hardboard masonite panels

Hardboard Masonite Panels and their Industrial Uses

Hardboard Masonite panels are a specific and surprisingly versatile type of wood-based composite panel. It’s strength and durability make it an excellent product for a wide variety of applications.

Commonly known as “Masonite” (a brand name derived from the panel’s inventor and the company he started), hardboard is a thin, strong board made from wood fiber derivates like chips. It is often confused with MDF or cement fiberboard, but it is not the same thing. It can be unfinished – standard hardboard, or tempered hardboard, a process that adds a minuscule amount of oil as a finishing agent that makes it stronger and less prone to warping. Compared to other panels like plywood or OSB, it is only made as a thinner product but can be just as strong as a thicker panel.

Uses for Hardboard

Manufacturers use hardboard masonite panels in a huge range of ways. Pallets, crates, and other packaging companies use it as lightweight tops, slip sheets or dunnage. Furniture manufacturers use it for cabinets, drawers, shelves, and backing for mirrors and pictures, among other things. Beyond manufacturing, you will find hardboard in use by farmers for barn flooring and bedding and artists use hardboard as a painting substrate.  Hardboard’s ability to resist damage and withstand cutting, routing, shaping, and drilling allow for near 100% usage of the panel. And one fact that not many people know is that B Grade hardboard, while much less expensive, can feature only minor defects, making it nearly as usable as premium grades!

Hardboard’s unique qualities make it an ideal option as a panel substrate for hundreds of different products. Turns out that old coach’s clipboard (made from hardboard!) is more useful than you think.

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About Masonite on Wikipedia.