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Thread: hard surface router top

  1. #1
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    hard surface router top

    I recently bought the granite top for the kitchen island (pictures later) and I was able to negotiate a piece of 24x36x1" Silestone which is a quartz surface.

    I wanted to use it as a router table top but of course I would need to cut holes in it and hopefully a miter guide slot. Its really good stuff and is pretty flat and smooth and would seem to be perfect as router table top.

    Has anybody had any experience cutting holes in this type of material?

    I was thinking of laying out the holes and then having the shop cut them but if I can spare myself the expense so much the better.

    My main issue is the thickness that while it is great being 1" thick, I would have to rout out a recess for the router. That would seem like a lot of work.

    Thoughts, suggestions, advise?

  2. #2
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    How do the shops cut the holes for sinks, faucets and stuff?
    You might want to wander by one of those and inquire.
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  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Frank Fusco View Post
    How do the shops cut the holes for sinks, faucets and stuff?
    You might want to wander by one of those and inquire.
    I am figuring with diamond tipped tools and lost of water. I am not sure how easy it is to rout though.

  4. #4
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    I just did a Google on "machining Silestone" and got a training manual PDF file. Looks like stone cutting tools and water are used.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jack Feldmann View Post
    I just did a Google on "machining Silestone" and got a training manual PDF file. Looks like stone cutting tools and water are used.
    I have that manual. Keeps looking like its a hassle.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Julio Navarro View Post
    I have that manual. Keeps looking like its a hassle.
    Silestone is always marketed as tougher that granite. I don't think it is homeowner/woodworker friendly. Not like Corian! Seems like it would be hard to make a router table out of it.

    How about a nice roll around kitchen table? That way you wouldn't have to futz with the holes and miter slot.

  7. #7
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    Or maybe you could mark what the cutouts you want on it and get the fabricator to mill it up for you?
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  8. #8
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    I'll ask Luke tuesday if it ain't to late by then. He's our tile guy and also our granite top guy. I used to work for his brother for years. I also know there whole family, and been to his shop helping him on a few tops.
    Not sure if you have ever heard of "Kirklands" but he does all the tile and carpet work in most of the stores in the US. So i guess what i'm trying to say is if it can be done fairly cheap he will know, and let me know.

  9. #9
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    I don't know but it sure sounds like a lot of money and a lot of work to get what you want
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  10. #10
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    Granite has recently become a new material for certain pieces of power equipment. The slabs they are using for say a table saw top are machined dead flat (or supposed to be). They have been used by machinists for years because it is such a stable surface and once milled they stay flat.
    This is to compete against cast iron tops. Which unless allowed to season after being cast but before being milled can distort due to internal stress being released. Many manufacturers of machinery with cast iron surfaces dont let the iron go through this seasoning. Thus a lot of tables out there with little depressions and slight warpage.....
    Silestone is a man made product comprised of crushed stone and resins. I don't believe it is going to give you the benefits of a granite top that is machinist grade. You would probably do better just getting a good cast iron top or making a router table top with phenolic plywood reinforced with steal stiffeners and use a power feeder. By the time you have your silestone machined to accept the router and the insert you are going to have a fairly large area removed from the top that my cause the top to fracture or just not give you the desired quality you are trying to achieve. Also, if the silestone does fracture you are out a top and all that you invested.....

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