No reason to do so with a router bit as it is cutting horizontally. A saw
blade - any saw blade - is moving perpendicular to what you are cutting so
the teeth will tend to lift and tear out material along the saw cut on one
side or the other depending on the type of saw and which side you are
cutting from; in that case, tape can help.
1. Use a fine tooth circular saw blade and make your cuts upside down
(with the laminate surface on the bottom)
2.Cut the back splash first, setting it on a flat, horizontal,
sacrificial (piece of 3/4" plywood) surface.
3. Cut the counter top part the same way - upside down setting on a
flat, horizontal, sacrificial (piece of 3/4" plywood) surface.
IOW, make your cuts upside down, backup both cuts on the bottom side
(and be sure to not let that cut-off tear the laminate as it falls, so
hold on to it all the way through the cut).
Once or twice ... now I just supervise. :)
Problem is, if you backcharge one of the current generation of trim
carpenters (or more often, one of his helpers) for a ruined countertop,
you stand a good chance of unseen consequences until it's too late
(that's spelled r-e-t-r-i-b-u-t-i-o-n, unfortunate, but always something
to keep in mind around a modern construction site).
Cheaper just to anticipate and make sure it gets done right.
(About the only place we do this anymore is in a remodel where the
client just wants to replace/repair what is already there and new
laminate is not an option).
Thanks for your input, Swing. I found a youtube vid shortly after my original
post that somewhat echos your suggestion:
German ingenuity! :-)
I find it a little strange that Home Depot and Lowe's have been selling pre-made
laminate coutertops for many, many years yet there is only ONE video on youtube
(at least that's all I could find) that shows a way of cutting one to length.
After I viewed your link, youtube automatically suggested a number of
other videos related to cutting a counter top.
Another method was to cut the backsplash on a power miter saw and then
use the saw cut to transfer the line to bottom. A circular saw and
straight edge is used for the rest of the cut.
FYI...I also found a series of 3 videos where a guy cut off the
backsplash along the glue line, cut the flat surface down to a
narrower depth and then reattached the back splash. Interesting idea.
Unfortunately the videos leave out major parts of the cutting and
don't include a close up of the new seam. I can't imagine it's even
close to perfect.
Bingo! Thanks for the link, Pat!
Since the laminate is glued to termite-puke I'm thinking about maybe sealing up
the underside with a few coats of some left-over dark brown latex house paint
I've got in the shop. Just to keep moisture out and maybe keep the particle
board from shedding little flakes over the coming years. Anything wrong with
I cut one of those once. I didn't have a circular saw. I taped the laminate
clamped 2x4s to it and used a sharp hand saw. It cut like butter. I measured
from one side, marked several places, and connected the marks. My only problem
was assuming the end from which I measured was square. It was not. Please check
On Wednesday, October 31, 2012 9:11:08 AM UTC-5, Spalted Walt wrote:
Get a Festool track saw. The bigger model would be preferable since it might be able to go through the backsplash in one pass. Not sure. But you can do it with the smaller Festool track saw too. Clamp the guide to the backsplash and make your cut. Then move the track so it lines up with the cut you just made and finish cutting the counter portion of the plastic laminate. You are cutting from underneath so the plastic laminate is on the under side.
Yes, circle saw with the top upside down. Make sure to support the fall
off. Screw on an edge guide. It would probably be worth making a
"scrap" cut for practice and to see all the issues before launching into
the finish cut.
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