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3D Tech Tip – MDF – a simple, inexpensive material to mill

MDF is a great low cost material that is easy to buy in lumber yard and home supply stores. It is made from compressed wood fibers and sold in sheets. We recommend using MDF for test cuts and simple parts because it is so inexpensive and machines quickly. It is important to seal MDF before you adhere it to your table with double-sided tape. A quick coat of polyurethane will do the trick. You only need to coat one side and let it dry completely before you mount it with double-sided tape. After your part is completed you can stain, paint or simply coat it with polyurethane to seal all of the surfaces. All of the samples below were created with simple 3-axis operations using a .125 end mill. The sign geometry was created with Roland 3D Engrave and the gears were free downloads from the Autodesk 123D content site. All tool paths were created in Roland SRP Player software. A 12” x 12” x ½” sheet of MDF was used to create all of the parts.

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