Report Plywood or MDF bench top in The Shop Posted February 12, 2011 One of my concerns with using MDF, the lag screws for my vise will not last. I plan on using the bench for both hand and power tools, and there will be dog holes. I have to say that I'm running in to this problem right now. MDF is easy to cut and get a flat surface, but when drilling in to the material it is questionable. My 7" inch Jorgensen vice pulls away from the face of my bench when I have material clamped using bench dogs. If you plan to make wooden jaws for your vice with dog holes that you line up with dog holes on your bench, then in my experience plan to see your vice pull away from your bench face when clamping material that runs horizontal (i.e. parallel to the bench top). I can't say I know exactly what is to blame here, maybe I just built a poor bench, but I have a bench with a 1.5" MDF top and a vice attached with lag screws and there is a noticeable amount of "give" away from the bench face when applying clamping load. Either my vice mounting technique was bad, or MDF just doesn't hold a lag screw very well. Either way if I built it over again it would be without MDF, FWIW.