Choosing the Right Material for Your Pegboard System
Your home workshop pegboard system is an important organizational fixture designed to maximize the available space while at the same time reducing clutter. By hanging tools and other shop supplies from a pegboard by means of hooks, brackets or pegs, work surfaces are kept clean and everything you need is within eyesight and easy reach. With the usefulness of pegboard beyond question, the only issue is what type of material to use. Pegboard is available in several materials including solid wood, wood-based fiberboard, metal and acrylic. Depending on the amount of weight you plan on hanging from the pegboard and the support structure behind, one or more of the materials would work. Durability over time and cost are two other considerations to make.
Choosing the Right Pegboard Material
For most home applications, wood-based fiberboard or even solid wood pegboard is more than adequate. Home workshop needs primarily involve the hanging of small, handheld tools, relatively lightweight supplies and a few power tools. Acrylic pegboard is a good choice for the sake of durability, but wood and fiberboard pegboard systems are simple enough to make from scratch. Metal pegboard systems are great for heavier loads, but they are more expensive and require a sturdier means of support to mount them.
Wood and Wood-Based Fiberboard
Aesthetically, solid wood is nicer than fiberboard, but due to the fact that it is not as dense as particleboard or MDF, splintering can occur when too much weight is hung from the pegboard. Fiberboard is harder, more rigid and ultimately stronger than solid wood, but moisture can warp it and it may sag off the wall under heavy loads. One major benefit of both types, though, is that you can construct them yourself with a table or circular saw, a tape measure, straightedge and power drill. Once properly mounted to a wall, insert pegs made from wood dowel and the pegboard is ready for use. Wood is also easily stained or painted.
Acrylic pegboard is pre-fabricated in either clear or black acrylic material. The 1/8 inch holes are laser cut with precisely 1 inch between centers, making acrylic pegboard a very exact product. Slat wall boards are also available in acrylic, although this type is mainly used in commercial shops. Still, as a material option, acrylic is strong, relatively lightweight and versatile.
While metal pegboard is extremely strong, if it is mounted on drywall or wooden beams, it may eventually pull off its mount given too much weight. Metal pegboard is most convenient when installed in narrow strips as opposed to large sheets. With the right structural support behind it, metal pegboard is great for heavy duty hooks and brackets. Even heavy handheld power tools are suitable for hanging on metal pegboard.
The right material for your home pegboard system will depend upon how much you want to spend, the type of material you intend to mount it onto and the things you plan on hanging. For the average home shop, wood, wood-based fiberboard or acrylic pegboard will do. You can even make wood and fiberboard pegboard yourself. Metal pegboard is more for heavy application and requires a very sturdy means of backside support.