Wood Substrate

Various substrates give metal countertops thickness and strength.

Wood substrates add support and sound deadening and are recommended for general applications. Metal hat channels are recommended for high moisture conditions while stainless steel hat channels are recommened for medical and pharmaceutical sites.

Application Suggested Substrate
Wet or moist areas MDO ( Medium Density Overlay )
 or Metal hat channels
Fire Code Rating Medite FR ( Fire Rated )
 or Metal hat channels
Industrial Heavy Use (2) Solid layers of MDF or MDO
Medical & Pharmaceutical Stainless steel hat channels

Types of Wood Backers:


  • MDF – Medium Density Fiberboard Standard for indoor residential applications and rivals the affordability and versatility of plywood and similar engineered wood products. Unlike real wood, MDF has no knots, grain, or warping, and it has a smooth surface.
  • MDO – Medium Density Overlay Used for Outdoor and Marine Applications, is produced with a high-quality thermosetting resin-impregnated fiber surface bonded to one or both sides under heat and pressure to create an exterior-grade plywood panel. MDO is manufactured with waterproof resins that meet or exceed all veneer-grade, adhesion, and construction requirements.
  • Medite FR– Fire rating Applications. Medite FR is made with a formaldehyde free adhesive system and is designed for critical applications where Class 1 flame retardant material is required. Medite FR has a low flame spread and smoke development as well as extremely low VOC emissions.

The drawing below illustrates a stainless countertop with a  1 ½” wood substrate build up that is glued and fastened in place.

For both residential and commercial applications, we encourage our customers to order their stainless steel and copper countertops with our factory applied wood or metal substrates for a turn-key application.