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Thread: Kitchen temporary re-do

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Westphalia, Michigan

    Kitchen temporary re-do

    I have been putting off a total kitchen remodel until the kids were older. Now things have changed and because we might not live in the house much longer we are thinking about just fixing up the doors and drawers and painting everything to make it presentable.

    So I have a few problems: the counter-top is trashed and an inch to low. So aside from it being nailed in underneath the linoleum making it a pain to remove, it must be replaced with something. So the plan is to tear it out and put some raiser blocks to get the counter top high enough so one can put in a dishwasher. The whole kitchen is built from plywood. ....I really want to just wade in with a sledge hammer and start over, but I have to keep the peace at home.

    My original plan was to do a total remodel but since we might move...........I've been saving q-sawn white oak, and have loads of cherry and other really nice wood. .sigh..........I guess we will just do a temporary fix up until we know where we might be in a few years.

    We have been debating getting a generic counter-top, tiling a counter-top, doing a faux granite or epoxy finish, and now I am wondering about a wooden counter-top. A wood counter-top would be the cheapest because I already have a wide choice of lumber.

    So I am off to investigate the issues of doing a wooden counter-top and thought "maybe the Family knows" ..........I expect there are issues with wood movement, finishes, etc. where some wise family members might have insight. I might tile a section around the stove so burn marks may not happen? I worry about water issues around the sink.
    I'm a certifiable tree hugger. (it's a poor mans way of determining DBH before cutting the tree down)

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Cape Cod, Ma.
    Hi Paul,
    A wooden countertop is a great idea! I've made dozens of them over the years with many species of wood.
    With regards to movement, its no big deal. Elongate the screw holes in your cabinets so the top can move and use silicone which will seal off any spills getting into the cabinets.
    There is a wide choice of finishes available depending on the look and how the counter will be used (ie food prep directly on the surface which I would not recommend) Waterlox, Lacquer, Epoxy, Mineral oil and beeswax etc. Make sure you seal the underside with at least 2 coats then the top with several and you should be good to go.
    Also, use a glue that doesn't have any "creep" Ive seen a lot of folks using products like tb3, tb3 moves and you don't want a glue joint moving. tb1 or epoxy is what you want to use.
    Any questions you have feel free to pm me or post them here happy to help
    He who laughs last, thinks slowest

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    ABQ NM
    My parents had maple counter tops for a number of years when I was growing up. They were finished with mineral oil. They held up well, although they eventually had some issues with water stains around the sink area, and a few scorched spots from hot pans.

    And I'll add plastic resin glue (like DAP Weldwood) to Rich's "no-creep" glue suggestions. I've used it on a lot of cutting boards and had no creep whatsoever.
    When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro. - Hunter S. Thompson
    When the weird get going, they start their own forum. - Vaughn McMillan

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Westphalia, Michigan
    Well after looking into all options we eventually went with a cheap laminate. I will have to maybe wait until we move or decide to stay before doing a thorough re-do. Sometimes compromise is a hard thing to swallow. I am looking on the bright side and realize that my sons are learning how to fix up things. There has been some interest among them with purchasing homes to flip. (why?) They at least have learned how to use the dovetail jig and drawer making skills.

    All is not a loss. I figured out that my wife likes a certain color countertop and I happen to know that the spalted beech I have been saving is similar to her tastes. A spalted beech countertop might be in the works for the future.

    As to finishes, I wonder how well high traffic Varathane might work. I have had really good results with this on floors. I will have to test this with a hot pan and see what happens.
    I'm a certifiable tree hugger. (it's a poor mans way of determining DBH before cutting the tree down)

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