Any time you have a large cutout in a project (one-piece tub deck, hearth, sink cutout, etc.) you run the risk of it getting broken either in transit or when the substrate shifts over time. Evan Kruger of SolidTops, LLC in Easton, MD has come up with a low tech way to reinforce those delicate cutouts quickly. Best of all, this method works with all types of countertop materials.
“You take a laminate backer sheet, you know the kind they use to balance the backside of a laminate panel and that has no color,” Kruger says, “and glue it to the underside of the cutout with contact adhesive. Trim it off, and that’s it.”
Low Tech. Low Cost.
Kruger says that little strip of laminate backer will hold everything from a massive bathtub cutout to the most delicate and fragile of pieces.“This is such a simple, easy, cost-effective procedure,” he says. “It is applied with contact adhesive (spray gun with disposable tank) and it sticks to every smooth or semi-smooth dry surface. You cannot remove it without a lot of work, so it stays on the countertop permanently after installation. The front side can be supported with strapping tape, which is then removed after installation.”
According to Kruger, this method can even be used in place of rodding a sink cutout in stone. But don’t take Evan’s word for it, give it a try yourself. If you find it works you could save hundreds of hours over the course of a year in transportation prep and (heaven forbid) repairs.
Kruger is founder and president of SolidTops, LLC, an Eastern Shore, Maryland countertop company with more than 40 employees that fabricates and installs all types of countertop materials for both residential and commercial customers.
He has served as president of the International Surface Fabricators Association (ISFA), is a founding member of The Artisan Group and is an onsite inspector for the Marble Institute of America’s (MIA) fabricator certification program. He and fellow fabricator, Ken Trinder, founded EOS 3cm Solid Surface in 2004. In addition to running SolidTops with his wife, Annie, Evan travels extensively throughout China, always on the lookout for new countertop offerings to import to the U.S. market.
Want to know more? At Moraware, we make software for countertop fabricators. CounterGo is countertop drawing, layout, and estimating software. JobTracker is scheduling software that helps you eliminate the time you waste looking for job folders. RemnantSwap is a free place to buy and sell granite remnants with fabricators near you.