Medium-density fiberboard (abbreviated MDF), which can be translated as “medium-density fiberboard,” is a wood derivative. It is the most common of the fiberboard family, comprising three categories based on the process used and density: low, medium and high. Ideal for the creation of semi-glossy and glossy matt satin lacquered furnishings, as it is free of undulations that could compromise the final result of the product.
WHAT IS MDF?
The mdf panels are smooth and neutral and fit any need due to the ease of being cut and shaped and are covered with decorative wood sheets, or are painted or lacquered.
Specifically, the residues and waste are debarked and “chipped” , that is reduced in flakes, carefully selected by discarding the bark residues, regrinded in order to obtain a paste of fibers that is compacted using natural resins and non-toxic glues and finally pressed to obtain the panels.
Unlike chipboard, this fiber is more refined and the granules are thinner, i.e. up to 0.4 mm.
PROPERTIES OF MDF
MDF panels are characterized by their uniformity and homogeneity throughout their thickness, do not present problems at the time of cutting and can be processed and shaped with ease.
The fiber density, according to UNE-EN 316, must be equal to or greater than 450 kg/mc, a value that makes the material very dimensionally stable, more so than solid wood , a property quite appreciated in carpentry and furniture.
From the point of view of moisture resistance, this is relatively low due to the water absorption capacity of the fibers of which it is made.
This resistance can be improved through the use, during the production process, of special products that significantly increase the resistance to moisture.
It should be noted that the designation water repellent for this material is incorrect, because these are only moisture resistant panels and should not be exposed to the elements without proper protection.
Let’s take a look at the main properties of MDF panels:
- It is a uniform material with a homogeneous surface, both from a chromatic and structural point of view, and this facilitates processing, decoration and painting.
- It is very versatile , which is why it is widely used in the furniture industry as it can be coated with different coatings and decorative effects;
- Through the application of water-repellent chemical products that make it heat-resistant, we obtain panels that are water-resistant, moisture-resistant, fungus-resistant and washable.
- It is a good thermal and acoustic insulator;
- It is a natural eco-friendly material that can be used in green building because it does not contain harmful substances.
PARAMETERS TO CONSIDER WHEN PURCHASING
Regarding the price of MDF woodIt is necessary to take into account the type of panel and, in particular, the thickness chosen: in principle, it starts from a price of about 5,00 €/sqm for the thinnest panels, 3 mm, up to prices of about 30,00 €/sqm for a thickness of 25 mm. Compared to plywood panels, consider that for this type of product you go from 4,50/5,00 €/sqm for 4 mm panels to about 25,00 €/sqm for 30 mm thick ones. To get a quality result, it is always advisable to get a quote from a carpenter. This will give you an idea of the expense and reveal all the applications of this versatile wood.
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