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Old 09-04-2005, 07:24 AM   #1
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Mike Finley


MICHAEL WHO DO YOU THINK MAKES THE BEST SOLID SURFACE COUNTER TOP FOR A KITCHEN? THANKS :Thumbs: MICHAEL COULD YOU ANSWER A FEW OTHER QUESTIONS FOR ME.

1. Would you install solid surface in your own kitchen?

2. Is it possible to get a undermounted sink with solid surface?

3. Is it possible to do the back splash walls above counters in matching solid surface or do you think that would look stupid?

4. Do you think solid surface is a good choice if a person doesn't want to spend the big money on granite?

I really like granite until i seen the sticker price shock associated with it. I don't want to spend that kind of money. But i think new counter would dress the kitchen up.

Thanks.

Last edited by 747; 09-04-2005 at 07:46 AM.
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Old 09-04-2005, 09:18 PM   #2
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I know Micheal is a Pro around here but I can throw in my 2 cents for the time being. Dupont Corian is very popular and probably the most widely used, here at least. You can get Corian counters that have a sink and countertop all in one piece. To the best of my knowledge you can undermount sinks as well. I have seen the solid surface material used as backsplash as well as countertop, Its really whatever you like some may like it and some may not. I personally think it is a very good alternative to granite, its durable, non porus etc. I am in the process of building a house and used it in my kitchen.

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Old 09-05-2005, 04:13 AM   #3
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Thanks and when i post everybody feel free to jump in with there knowledge. :Thumbs:
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Old 09-05-2005, 04:36 AM   #4
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In our last house we had Corian with the seamless Corian sink ... I loved the look of it, the ease of cleaning (seamless sink), BUT you can't pour hot water directly in the sink (risk of breaking) ... so, for that reason alone, I would never put a Corian sink in again ....
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Old 09-05-2005, 06:14 AM   #5
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I didn't know that. I mean't like a undermounted stainless sink.
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Old 09-05-2005, 01:06 PM   #6
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corian is usually better with an undermount stainless sink. another bad thing about granite and most other stone-type countertops is that they usually have to be resealed and polished yearly or they degrade. this is alot of maint. and NOT cheap. the only knock on corian, is heat resistance. like the sink problem above. also you can't sit hot pans and such directly on the counter. you have to have at least a towel, or something under it. corian like granite, once installed and finished ,is solid seam.you can get it just about any color you want, and is considerably easier to install and maintain. depending on your location, the cost isn't always alot cheaper than granite though.
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Old 09-05-2005, 01:14 PM   #7
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For me and my house, I just do laminate countertops. About the time they start looking shabby, we're tired of the looks of the countertop anyhow and ready for a new one. You can buy several laminate countertops for the price of Corian, Wilsonart SSV, marblux, or granite.
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Old 09-05-2005, 01:19 PM   #8
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yeah,but if you install something expensive,your wife won't insist on a new one in six months.(check that off the honeydo list,yes!)
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Old 09-05-2005, 09:32 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 747
MICHAEL WHO DO YOU THINK MAKES THE BEST SOLID SURFACE COUNTER TOP FOR A KITCHEN? THANKS :
That's impossible to answer. Every surface has pros and cons, I give my customers a 4 page custom created document that explains just about every counter material there is , wood, stainless steel, marble, granite, quartz, corian, laminate, tile, cement ect... It lists the pros and cons of each product. It is often easier to eliminate a product then recommend it to a customer based on their uses of the kitchen, their lifestyle, and most importantly their budget. Counter top materials are almost always dictated 100% by wants and not needs.

Quote:
Originally Posted by 747
1. Would you install solid surface in your own kitchen?

Yes and I will be shortly. The surface I install will be decided upon based on a combination of factors, one being the look I need for the house to match the level of neighborhood because I will eventually be selling this house, the second factor will be what I can get installed cost effectively - because I want to maximize ROI in this house balanced with having to live here also, and finally the last factor will be based soley upon the products attributes (as you can see the attributes comes in last).

Quote:
Originally Posted by 747
2. Is it possible to get a undermounted sink with solid surface?
Yes, any solid surface can get an undermount. You can even get an undermount with laminate now. It can even be done with granite tile.

Quote:
Originally Posted by 747
3. Is it possible to do the back splash walls above counters in matching solid surface or do you think that would look stupid?
It is done all the time, but beware of a 'commercial' look that can result from it. The best results I get are when the backsplash compliments and contrasts the counters. 6x6 tiles set on a diagonal is a very nice back splash combination and will go with any counter top. We jazz it up with listellos and inserts.

Quote:
Originally Posted by 747
4. Do you think solid surface is a good choice if a person doesn't want to spend the big money on granite?.
Around here solid surface and granite can some times not be that far apart. A higher priced solid surface and a more comon type granite such as Uba Tuba can be pretty close in price. But normally with solid surface you top out money wise around $80 sq/ft, but granite you can keep going into the unreal with some really, really rare stuff hitting the $180 sq/ft range.


Quote:
Originally Posted by 747
I really like granite until i seen the sticker price shock associated with it. I don't want to spend that kind of money. But i think new counter would dress the kitchen up..
The big difference between solid surface which I believe you are referring to as Corian or resin based products is that resin based is man made, the pattern is man made and repeats. Granite is natural, they can't duplicate the beauty of granite with man mane materials yet. The veining and the subtle variations in granite are what makes it so desireable. Corian is plastic, it is generic. However if your tastes are not offended by the man made look of resin or quartz based products then by all means go for it. In Corian I usually tell customers to choose a matte finish. Corian will scratch and the darker or shinier the surface the more the scratches will show. With a matte surface at least you have a fighting chance of it looking good longer. If you want a dark and shiney surface then I would say to stay away from Corian and look at the next level of products that are quartz based.

Let me know if you have more questions or want more details.
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Old 09-05-2005, 10:50 PM   #10
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thanks for listing the scratch thing, i'd completely forgotten about it. i had a client ask me about it the other day for a remodel. THAT could've been a little embarrassing!
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Old 09-06-2005, 07:03 AM   #11
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Thanks Michael. I didn't realize solid surface was so expensive. Now i'm thinking look into granite tile. You did say once thats cheaper then slab granite. Thanks again.
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Old 09-06-2005, 08:53 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 747
Thanks Michael. I didn't realize solid surface was so expensive. Now i'm thinking look into granite tile. You did say once thats cheaper then slab granite. Thanks again.
Yes, it should be much cheaper. If you want an undermount sink and bullnosed edges expect to pay more for all the custom grinding and polishing involved. Think tiny grout lines, a dark that matches the granite tile not a lighter or darker grout which will make the grout lines stand out, and even epoxy grout for more of a bullet proof product that will resist staining.
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Old 09-06-2005, 09:23 PM   #13
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Michael i'm thinking black granite tile tight lines with like black grout lines. No undermounted sink, No bullnoze edges. Those sound like budget breakers. I say menards or lowes for a drop in sink with a decent looking faucet set up. What edges would you recomend that looks decent but not a budget breaker. Thanks Mike.
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Old 09-07-2005, 08:28 AM   #14
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Quote:
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What edges would you recomend that looks decent but not a budget breaker. Thanks Mike.
What comes to mind is two things. Either a granite edge or a edge made from some other material such as wood, with the granite field tile contained within the edging.

Going with wood, you are limited only by the router bits and the wood species you or your installer has access to.

Going with a granite boarder you are pretty much limited to a boxed edge, with the counter top extending the thickness of the granite tile over the edge and the granite edge tile butting up underneath it to for a sharp boxed edge. Keep in mind the corners will be deadly sharp to childrens heads and adults hips. You can jazz it up and reduce that a bit by clipping the corners.

I would recommend at least looking into the cost of bullnosing, it might not be as bad as you think money wise. This would allow you to also put a slight radius on the corners. It would be ideal if you could find some place where you can see a boxed edge and a bullnosed edge and a wood edge and judge for yourself what you like best.
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Old 09-20-2005, 03:19 AM   #15
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Michael.....Have decided to go with Dupont Zodiaq counter tops. Originally only wanted to spend 3,000 dollars. That is lunch money compared to how much it going to cost me now. I just couldn't resist after seeing those countertops. Also the in house designer recomended doing backsplash in ceramic tile in a contrasting color. It will have to wait until i get some down time in about a month in a half to have them start the project. But its definately a go. I put down a 7,500 dollar down payment. Remainder do when project is complete
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Old 09-20-2005, 07:05 PM   #16
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Quartz resin products are a good choice, as long as you like the look of them, you can't go wrong with that material. 4th hardest substance in the world you know? Sounds like you will have close to 10k tied up by the time you get all done, that's quite a bump from your original plans!

Around here I can get such a good deal on granite compared to quartz resin that I would end up with granite if I was spending that much money, but things can be different in different parts of the country.

I just found a great guy out here who will sell me slabs at $12 sq ft and do the templating, fabrication and installations for $40 sq foot complete including any edge details, any cut outs and radius. Quite a good find for me.
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Old 09-20-2005, 08:28 PM   #17
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Michael I Would Through A Party If It Was Only Going To Cost Ten. Its Going To Cost 15. Give Or Take. Don't Foret About The Contrasting Ceramic Tile Back Splash The In House Designer Recomended. When I Was Home They Came 2 Guys Made Templates And Its Off To Fabrication. The Color I Went With Is Like A Soft Mint Green. This Is The Best Way I Can Describe It But It Looked Awesome. The Inhouse Designer Also Scetched Out How The Back Splash Is Going To Look. Like Some Tiles Are Going To Be Hung In Like A Diamond Pattern Is What I Call It And Others Will Be Hung A Different Way. I'm Sure You Know What I Mean. You Probably Do A Lot Of High End Kitchens.
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Old 09-20-2005, 11:28 PM   #18
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Good for you man, nothing better than spending money on your surroundings.

Living well is the best reward! :Thumbs:

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