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What is the best material for the top on an outfeed table

HSV_Ron's picture

I am in the process of building an outfeed table for my tablesaw similar to the one in FW Workshop Solutions issue.  The one in the article has a phenolic plywood top which is basically impossible to find anywhere near me.  Can anyone suggest a good material that will hold up and provide a slick surface for material to slide on?  Thanks.

BruceS's picture

Tops (post #169267, reply #1 of 15)

Formica works great .   It's what I used to surface my router table top.

Work Safe,  Count to 10 when your done for the day !!

Bruce S. 


HSV_Ron's picture

Thanks Bruce.  Formica is on (post #169267, reply #2 of 15)

Thanks Bruce.  Formica is on my short list for sure.  Also, it's nice to see you concerned about shop safety.  I've been woodworking over 50 years and can still count to 10.  A great safety record is not an accident.

Mcfarmer's picture

I found mine at a kitchen (post #169267, reply #3 of 15)

I found mine at a kitchen cabinet place, a drop or mistake or whatever. The drip edge goes to the back and doesn't bother.

lwj2's picture

Formica over either MDF or (post #169267, reply #4 of 15)

Formica over either MDF or Masonite & plywood. All of them can be purchased at any of the borgs, or you can get countertop sections and rip the edges off, glue together.

Leon Jester, Roanoke VA

bones's picture

formica over mdf or ply (post #169267, reply #5 of 15)

You could either use mdf wrapped in solid wood topped with formica or build a simple ply box topped with formica to get what you want.  

...For that old machine lovers:

stgibson's picture

outfeed table (post #169267, reply #6 of 15)

Formica is the best. Then I keep mine waxed with Johnsons paste floor wax. It makes you material slide like it is on ball bearings. Cheap too.

billbarrand's picture

out feed table (post #169267, reply #7 of 15)

Save your self some time and use 2 sided thermofused Melemine it's as good as laminate. I have it on my tables and it works great.  

pakman1's picture

top surface for outfeed table (post #169267, reply #8 of 15)

I found this place on the internet that sells phenolic in sheets and will ship it. It's more expensive than formica, for sure, but it's available. The company is Professional Plastics and the phone # is 888-995-7767. You can buy a sheet of baltic birch plywood and make your own phenolic plywood.

vince8's picture

Vince (post #169267, reply #10 of 15)

how do you make your own phenolic with baltic birch?

Jigs-n-fixtures's picture

The phenolic plywood is form board (post #169267, reply #9 of 15)

You can get it through most concrete tool suppliers. 

Alternatives are:

MDO plywood, (with a good coating of paste wax it will last for years);

HDO, but agian it is made for concrete forms and may be hard to find;  

formica over mdf, or even particle board is certainly an option.  The high dollar premade beisemeyer side extension wings, and outfeed tables are particle board, and they last for years. 

Kumarasen's picture

Easy Woodworking Bench Plans (post #169267, reply #11 of 15)

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highfigh's picture

outfeed table (post #169267, reply #12 of 15)

I made an outfeed for my table saw from plywood used for a packing crate, to ship a large painting. It's cabinet grade Baltic Birch. I doubled the edges, used door hinges and coated it with polyester resin. Slides well and it was cheap. I made the top of one of my benches from two layers of 1/2" MDF that I already had, glued and screwed it together (from the bottom) and two coats of poly resin. I dumped acetone on it and it didn't matter.

"I cut this piece four times and it's still too short."
SenorDorado's picture

Outfeed Table Top (post #169267, reply #13 of 15)

I used melamine and wrapped the edges with oak. Looks great and has lasted 10 years with hardly any defects!

Senor Dorado

Pontic's picture

I used a cutting mat from a (post #169267, reply #14 of 15)

I used a cutting mat from a sewing supply. store. Costs a little more but slides like butter. also 10yrs of use and still working.

EdwinBaker's picture

Fabric and Leather Cover (post #169267, reply #15 of 15)

What about the fabric and leather cover over top of an outfeed table? I think this is good to minimise the cost and maintenance I always prefer to repair and maintain the furniture and leather by restoring and repairing it. Please add your thoughts.