Painting Over Mixed Substrates

Mixing wood and MDF, and don't want wood grain showing through paint? Use a wood like Maple. April 6, 2007

I started a large quote today, paint grade. Do you ever mix wood with MDF? Customer is looking for no wood grain showing through the finish. Say MDF doors with ply for the cabinet, just for strength and weight?

Forum Responses
(Business and Management Forum)
From contributor M:
I do a fair amount of paint grade, mixing MDF, hardwood, and cabinet ply. If your customer doesn’t want to see the wood grain, I would suggest using hard maple for your hardwood, MDF for door panels, and either MDO, or maple ply for your carcasses. These materials all spray up beautifully, and the maple will show very little if any grain. I use poplar usually, as I like this material, and I like to see a little grain, but the maple really makes a nice finish with paint.

From contributor P:
I would agree with contributor M on everything, except with the MDO, sometimes the core will telegraph through the overlay.

From contributor M:
I agree, and forgot to mention that. Also sometimes with the maple ply, you get either the core telegraphing some, or just a lousy glueup of the veneer, and it shows as a wavy finish in the veneer.

From contributor L:
I would use soft maple, not hard. It is much less expensive and moves less.

From contributor C:
Ditto on the soft maple instead of hard. We always sand 120, then 150 on painted plywood interiors prior to painting. If the panels are MDF, don't they take a lot of sealing or filling. I use a lot of TruPan Ultralight. Is this a decent product? It sucks up a lot of paint to look as good as soft maple panels.