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countertops

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 
I'm probably going to become a bit of a pest in the next several weeks with kitchen questions.....I am planning a remodel, and feel like there are so many decisions to make!

So I'll start with a countertop question: what do you like? I am definitely NOT doing tile, and am leaning towards a solid surface like corian or its relatives, or granite. Granite is gorgeous, but it may not fit the budget, and I'm worried about cracking. I want something that looks like natural stone, and is durable and cost effective. Being nice and cold for pie dough is a plus, but I dont make enough pies to base any decision on that. I am willing to spend enough for quality, but I'd like to keep the project manageable.

thanks!
post #2 of 11
I have granite work tops. But then granite is plentiful (but not cheap!) in Scotland. :D
post #3 of 11
Muscat, years ago, on a strict budget for a remodel, I did a pretty nice looking formica (the newer lines have greatly improved in appearance) and then did one island in marble for pies, pasta, etc. It saved alot of money, worked for me in the kitchen. Just a thought.
post #4 of 11
What about stainless steel? It's not that expensive as you think. Check out some of your local sheet metal fabricators. Stainless has a lot going for it.
...."This whole reality thing is really not what I expected it would be"......
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...."This whole reality thing is really not what I expected it would be"......
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post #5 of 11
We have Silestone that was installed about a year ago, and love it.
It has the durability of granite, without the porosity.
I might be suffering from CDO.
It is just like OCD, except the letters are in alphabetical order.
Just as they should be...
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I might be suffering from CDO.
It is just like OCD, except the letters are in alphabetical order.
Just as they should be...
Reply
post #6 of 11
Thread Starter 
Thanks for your replies. I will have to look into silestone. Is quartz similar? Costly? I had assumed that stainless steel would be pricey, but I also think I want a warmer look that that. If all goes well, the appliances and sink will all be stainless or stainless looking, and I'd like a stone-like look for contrast and a earthy warmth.

I found a contractor! Now it is time to do a LOT of research..... :)

Thanks
post #7 of 11
The most recent episode of This Old House went to a factory where they used recycled glass in concrete for countertops. They had some stunning pieces. The one that caught my eye was dark with some amber and tan and some mirror chips sort of like mica in granite. It's not in their standard colors but they were showing some of their experiments.

http://www.icestone.biz/new/

And it's recycled product. Always good.


Phil
Palace of the Brine -- "I hear the droning in the shrine of the sea monkeys." Saltair
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Palace of the Brine -- "I hear the droning in the shrine of the sea monkeys." Saltair
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post #8 of 11
Muscat,

Silestone is essentially ground quartz, set in a polymer, with an agent they call "Micro-ban", a bacteria, mold and mildew fighter...

It is pricy, as compared to Corian, but we felt the benefits (looks, durability, warmth) outweighed the cost...

I'm not allowed to post attachments, so pictures are out unless you send me an e-mail that I can reply to.

We put in a new cabinets (Thomasville cherry wood in a Briarwood tone) under mount stainless sink, new free standing stainless glass top Kenmore stove/oven, stainless Kitchen-Aid refrigerator, under cabinet lighting, porcelain tile floor all new lighting fixtures, and a couple other things that made the kitchen a joy to just hang out in.

It's warm, cozy, and inviting, rather than just utilitarian...

The color we selected for our counter tops was the Kona Beige, with a bullnose edge.

The tops themselves are 3/4" thick, and the bull nose added another 3/4" around the outside edges for a total of 1.5" The back splash is three inches high, and 3/4" thick.

In our "U" shaped kitchen, there is one seam in the counter top, which is essentially unnoticeable. What I mean is, you really need to run a sensitive finger tip over the area to even discern the joint.

To say I'm pleased with the outcome could probably be considered an understatement...

Counter tops were about $3K
Cabinets another $8K
Plumbing and electrical components $2K

All labor done by myself. Kitchen cabinet labor bid was $2K by a "knob" that insulted both my wife and myself when he came over to do the verification measurement, and he was the only contractor that Home Depot was using. I elected to not take advantage of his services... :mad:

Never argue with an engineer's analysis regarding whether or not a particular cabinet will fit in a defined space... :p

Anyway, if you need further particulars, shoot me an email...

Think I need to go hang out there for a while, just to bask in the atmosphere... :)
I might be suffering from CDO.
It is just like OCD, except the letters are in alphabetical order.
Just as they should be...
Reply
I might be suffering from CDO.
It is just like OCD, except the letters are in alphabetical order.
Just as they should be...
Reply
post #9 of 11
Phatch, I saw that episode too and that's been in the back of my mind for my kitchen remodel when I move to the other house. Thanks for posting the site. I was intrigued by that also. Anyone know anything about this product?
post #10 of 11
I've seen concrete counters before. They look nice and wear well. All the stone products need yearly sealing.

The Corian/Avonite/Silestone and so on use a resin matrix and do not need sealing. Most use an acrylic matrix which can yellow. Corian does not, but it costs more.
Palace of the Brine -- "I hear the droning in the shrine of the sea monkeys." Saltair
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Palace of the Brine -- "I hear the droning in the shrine of the sea monkeys." Saltair
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post #11 of 11
I'd only give the warning that a friend going through this same process opted for what the fellow said was "just like Corian, but imported so it's much cheaper." Her second day in the kitchen, she slid a bowl of fruit from one spot to another, and left a gouge that looked like she had walked an angle-grinder over the surface.

We just got done with a major redo, and found that, after shopping, the total out-of-pocket for the granite we really liked was only a couple hundred dollars more than the Corian.
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