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accuab
11-10-2011, 11:25 PM
I was in the shop doing some testing to get the right drill bit for pilot holes. I was drilling into the length of one piece of and testing. I noticed that the wood still split unless the pilot was so big that the screw barely gripped. So I tested with the brad nailer. Even after turning the pressure way way down, I still saw small wood splits. So I tried next with a trim nail and hammer. That caused small splits as well. Is there anything really that doesn't split at all. For the screws I was using 1 5/8 course drywall. Keep in mind that I'm not talking about going into the face of the wood. I was going into the side where a cut is. I'll bet many of you that put screws in your box have tiny splits in your wood that you don't know about.

Ninesvnsicks
11-10-2011, 11:37 PM
I had this problem with my MDF the problem was my drill bit it wasn't long enough at least the cutting edges weren't it would get to the solid part and then the wood shavings had no where to go and the pressure split the wood. If you get a longer drill bit with longer cutting edges it might help.

accuab
11-10-2011, 11:41 PM
Drill bit is plenty long enough. The drill bit isn't what is causing the split. Anything going into the wood besides a drill bit is splitting it.

Ninesvnsicks
11-10-2011, 11:43 PM
Drill bit is plenty long enough. The drill bit isn't what is causing the split. Anything going into the wood besides a drill bit is splitting it.

What kind of wood is it?

accuab
11-10-2011, 11:49 PM
3/4 in mdf

RAM_Designs
11-10-2011, 11:56 PM
I've never had MDF split when pre-drilling. I stay at least 2" from the corner, and use 1.625"(1 5/8") long coarse thread drywall screws. Either you're doing something wrong, or the MDF you're using is bad.

accuab
11-11-2011, 12:02 AM
Have you ever pulled a joint apart after putting the screw in? And keep in mind I'm not saying it split on the face. The face of the board was no problem. I'm talking about a screw, brad, or nail directly into the end of a board.

Some of my splitting came from sinking the head of the screw in without using a countersink bit first. But the brad did split some even when set to not sink the head and turning the pressure down.

RAM_Designs
11-12-2011, 01:56 AM
Have you ever pulled a joint apart after putting the screw in? And keep in mind I'm not saying it split on the face. The face of the board was no problem. I'm talking about a screw, brad, or nail directly into the end of a board.

Some of my splitting came from sinking the head of the screw in without using a countersink bit first. But the brad did split some even when set to not sink the head and turning the pressure down.

Why in the world would you need to screw into the side of a piece of MDF?

brodeisel
11-12-2011, 02:00 AM
i talk to my wood very gently and it never splits

TaylorFade
11-12-2011, 03:20 AM
MDF *****. That's why. Try different screws. I use Spax. No predrilling, very minimal (if any) splitting, but when dealing with MDF, it's the nature of the beast. If you use a good plywood with excellent lamination, that won't happen.

accuab
11-12-2011, 09:07 AM
Why in the world would you need to screw into the side of a piece of MDF?

it's not that I would screw directly into the side. It's putting a screw through the face of one and into the end of another. I really was doing my test all wrong cause I was putting the screw a little too far in for my test and it was getting to where the screw expands near the top. I've got most of my box built now with no splitting that I know of. I still don't know why the brad nailer was splitting it though. I thought maybe that without the face to shoot the nail into first, the end of the board was taking the blunt force of the air pressure. With shooting it through a face before going into a end of a board, the velocity of the nail is slowed down before it hits the second piece.

I'm much more accustomed to using a real sheet of wood than mdf so I had to get used to using it again. I wasn't used to having to deal with wood splits. I don't think I have built anything with mdf in like 8 years. I did see online mentioning those screws that TaylorFade mentioned and they do seem to be good just not worth the price.

disturbed471985
11-12-2011, 09:09 AM
Birch FTW.........

maylar
11-12-2011, 09:36 AM
Are you using #6 or #8 screws? I typically use an 1/8" bit with #6 screws and get no splits. But the screws are only to clamp the pieces until the glue dries, so they don't have to be real tight.

bubbagumper6
11-12-2011, 09:40 AM
If you glue your joints properly like you're supposed to then those little splits won't matter...

sacsking916
11-12-2011, 09:52 AM
birch ftw.........

x2

duanebro
11-12-2011, 10:12 AM
I hate using MDF, not only because it splits, but because the dust is nasty. The problem with ply is the price to get void free. The recommended kind is Baltic birch. And its about $70!

wenn_du_weinst
11-12-2011, 10:15 AM
try using a humidifier, it makes the wood softer so it doesn't split as easily. OR use a nail gun

grandam888
11-12-2011, 10:54 AM
its inevitable, it will wplit no matter what. i have tried different sizes of bits, different screws etc. the only way is to drill the whole so big the screw doesnt grip well, and to me, thats worse than having a split. it just part of using mdf.

wenn_du_weinst
11-12-2011, 10:56 AM
I've made plenty of mdf boxes no splits, all I needed was to make sure the wood wasn't dry as hell.

grandam888
11-12-2011, 11:03 AM
have you takes tne box back apart to check the end of the mdf, where the screw goes? cause out of the many boxes i have made, this is where it ALWAYS splits.

wenn_du_weinst
11-12-2011, 11:06 AM
I've blown some boxes apart and no splits. The one I switched a baffle on was good as well.

accuab
11-12-2011, 12:34 PM
Birch FTW.........

When you say birch, are you meaning birch plywood?

wenn_du_weinst
11-12-2011, 12:36 PM
I've used baltic and cabinet grade, and pine. For a regular box you can get away with pine. it will resonate easily so you need to brace like you would with mdf. Cabinet grade birch I didn't have the resonating problem it just isn't as strong as baltic.

RAM_Designs
11-12-2011, 05:33 PM
have you takes tne box back apart to check the end of the mdf, where the screw goes? cause out of the many boxes i have made, this is where it ALWAYS splits.
Dude, I can't stop watching your sig...

grandam888
11-12-2011, 05:35 PM
i know, its hard for me to type when i can see it(hence the misspelled words in my last post ;)....

StevesCarAudio
11-12-2011, 09:16 PM
I pretty much never have problems with wood spliting. And heck I am lazy, I use my Milwaukee Impact driver to drive in screws on most projects. Usually use decking screws or drywall screws and 3/4 mdf.

double 07
11-12-2011, 10:00 PM
I have BUILT a lot of boxes since 1989 and wood is going to split every now and again. I say as long as you use GOOD quality glue, properly brace it, and use a good sealant it's going to be problem free for YEARS!!!! A split is not the end of the world. Hell your A** has a split in it and it survives!!!! lol

mylows10
11-12-2011, 10:06 PM
i use a good grade of mdf ,no home depot stuff,#6 2" stainless steel screws and very rarely have splits ,2.5 - 3" from the corners too

grandam888
11-12-2011, 10:13 PM
maybe thats my issue, i always use home depot wood. i also use a screw every 2-3" so on a 10 cube box(before displacements), i use about 2 pounds of screws. my wood ALWAYS splits.

813thumper
11-12-2011, 10:35 PM
you could always not screw it into the side and use one of these bad boys on the inside of it:
http://www.woodpeck.com/media/main_K4-Kreg-Jig-2.jpg

Kangaroux
11-12-2011, 10:53 PM
you could always not screw it into the side and use one of these bad boys on the inside of it:
http://www.woodpeck.com/media/main_K4-Kreg-Jig-2.jpg

Those work terribly with MDF just because if you drill near the edge it will just pop open. OP you will always have issues with MDF splitting it's just one of the down sides to using it. Try and predrill at least a good 2" from any edges and you won't have any problems. Put a good amount of pressure on the drill when you are screwing it in and it should go in just fine. If you keep running into problems of splitting try using a shorter screw (I use 1 5/8") or try a larger predrill bit