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Concrete Countertops

 
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Old 04-04-2007, 09:49 PM   #1
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Concrete Countertops


We will be installing our second kitchen with cast in place concrete counters.
I am just looking for feed back, regarding concrete as a good food surface.
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Old 04-06-2007, 04:59 PM   #2
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Re: Concrete Countertops


From what I've found out it is very similar to other materials. Vulnerabilities: "Unsealed concrete is especially susceptible to the many acidic liquuids likely to be in use around a kitchen like wine, lemon juice and balsamic vinegar."

Of course you'd seal the countertops.

"They need a professionally applied epoxy sealer or thorough routine maintenance with penetrating sealers and wax. Penetrating sealers help resist stains, but they don't prevent them. And while epoxy sealers are fairly stainproof, there are problems: They scratch, you can't set hot pots on them, and they put a distance between the surface and you that reads "plastic coating."

What you've just read is straight out of Fu-Tung Cheng's book "Concrete Countertops". I got his books at amazon.com.


I'm also researching concrete countertops and hoping to sell a client on them. Links:

Well I had a whole pile of links to send you but this is my first post so it's not allowed yet. This site is comprehensive: Just add the http stuff to the beginning of the string.
concretecountertops.org/modules/smartsection/item.php?itemid=30


Best to you, Artgineer

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Old 04-23-2007, 05:39 PM   #3
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Re: Concrete Countertops


did you see the episode of This Old House, the Austin project, where they installed concrete countertops made in NYC. They mix them to order mixing in recycled glass material-lots of options. I'm considering this for an upcoming project, but don't recall the company's name. Anyone??
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Old 04-23-2007, 09:00 PM   #4
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Re: Concrete Countertops


So basicly concrete as food service sucks and just looks cool. I am thinking that if someone had not written a book on the subject, concrete would be on the garage floor only....Someone really needs to address that putting pots on the surface and the contamination thing. Any better ideas, I have done epoxy as mentioned, that is cool but not utilitarian enough. Wax just sucked, metal rails cast in place, leave the surface uneven.....
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Old 05-09-2007, 02:12 AM   #5
 
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Re: Concrete Countertops


Concrete isn't perfect but when done right staining isn't a problem if the newer sealers are used and applied correctly.
The old systems were not specific to C-tops, just floor or tile products as an attempt to seal. Face it wax is no protection and who wants to reseal tops every month.

Some other products have been updated specific to C-tops. The two that are most common are two step topical epoxy based and penatrating densifier/sealing lithium silicate products.

I haven't tried the epoxy don't care for the plastic look. I have been told holds up great to abrasion, heat and all stains. Many swear this is the product to use.

I have just tried lithium silicate system. Being it is a reactive system it takes time to protect. I have found no abrasion problems. Left red wine overnight and it wiped right off. Still tweeking application due to slight problems with straight vinegar after 1-2 hours on surface. Doesn't etch just a very slight color change. But that is after a couple weeks does seem to improve with time. Neither are cheap..about $1.75 to $3.00 sq/ft.



When concrete is done right it is not a high matainance product. I have looked at granite tops, what about the grain in a granite top? My neighbor just asked me how to seal his new bathroom granite top, it is staining.

Lets face it for the best cost effective, clean top....formica!

The This Old house tops " IceStone"

The "book" does make it look much eaiser than it is!
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Old 05-09-2007, 11:32 AM   #6
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Re: Concrete Countertops


We used to use a product called TRAZ, it was the best sealer we found for countertops, unfortunately it was outlawed in Calfornia a few years back so it is no longer available, since then we have tried many other products and found them to be not as good as TRAZ and are slowly getting out of doing countertops now. TRAZ was available at United Rentals in the US (they are the dealer) I don't know if United Rentals in Canada can get you the product or not. The best part about doing a concrete countertop is your limitations of design are only limited by your imagination. You can make it plain jane or the skys the limit. There is also a number of companies that now sell styrofoam moldings to give you a variety of nosings for the front edge instead of having to make your own.

Chris

The Former Canadian - How's the weather up there?

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