I want to build a few different projects (arcade stick, electronics charging station, dice tower…) using laser-cut oak veneer MDF. (The cutting will be done by an online service.) I know from a previous arcade stick build that the cut edges of the MDF wear very quickly. What can I do to both protect the edges from wear, and make them look nice?
- Applying an edge banding tape made of veneer or PVC can not only cover the cut edges but also provide a smooth, finished look. Ensure to choose a banding material that matches or complements your MDF veneer for a seamless appearance.
- Sealing the edges with a wood sealant or a sanding sealer can provide a barrier against wear and tear. It also prepares the surface for further finishing steps.
- Sanding the edges smooth and then applying a high-quality paint or lacquer can drastically improve the appearance and durability. The paint acts as a protective layer against wear while giving a polished look.
- Coating the edges with epoxy resin creates a hard, glossy surface that is both attractive and durable. It's a more labor-intensive option but offers a high level of protection and a professional finish.
- A good varnish can provide a protective coat, enhancing the natural look of the oak veneer MDF. Opt for a clear varnish to retain the wood aesthetics or a tinted one to add some color.
- Fill any imperfections on the edges with wood filler, sand smooth, then apply a quality primer. This will create a solid base for painting or varnishing.
- T-molding is a plastic edging that can be installed on the cut edges of MDF. It's available in various colors and styles, providing both protection and a clean finished look.
Each of these methods can be employed based on the level of finish and protection you desire. You may even combine a few of these techniques to achieve a superior finish that will stand the test of time, ensuring your arcade stick, electronics charging station, and dice tower projects not only look appealing but remain sturdy and wear-resistant.