Protecting my Rack It Work Bench Top

After completing my Rack It Work Bench Kit construction, I wanted to protect the MDF bench top surface from damage. Initially I’d intended to use a spray lacquer or varnish, however my father-in-law recommended I use a Carnauba Wax. He advised it is more suited to the purpose and the surface can easily be restored in the future by re-waxing.

I purchased a 500 gram tin of Carnauba Wax from Bunnings. It’s available in either natural or brown. I probably would have gone with the natural colour if I had seen it, but instead I’ve got the brown.

To apply the Carnauba Wax, you smear some from the can onto a clean cloth and wipe a thin coating onto the surface with a circular motion. I found this to be a bit difficult to achieve a smooth consistent coating.

My less than perfect job of the underside
My less than perfect job of the underside

Fortunately I had started with the underside of the workbench, because I ended up with a blotchy finish with some spots much darker than other where more Carnauba had been applied.

After consulting with my father-in-law again, he suggested putting the Carnauba on the inside of a folded cloth and applying it through the cloth. This worked much better as the wax was applied at a much more constant rate as it squeezed through the fine holes in the cloth. I used this technique on the top surface and got a much more consistent end result.

Applying the wax through the cloth
Applying the wax through the cloth

Doing this is quite labor intensive but took about an hour for each side with lots of circular motions to spread the wax consistently and rub it in.

After leaving it to settle for 15 minutes, the surface is then buffed with another clean cloth to remove the excess Carnauba Wax that hasn’t been absorbed into the surface. This probably would have been easier with an electric buffer, but I was able to get a smooth surface result with just hand labor with a cloth. I used white cloth rags I bought in a bag from Bunnings cheap.

The completed job
The completed job

Overall I was quite happy with my end result. I think it looks great and it’ll protect the surface nicely as I use my workbench.