MDF is an acronym for medium-density fibreboard. It is a common replacement for traditional types of wood such as oak and maple. Not only is MDF a more cost-effective option, but it boasts excellent levels of strength and durability. There are also many instances when variants such as veneered MDF can be purchased in order to accurately mimic the appearance of the natural wood grain. Still, it is interesting to note that relatively few consumers are aware of the technology involved with the creation of medium-density fibreboard. Let us therefore take a look at the manufacturing process to fully appreciate the options at your disposal.
From Humble Beginnings to a Finished Product
MDF consists of wood chips that originate from several species. These can include both hardwood and softwood varieties. One of the reasons why MDF is a cost-effective alternative arises from the fact that these chips are often the byproducts of other manufacturing processes.
Once these chips have been obtained, they will first be soaked and then broken down by a machine known as a “defibrator”. The subsequent mixture will essentially resemble a rough solution of wood pulp.
The real process begins when the manufacturer introduces other materials such as wax and resin. Once the concoction is thoroughly mixed, it will be simultaneously heated and pressed. This allows the constituent components to cure; resulting in a stiff board that can be cut to various dimensions.
Other steps may be required to produce variants such as flexible MDF. This includes cutting a series of grooves and introducing a vinyl backing so that the sheet is able to bend and stretch without cracking.
MDF is a truly revolutionary material and it enjoys numerous uses throughout both domestic and commercial environments. If you would like to learn more about your options, please feel free to contact a specialist at Theos Timber Limited.