Clippings by sheila99

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RE: Chandelier lifts (Follow-Up #1)

posted by: normclc on 05.12.2010 at 09:09 am in Lighting Forum

The answer to both your questions is yes.
The Aladdin light is only 9" high, and you can use their pulley system to offset the lift.
Their technical people are great.
Go to their website


clipped on: 05.12.2010 at 10:22 am    last updated on: 05.12.2010 at 10:22 am

RE: azstoneconsulting: please look at the island pics (Follow-Up #13)

posted by: cloud_swift on 05.05.2010 at 12:31 pm in Kitchens Forum

It looks like nkkp's cabinets are framed so there is some space between the doors to put the brackets. It looks like your cabinets are frameless like mine so there is no space between doors for a bracket.

Our GC steel bars inset into a plywood subtop. Kind of a similar idea to what Keven showed above except our bars are routed into the top of the granite. Our plywood subtop is 3/4" and the bars might be 3/8 or 1/2" thick. There is about one bar every two feet. I have pictures:


Here is a close-up:

You can see the plywood if you duck your head under the counter, but unless you are younger than 4 or make a habit of lying on the floor near the island, you aren't going to notice it. One could paint the underside of the plywood or even get some with a veneer finish if one wanted.

We like that there is nothing projecting down from below the bar to interfere with leg space. Here is what it looks like with the granite in place:


clipped on: 05.05.2010 at 01:39 pm    last updated on: 05.05.2010 at 01:39 pm

RE: azstoneconsulting: please look at the island pics (Follow-Up #8)

posted by: nkkp on 05.04.2010 at 10:21 pm in Kitchens Forum

well....I took the pictures...then I left the camera at the house! I found an older picture that may work. Let me know if you want one that is closer or with the doors open and I'll get the camera tomorrow.


clipped on: 05.05.2010 at 01:38 pm    last updated on: 05.05.2010 at 01:38 pm

RE: azstoneconsulting: please look at the island pics (Follow-Up #1)

posted by: azstoneconsulting on 05.04.2010 at 09:27 am in Kitchens Forum

You are correct in your statement that the Chemical Concepts T-Bars may not
work in your scenario.

Their flat plates however, WILL work - and that is what I would recommend you
use to support your overhangs.

This is what I am talking about:


This can be done to solve your issue. I have done this many times and it works with
your particular scenario

does this make sense???




clipped on: 05.04.2010 at 10:25 am    last updated on: 05.04.2010 at 03:15 pm

RE: Granite Rod Reinforcing (Follow-Up #3)

posted by: azstoneconsulting on 02.28.2008 at 11:45 am in Kitchens Forum

here's apic of the process:


We cut a slot for a steel rod or flat bar to sit in..
in this case - it's 3CM stone that will receive a 1/8" x 1/2" flat bar stood up on it's side for more strength.

for 2CM - 1/4" round rod is used... I like stainless in case
the rod ever comes in contact with moisture - it WON'T rust...
better peace of mind for me and my customers....... ;-)

The rod is set down into the slot, then flowing epoxy is
poured into the void to "lock" the rod in place...excess
epoxy is ground off when it's dry, and the top is aprox
600% stonger (I saw a test that threw that figure out - It
may be more or less - but rodding works!!!)

hope that helps


Kevin M. Padden MIA SFA
Fabricator, Trainer & Consultant to the Natural Stone Industry


clipped on: 03.28.2010 at 02:48 pm    last updated on: 04.13.2010 at 10:55 pm

RE: Granite Rod Reinforcing (Follow-Up #1)

posted by: azstoneconsulting on 02.27.2008 at 10:25 pm in Kitchens Forum

Typically, I rod ALL pieces that are to have cutouts.

I like to use 1/4" stainless steel round rod in 2CM stone
and 1/4" x 1/2" flat stock for 3CM stone

Rodding is an extra step, and it costs me more to do it

I'll have to check my MIA Design Manual to see if there
is anything documented...


Kevin M. Padden MIA SFA
Fabricator, Trainer & Consultant to the Natural Stone Industry


clipped on: 03.28.2010 at 02:47 pm    last updated on: 04.13.2010 at 10:54 pm

RE: Reminder - Back Up Your Computers! (Follow-Up #7)

posted by: jcoxmd on 03.30.2010 at 12:05 am in Kitchens Forum

Mozy and other services will back everything up remotely without you needing to worry about it after install and payment. For me (after a particularly heartbreaking loss of photos I had no where else) it's so worth the $5 a month. My brother picked Mozy for me (he's a technogeek) but there are other services.


clipped on: 03.30.2010 at 06:20 am    last updated on: 03.30.2010 at 06:20 am

RE: Reminder - Back Up Your Computers! (Follow-Up #5)

posted by: buehl on 03.29.2010 at 04:26 pm in Kitchens Forum

To add, and don't keep those backups plugged into anything...perform your backup & unplug it from the computer AND from any power source, etc. If you get a power surge that fries your computer, it will also fry anything else plugged in. Yes, even if you have a UPS or surge protector....better safe than sorry!


clipped on: 03.30.2010 at 06:19 am    last updated on: 03.30.2010 at 06:19 am

RE: Reminder - Back Up Your Computers! (Follow-Up #3)

posted by: johnliu on 03.29.2010 at 02:16 pm in Kitchens Forum

viyaram, I'm not sure about what's best for windows. My PCs are work machines, so I don't do the backing up myself. You could check cnet, pcworld, etc for "best backup" articles and find free or cheap software. There's lots of choices, Microsoft has built backup into recent Windows versions too, I don't know which is the best.

Barring that, I'd buy Norton Ghost ($70) and use that, it is a proven tool. Ghost and similar software will make an exact image of your hard drive so that, if the drive fails, you replace it, boot from the Norton DVD, use Ghost to restore that image to the replacement drive, and then your system will be exactly as it was before, with all the same applications, preferences, settings, data, etc.

That's different from merely backing up your data files. In that case, if your drive fails, you have to replace it, then reload Windows, reinstall all your applications, put your settings back the way they were, and finally copy your data back. That's more tedious, although you do end up with a clean install of Windows.

For Macs, I use Time Machine and will now supplement with CarbonCopyClone.


clipped on: 03.30.2010 at 06:18 am    last updated on: 03.30.2010 at 06:18 am

RE: 2cm granite - rod reinforcement for the sink area (Follow-Up #4)

posted by: azstoneconsulting on 03.29.2010 at 01:27 am in Kitchens Forum

Sheila99 -

Thanks for your very kind remarks! You have been very nice to work with, and
it's always a peasure to help folks out when they are stressin out over stuff
like this...

In answer to your question - the rods need to run along the long axis of the
countertop - example: you have a 98 inch long top that will have a sink opening
somewhere in that 98 inch "run".... the rods need to run along the 98 inch

At sink openings the rods do NOT have to be on all four sides of the opening.

The rod along the back edge should be held in from the back by about an inch.
Any more, and the back rod runs the risk of laying in the path of where the holes
for your faucets can get driled.

As far as what kind of rods need to be used - I prefer the best stainless steel
that I can buy, and flowing epoxy from either Bonstone, Chemical Concepts,
or Integra Adhesives. ALL THREE companies make "bullet proof" products
that have NEVER let me down.

I am producing a video this week that will show the rodding process from start
to finish....

when it's up on You Tube - I will post a link.

In the mean time - here's a link to one on "No Drill Sink Fasteners" for
Chemical Concepts....



Here is a link that might be useful: No Drill Sink Fastener VIDEO


clipped on: 03.29.2010 at 01:44 am    last updated on: 03.29.2010 at 01:44 am

RE: help!!! need advise on honed vs. polished granite (Follow-Up #5)

posted by: azstoneconsulting on 03.28.2010 at 06:57 pm in Kitchens Forum

Kashmir White has historically been more porous than other - darker colors,
and tends to show staining much easier - it's just part of THAT species of
stone... IF you take proper steps to minimize the staining potential - regardless
of whether the stone is polised or honed - you will be doing the right thing.

On polished Kashmir White -
IF you use a good grade of sealer like either - Miracle's 511 Porous Plus,
or Surface Treatment Technologies FE & SB - you will increase the stain
resistance of the stone.....

On HONED Kashmir White - Tenax Ager Tiger would be what I would also
look at doping. Ager on Honed stone tends to make the colors "pop" and jump out-
it really has a way of making the stone have a more "rich" look to it - IMHO......

Everyone else above is offering really great advice too...




clipped on: 03.29.2010 at 12:01 am    last updated on: 03.29.2010 at 12:01 am

RE: Heart broken - drill hole in granite! (Follow-Up #2)

posted by: azstoneconsulting on 03.20.2010 at 02:59 pm in Kitchens Forum


first of all - I hope that your DH. DD & Mom are doing OK - THAT is
WAY MORE IMPORTANT than a stupid countertop - I know - My mom
was diagnosed with stage 4 Lung Cancer in January and given around
6 months to live - so i kind of know what you're going through - I just
hope that your circumstances with your DH, DD & Mom are not like mine...

Anyways -

Second - can you post a pic? Visuals are WAY EASIER to work with rather
than verbal descriptions..

An honest to goodness "drilled" hole in a Granite countertop - made by
a Carpenter - a REAL carpenter - using a traditional wood bit - is going to
be hard to do - as wood bits hardly touch anything as hard as stone and leave
a divot or a mark or a scratch or especially a hole... Plus - unless your
carpenter was Ray Charles - I doubt that this is what happened - BUT.....

I could be wrong.... so hence - the request for a pic.

Third - Is your top REALLY "Granite" - or is it a Quartz Product? or something
else that LOOKS like Granite? Again - a pic (or multiple pics) will help to
diagnose what you have going on...

I have to head over to my mom's house right now, but I'll check back here
later in the day to see if you posted a pic - u can also e-mail me - something too...

Hang in there - things could always be worst - and yes - what you have IS
most likely fixable - I teach this at my school - so chill out - no worries Brah!!

We'll find out what's up and get you good again!!




clipped on: 03.28.2010 at 11:16 pm    last updated on: 03.28.2010 at 11:17 pm

RE: Chip in granite around sink (Follow-Up #9)

posted by: live_wire_oak on 03.24.2010 at 09:13 am in Kitchens Forum

A sink edge is the hardest spot in the whole countertop for usage and frequently sees small chips with wear and tear as the years pass. That's an unfortunate aspect of owning a granite countertop, and some stones are just more prone to it than others. THe ones with larger crystalline depos:ts are the worst. Small spots can be "smoothed out" or larger chips epoxied back in place. If the original piece is not available, the next best thing is to have a decorative edge applied to the sink edge. In many ways, rounding over the sink edge will be the best solution is it will eliminate the chip and the rounded edge will be less likely to have any chips in the future. It's one of those things that I have to wonder why fabricators don't do it in the first place other than, "a square edge is how we've always done it."


clipped on: 03.28.2010 at 05:10 pm    last updated on: 03.28.2010 at 05:10 pm

RE: Chip in granite around sink (Follow-Up #2)

posted by: azstoneconsulting on 03.23.2010 at 06:27 pm in Kitchens Forum


do you still have "the" chip??? many times the chip can be glued back in
place IF the circumstances are right - this works sometimes, but not
all the time.

Looks like you have either Bianco Romano or Delicatus - am I close?
Both of these stone species are pretty notorious for chipping as the crystal
structure is pretty diverse and complex with large quartz deposits, etc...

from the pics - it looks like a good 1/8 inch of material would need to be
ground back and re-polished - this is feasible IF there's enough overhang
in the stone - and IF the sink can be shifted, but that's a LOT of "IF's" to all
line up at one time and all work in harmony.....

Here's my FREE professional advice to you - give your fabricator an honest
chance to repair the chip - to YOUR satisfaction. Depending on the surrounding
circumstances and the skills of your Fabricator - it CAN be done - but like I
said - "The MOON will HAVE to be in the 7th huse, and Jupiter will HAVE to align with Mars" -
seriously - IF all of this can happen - you have a very good
shot at having the chip get fixed and everyone will be happy...

Another option would be to put a bullnose around the opening to blend in
where the material is missing - this could work real well of you're open to it...


IF these options can not be done - the chipped top will need to be replaced......

it's pretty clear cut here....




clipped on: 03.28.2010 at 05:06 pm    last updated on: 03.28.2010 at 05:06 pm

RE: Chrome or Polished Nickel kitchen faucet? Help! (Follow-Up #14)

posted by: altagirl on 03.19.2010 at 02:06 pm in Kitchens Forum

Okay, my faucet is in and I've been using it for about 2 weeks. I polished it with Flitz was as was recommended by Rohle before we used it for the first time. It has been a pleasure to keep clean! I just wipe it down with a micro fiber cloth after I use it just like I did with my old chrome faucet and I haven't had any tarnishing or finger prints at all. I'm so happy I went with the pn, it looks beautiful!


clipped on: 03.28.2010 at 03:59 pm    last updated on: 03.28.2010 at 03:59 pm

RE: Chrome or Polished Nickel kitchen faucet? Help! (Follow-Up #11)

posted by: judydel on 02.25.2010 at 11:12 am in Kitchens Forum

dotcomgone recently published a thread on this subject. Dot was scrubbing a pan with BarKeeper's Friend and it splashed the nickel faucet leaving permanent marks. Be careful : )


clipped on: 03.28.2010 at 03:58 pm    last updated on: 03.28.2010 at 03:58 pm

RE: Chrome or Polished Nickel kitchen faucet? Help! (Follow-Up #10)

posted by: pirula on 02.25.2010 at 11:09 am in Kitchens Forum

I've found that Wenol (available at WIlliam Sonoma) has done a great job of removing the few stains I get on my polished nickel. Leaving it all gleaming good as new. I've not had any etching.


clipped on: 03.28.2010 at 03:58 pm    last updated on: 03.28.2010 at 03:58 pm

RE: Chrome or Polished Nickel kitchen faucet? Help! (Follow-Up #8)

posted by: sombreuil_mongrel on 02.25.2010 at 10:31 am in Kitchens Forum

link to the polish recommended by Kingston Brass for maintaining the polished nickel. This is what Restoration Hardware recommends as well.

Here is a link that might be useful: Brass ProTech Cleaner


clipped on: 03.28.2010 at 03:57 pm    last updated on: 03.28.2010 at 03:57 pm

RE: 2cm underlayment: marine quality plywood? (Follow-Up #1)

posted by: azstoneconsulting on 03.24.2010 at 05:00 pm in Kitchens Forum

Sheila -

the "Marine" quality that was put in the MIA spec by the late Vincent Migliori - who
was the MIA technical director until his passing back in 2003 - was one of
Vincent's ways of - shall I say - "OVER engineering" stuff way past where it
needed to be - he was being careful - but in this case, I disagreed with his logic...

Let's put it this way - Let's say you do go to the expense of using marine grade
plywood -
The ONLY benefit you'll have from using Marine grade plywood IMHO - is
IF your kitchen is constantly being flooded - ie - New Orleans from Hurricane
Katrina, and even then - your cabinets will fall apart from the water damage
and your house will be ruined form the mold - but your subtops will
still be good - 'cause they're marine grade plywood... does this make sense???

Vincent was a good friend, but he and I went "round and round" on this point
and although in 25+ years of Fabricating - I have NEVER - EVER used Marine
Grade plywood on ANY project I have ever done in my career.... ACX - Like
we discussed today - will work fine for your application...

IMHO - MIA needs to redact that point in their next Design Manual - I will talk to my friends
there about it - Again - IMHO, 5/8" ACX plywood is fine for a conventional Kitchen application......

Thanks by the way for your very kind remarks - I'm always glad to help
people here on GW!!!!

now - don't bother the US Marine Corps for any more plywood of their plywood!!! HA!!!!

that's a joke there - by the way..... ;-)

Stay with the ACX grade - you'll be fine - 5/8" if you can get it out there
in Virginia.....



clipped on: 03.24.2010 at 05:42 pm    last updated on: 03.24.2010 at 05:42 pm

RE: marble fabricator Northern Virginia/DC (Follow-Up #8)

posted by: buehl on 02.25.2010 at 09:50 pm in Kitchens Forum

Um...stay away from Granite Source in Chantilly, VA. It would take several long paragraphs to list all that they did wrong or went wrong (all their fault!). [From templating through installations (yes, blood still boils when I think of their arrogance and ineptitude!)]

Yes, Jesse was nice on the phone, but she didn't do the work (nor does being "nice" mean a good job).

I'm still not completely happy with the final result but it's livable.


clipped on: 03.18.2010 at 10:30 pm    last updated on: 03.18.2010 at 10:30 pm

RE: marble fabricator Northern Virginia/DC (Follow-Up #5)

posted by: azstoneconsulting on 02.24.2010 at 11:38 pm in Kitchens Forum

Here's John's info:

Cogswell Stone
861 Lake Monticello Rd.
Palmyra, VA 22963
Voice: (434) 589-9661
Web Page:

Say hi to John for me - I saw him at StonExpo this past October and
he was doing well - When you call - you may get his wife Lisa - she is

John and Lisa are WAY COOL people - check out his showroom pics on his website -
John DEFINITELY "GETS IT" when it comes to having a really user friendly showroon
and shop......

John was also the very FIRST Fabricator to become MIA ACCREDITED - I have
been an Accrediation Inspector for MIA since the program started, and I can
tell you that achieving what Cogswell Stone has done through becoming an
Accredited Company that's a member of the MIA is no easy thing - less than
5% of all MIA Fabricators are able to have the title of "Accredited" on their business....

Try him - it'll be worth the call - I can assure you....



Here is a link that might be useful: Cogswell Stone's Web Site


clipped on: 03.18.2010 at 10:27 pm    last updated on: 03.18.2010 at 10:27 pm

RE: New granite countertops...supposed to have an apron seam? (Follow-Up #8)

posted by: azstoneconsulting on 02.11.2010 at 08:36 am in Kitchens Forum

What you're seeing is what we call a "glue line" - This happens when two pieces
of stone are laminated to create a thicker looking edge detail. This is common.

The glue lines in laminating - no matter HOW good your guy is (even me - HA!)
WILL be able to be seen if you look for them. This is normal. Some glue lines
are not as noticeable as others (ie: look at Boxerpups - you can barely see them) ...
This is attributable to the stone, and the abilities of your Fabricator, and the
kind of glue they use (with or without tints)

As far as remedies now - you can use some stone enhancer (Ager Tiger)
on the edge and it might help disguise the glue line - but it won't make it
go away entirely. As crazy as this sounds too - a black sharpie pen hitting
the black areas will also help minimize the visual impact of the glue lines.
Those of us making a living doing Slab Countertops have used this little
trick of the trade for decades...... ;-)

It's always advisable for Fabricators to SHOW you a sample of a laminated
edge to alert you to the glue line issue - I always say that the glue lines WILL
be there - and no matter how good I can get them - you WILL see them if
you look hard enough for them.....




clipped on: 03.18.2010 at 09:41 pm    last updated on: 03.18.2010 at 09:41 pm

RE: Stone Information and Advice (& Checklists) (Follow-Up #60)

posted by: buehl on 07.12.2009 at 01:23 pm in Kitchens Forum

  • Posted by stonegirl (My Page) on Sun, Jun 21, 09 at 13:41

    1. Lifetime Sealer: With modern sealer technology advancing as fast as (or even faster than!) computer technology, it is difficult to keep up with all the developments. The most recent development is called "nano technology", which, for all intents and purposes, mean that the solid particles in the sealer (the stuff that makes the sealer work) are very, very small and combined with advanced solvent technology, these particles can penetrate deeper into the stone and do a better job of sealing it.

      There are a number of sealers on the market that make use of this technology and some even give lifetime warranties for properly applied sealers. A couple of these are "Dry Treat" and "Surface Treatment Technologies". STT has a proprietary combination sealer consisting of SB (the first application) and FE (the final application) that offers superior protection even on extremely porous surfaces. The guys over at the SFA did side-by-side testing of Dry Treat and the STT combination and found STT to be the superior product.

      That said, there are a few others out there that I am not familiar with and could offer the same benefit. Just be wary of companies that claim to be "certified applicators" or some such. A lot of people saw a niche in a market and are trying to fill it by employing shady techniques.

      Lifetime sealers often are more expensive than regular good quality sealers, and as some have noted before me, sealer application is no big deal and can be done at home and by yourself fairly easily. Just be sure to purchase a high quality product with a recognized brand name, such as Miracle or StoneTech, to name a couple.

      BUT: Not all stones need sealer either. Stones like Blue Pearl, Ubatuba, Black Galaxy, Verde Peacock, Verde Butterfly, Platinum Pearl and many others are too dense to absorb any liquids - sealers included. Sealers only protect stone from staining through absorption, so in stones with low absorption co-efficients, sealing would be superfluous.

      Sealing dense stones could lead to nasty results, such as streaking and ghost etching, so DO NOT go by the motto of "seal it anyway, it could not hurt". Rather test your stone for absorption by dripping water on it to see if it darkens any. If the water has no effect on the stone, sealing it is unnecessary.

    2. Seams: DO NOT pick a stone to satisfy the abilities (or lack of!) the fabricator. A good fabricator will be able to make a good seam in whatever stone you select. MIA standards for seams list 1/8" as being acceptable. As with all bureaucratic institutions they are decidedly behind the curve in technology and applications, and there are fabricators who strive to make seams virtually disappear. Do know that it is more challenging to make seams "disappear" in veined or boldly patterned stones and fabricators will charge accordingly.

      Ask your intended fabricator(s) to have you see actual installed kitchens and look at the quality of the work they have done - not just on the seams, but on the rest of the kitchen too. Check for good edge polishing, consistent overhangs and overall appearance of the job. Speak to the homeowners (if they are available) and ask about their experiences with the fabricator. Showrooms could be misleading. Remember, they are designed to make you buy stuff :)

    3. Seam Locations: There are very many variables that go into the location of a seam. Appearances, although important too, are secondary to a number of them, including slab length, material pattern, installation hazards, cabinet and cut-out locations and access to the installation, to name a few.

      You could ask your stone guy to consider a seam in a location that would be preferable to you, and he will proceed with due consideration, but ultimately, it is his decision where they go in order to provide a quality installation. A good fabricator will discuss them with you and provide motivation for his choices.

    4. Seams over dishwashers: If done well and supported properly, there is no issue with having a seam over a dishwasher. The glue will not melt, the stone will not weaken and no disaster will occur IF it was done well. Most fabricators will avoid doing seams over the DW because the extra precautions are time and material intensive, but sometimes they can not be helped.

      Extra precautions for seams over a DW could include a "biscuit" joint at the seam, a ledger board screwed in the back wall or support plates glued under the seam, to name a few.

    5. Pricing: Pricing is a carbuncle. Every shop has a different way of doing it, and practices vary from region to region. Some shops will give all inclusive prices, some use itemized bills, others will charge for labor and material and some others might charge them separate. In some parts of the country fabricators require you buy your own materials.

      My advice would be to compare the bottom line of all quotes and determine of you are comparing oranges to oranges. Determine what you would like: material, edge profile, cut-outs and backsplashes. Get estimates from the fabricators that will deliver the same end result and compare those. See if the price includes all the options you prefer, along with material and installation. Once you have all the details determined, looking at the final prices should then give a you a monetary comparison between the different operators.

      Although the price should be important when deciding on a fabricator, do not forget to look at other things like quality, customer service and your own *gut feeling* when you shop for a stone guy.

    6. MIA or not?: Does it matter? The MIA has no means of policing the fabricators that belong to them and joining the association only costs about $500 or so. Anybody can write a check and then put MIA on their business cards. We used to belong to them, but for fundamental reasons gave up our membership. This did not make our quality go downhill all of a sudden. In fact, the standards that we set for our shop were consistently higher than the MIA "required" for any of their members. In short - being an MIA member will NOT be a guarantee of any kind of good service or quality installation. Much rather look at the ethics and business practices of the fabricators on your short list.


    Other comments from our experts:

    • You shouldn't seal granite under a .25% absorption

    • Leathered finish stones are typically finished to a semi-gloss and would most likely not benefit from a sealer. It is easy to see if you need one, though. Try and get an untreated sample from the fabricator and do a water test on it. See if the stone darkens if it is exposed to water. My guess is that the Brazilian Black will not.

      If it shows finger marks and such, an enhancing sealer would be a better option - it will be a semi-topical treatment on a stone that dense, so it might need to be re-applied occasionally, depending on how often and with what kind of cleaners you clean your stone.

      Impregnating sealers and enhancers are designed to work from within the stone - i.e. they need to be absorbed to work properly. On dense stones with alternative finishes like brushing, leathering or honing, these sealers will get stuck in the surface texture, giving the desired effect. It will not really be absorbed within the stone, but kinda' stuck in the surface - subject to removal by mechanical means such as a vigorous scrubbing :)

  • NOTES:

    clipped on: 03.18.2010 at 09:36 pm    last updated on: 03.18.2010 at 09:36 pm

    Stone Information and Advice (& Checklists)

    posted by: buehl on 04.14.2008 at 02:56 am in Kitchens Forum

    First off, I want to give a big thank-you to StoneGirl, Kevin, Joshua, Mimi, and others (past and current) on this forum who have given us many words of wisdom concerning stone countertops.

    I've tried to compile everything I saved over the past 8 months that I've been on this Forum. Most of it was taken from a write-up by StoneGirl (Natural stone primer/granite 101); other threads and sources were used as well.

    So...if the experts could review the information I've compiled below and send me comments (here or via email), I will talk to StarPooh about getting this on the FAQ.

    Stone Information, Advice, and Checklists:

    In an industry that has no set standards, there are many unscrupulous people trying to palm themselves off as fabricators. There are also a number of people with odd agendas trying to spread ill rumors about natural stone and propagate some very confusing and contradictory information. This is my small attempt at shedding a little light on the subject.

    Slab Selection:

    On the selection of the actual stone slabs - When you go to the slab yard to choose slabs for your kitchen, there are a few things you need to take note of:

    • Surface finish: The finish - be it polished, honed, flamed antiqued, or brushed, should be even. There should be no spots that have obvious machine marks, scratches, or other man made marks. You can judge by the crystal and vein pattern of the stone if the marks you see are man-made or naturally occurring. It is true that not all minerals will finish evenly and if you look at an angle on a polished slab with a larger crystal pattern, you can clearly see this. Tropic Brown would be a good example here. The black spots will not polish near as shiny as the brown ones and this will be very obvious on an unresined slab when looking at an acute angle against the light. The black specks will show as duller marks. The slab will feel smooth and appear shiny if seen from above, though. This effect will not be as pronounced on a resined slab.

      Bottom line when judging the quality of a surface finish: Look for unnatural appearing marks. If there are any on the face of the slab, it is not desirable. They might well be on the extreme edges, but this is normal and a result of the slab manufacturing process.

    • Mesh backing: Some slabs have a mesh backing. This was done at the plant where the slabs were finished. This backing adds support to brittle materials or materials with excessive veining or fissures. A number of exotic stones will have this. This does not necessarily make the material one of inferior quality, though. Quite often, these slabs will require special care in fabrication and transport, so be prepared for the fabricator to charge accordingly. If you are unsure about the slabs, ask your fabricator what his opinion of the material is.
    • Cracks and fissures: Yes - some slabs might have them. One could have quite the discussion on whether that line on the slab could be one or the other, so I'll try to explain it a little.

      • Fissures are naturally occurring features in stone. They will appear as little lines in the surface of the slabs (very visible in a material like Verde Peacock) and could even be of a different color than the majority of the stone (think of those crazed white lines sometimes appearing in Antique Brown). Sometimes they could be fused like in Antique Brown and other times they could be open, as is the case in the Verde Peacock example. They could often also go right through the body of the slab like in Crema Marfil, for instance. If you look at the light reflection across a fissure, you will never see a break - i.e., there will be no change in the plane on either side of a fissure.
      • A crack on the other hand is a problem... If you look at the slab at an oblique angle in the light, you will note the reflection of the shine on the surface of the stone. A crack will appear as a definite line through the reflection and the reflection will have a different appearance on either side of the line - there will be a break in the plane. Reject slabs like this. One could still work around fissures. Cracks are a whole other can of worms.
      • Resined slabs: The resin gets applied prior to the slabs being polished. Most of the resin then gets ground off in the polishing process. You should not be able to see just by looking at the surface of a slab whether it was resined or not. If you look at the rough sides of the slab, though, you will see some drippy shiny marks, almost like varnish drips. This should be the only indication that the slab is resined. There should never be a film or layer on the face of the stone. With extremely porous stones, the resining will alleviate, but not totally eliminate absorption issues and sealer could still be required. Lady's dream is an example. This material is always resined, but still absorbs liquids and requires sealer.
      • Test the material you have selected for absorption issues regardless - it is always best to know what your stone is capable of and to be prepared for any issues that might arise. Some stones indeed do not require sealer - be they resined or not. Baltic Brown would be an example here. It will not absorb one iota of anything, but it is still resined to eliminate a flaking issue.

    Tests (especially for Absolute Black) (using a sample of YOUR slab):

    • To verify you have true AB and not dyed: Clean with denatured alcohol and rub marble polishing powder on the face. (Get denatured alcohol at Home Depot in the paint department)
    • Lemon Juice or better yet some Muratic Acid: will quickly show if the stone has alot of calcium content and will end up getting etched. This is usually chinese stone, not indian.
    • Acetone: The Dying usually is done on the same chinese stone. like the others said, acetone on a rag will reveal any dye that has been applied
    • Chips: Using something very hard & metalhit the granite sharply & hard on edges to see if it chips, breaks, or cracks


    • Before the templaters get there...
      • Make sure you have a pretty good idea of your faucet layout--where you want the holes drilled for all the fixtures and do a test mock up to make sure you have accounted for sufficient clearances between each fixture.
      • Be sure you test your faucet for clearances not just between each fixture, but also between the faucet and the wall behind the faucet (if there is one). You need to be sure the handle will function properly.
      • Make sure that the cabinets are totally level (not out by more than 1/8") before the counter installers come in.
      • Check how close they should come to a stove and make sure the stove sits up higher than the counter.
      • Make sure they have the sink/faucet templates to work from.
      • Make sure have your garbage disposal air switch on hand or know the diameter

    • If you are not putting in a backsplash, tell them
    • Double check the template. Make sure that the measurements are reasonable. Measure the opening for the range.
    • Seam Placement: Yet another kettle of fish (or can of worms, depending on how you look at it, I guess!) Seam placement is ultimately at the discretion of the fabricator. I know it is not a really popular point of view, but that is just the way it is. There really is more to deciding where the seam would go than just the size of the slab or where the seam would look best in the kitchen.

      Most stone installations will have seams. They are unavoidable in medium or large sized kitchens. One hallmark of a good fabricator is that they will keep the seams to a minimum. It seems that a good book could be written about seams, their quality, and their placementand still you will have some information that will be omitted! For something as seemingly simple as joining two pieces of stone, seams have evolved into their own universe of complexity far beyond what anybody should have fair cause to expect!

    • Factors determining seam placement:
      • The slab: size, color, veining, structure (fissures, strength of the material an other characteristics of the stone)
      • Transport to the job site: Will the fabricated pieces fit on whatever vehicle and A-frames he has available
      • Access to the job site: Is the house on stilts? (common in coastal areas) How will the installers get the pieces to where they need to go? Will the tops fit in the service elevator if the apartment is on the 10th floor? Do the installers need to turn tight corners to get to the kitchen? There could be 101 factors that will influence seam placement here alone.
      • Placement and size of undermount (or other) cut-outs. Some fabricators like to put seams in undermount sinks, some do not. We, for instance will do it if absolutely necessary, and have done so with great success, but will not do so as general practice. We do like to put seams in the middle of drop-in appliances and cut-outs and this is a great choice for appearances and ease of installation.
      • Location of the cabinets: Do the pieces need to go in between tall cabinets with finished sides? Do the pieces need to slide in under appliance garages or other cabinetry? How far do the upper cabinets hang over? Is there enough clearance between the vent hood and other cabinets? Again the possibilities are endless and would depend on each individual kitchen lay-out and - ultimately -
      • Install-ability of the fabricated pieces: Will that odd angle hold up to being moved and turned around to get on the peninsula if there is no seam in it? Will the extra large sink cut-out stay intact if we hold the piece flat and at a 45 degree angle to slide it in between those two tall towers? Again, 1,001 combinations of cabinetry and material choices will come into play on this question.

      You can ask your fabricator to put a seam at a certain location and most likely he will oblige, but if he disagrees with you, it is not (always) out of spite or laziness. Check on your fabricator's seams by going to actual kitchens he has installed. Do not trust what you see in a showroom as sole testament to your fabricator's ability to do seams.

      With modern glues and seaming methods, a seam could successfully be put anywhere in an installation without compromising the strength or integrity of the stone. If a seam is done well, there is - in theory - no "wrong" location for it. A reputable fabricator will also try to keep the number of seams in any installation to a minimum. It is not acceptable, for instance to have a seam in each corner, or at each point where the counter changes direction, like on an angled peninsula.

      Long or unusually large pieces are often done if they can fit in the constraints of a slab. Slabs as a rule of thumb will average at about 110"x65". There are bigger slabs and quite often smaller ones too. Check with the fabricator or the slab yard. They will be more than happy to tell you the different sizes of slabs they have available. Note, though, that the larger the slabs, the smaller the selection of possible colors. Slab sizes would depend in part on the capabilities of the quarry, integrity of the material or the capabilities of the machinery at the finishing plant. We have had slabs as wide as 75" and as long as 130" before, but those are monsters and not always readily available.

    • Generally, it is not a good idea to seam over a DW because there's no support for the granite, and anything heavy placed at or near the seam would stress the stone, possibly breaking it.
    • Rodding is another issue where a tremendous amount of mis-information and scary stories exist: The main purpose for rodding stone would be to add integrity to the material around cut-outs. This is primarily for transport and installation and serves no real purpose once the stone is secured and fully supported on the cabinets. It would also depend on the material. A fabricator would be more likely to rod Ubatuba than he would Black Galaxy, for instance. The flaky and delicate materials prone to fissures would be prime candidates for rodding. Rodding is basically when a fabricator cuts slots in the back of the stone and embeds steel or fiberglass rods with epoxy in the slots in the stone. You will not see this from the top or front of the installation. This is an "insurance policy" created by the fabricator to make sure that the stone tops make it to your cabinets all in one piece
    • Edges: The more rounded an edge is, the more stable it would be. Sharp, flat edges are prone to chipping under the right (or rather wrong) circumstances. Demi or full bullnose edges would almost entirely eliminate this issue. A properly milled and polished edge will be stable and durable regardless of the profile, though. My guess at why ogee and stacked edges are not more prevalent would be purely because of cost considerations. Edge pricing is determined by the amount of work needed to create it. The more intricate edge profiles also require an exponentially larger skill set and more time to perfect. The ogee edge is a very elegant edge and can be used to great effect, but could easily look overdone if it is used everywhere. We often advise our clients to combine edges for greater impact - i.e., eased edge on all work surfaces, and ogee on the island to emphasize the cabinetry or unusual shape.
      Edge profiles are largely dependent on what you like and can afford. There is no real pro or con for regular or laminated edges. They all have their place in the design world. Check with your fabricator what their capabilities and pricing are. Look at actual kitchens and ask for references.


    • Seams:
      One hallmark of a good fabricator is that they will keep the seams to a minimum [StoneGirl]

      • A generic good quality seam should have the following characteristics:
        • It should be flat. According to the Marble Institute of America (MIA) a minimal amount of lippage is acceptable (1/32"), but conscientious fabricators all strive for a perfectly flat and smooth joint.
        • It should be narrow - as in smaller than 1/16". (I think the MIA stipulates no larger than 1/8", but that is pushing it - and only if the fabricator bevels the edges of the seam, almost similar to the edge of a stone tile. This is, thank goodness, not a standard practice any more!)
        • The color on either side of the seam should match as closely as possible. On regularly patterned stones like Ubatuba for example - there should be no variation. On stones with variation in colors or veins, the match should be made as close as was humanly possible.
        • Vein direction should flow. The MIA suggests a single direction of vein flow, but it is acceptable IF DISCUSSED WITH THE CLIENT to change vein direction on a seam if no other option is available. This would happen in book matched slabs - you will have a "butterfly" seam in this case. In other cases, the fabricator could put a miter seam in a corner and change vein direction 90 degrees. This is usually done with extremely linear veining like Bamboo Green, for example, but this is something that should be discussed with the fabricator and agreed upon by the client.
        • The seam on the finished edge of the stone should NOT dip in and create a divot in the edge. When you run your fingers over the edge, you should not be able to feel the location of the seam at all.
        • The thickness of the slabs on either side of the seam should be equal (or feathered out so that there is no discernible difference)
        • The glue in the seam should be of a color that matches the stone as closely as possible. Glue joints that are too light or too dark will show up something terrible. The idea behind tinting the glue is to try to make the seam "disappear" or something relatively close to it

    • Checklist:
      • Check the seams for evenness and smoothness.
        • Make sure that the seams are neat and clean.
        • Make sure that the seams are not obvious.
        • Make sure the seams are butted tight
        • Make sure that there are no scratches, pits, or cracks

      • If sealing is necessary (not all granites need to be sealed):
        • Make sure that the granite has been sealed
        • If more than one application of sealer was applied, ask how long they waited between applications
        • Ask which sealer has been used on the granite.

      • Make sure the sink reveal is consistent all the away around
      • Check the gap of the granite at the wall junctions.
      • Check for inconsistent overhangs from the counter edges
      • Check for chips. These can be filled.
      • Make sure the top drawers open & close
      • Make sure that you can open & close your dishwasher
      • Make sure the stove sits up higher than the counter
      • Make sure that you have the appropriate clearances for your appliances
      • Check the edge all around, a good edge should have the following characteristics:
        • Shine: The edge polish should match the top polish in depth and clarity. The edge should not be milky, dull, or waxy.
        • The edge should not have "waves". Eyeball along the edge. A good edge should have a mirror like reflection and be fairly flat. Waves that you can see or feel are not a good thing.
        • The aris (very top of the edge) should be crisp and straight, even on a bullnose edge. Once again you can see this by eyeballing along the very top end of the edge profile. A wavy, dippy aris is poor craftsmanship.
        • A good edge will have a consistent profile. It will not be larger in some spots or smaller in others.
        • A good edge should also have NO tooling lines. These will be fine lighter/white lines running along the edge. This is a mark of a poor edge polish, of a CNC machine that is not set correctly, and a lack of hand finishing. This is common when a company has only mechanical fabrication (i.e., CNC machines or line polishers) and no skilled hand fabricators to finish the work properly.

      • Run your hands around the entire laminated edge of yor counters to make sure they are smooth
      • Check surrounding walls & cabinets for damage

    Miscellaneous Information:

    • More than all the above and below, though, is to be present for both the templating as well as having the templates placed on your slabs at the fabricator's
      If you canot be there, then have a lengthy conversation about seam placement, ways to match the movement, and ways to color-match the counters that will be joined at the seam
    • Find a fabricator who is a member of the SFA
    • When they polish your stone for you don't let them wax it. It will look terrible in 2 months when the wax wears off.
    • Don't use the Magic Eraser on granite--especially AB
    • Any slab with more fill (resin) than stone is certainly a no-no!!
    • When you do check for scratches, have overhead lighting shining down so scratches are easier to see
    • Don't let them do cutouts in place (granite dust becomes a major issue)
    • Granite dust can be a problem...some have heard of SS appliances & hoods damaged by the dust, others have heard of drawer glides being ruined by the dust
    • If you have wood floors--especially if you're in the process of staining or finishing them--make sure that they don't spill or drip granite sealer on the wood floors. Apparently the sealer interferes with the stain or finish process.
    • Suggested Prep for Installation:
      • Remove any drawers and pullouts beneath any sections that will be cut or drilled onsite, e.g., sink cutouts and/or faucet, soap dispenser, air gap, instant hot etc. holes, cooktop cutouts.
      • Then just cover the glides themselves with a few layers of blue painter's tape (or some combo of plastic wrap and tape)
      • If you make sure to cover the top of the glides and attach some of the tape to the cab wall as well (to form sort of a seal)and cover the rest of the glides completely with tape, you should be fine.
      • Usually the fabricators will have someone holding a vacuum hose right at the spot where they are drilling or cutting, so very little granite dust should be landing on the glides. What little dust escapes the vacuum will be blocked by the layer(s) of tape.
      • When done w/installation, remove the tape and use a DustBuster (or similar) on all the cabinets and glides

    • Countertop Support:
      • If your granite is 2 cm thick, then there can be no more then 6" of of unsupported span with a 5/8" subtop
      • If your granite is 3 cm thick, then there can be no more then 10" of unsupported span - no subtop required
      • If you need support, the to determine your corbel dimensions:
      • Thickness of Stone - Dimension of Unsupported Span = Corbel Dimensino
      • i.e., an 18" total overhang in 2 cm would require a 12" corbe; the same overhang in 3 cm would require an 8" corbel


    clipped on: 03.18.2010 at 09:19 pm    last updated on: 03.18.2010 at 09:29 pm

    RE: Stone Information and Advice (& Checklists) (Follow-Up #40)

    posted by: buehl on 10.21.2008 at 05:12 pm in Kitchens Forum

    Sink Undermount Options

    There are pros & cons for each type of reveal:

    • Positive Reveal. The sink shows; granite cutout is slightly larger than sink
      • Pros: Easier to clean b/c you can see the gunk and can easily wipe it off (it only gets nasty if you leave it there)
      • Cons: Silicone (caulk?) is visible, but if they use clear you won't see it when it dries

    • Negative Reveal. The granite overhangs the sink; granite cutout is slightly smaller than the sink
      • Pros: You cannot see the gunk buildup or silicone
      • Cons:
        • You cannot see the gunk to clean it.
        • Dirty water/food can splash up & under where you cannot see to clean it. It's difficult to see underneath w/o leaning way over & into the sink.
        • Dishes/glasses have been known to break b/c when you lift them out near the edge of the sink the dish hits the stone counter & can break (or, if the dish wins, the counter could chip...but I'm not sure how likely that is).

    • Zero Reveal or Flush. Sink & granite are flush or even; the granite cutout & sink are the same size
      • Pros:
        • Easier to clean b/c you can see the gunk
        • No platform over or under for the gunk to collect

      • Cons:
        • More difficult to do perfectly
        • Silicone is visible, but if they use clear you won't see it when it dries

    You will find proponents of all three types of reveals here...but in the end it's what works best for you.


    clipped on: 03.18.2010 at 09:24 pm    last updated on: 03.18.2010 at 09:24 pm

    RE: quartz/stone counter undelayment thickness? (Follow-Up #1)

    posted by: azstoneconsulting on 03.01.2010 at 06:54 pm in Kitchens Forum

    use 5/8" ACX grade

    You could use the 3/4" you have IF you were not using any glue to
    hold the stone down..

    Usually - Some kind of glue is used to attach the stone to the subtop:

    like this........

    The glue will take up about 1/8 of an inch of space - RAISING the counters up
    so that IF you were to use the 3/4" stuff - it would stick out on the bottom
    and show from underneath when you looked at the bottom of the lamination:

    like this........

    Make sense????

    Use the 5/8" ACX grade - been do'in it that way for the last 25 years - never a problem......




    clipped on: 03.18.2010 at 09:12 pm    last updated on: 03.18.2010 at 09:12 pm

    quartz/stone counter undelayment thickness?

    posted by: poorowner on 03.01.2010 at 06:33 pm in Kitchens Forum

    I was talking to the kitchen countertop shop owner, not the fabricator. They told me to put 5/8" plywood as the underlayment to install 2cm quartze on top, doubled up for the edge. I always thought plywood is instlled by the fabricator, but apparently not?

    I do more thinking, 2CM is 0.7874 inches. So it's actually over 3/4" a little.
    next, I think lowe's 3/4" plywood is actually a little less than 3/4", so I think you would never see the plywood even if 3/4" ply is used as the underlayment..
    5/8" plywood might have the stone rubbing my drawer doors.

    I am asking because I bought my 3/4" ply long ago thinking that is the thickness I need, can I still use that plywood?


    clipped on: 03.18.2010 at 09:11 pm    last updated on: 03.18.2010 at 09:11 pm

    RE: Installing Undermount Sink without Using Brackets??? (Follow-Up #6)

    posted by: dawn_t on 02.26.2010 at 04:36 pm in Kitchens Forum

    Do you mean the Sink Setter?
    I just installed mine yesterday and it's pretty nifty (using mine under butcherblock).


    clipped on: 03.18.2010 at 08:22 pm    last updated on: 03.18.2010 at 08:53 pm

    RE: Installing Undermount Sink without Using Brackets??? (Follow-Up #1)

    posted by: azstoneconsulting on 02.26.2010 at 10:30 am in Kitchens Forum


    The application thet you are describing - 2CM over plywood with a SS sink
    and no brackets - for THIS application - is fine IMHO....

    We do this all the time - with Stainless Steel type sinks ONLY.

    The ONLY negative to this method - is thet "IF" you ever have to
    remove the sink for any reason (damage is usually the only one here)
    you'll be "S.O.L" (sorely out of luck).....

    Sounds like your fabricator is willing to work with you on this -
    just make sure that he's using 5/8" and NOT 3/4" plywood, and the
    plywood itself is ACX grade -and NOT a cheaper grade - like CDX (it
    tends to warp really easy and has been known to effect the flatness
    of the stone once everything is installed.)




    clipped on: 03.18.2010 at 08:16 pm    last updated on: 03.18.2010 at 08:52 pm

    RE: Kevin - 'remember the 6 & 10 rule' (Follow-Up #1)

    posted by: numbersjunkie on 03.18.2010 at 02:47 pm in Kitchens Forum

    I think the 6 & 10 rule says that if your slab is 2 cm you can have 6" overhang without support, and if its 3 cm you can have 10" without support.


    clipped on: 03.18.2010 at 08:06 pm    last updated on: 03.18.2010 at 08:47 pm

    RE: Countertop overhang (Follow-Up #12)

    posted by: buehl on 02.05.2010 at 12:29 pm in Kitchens Forum

    You generally want the overhang to not only cover the doors and drawer fronts, but also the pulls/ reduces bruises! When the pulls/knobs stick out past the counter, you are more likely to bump them or have things get caught on them.

    The overhang should, at the very least, extend past cabinets/drawer fronts/doors so liquids drip straight down to the floor and do not touch the cabinets...if you have no overhang (i.e., flush) with the cabinets/doors/drawers), liquids will drip down the cabinet surface to the floor.

    Usually, though, "no overhang" is a sleeker, more "modern" look while inset cabinets are usually a more "traditional" look. However, if you like the look, then do what you like. But, I would at least have a 1/4" overhang so you know the drips will not drip down the cabinets.


    clipped on: 03.18.2010 at 08:45 pm    last updated on: 03.18.2010 at 08:45 pm

    RE: Countertop overhang (Follow-Up #6)

    posted by: azstoneconsulting on 02.04.2010 at 03:35 pm in Kitchens Forum


    My Bad..... Your guy that measured is right!!!

    a NORMAL overhang is measured 1 1/2 inches from the FACE of the CABINET FRAME - NOT the drawer front... Sorry for not pointing that out earlier... <:-0

    Thanks for asking that question - I am pr-occupied with some other issues
    right now....




    clipped on: 03.18.2010 at 08:44 pm    last updated on: 03.18.2010 at 08:44 pm

    RE: Countertop overhang (Follow-Up #2)

    posted by: azstoneconsulting on 02.04.2010 at 08:09 am in Kitchens Forum

    for Natural, Engineered and "Green" slab countertops - 1 1/2 inches of overhang
    on the front leading edges of your countertops is "the norm"...
    I have seen this in Solid Surface products too....

    Your finished overhang can vary by up to 1/2 inch more
    (giving you up to 2 inches of front overhang),
    or 1/4 inch less (reducing the dimension down to 1 1/4 inches of front overhang)

    IMHO - for the finished product,
    this will ultimately be depending on the cabinets,
    your personal taste, how straight the cabinets are,
    and the Fabricator doing the work....




    clipped on: 03.18.2010 at 08:43 pm    last updated on: 03.18.2010 at 08:43 pm

    RE: How much does your granite overhang your cabinets? (Follow-Up #7)

    posted by: azstoneconsulting on 03.18.2010 at 10:41 am in Kitchens Forum


    Like I said in the other thread - your 1 5/8 inch overhang will be fine.

    Most Fabricators (myself included) do 1 1/2" from the face of the cabinet frame, so an additional
    1/8th of an inch is NOT going to be cause for concern at all (IMHO)

    Sounds like you have a good Fabricator there - especially since your templator
    scribed the wall where the stone meets it.....

    As far as your sink goes - the normal "set back" from the front edge
    of the stone is typically (but not always exactly) 4 inches. This dimension
    will vary with the sink type, and cabinet configuration. IF you have "pop outs"
    where the sink cabinet is deeper than the rest of the cabinets - like 1 or 2
    inches deeper - the sink set back may be affected. Another thing that affects
    the sink set back is IF you have a "tip out" drawer in front of the sink - the
    kind that tilts out and you stick your dish rags and other stuff in there - like
    cars keys, drain plugs, concealed weapons, etc HA! - THAT scenario
    may require that the sink then be set back a bit further than 4 inches - the more
    "traditional" dimension.....

    other than that - it sounds like you are on track for a good project so far.....

    my .02 cents worth



    clipped on: 03.18.2010 at 08:09 pm    last updated on: 03.18.2010 at 08:42 pm

    RE: How much does your granite overhang your cabinets? (Follow-Up #6)

    posted by: numbersjunkie on 03.18.2010 at 10:30 am in Kitchens Forum

    My current (read old) kitchen had very small overhangs, and the cabinets in front of the sink are ruined from water dripping on to them.


    clipped on: 03.18.2010 at 08:42 pm    last updated on: 03.18.2010 at 08:42 pm

    How much does your granite overhang your cabinets?

    posted by: eks6426 on 03.18.2010 at 08:21 am in Kitchens Forum

    I had granite templating done last night. All went well. Granite guy will be able to scribe to my wall which is good because it might be awhile before I get a backsplash.

    When picking the amount of the overhang, his advice was to go a little bit past the edge of the handles/knobs. So, for me this put my overhang at 1 5/8". This seems like a lot to me because most of the countertops I've had were maybe 1/2" overhang tops (I've only had formica).

    Doing the 1 5/8" overhang, puts the sinks 5" from the edge of the counter.

    Does this seem like it will work?

    What overhangs do you have? How were they determined?


    clipped on: 03.18.2010 at 08:41 pm    last updated on: 03.18.2010 at 08:41 pm

    RE: Should I screw the undermount SS sink to granite or use brac (Follow-Up #3)

    posted by: azstoneconsulting on 03.17.2010 at 11:42 am in Kitchens Forum

    Here's the problem (as I see it) when using screws on 2CM stone:

    The stone is too thin to support the weight of the screw fittings that
    are imbedded into the stone at least 3/8 of an inch or more. This weakens
    (structurally) the stone around where the the screw has been drilled,
    and because you are adding tension (load of the weight of the sink, PLUS
    the garbage disposal, PLUS the "pull" from the plumbing pipes that are
    tightened to the sink drain) you are asking for a failure.

    Yes - you CAN use the screws - But I only would do them using 3CM stone
    (it's thicker and can disperse the weight & tension load a bit easier) BUT -
    even then - I'd use some kind of "cradle" that supports the sink from underneath....

    A KD that "laughs at the suggestion of an alternate means of installation"
    is only showing his or her ignorance of newer methods of doing things better.

    Your Fabricator that told you that you will not be able to change your
    sink out in the future if you use screws - is IMHO- half right - there is still a chance
    that you can change out the sink -
    it'll depend on the sink that you use and the cabinet
    interior dimensions - allowing you to manipulate the sink in order to remove
    it and replace it with another - or not.....

    I really LOVE any kind of "cradle" system that supports the sink - from UNDERNEATH -
    rather than relying on "hanging it from the underside of the stone -

    Structurally - the "cradle philosophy" is more sound and will work
    far better for you that using screw that will "hang" the sink from the stone
    putting pressure and tension on the stone assembly - eventually leading to
    a potential fracture scenario..

    I've been doing this gig for a LONG time (25+ years) and I get to visit "failure"
    scenarios all the time - done by guys that didn't know any better, wanted to
    be "the cheapest guy doing the job" or the KD's that "laughed at their customers
    and said that no-way would their company would support such an idea" - that is
    until I write my report - based on MIA specs and reference that HAD a "cradle"
    type method of support been used - the failure would not have taken place.

    Then...... the KD isn't laughing any more....... especially when they have to do
    a "rip out and replace".......

    Bottom line - laughing at sound advice can be expensive!!! especially for ignorant KD's

    just my .02 cents worth......




    clipped on: 03.18.2010 at 08:40 pm    last updated on: 03.18.2010 at 08:40 pm

    RE: Should I screw the undermount SS sink to granite or use brac (Follow-Up #1)

    posted by: azstoneconsulting on 03.17.2010 at 12:21 am in Kitchens Forum

    brackets - definitely... try Braxton Bragg's "sink setter"

    it's easy to work with and inexpensive... been usin 'em for years!!!



    Here is a link that might be useful: Braxton Bragg - Sink Setter System


    clipped on: 03.18.2010 at 08:39 pm    last updated on: 03.18.2010 at 08:39 pm

    RE: The best way to clean.... (Follow-Up #3)

    posted by: buehl on or granite counters to install your faucets or soap dispensers in Kitchens Forum

    To start...

    • Granite...microfiber cloth along with one of the following:
      • 50/50 mix of alcohol & water
      • Method granite cleaner & polish
      • Don't use plumber's putty on your marble
        or granite counters to install your faucets or soap dispensers

    • Stainless Steel...microfiber cloth along with one of the following:
      • Weisman SS Cleaner/Polish in the silver can
      • Pledge in the brown can

    • Nickel fixtures (polished or brushed)...
      • Mild detergent & water
      • Don't install a nickel strainer
      • Don't use BarKeeper's Friend or other chemicals on nickel
      • Don't use bleach on nickel

    • Glass oven top:
      • Ceramic/glass oven surface cleaner
      • Razor blade for stuck-on food


    clipped on: 03.18.2010 at 08:14 pm    last updated on: 03.18.2010 at 08:38 pm

    Pics of what your Fabricator is proposing (Follow-Up #2)

    posted by: azstoneconsulting on 02.26.2010 at 11:35 am in Kitchens Forum

    here's a few pics of how I do what your Fabricator is proposing:

    plywood cutout for sink:

    Stainless Steel Sink is set into opening:

    Sink will be supported by the plywood around the perimeter flange:

    I always make a cutout for the faucets and accessories in the plywood:

    Stone Countertop is slid CAREFULLY into place in order to "Sandwich" the sink
    flange between the stone and the plywood:

    Silicone is used to creat a "seal" between the steel sink flange and the stone:

    THIS is why we use 5/8" plywood - rather than 3/4" thick:

    IF you use 5/8" plywood - the bottom layer of plywood will NOT stick out
    past the lowest level of the stone...This is because we use dabs of adhesive to secure the stone to the plywood:

    This is for an island we did on the same project:

    here is the island before we "stuck" the stone:

    I always use adhesive to "set" the sink in it's position too:




    clipped on: 03.18.2010 at 08:16 pm    last updated on: 03.18.2010 at 08:36 pm

    RE: Help .... anyone using 2cm granite instead of 3cm? (Follow-Up #7)

    posted by: azstoneconsulting on 03.18.2010 at 09:17 am in Kitchens Forum


    Plywood alone WILL NOT PREVENT cracks in the tops!!!

    Your fabricator (IMHO) needs to re-think their logic in what they
    are doing in relationship to using 2CM thick stone and people
    sitting on the countertops....


    Here's the saying I have for this scenario:

    "Countertops are made for Plates & Glasses
    NOT for FEET and DIRTY ARSES!!!"

    People hve to realize that a countertop is NOT a seating surface!

    I will venture a guess that the top that cracked was an overhang
    like a breakfast bar - or an area where chairs were under it for a dining
    application, and the kid sat on the unsupported top and the stone cracked
    where the cabinet line was - I see this all the time on jobsite inspections
    that I get called on to do - and have to write an "industry expert opinion"
    on WHY the countertop fractured - kind of like CSI for countertops..... HA!

    This can be prevented by the proper use of corbels and support of the
    assembly with either corbles or counterbalance plates spaced out no more
    than 16 inches on center.

    Whenever a consumer is going to use 2CM thick stone - IT MUST HAVE A SUBTOP -
    and the subtop should be 5/8 inches thick - PLYWOOD - ACX grade...

    This has worked for me flawlessly for over 25 years - no failures!!!

    Plywood should be used as the subtop in lieu of OXB, Particle Board, Masonite, etc.
    It should be screwed down to the cabinets- sanded side down where there
    is an overhang - sanded side up on conventional cabinet applications where
    the countertop is the depth of the cabinets (plus an overhang of 1 1/2" from
    the FACE of the Cabinet frame)




    clipped on: 03.18.2010 at 08:34 pm    last updated on: 03.18.2010 at 08:34 pm

    RE: Help .... anyone using 2cm granite instead of 3cm? (Follow-Up #5)

    posted by: julie94062 on 03.17.2010 at 11:39 pm in Kitchens Forum

    What Kevin and Steff said! Plus the 5/8" plywood needs to be screwed into the cabinet frames. Very common here on the West Coast. I saw very few 3cm. It's mostly 2cm.


    To get the edge, another piece of 2cm is added to the bottom.
    Example (crescent edge):


    How mine turned out:


    (Forgive the big pics...haven't figured out how to resize)

    And, BTW, I had NO idea about any of this when I started :-)


    clipped on: 03.18.2010 at 08:30 pm    last updated on: 03.18.2010 at 08:30 pm