I want to put in a solid countertop in my kitchen. However, I discovered
that the ones I found locally (Corain etc ) aren't available for the DIY.
I'm an experienced wood worker and this doesn't seem like a difficult
very difficult job especially in my case a straight run of about 10 feet.
Any products available for the DIY?
Well, you have to follow the money on this one. Solid suface material is
not made up of any expensive. In fact, the stuff that goes into it is quite
*inexpensive*. How do you get away with putting $20 of raw materials into
something and then charging $1000 for it? Answer: because you can.
My buddy is a handyman, and knows a deal when he sees one. He found some
solid surface stuff that was a bargain. Like $600 for a 8 foot section. My
research suggested the piece was fabricated in Saudi Arabia, and then
somehow found its way to the good ol USA and then undercut the DuPont stuff
What does it all mean? I don't really know.
But, to answer the first part of the question, this stuff supposedly can be
butt-jointed, sanded, and you have no way of knowing any seam existed. I
guess there is an "art" to that. Who knows.
The stuff from the middle east? Hi-Macs or something like that.
Good luck with the job.
I'm in a similar situation, and my plan is to use soapstone. It seems
like an ideal countertop surface: heat impervious and very non-porous,
unlike many granites. Plus it is soft enough to be cut with
You could take the training course that Corian offers.
I don't know how much that costs.
I'd go with a Corian installer.
That way you get a lifetime guarantee on the countertop.
In my case, it was worth it.
Also, if you put your microwave on a Corian counter,
but something underneath the microwave so that counter
doesn't get too hot.
It's probably not what you had in mind but if I wanted
to build a DIY countertop, I'd consider something like
large (12in by 12in) granite tiles.
Or even an engineered stone tile if you want a material
that's totally non-porus and doesn't need sealing.
I'd use very thin grout lines and a sandless grout.
There are various options for finishing the edges:
* Matching pre-formed tiles (but that will limit your
basic tile choices quite a bit).
* Custom formed tiles. It's possible to cut/polish
the stone yourself although probably easier to get
this done. I'm told that quite a few places will
do this for a modest price.
* Some kind of hardwood (or even metal) molding.
In any event, you can finish up with something that
looks and performs pretty much like a granite countertop
at a fraction of the price. And take pride in the fact
that you did it yourself.
Corian is a neat material but it's quite easy to damage
mechanically or with heat (although such damage can often
be repaired quite easily). And being plastic, it does
look a little like, ummm, plastic. Finally, as you've
already discovered, a DIY installation means you'll be
battling with Dupont at every step.
| Malcolm Hoar "The more I practice, the luckier I get". |
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