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Novaply vs Mdf

#75144 by fuji1 » Tue Sep 21, 2010 7:52 pm


My local lumber yard does not carry the "MDF" but has Novaply that looks more like particle board. I'm building a mobile storage unit for my garage, is there a drawback using Novaply? The best I can find is that it is used mostly for counter tops. It is smooth and according to the guys it isn't the soft particle board that comes to mind.

Anyone feel it wouldn't work for a mobile storage that will be a 6' x 3' storage closet on wheels?


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The Downsides of Novaply

#75162 by Collector » Wed Sep 22, 2010 12:56 am


Years ago I built some three-shelf storage units to hold an LP record collection. Each unit therefore held a substantial load. I don't remember whether I used either 3/4-inch or 5/8-inch stock. I rabbeted the sides, top, and bottom to half the stock thickness, and had 3/8-inch dadoes also to receive the two shelves, and used yellow glue with drywall screws to pull the pieces together. The back was thinner novaply that fitted into into rabbets in all the surround pieces. This furniture was spackled and painted in places, and worked out quite well for the owner.

I believe the downsides of Novaply would be, (1) it's heavy for its size; (2) its cut edges require finishing or wooden banding; (3) unless supported it will sag under weight and over even medium spans (I think I therefore kept my cabinets under 3' wide, as the shelves had no extra support except the back); and (4) its edges will wick up standing water and swell; and (5) its edges can crumble under pressure or shock. The upside is that it is smoother than plywood, and stable and straight and paintable.

I think Novaply could work out well for you if you compensate for its downsides.
Go for it!



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