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MDF for bowforms?

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John Cooper:
I love this new Forum!

I'm just starting to get my bowshop up and running and am planning on putting together a bunch of different forms for steam and heat bending.  (then I'll have some bows to show n' tell!)  I'm primarily a selfbow guy.

Has anyone used MDF for your forms?  The dimensional stability of it attracts me, but I don't know how it would hold up to my heat gun.  I know moisture is bad so I'm going to polyurethane the whole thing.

Am I just making more work for myself by straying from plain old pine lumber?


I've had the same form for about 6 years, doug fir, untreated, unfinished, it takes a beating and I don't worry about it.

Pat B:
Yea, mine are 2x4 and 2x6 lumber. How many bows do you plan to build?     Pat

John Cooper:
Just one at a time, Pat!   :)   I'm going to try some experimentation on the amount of reflex and adding recurved tips to different lengths of bows.


Pat B:
I don't know how the glue in the MDF will react to the heat. I use a heat gun for reflexing, recurving and corrections and my 2x4 caul has lasted quite a few years. Pat


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