On Mon, 20 Nov 2006 14:08:29 -0600, Patriarch wrote:
All fine for a variety of purposes but who said I was making a counter?
My view on it is that Corian and the like are materials that can be used
to make countertops and can also be used for other purposes, just as wood
can. But by preventing anyone but countertop installers from buying it
in anything but small precut sizes one is prevented from using it for any
purpose other than countertops.
If you need something less than a full sheet, why not visit your local
fabrication shop? I found one locally who sold me a 3' x 5' "scrap"
piece of Corian for $50. It's enough to get me through 2 largeish
projects (router table and kitchen island). At that price, if I need
another piece, I know I'll be going back for more when I need to build
something else. I've been working with my piece for a couple weeks now,
and it's really neat stuff. I still can't get over how heavy it is.
Seriously, if you don't need to finish all your countertops, just call
your local fabrication shop. If you don't know one offhand, call any
kitchen counter shop and ask them who does their countertops for them.
That's what I did, and the scrap I bought was only one of a large
number of pieces just sitting outside in the elements waiting for
someone to buy it up.
Incidentally, for those of you interested in this stuff for turning,
what size is the smallest useful piece for you to use? I may have some
scraps I can give away when I'm done with these projects. I have the
1/2" kind, it's white with greyish specks in it.
Now we're talking. I give away blanks all the time. I sell left-over
vanity-size pieces all the time. Cheap too. Last weekend.. 23" x 38"
Meganite acrylic..wasn't her favourite colour, but for $150.00? I even
glued an edge on for her.... free. Then explained to the husband how to
If anybody in here wants a blank for a router table, and doesn't care
about the colour... e-mail me.
I'll see what I can do. Shipping may take a while, because I am
spending all my free time needling Frank.
On Tue, 21 Nov 2006 05:21:44 -0800, N Hurst wrote:
Because now I'm in the position of having to settle for whatever scrap he
has on hand instead of buying what I want.
If you want to make something else that matches your kitchen island and he
doesn't have another scrap of that same stuff available, then what?
I'd go down the street to another one and ask them, and so on. If none
of the locals had it, and none of the locals where I have family had
it, I'd try to find something that complemented it. If I knew the guy
well enough, I'd ask for him to let me know when someone else is
getting some counters done in that color and ask to piggyback on their
order or something.
Maybe I'm more easygoing about this kind of stuff than other people,
but I just don't see this as that big a deal.
Anyways, I was just sharing my experience in buying the stuff as an
"outsider." It wasn't difficult, the guy I worked with was friendly and
we both walked away from the deal happier than when we'd entered it. If
it's not the way you want to work, that's fine, but I'm pretty sure
that you'll be able to find something you're content with from a large
enough fab shop.
Now, let's quote the entire statement, shall we?
Try to follow this scenario, if you can allow yourself to see things
from another perspective.
If I am faced with the fact that my distributor is shipping to a new,
unestablished, fabricator who is in my neck of the woods, I have to ask
myself the question why. If then, the new guy starts undercutting my
pricing, I have to ask myself if I can afford to cut the margins to the
point where it simply isn't worth the hassle of operating a business. I
am not some phylantropical institution no matter how much the likes of
Mr. Clarke would like me to be.
Next thing you know, I stop ordering from that distributor. Meanwhile,
the new fabricator's bills are due...he's not making enough money to
operate a business, so he goes under..
Then you, CW wrote this:
So where am I saying that? Nowhere did I mention that we ensure high
prices and lack of competition. In fact, the opposite is true. because
I get to operate by myself, I can cut my prices because I know I will
have enough business to maintain my business model. There simply isn't
any room for me to cut my prices further. Which is why I know that if
anybody tried to sell for less than I do, they wouldn't be able to stay
in business, because they would be operating at a loss.
And www.issfa.org is an outfit which shares all the best techniques to
produce a better product with less labour so that we can make it even
more affordable to the consumers.
You, sir, are barking up the wrong tree.
It is a combination of my low prices and quality craftsmanship that
keeps my shop going, fuelled by the best advertizing ever: word of
On Sat, 18 Nov 2006 20:38:14 -0800, Robatoy wrote:
Huh? Who has asked you to be a "phylantropical institution"?
Look, moron, I don't want to compete with you, and it will be a cold day
in Hell before I buy anything from you. What I want is to be able to buy
a product at a fair price. That's all. But since the stuff is so
delicate and fragile and likely to burst into flames at the drop of a hat,
I don't want anything to do with it at this point. You've turned me off
of it entirely by pointing out at length what utter crap it is.
So you cut off your nose to spite your face and now you're whining
In other words you benefit from lack of competition.
On Fri, 17 Nov 2006 14:22:31 -0800, Robatoy wrote:
Because you have a vested interest in maintaining the status quo.
Yes, you do, and that is the problem--one wonders how much of what you say
is in fact addressing real problems and how much of it is putting up a
smokescreen to protect your business.
I'm sorry, but I don't see how a few DIY counter installers
are going to harm your business any more than do-it-yourself furniture
makers are harming Stickley. If a DIYer can't get solid surface he's not
going to come to you for an installation, he's just going to not use solid
message If a DIYer can't get solid surface
After 24 years, the stuff will likely never catch on. DuPont, Samsung,
Pyrotech, Wilsonart, are all clueless. They all built 20 to 50 million
dollar plants because they don't think it will catch on either.
I don't think laminate flooring stands a chance. <G>
I think part of the problem lies with the total self-entitlement attitude
that is becoming more common. My FIL has (on occasion) issued the same
lament with regard to the electric and gas utilities he uses.
In both cases, my argument is this ... "If you think the prices are too high
(whether for electricity, gas, solid surface counter top material ...
whatever) then feel free to make your own". In the case of electricity ...
buy yourself generating equipment, build the infrastructure, and enjoy.
I suspect that no one is going to try to build an extrusion plant to make 20
feet of counter top material ... but hey, that's their option.
What REALLY bugs me (long list to follow) is first that many people view
their own labors (labours?) as priceless, yet hold in complete contempt
anyone else's talents, trade, skill set, etc. People that do not even
understand the basics of the material science you've spent years mastering
feel confident to tell you just how wrong you are. Sigh ... you've got a
thicker skin than I do ... My hat is off to you.
My second item (and I'll hold it to two today) is that this is a WOODWORKING
newsgroup, and the people stirring up the noise level have been here for
quite some time. Make your countertop out of wood and quit whining about the
availability of raw materials. Find alternatives, get back to the shop and
make something out of wood, and share the experience.
Hang in there Rob ... and if you get down this way ... remember to bring a
couple of sink cutouts with you so we can experiment with the ShopBot. The
door is always open, and the beer will be cold.
The problem isn't the price, the problem is the availability. One can buy
a generator if one wants to go that route, or one can buy the materials
and parts to make one. But try to buy solid surface if you aren't an
It's not an issue of his being wrong about the "material science"
(althought "material science" is a different field related to structural
design), the issue is that he doesn't want anybody but him and others who
are "authorized" to be able to buy solid surface even if the application
is one that is outside of his line of business.
The problem is not with cost or with skills but with the attitude of the
manufacturer that you must prove that you are worthy before they will
deign to sell you their wonderful product.
How would you feel if the glue manufacturers got together and refused to
sell glue to anybody who wasn't "authorized"? How about the nail
manufacturers or the screw manufacturers or the paint manufacturers? How
about if the lumber mills refused to sell wood to anyone who wasn't
"authorized"? After all, not everybody knows how to design for wood
movement or apply clamping pressure or cut a proper mortise and we can't
have substandard work degrading the reputation of the product now can we?
See how empty those arguments are when applied to something other than
Now, suppose you find that you can do wonderful things with solid surface
and the ShopBot and then Rob kicks off and you can't get the material
anymore. What is that going to do to your attitude?
You CAN buy the material direct from the manufacturer ... but you have to
play by their rules, NOT YOURS. If you want, you too can get the factory
training, buy the proper tools, and then become an authorized installer and
buy the materials you need.
Of course, the cost is probably higher than you'd like ... but it IS your
Materials Science is probably a better fit ... pardon the dropped "s".
Perhaps, if your need is indeed outside the normal use, you could engage the
manufacturer in a discussion of what would be necessary to protect their
product name while satisfying a (perhaps) new market opening up.You'd be
wise to engage someone else to perform the negotiations, however, based on
your actions to date in this forum. Not a slam by any means, just an
You have the SAME attitude the solid-surface manufacturers have ... just at
the polar ends of the scale. They don't want their product's (or their)
reputation diminished by those who don't follow their instructions regarding
installation. You don't want to play their game by their rules. Fair enough
... you don't get to play (it IS their ball, after all).
You assume collusion between the different solid surface manufacturers, you
allude to price-fixing, but you don't provide any supporting proof. If you
feel that the manufacturers are price-fixing, feel free to contact the FTC
and file a complaint. As to your comments about screw, nail, glue or paint
manufacturers refusing to sell their products to untrained individuals ...
it already happens. Lumber yard just up the street refuses to sell to anyone
without an established business relationship with them. Why? In the former
case, proper training in the handling, storing and use of the materials is
required by the technology involved. In the latter case, they just don't
want to bother with DIY types, because it's such a pain to deal in small
quantities, put up with the problems brought about by the lack of
understanding of the materials involved, and because they don't want to work
Now, I'm pretty sure that the lumber yard you buy your wood from doesn't
care what you do with the wood ... being a generic agricultural product
easily obtainable by anyone with a piece of steel. The solid surface
manufacturers are dealing with their propriatary compound and manufacturing
process, coupled with a long-term warranty with their end-customers. If you
buy countertop material, install it in a house you are flipping, and in one
or two years this countertop has a problem ... well, you're long gone and
the manufacturer is listening to the homeowner (or more likely, the
homeowner's lawyer) about damages. The manufacturer's only fault was selling
you the material, yet they end up footing the bill for your misdeed.
My point? They DON'T have to do business with you, and in many cases they
If Rob kicked off as you so poorly put it, I'd miss his wit, his reasonable
ability to articulate even difficult subjects to most of the readers here,
and his sense of humor (humour) but I won't change my attitude about Rob or
about solid surface material. You see, to me, this is what I do to relax and
have fun while being creative. I don't get all wrapped up because someone
won't give me what I want, I move on to something else.
I really must have slept through Social Studies in school, because I really
fail to see where ANYONE is entitled to get what they want just by plunking
down money and insisting. Not saying that you do that ... that is the
perception I get from the tone of your writing. I don't mean to be
dismissive (though it often comes across that way) ... you are either going
to have to play by the existing rules, or gently establish new ones
agreeable to both you AND the solid surface manufacturers, else they are
going to ignore you.
With regard to the ShopBot and solid surface materials, I already know the
ShopBot can do wonderful things unimaginable to most ... the key to that
particular paragraph was to entice Rob to "come on down" and get some
run-time on a very nice piece of equipment so that he'll head over to Durham
and buy one to take home with him. I like sharing my enthusiasm about
woodworking, technology, etc. with others, and try to be encouraging. There
is always room for more positive, encouraging words ... both here on the
w(rec)k, and in the "real" world.
On Sat, 18 Nov 2006 20:07:34 +0000, Rick M wrote:
I made no mention of price fixing or of price at all.
But since it's clear that you're addressing what you want to believe I
said rather than what I said, there is obviously no purpose in attempting
to continue discussion with either you or "robatoy".
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