: Best wood screws and wood glue for MDF?
« Reply #4 on: March 30, 2011, 09:10:48 pm »
This glue is tough as nails: http://www.rockler.com/product.cfm?page=1414

Don't use tapered wood screws on MDF.

You may not need everything in this kit, but the screws are made specifically for this type of material.
http://www.mcfeelys.com/product/5040-CSP-A/5-x-40mm-Connecting-Screw-Starter-Kit

Can I get those screws anywhere? What are they called? If I was limited to home depot what direction should I go screw wise LOL. and BTW I'm specifically talking about mounting support pine strips to the inside of the MDF.

miles2912

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Re: Best wood screws and wood glue for MDF?
« Reply #5 on: March 30, 2011, 09:31:24 pm »
Titebond and Drywall screws work great in MDF.  Pre drill and you will be fine.  Basically the screws just hold it until the glue dries.
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DataWest

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Re: Best wood screws and wood glue for MDF?
« Reply #6 on: March 30, 2011, 09:59:43 pm »
Titebond and Drywall screws work great in MDF.  Pre drill and you will be fine.  Basically the screws just hold it until the glue dries.

Thanks!

Woodshop Flunky

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Re: Best wood screws and wood glue for MDF?
« Reply #7 on: March 30, 2011, 10:23:54 pm »
I don't know if these screws are readily available at Home Depot or Lowes.  I have a Rockler and Woocraft store nearby.  They are listed as Confirmat screws (but this may be a brand name).

One of the things that make these types of screws effective for MDF is the straight thread body.  MDF doesn't compress or flex like wood (or plywood).  If you drive a tapered screw into MDF the top of the hole and the bottom of the hole will be under different pressure.  It's the same as running a round wedge into the board, and you run a higher risk of splitting.

All that being said, if you're careful to drill a properly sized pilot hole, you will likely get perfectly acceptable results with drywall screws. :)

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DataWest

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Re: Best wood screws and wood glue for MDF?
« Reply #8 on: March 31, 2011, 01:35:00 am »
Thanks for all the info.  ;D

Blanka

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Re: Best wood screws and wood glue for MDF?
« Reply #9 on: March 31, 2011, 02:42:58 am »
If you need to screw, try it from the inside. Never put screws in the visible faces.
Glue has to do the job, and the best aid for glueing is lamello type connections:
http://images.google.com/images?q=lamello

miles2912

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Re: Best wood screws and wood glue for MDF?
« Reply #10 on: March 31, 2011, 03:58:15 am »
Counter sink the holes and then wood putty filler any 'outside' holes.  After you paint, no one will ever know.  If you laminate you dont need wood filler.

Pre-drill all your holes and you will be fine with Dry Wall screws and MDF.  

In the image, all of the light spots is wood putty over screws.
« Last Edit: March 31, 2011, 04:03:33 am by miles2912 »
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gryhnd

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Re: Best wood screws and wood glue for MDF?
« Reply #11 on: March 31, 2011, 07:26:46 am »
Drywall screws and wood glue, as other have said.

Counter sink the holes and then wood putty filler any 'outside' holes.  After you paint, no one will ever know.

Everyone's opinions vary, but that was WAY too much effort for me (fill, wait to dry, sand, check, sand again, possibly re-putty if it sunk in) and too much risk of ending up with a a marred surface after all that.

It was better for me to corner block where needed and screw from the inside, or for load bearing/structural parts I would cut a rabbet with my router. Glue the groove, then the block/screw method. Clamp wherever you can regardless of the use of screws.
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DataWest

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Re: Best wood screws and wood glue for MDF?
« Reply #12 on: March 31, 2011, 11:28:10 am »
Ok new question....

If I'm using 1/2" MDF to make the cabinet does any of this advice change? I really need to keep the weight down and I've seen people make cabs out of 1/2".

I'm basically going to build this type of cab and support  1/2" MDF on sides and 3/4 pine support.

http://forum.arcadecontrols.com/index.php?action=dlattach;topic=109664.0;attach=161409;image

Glue and pre drilled drywall screws will do it?

Woodshop Flunky

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Re: Best wood screws and wood glue for MDF?
« Reply #13 on: March 31, 2011, 12:58:55 pm »
Okay, if you are only using MDF for the outsides, and using actual wood for the inside carcass, then drywall screws and glue will be fine even with 1/2 inch MDF... if your are drilling countersunk through holes and fastening from the outside.

If you plan to fasten from the inside, then 1/2 inch MDF doesn't give your screws much bite and the glue will be what you're counting on most.

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DataWest

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Re: Best wood screws and wood glue for MDF?
« Reply #14 on: March 31, 2011, 01:07:04 pm »
Ok I've never worked with wood in my life.  ;D

What do you mean by fasten? The picture I used above is plywood, I don't think it's any kind of MDF. What does it look like he did so I can have a visual.

DataWest

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Re: Best wood screws and wood glue for MDF?
« Reply #15 on: March 31, 2011, 01:12:08 pm »
Ok it looks like he fastened them from the inside. So I need to drill into the support from the outside?

DataWest

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Re: Best wood screws and wood glue for MDF?
« Reply #16 on: March 31, 2011, 02:30:05 pm »
Ok here is my final plan, please give me your thoughts.....

Im going to be using this sort of cab template   http://forum.arcadecontrols.com/index.php?action=dlattach;topic=109664.0;attach=161409;image

Ill be using 1/2" MDF for the outside walls, and stud 2x4's for the support/frame.

Ill use glue to assemble my 2x4 frame.

I will drill countersunk drywall screws from the outside of the cab in to attach my MDF to the frame. the frame will be glued to the MDF as well.

Does that sound like a plan???

D_Harris

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Re: Best wood screws and wood glue for MDF?
« Reply #17 on: March 31, 2011, 05:18:55 pm »
As I said your options depend on your application.

Now that you've been more specific you have to consider that 1/2" MDF  will be weaker than the conventional 3/4". Add to that, countersinking will weakens the MDF further.

Why have you settled on 1/2" MDF? 1/2" plywood is lighter.

And why use 2" x 4"s for the frame?

The MDF from places like Home Depot and Lowes is the cheapest stuff on the market and is very easy to fracture with a screw that is too big for its pilot hole. And confirmat screws were made for something like this, but you need a special bit and a drill guide.

Nevertheless, since you want to use drywall screws, you will need a way to hold the cabinet together when you drill the pilot holes. Hole accuracy cannot be understated. And be careful with the drywall screws. They are brittle and will snap when they are over torqued.

I'd use dowels myself. Dowels are actually far stronger. Even stronger than biscuits. If you had a good dowelling jig you wouldn't have to worry about countersinking. Of course this would take longer and really isn't for the average newbie woodworker.

Darren Harris
Staten Island, New York.
My collection:Asteroids, Joust, Millipede, Ms. Pac-man, Pole Position II, Robotron 2084, Star Trek, Star Wars, and many PCBs. Trading/Selling:Donkey Kong and Ms. Pac-man. And two Midway cocktail cabinets. HP 16500A Logic Analysis System. Wanted:Ms. Pac-man, Donkey Kong, Millipede, and Star Wars Marquees. An MVS 4-slot PCB. And a

Woodshop Flunky

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Re: Best wood screws and wood glue for MDF?
« Reply #18 on: March 31, 2011, 05:26:29 pm »
Ok I've never worked with wood in my life.  ;D

What do you mean by fasten? The picture I used above is plywood, I don't think it's any kind of MDF. What does it look like he did so I can have a visual.

Sorry, a screw is a fastener.  So, just replace "fastening" with "screwing" (:) sorry again) in my previoius post.

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miles2912

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Re: Best wood screws and wood glue for MDF?
« Reply #19 on: March 31, 2011, 07:00:54 pm »
As I said your options depend on your application.

Now that you've been more specific you have to consider that 1/2" MDF  will be weaker than the conventional 3/4". Add to that, countersinking will weakens the MDF further.

Why have you settled on 1/2" MDF? 1/2" plywood is lighter.

And why use 2" x 4"s for the frame?

The MDF from places like Home Depot and Lowes is the cheapest stuff on the market and is very easy to fracture with a screw that is too big for its pilot hole. And confirmat screws were made for something like this, but you need a special bit and a drill guide.

Nevertheless, since you want to use drywall screws, you will need a way to hold the cabinet together when you drill the pilot holes. Hole accuracy cannot be understated. And be careful with the drywall screws. They are brittle and will snap when they are over torqued.

I'd use dowels myself. Dowels are actually far stronger. Even stronger than biscuits. If you had a good dowelling jig you wouldn't have to worry about countersinking. Of course this would take longer and really isn't for the average newbie woodworker.

Darren Harris
Staten Island, New York.


I don't want to be a jerk, but all the advice here (except that plywood is lighter) is wrong.  A 2x4 frame is a great idea.  Makes for a very sturdy cab.  1/2 MDF is plenty strong and as far as hole placement you just have to be close.  Dowels make for cleaner work, but a dry wall screw is plenty strong.  I built a cab.  It is still around after 5 years or so.  Check out the link ...

http://forum.arcadecontrols.com/index.php?topic=47074.0

Note the 2x4 frame and how it is built.  It looks like you collect cabs, have you made any?
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D_Harris

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Re: Best wood screws and wood glue for MDF?
« Reply #20 on: March 31, 2011, 10:02:13 pm »
As I said your options depend on your application.

Now that you've been more specific you have to consider that 1/2" MDF  will be weaker than the conventional 3/4". Add to that, countersinking will weakens the MDF further.

Why have you settled on 1/2" MDF? 1/2" plywood is lighter.

And why use 2" x 4"s for the frame?

The MDF from places like Home Depot and Lowes is the cheapest stuff on the market and is very easy to fracture with a screw that is too big for its pilot hole. And confirmat screws were made for something like this, but you need a special bit and a drill guide.

Nevertheless, since you want to use drywall screws, you will need a way to hold the cabinet together when you drill the pilot holes. Hole accuracy cannot be understated. And be careful with the drywall screws. They are brittle and will snap when they are over torqued.

I'd use dowels myself. Dowels are actually far stronger. Even stronger than biscuits. If you had a good dowelling jig you wouldn't have to worry about countersinking. Of course this would take longer and really isn't for the average newbie woodworker.

Darren Harris
Staten Island, New York.


I don't want to be a jerk, but all the advice here (except that plywood is lighter) is wrong.  A 2x4 frame is a great idea.  Makes for a very sturdy cab.  1/2 MDF is plenty strong and as far as hole placement you just have to be close.  Dowels make for cleaner work, but a dry wall screw is plenty strong.  I built a cab.  It is still around after 5 years or so.  Check out the link ...

http://forum.arcadecontrols.com/index.php?topic=47074.0

Note the 2x4 frame and how it is built.  It looks like you collect cabs, have you made any?

I don't have to make any game cabinets. But I've repaired enough of them.

And you would be a jerk if you called someone's advice wrong and not address specifically what advice you think is wrong and why.

I never said using 2" x 4" for framing was a bad idea. I simply asked him why he settled on it.

I did say that 1/2" MDF is weaker than 3/4" MDF, and having to countersink will weaken it.

Of course plywood is lighter than MDF. He conveyed a concern with the weight of the cabinet. Plywood also holds screws, nails, dowels, etc., better. Plywood would also repair better. And MDF releases urea formaldehyde when sanded and cut. The health implications of that are well known.

(I personally wouldn't use drywall screws in MDF, but perhaps my joinery standards are just higher).

And downplaying hole placement demonstrates that you need to learn more.

Having a cabinet for 5 years means nothing.

But again, what advice did I give was wrong?

Darren Harris
Staten Island, New York.
My collection:Asteroids, Joust, Millipede, Ms. Pac-man, Pole Position II, Robotron 2084, Star Trek, Star Wars, and many PCBs. Trading/Selling:Donkey Kong and Ms. Pac-man. And two Midway cocktail cabinets. HP 16500A Logic Analysis System. Wanted:Ms. Pac-man, Donkey Kong, Millipede, and Star Wars Marquees. An MVS 4-slot PCB. And a

DataWest

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Re: Best wood screws and wood glue for MDF?
« Reply #21 on: March 31, 2011, 10:35:17 pm »
All MDF at HD is formaldehyde free now.

« Last Edit: April 01, 2011, 11:17:08 am by DataWest »

DataWest

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Re: Best wood screws and wood glue for MDF?
« Reply #22 on: April 01, 2011, 01:30:34 am »
New set of plans yet again

Same build material and support layout. New screws

http://www.ehow.com/i/#article_5232815

Seems like the easiest way for me not to screw up (pun intended  ;D )

I'll just go from the outside through the MDF into the 2x4's.

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Re: Best wood screws and wood glue for MDF?
« Reply #23 on: April 01, 2011, 03:48:35 pm »
Just be sure to countersink those holes so you don't make a volcano out of the surface.

D_Harris

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Re: Best wood screws and wood glue for MDF?
« Reply #24 on: April 01, 2011, 07:24:21 pm »
All MDF at HD is formaldehyde free now.

I wouldn't trust that. (And that dust can cause problems for other reasons. Especially if you have a respiratory condition).

New set of plans yet again

Same build material and support layout. New screws

http://www.ehow.com/i/#article_5232815

Seems like the easiest way for me not to screw up (pun intended  ;D )

I'll just go from the outside through the MDF into the 2x4's.

Yes. Confirmat screws is the way to go.

Depending on the climate the game will be in you might want to seal the MDF.

Darren Harris
Staten Island, New York.
My collection:Asteroids, Joust, Millipede, Ms. Pac-man, Pole Position II, Robotron 2084, Star Trek, Star Wars, and many PCBs. Trading/Selling:Donkey Kong and Ms. Pac-man. And two Midway cocktail cabinets. HP 16500A Logic Analysis System. Wanted:Ms. Pac-man, Donkey Kong, Millipede, and Star Wars Marquees. An MVS 4-slot PCB. And a

pharoah007

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Re: Best wood screws and wood glue for MDF?
« Reply #25 on: April 02, 2011, 02:57:17 pm »
Glue and a nail gun/ Brad nails Is always a option.

What are everyone's opinions on this?

I have seen Midway construction videos (San Fransisco Rush Cab) where all they use is glue and brad nails.

any no one has any thoughts on this??  (or am I blind and missed them)

D_Harris

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Re: Best wood screws and wood glue for MDF?
« Reply #26 on: April 02, 2011, 03:28:28 pm »
Glue and a nail gun/ Brad nails Is always a option.

What are everyone's opinions on this?

I have seen Midway construction videos (San Fransisco Rush Cab) where all they use is glue and brad nails.

any no one has any thoughts on this??  (or am I blind and missed them)

Brad nails are for attaching. Not supporting. I assume they were used to hold the cabinets together while the glue dries.

Darren Harris
Staten Island, New York.
My collection:Asteroids, Joust, Millipede, Ms. Pac-man, Pole Position II, Robotron 2084, Star Trek, Star Wars, and many PCBs. Trading/Selling:Donkey Kong and Ms. Pac-man. And two Midway cocktail cabinets. HP 16500A Logic Analysis System. Wanted:Ms. Pac-man, Donkey Kong, Millipede, and Star Wars Marquees. An MVS 4-slot PCB. And a

pharoah007

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Re: Best wood screws and wood glue for MDF?
« Reply #27 on: April 02, 2011, 05:42:04 pm »
Glue and a nail gun/ Brad nails Is always a option.

What are everyone's opinions on this?

I have seen Midway construction videos (San Fransisco Rush Cab) where all they use is glue and brad nails.

any no one has any thoughts on this??  (or am I blind and missed them)


Humm, this does make seance.

thanks.

Brad nails are for attaching. Not supporting. I assume they were used to hold the cabinets together while the glue dries.

Darren Harris
Staten Island, New York.

  
 

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