Does the straightness/stability ranking go like this?
2) Particle board
I'm building a workbench with a torsion box top. I'm using 2x4's and
particle board and have everything laid out and ready to glue/screw, but I
saw some hardwood plywood on sale at HD. Will I still be okay with the
particle board? This is going to be an all-around workbench for my garage,
with a tempered hardboard top. I'll be doing some woodworking, but not a
I've seen torsion boxes built with MDF and it seems to me that particle
board would have better stability because of the strands in it. I'm just
trying to justify me not spending more money (and time in cutting).
from your post it is not clear -- are you going to use the 2x4's in the
construction of the torsion box ? if so then your choice of surface
material won't matter.
If you are going for a torsion box and you desire flat, and you are going to
have this essentialy "outside" (in the garage) you may want to seal the MDF
before you close up the box. before the moisture swlls the MDF...
Yes, I'm making the frame out of 2x4's (glue is drying as I write this).
The skin will be particle board. I think this will work for my needs. If I
get into woodworking more I can build a new top since this one is only
costing me $20.
Thanks, George. I did see that. It's what made me doubt my choice of
particleboard. I'm sticking with it for now, though. I'll seal it and see
if it holds its straightness. And if not, then I might be able to use it on
another wall in my garage and build an new MDF top.
One other concern I would have with using particle board for
a torsion box is that it is not all that great at dealing with
tension. It stands up to compression well enough, but, not so well
with tension. I prefer "real" plywood for this sort of thing. One
really nice thing about torsion boxes, too, is that one can often use
1/4" or 1/2" plywood in places where one would usually use 3/4" or 1"
stock. The internal structure adds a LOT of strenght and stiffness
to the construction. I made some torsion box stage sections some
years ago, and, instead of using 2 sheets of 3/4" ply, I used
1x stock for the ribs, and 1/2" stock for the skin. Works great,
is very stiff, and, quite light and easy to move.
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