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Liam V

DIY bats and carcinogens

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I'm looking to cut my own bats out, from either masonite or high pressure laminate.

My only worry is that formaldehyde is used to manufacture these products and I don't know how I feel about having such materials constantly brushing against my hands.

I've also noticed that some of the commercial batting systems use masonite.

Does anyone have any experience or opinion with this? Is there a material that doesn't use formaldehyde and makes a good bat?

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While formaldehyde may be used in the manufacturing process, the final product is not subject to outgassing. Hence, you shouldn't be concerned with handling on a regular basis. If you cut your bats from a piece of countertop where the laminate is fastened to particleboard, you should consider sealing the edges as well as the bottom of the bat with a couple of coats of spar urethane to waterproof the bat and prevent any possible outgassing...

JohnnyK

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Masonite is not very durable. If you're just using it as a ware board, it'll do okay, but if you're repeatedly throwing on the bats, where they get saturated over and over, they don't last very long. They delaminate and warp. A better wood product is Medex, which is an exterior grade MDF. It would probably have to be special ordered at your local hardware store, though. I've got a few dozen Medex bats that I've been using for 15 years. The nice thing about Medex is that it is absorbent, so the bottoms of your pots dry a little more evenly, but they're much lighter and more durable than plaster. I think they're the perfect compromise between plastic and plaster.

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I have some home made bats  that Icut from Medex almost 30 years ago  that are still in service! Its more expensive but its for exterior use which means its quite tough. From what Ive been told the highway department uses it for their road signs. Good stuff medex.

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If you want wood bats Medex is best

hyrotex marine mohogony plywood is the Cadalac of all wood bats as it never warps but makes me medex seem cheap

I use it for doors that need to stay flat or exterior weather flat wood like my self dump trailer Or a 

untility box cover to keep your electrical service dry

Edited by Mark C.

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i believe the bats sold as masonite are actually made of a better product named Duron which was sold be the 4x8 sheet years ago.   i had so many round bats made of that sheet, 48 12 inch rounds that i used for years.   it was very hard to find a sheet when i wanted to make the 5 inch square ones to fit into a Duron bat that i had cut to hold the 5 inch ones.   tons of bats that i still have and use when i throw.  i have never soaked Duron but someone put 6 or7 of them into the bucket in the sink and did not tell me.  the corners did slightly separate but when they dried, they were fine.   

it is now difficult to find sheet Duron since several changes in management of the manufacturing company.  

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Medex seems like the most popular opinion here,

we've got this at bunnings https://www.bunnings.com.au/9mm-standard-mdf-900mm-x-600mm_p0590030

Would this suffice or is medex better? MDF definitely contains formaldehyde; would it be a good idea to seal it with this https://www.bunnings.com.au/feast-watson-500ml-spar-marine-varnish_p1561089

 

For those of you using medex/MDF bats, do you find it necessary to seal or use as is once youve cut it to size?

 

Edit: I've just discovered medex is actually formaldehyde free, but I don't think I can get it in Australia, which sucks.

18 hours ago, neilestrick said:

Masonite is not very durable. If you're just using it as a ware board, it'll do okay, but if you're repeatedly throwing on the bats, where they get saturated over and over, they don't last very long. They delaminate and warp. A better wood product is Medex, which is an exterior grade MDF. It would probably have to be special ordered at your local hardware store, though. I've got a few dozen Medex bats that I've been using for 15 years. The nice thing about Medex is that it is absorbent, so the bottoms of your pots dry a little more evenly, but they're much lighter and more durable than plaster. I think they're the perfect compromise between plastic and plaster.

 

19 hours ago, JohnnyK said:

While formaldehyde may be used in the manufacturing process, the final product is not subject to outgassing. Hence, you shouldn't be concerned with handling on a regular basis. If you cut your bats from a piece of countertop where the laminate is fastened to particleboard, you should consider sealing the edges as well as the bottom of the bat with a couple of coats of spar urethane to waterproof the bat and prevent any possible outgassing...

JohnnyK

 

Edited by Liam V

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3 hours ago, Liam V said:

Medex seems like the most popular opinion here,

we've got this at bunnings https://www.bunnings.com.au/9mm-standard-mdf-900mm-x-600mm_p0590030

 

 

That looks to be regular old MDF. You could use it, but you'd have to seal it, in which case is would no longer be absorbent. Ask them if they can get you an exterior grade MDF. They might be able to order something in. You could also check with local sign shops to see if they have something like that.

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