Stainless Steel Kitchen Sinks - Opinions on brand?

Hi,
We're going back & forth on our plans to replace the sink with a Stainless vs Moenstone or something similar. The new counter will be laminate.
I'm leaning towards high grade stainless steel while my wife is leaning towards composite or similar (color basically driving the discussion).
I'm looking at Kohler - any one have a recent replacement/upgrade experience to share? Standard size 33x22 - two basin of equal size with deep wells.
Any feedback would be welcomed.
Thanks
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Make sure what ever sink you install, that a dish basket will fit in one side, I installed a s/s/ and the dish rack will not fit down into the sink.
Tom

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I personally don't like double sinks especially not 50/50 ones each sink is just too small and people wind up putting food down the non-disposal one. I have a Blanco stone undermount sink and I really like it it is very quiet no scratches and it is large and deep . I had Stainless steel before and it was noisier and hard to keep really looking clean. I would go to one of the high end big box stores Expo or Great indoors and look at the composite sinks either in a 80/20 or just one big one myself
Wayne

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I second the opinion about not having equal size bowls. I went thru about 2 weeks of sink hell trying to decide what to buy. I settled on the Kohler Marsala, which is a cast iron/enamel sink with two bowls, split about 70/30 or so. That gives you one bowl large enough for pans, the other one still quite big and usable for collanders, etc. I liked the idea of 2 bowls so you can have one clean and ready for anything, while you use the other one for the main. IMO, the most useless sinks are the ones that have one large bowl and then a smaller disposal well. That's what I had and hated it, the disposal well is just too small for any real use. And mine was installed with the disposal on the main bowl anyway, which is where I like it. In fact, I never knew until last week, that the small narrow bowl is really for the disposal. I'd go with a 70/30 one or else one large bowl as a second choice.
I like the Marsala also because it's a 2 hole model, with one hole where the bowl divider is, the other in the right hand corner. That leaves the area between the holes available so the basin on that side can go back as far as the other larger basin, which has no faucet holes at all. It gives you about another 2 inchs of fore/aft room. I have the instant hot water dispenser in the corner, single hole faucet in center. I made a mock up and compared this sink to others, like the exec chef which is very similar, but doesn't have the extra 2 inchs. IMO, it makes a big difference. Without the extra room, the smaller bowl is still usable, but you'll always be conscious of the instant water faucet being there as you go to put say, a collander, in it. With the extra 2 inchs, it seems wide open.
As to material, it's basicly what u like and want to spend. Stainless looks OK, without much work. If you really like it to shine, then it does take more work. It also scratches fairly easy. It's resistant to stains, but makes more noise with a disposal. Stone doesn't have a shine and scratches/stains easily, but either of these can be remedied, by, worst case, sanding it, as it's solid material. I chose Kohler cast iron because I liked the look of the finish. It's advantages are it doesn't stain easily, easy to keep clean, lasts a long time. Main disadvantage is it can chip if you drop something hard on it and that's hard to fix. It's also very heavy, if that's a factor. I looked at Amer Std Americast, which is their steel/composite/enamel product. It's about half the weight, but the finish just doesn't look like the rich, quality of Kohler cast iron. If you go with stainless, people I've talked to like Franke a lot.
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I have never had a SS sink fail. A couple that I installed 25 years ago are still going strong. They were the cheapest that I could buy at that time.
My sister-in-law's composite sink looks like crap after about 9 years of normal use. It is covered with small scrathes and stains. As a matter of fact I have never seen a composite sink that is used on a regular basis look good after a few years.
Personally I would avoid the mirror like finish as I would guess it to be difficult to keep it looking that way. The less shiny sinks are easier to keep looking like new for a long time. Cost is not the only indication of quality. Consider the gauge of the metal and the amount of sound -deadening material on the bottom of the sink. The deeper the bowls the higher the cost.
BUT, it is your wife you have to convince.
Good luck,
Colbyt
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my mom wanted a composite sink so it will look good, and she's afraid to just use it. she lines it with these rubber mats on the bottom and sides so it wont scratch, spends all this time being careful etc... i mean its just crazy, and it defeats the purpose of having a nice looking sink in the first place. those rubber mats look pretty stupid. and after all that, along with careful effort, its scratched and stained anyway....
if you plan to USE the sink, get a stainless sink. years later you can just take sponge and some ajax and it will look almost the same as the day you bought it. as was said, i think even a cheap SS sink is good enough. just make sure its real stainless steel.
randy
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On 1/23/2005 8:15 AM US(ET), Davma took fingers to keys, and typed the following:

depending upon what they have in their house, or what they wish they had if they had the money. So here is my opinion. I have a large deep single tub stainless steel sink that is about 15 years old now. I have had no problems with it and it is not scratched or dented all to shit either. Be sure that before you buy a SS sink that you check the thickness of the SS. If there is a model on display, press down on the bottom of the sink and see if it flexes with moderate hand pressure. If it does, it's too thin. The sink I chose had the thicker SS and also the outside of the tub is undercoated with some kind of white sprayed on material that deadens the sound and provides hot and cold insulation. The make of the sink that I have is Elkay.
--
Bill

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I know that there are various thickness in stainless steel sinks and various depths. Deep wells are good--a shallow sink splashes water more. I prefer stainless steel over composite--looks good, easy care, and low cost with even the high-grade SS.
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I like my 20 yr old stainless steel deep double sink, both of equal size.
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We have a Kohler double bowl SS sink. This was on the higher price end, but not top of the line. The more expensive sinks are usually thicker gauge and have a higher shine because of higher nickel content. Make sure you get a sink with sound deadening material on the outside. Even then the sink generally sound more like a drumhead.
The only problem we have had was my wife spilled jewelry cleaner on the sink and left it for awhile. It left a stain on the sink. Also the sink shows water spots easily.
We have had little trouble with the fact that both bowls are the same size and depth. If you have a lot of visitors that help you in the kitchen or small children, then it could be a problem of confusing which one is connected to the disposal.
I would also agree to make sure the bowls are deep.

Gary Dyrkacz snipped-for-privacy@comcast.net Radio Control Aircraft/Paintball Physics/Paintball for 40+ http://home.attbi.com/~dyrgcmn /
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Thanks all for your input. Appreciating it's all opinion, we have a 50/50 sink today and love it.
If we go stainless it will be 18 gauge for sure. If we go cast iron or similar if gives the color. Still looking at all options at this point but I'm always interested in people's experiences.
Dave

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What is the difference between a 22 gauge sink and a 18 gauge sink, besides the metal thickness?
Davma wrote:

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