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Old 09-23-2013, 10:05 PM   #1
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Granite help please...


I'm hoping this is the right spot to inquire about granite countertops.

We are considering getting the kitchen counters re-done with granite, and one of the counters has an unsupported overhang of about 13" - 14" or so. The overhanging part is curved.

Is there an expert out there who can tell me if it is OK to have granite without any support in this fashion, or is that a no-no? Thanks.

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Old 09-23-2013, 10:25 PM   #2
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Granite help please...


Keith, back when I was building they recommended having enough support to support a human. Some of the granite will have soft spots in it and can break fairly easy. Sorry I couldn't be of more help.

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Old 09-23-2013, 10:34 PM   #3
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Right Jim, that's the sort of thing I was concerned about.

Being a natural stone, granite would be subject to having fissures which might not be easy to detect. I need to know what sort of questions to ask when the fellow comes to see the job.

Well, you know me, I like to do my homework first so I know what I need to find out.
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Old 09-25-2013, 07:17 AM   #4
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IF only good granite were used for c-tops, your worry quotient would be greatly reduced,,, however, imo, most of today's stuff is junk incl my bride's ( nagzilla ) choices just like buying a car, appearance is the major reason sales are made
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Old 09-25-2013, 12:17 PM   #5
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Yes, I think you're right.

I'm continuing my investigation, and I find that there are several ways these tops are done.

Apparently the best is the 1 1/4" thick granite, next is the 3/4" thick product and finally, they are now leaving your original counter in place and adding a 1/4" thick slab on top. So at least there are choices.

Then the colour has a major effect on price, as does the edging treatment you want. Fancier being more costly. The overall pricing is all over the map. I have seen a report of an installed unit for $30 a square foot, and from there the sky seems to be the limit. Over $100 being quite common.

Still have a long way to go before I know what to look for specifically. Who knew it was so complicated?
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Old 09-25-2013, 12:28 PM   #6
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nagzilla pick'd out the farthest supplier Lord knows she dragg'd me to every fab shop & display w/i 40m radius of atl didn't bother her a whit that gas was $4.459gal either

w/my 15yrs granite experience ( carving, cutting, polishing, fabricating ), i'd never pick 1/4" unless it was hanging on the wall,,, typically here & hilton head, 1' is the thickness of choice

now go fuel up the car & have fun !
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Old 09-25-2013, 01:09 PM   #7
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FWIW, I had an area where I wanted an approx 14" overhang, but I didn't want corbels or other visible supports.

I had a local fab shop cut for me supports out of 1/2 steel stock, beveled at the end.

Bolted them to counter framing...are invisible under the granite.

I've also seen companies selling them on the net.
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Old 09-25-2013, 02:25 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by itsreallyconc View Post


w/my 15yrs granite experience ( carving, cutting, polishing, fabricating ), i'd never pick 1/4" unless it was hanging on the wall,,, typically here & hilton head, 1' is the thickness of choice

I wouldn't consider the 1/4" either. Seems to me that would be a recipe for disaster.

I will check on the thickness of what the local supplier has to make sure it is thick enough.
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Old 09-25-2013, 02:28 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RoyalAcresRod View Post
FWIW, I had an area where I wanted an approx 14" overhang, but I didn't want corbels or other visible supports.

I had a local fab shop cut for me supports out of 1/2 steel stock, beveled at the end.

Bolted them to counter framing...are invisible under the granite.
Not a bad idea. I think 1/2" aluminum would work as well...probably be 10 times the price of steel though.

How wide were your pieces of steel?
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Old 09-25-2013, 02:48 PM   #10
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The company that installed my granite countertops used steel plates underneath my overhang, as well. I think there are three plates, space roughly two feet apart. The plates take the force of the cantilever surface. The stone sits on the plates.

I have not tested with a human, but it sure seems solid.
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Old 09-25-2013, 05:06 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cocobolo
Not a bad idea. I think 1/2" aluminum would work as well...probably be 10 times the price of steel though.

How wide were your pieces of steel?
The steel bars are 2.5" wide. Spaced about 12-16 inches apart
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Old 09-25-2013, 05:11 PM   #12
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http://www.countertopbracket.com/

Where I got the idea from
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Old 09-25-2013, 07:10 PM   #13
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I take it from your post that you are planning to hire the job out. This is probably a good idea. I know from my own experience that I was very happy to have a professional granite installer put in my granite countertops, they are heavy, awkward, and the penalty for measuring incorrectly is very steep.

Any reputable, competent granite fabricator will be happy to discuss allowable overhang, and means of supporting the overhang. If they are unable or unwilling to discuss how they would support the overhang, that would be a non-starter for me. Since the fabricator will be installing and warrantying the job, they should offer you options for support, and you can select the one you feel most comfortable with.

When we had our granite installed, we went to the local stone supply yard (they supply stone for dozens of fabricators) and selected the specific slab we wanted. I recommend you do the same. As a side note, the term "granite" is very loosely defined in the stone profession. To a geologist, granite is a very specific type of rock made of specific minerals in relatively specific proportions. To a stone shop, "granite" may be any stone that they can label "granite", whether that stone is quartz, gabbro, schist, gneiss, monzanite etc. Most people can't tell the difference, but since everyone wants "granite", the stone shops conveniently label most of their stone "granite". You really should discuss in depth with your fabricator what type of stone you really want, and do a little research first on what granite really is. If the fabricator tries to tell you that all the stone they install is granite, that would be a good time to get suspicious. Nothing necessarily wrong with alternative stone, but different stones have radically different properties related to strength, stain resistance, hardness, durability, density etc., each of which could affect your project.
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Old 09-25-2013, 07:47 PM   #14
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Daniel: A most excellent post, for which I sincerely thank you.

Yes, the job will be contracted out.

I am fortunate in the fact that I am well acquainted with a geologist - have been for many years - and he has been more than willing to share his knowledge of any questions that I have had.

Rod (above) has provided me with a good solution for the overhang problem, so now it remains to take a visit to the stone yard for a first hand look. Having just moved up to Kamloops I am unfamiliar with where they are here, although I did visit two decent stone yards in my former neck of the woods in Nanaimo.

I should have paid more attention to these installs during my 45 or so years in the contracting business!

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