How Do I Get a Glossy Finish on MDF?

Written by cameron easey
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To get a glossy finish on a piece of medium-density fibreboard (MDF) you need to take your time to properly prepare the MDF. To do this, you need to paint, sand and polish the MDF to obtain a glossy finish. You can easily obtain a glossy finish by applying high-gloss paint. However, this typically does not last as the finish can dull over time or get scratched. Keeping a high-gloss finish requires using clear coat.

Skill level:
Moderate

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Things you need

  • 200-grit sandpaper
  • Orbital sander
  • Cloth
  • Primer
  • Paint brush
  • 400-grit sandpaper
  • Spray paint
  • 1000-grit sandpaper
  • Clear coat
  • Buffing compound

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Instructions

  1. 1

    Sand the surface of the MDF with 200-grit sandpaper. You can do this by hand or by using an orbital sander. Avoid putting deep scratches into the MDF.

  2. 2

    Wipe the surface of the MDF with a damp cloth to remove the dust and sanding residue.

  3. 3

    Apply one coat of primer to the MDF with a paint brush. Allow one to two hours for the primer to dry and then sand it by using 400-grit sandpaper. Wipe the surface with a damp cloth. Repeat this step two more times.

  4. 4

    Apply a third coat of primer, then sand it smooth with 800-grit sandpaper. Wipe the surface with a damp cloth.

  5. 5

    Apply three light coats of paint (black or other solid colour) using spray paint. Allow at least 12 hours for the paint to dry. Sand the paint smooth with 800-grit sandpaper. Repeat this step two more times. Sand the final coat by using 1000-grit sandpaper.

  6. 6

    Spray a coat of the clear coat over the surface of the paint and sand with 800-grit sandpaper. Repeat this step two more times and sand the final coat with 1000-grit sandpaper.

  7. 7

    Wash the surface of the MDF with a clean cloth and allow it to dry. Apply a final clear coat and set the MDF aside for seven to 10 days to harden.

  8. 8

    Polish the surface of the MDF with a buffing compound.

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