Particle Board and Kreg Pocket Fastening - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
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post #1 of 13 Old 04-24-2019, 10:52 AM Thread Starter
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Particle Board and Kreg Pocket Fastening

I am considering making a couple of 30"w x16"d x64"t cabinets with doors using 5/8" particle board. I called Kreg, and they said it will work fine...but don't overtighten the screws, and use glue.

My question is... has anyone used a Kreg pocket hole jig to fasten butt joints using particle board? How well does it work? Any pitfalls? Any recommendations?

I want to make it from particle board because it's cheap.

Gary

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post #2 of 13 Old 04-24-2019, 11:34 AM
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taking this route to produce something out of particle
board "that will last" will test your resolve like nothing else.
do some testing on scrap pieces and arrive at your own conclusions
as to how the finished product will turn out according to your skill sets.

.

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Last edited by John Smith_inFL; 04-24-2019 at 11:37 AM.
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post #3 of 13 Old 04-24-2019, 12:46 PM
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Your joint will be a strong as the glue you use, the screws are basically holding it in place until the glue dries. Titebond 11 works good on MDF. This method seldom fails: apply the glue to both surfaces, push together, pull apart and push together again.

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post #4 of 13 Old 04-24-2019, 01:32 PM
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Screws into particleboard are a waste of time. They will only hold until there is some stress put on it. You would be better off with corrugated fasteners. Dowels would be better.
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post #5 of 13 Old 04-25-2019, 08:40 AM
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I would recommend MDF if you still wanna go on the cheap. It will glue up much better than particle board.
I would STRONGLY recommend eye protection with particle board. The chips are very small and sharp. Also wear a dust mask.

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post #6 of 13 Old 04-26-2019, 12:05 AM
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Quote:
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Your joint will be a strong as the glue you use, the screws are basically holding it in place until the glue dries. Titebond 11 works good on MDF. This method seldom fails: apply the glue to both surfaces, push together, pull apart and push together again.
Sorry, I read particle board and thought MDF, you will likely be wasting your time with particle board.

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post #7 of 13 Old 04-26-2019, 09:33 AM Thread Starter
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My wife loves to cook and over the years she has amassed a plethora of kitchen items (I call them tools). She has 4 storage cabinets that she uses now that are of the kmart particle variety made from 5/8" particle board, and has worked well for the last 15 years or so. They are nowhere to be found anymore to buy 2 of them. She stores things like Tupperware, stock pots, casseroles, slow cookers and the like. I realize particle board is delicate and would rather build it with plywood. I have only just recently used the Kreg pocket hole jig for a cabinet carcass (plywood) to display/store my hand planes. My preference would be to use real joinery in making the carcass but wanted to make it a cheap as possible so I called Kreg to ask about it and of coarse the said it will work with the downfalls you describe. I wanted some verification from real users and I think that is the reason no one seems to sell these cabinets anymore. The cost of making these cabinets from plywood will jump the cost to more than double to three times the price for plywood and even more for real pine lumber.

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post #8 of 13 Old 04-26-2019, 09:50 AM
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Will the cabinets have backs?

Could you glue support pieces in the corners to give more gluing surface for the joints?

What about confirmat screws?
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post #9 of 13 Old 04-26-2019, 09:56 AM Thread Starter
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In summary, I think that the answer I got from Kreg was a poor one, and though it is possible...it shouldn't have been recommended. This answer typifies what is wrong with industry today. I am going to make the carcass from plywood, and for speed in assembly, I will use pocket hole joinery (although not my preference). I don't like all the gashes required for the screws. I agree that making this sort of cabinet from particle board is iffy at best, and would require substantial framework support in order to work. I want to thank everyone for your thoughts and participating in this discussion, and I hope it makes it clear to others about the use of a Kreg pocket hole jig on this matter. Gary Mercer.
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post #10 of 13 Old 04-27-2019, 12:34 PM
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Ikea uses particle board, but they also use fasteners that are designed to hold it together.

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post #11 of 13 Old 04-28-2019, 05:30 AM
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I made my kitchen cabinet from MDF and plastic blocks never any problem in 10 years.
For cabinets to hold plates and other heavy items, I put a batten underneath. A bonus in using a batten is very easy to get level. The batten is invisible from eye level.
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post #12 of 13 Old 05-06-2019, 01:24 PM
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Particle board does not take paint very well. If you are planning on painting this, then MDF makes more sense. Neither are particularly friendly to fasteners. Biscuits, dowels seem best. Pocket hole screws work, but use the coarse thread screws. Use glue. Apply to the end of the board twice. It will absorb a lot of glue. I apply it and brush it with a glue brush and then go back and do it again immediately. Then assemble.

When you go to paint the cabinet, apply some spackle or grain filler to the edges and sand smooth. Do not sand the shiny surfaces. Those surfaces take paint well. After you have sanded the cut or machined edges, apply an oil based primer to the edges (or the entire project). If you use a water based paint on the machined edges it will end up with the texture of sandpaper. Very ugly.

If you plan the project well, MDF is cost effective and takes paint extremely well. Do not screw into the edges of the MDF with drywall screws. They won't hold well and may split the MDF. Confirmat screws work pretty well but you have to use a special pilot hole drill bit before driving the screws.

Through dowels work well and are easy to do. You will have to use Spackle or wood filler to cover the dowels and screws.

Do not use MDF or particle board in a bathroom or a damp environment. The board will absorb moisture and swell affecting the fit of all the components.
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post #13 of 13 Old 05-07-2019, 09:32 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FrankC View Post
Ikea uses particle board, but they also use fasteners that are designed to hold it together.
The ready to assemble (RTA) furniture manufacturers' association (of which Ikea is a member) commissioned a testing laboratory to test various fasteners on plywood, particle board and MDF. I found the results on line, it requires some careful reading to get the most out of it.

The kitchen cabinet manufacturers' association commissioned a similar test. They were far less concerned about racking strength (side to side flexing) than was the RTA manufacturers.

But still, their results were similar.

The test was basically a shelf that was attached to a vertical board with no glue (they were testing the fasteners, not the joint. And in many cases glue was not an available choice. They then proceeded to use a tensile tester to pull down on the edge of the shelf.

At the bottom of the list in terms of strength was the dado. It failed before any reading on the tensile tester would register. (Remember this is anchored on one side only.)

Next was the metal dowels and turn fasteners. They added little racking strength.

Wood screws were next.

A big jump in racking strength occured when they switched to Confirmat screws, which with their wide barrels they behaved like both dowels and screws providing both racking strength and holding power.

And finally dowels. Apparently the lowly dowel in sheet goods fared the best.

Regardless of the fastener chosen, it should be placed no closer to the end of the panel than 2". The fasterners need support on both sides or the racking stresses will split the panel.

Racking strength on kitchen cabinets is much less of an issue as the wall generally becomes a structural member. It does become an issue for islands and I think I would put a piece of plywood across the entire back of an island to mimic the wall. It will get covered anyway so it is just the cost of a piece of plywood.

I'm sure you can find the same research if you google it. I have not looked at is for several years and perhaps some new findings have been made.

Last edited by Packard; 05-07-2019 at 09:35 AM.
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