Corian counter top build - tips?

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Forum topic by Charlie posted 04-12-2012 12:24 PM 2554 views 0 times favorited 7 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View Charlie's profile


1100 posts in 1707 days

04-12-2012 12:24 PM

Not really woodworking, but using a lot of woodworking skills. :)

This will be my first Corian counter top build. I understand the basics of how to build up the edges, reinforce corners, etc.

The countertop is only about 8 feet total. Going on a 3 ft base cabinet at the left, then there’s a farmhouse sink (apron front), then a dishwasher (2 ft). So essentially this would look like a 3 foot piece and a 2 ft piece with a 3 ft space in the middle and the 3 ft and 2 ft pieces are only joined by about a 4 inch piece (36 inches long) which would be running at the back of the sink cutout. It will have no backsplash glued to it.

My original though was to simply make the top all one piece with the sink cutout, but I’m now wondering if I won’t be opening myself up for a disaster trying to move it, flip it, whatever, during fabrication, installation. If I twist it I’d run the risk of breaking it at the 4 inch strip.

So for anyone experienced in this, would I be better off seaming in a piece at the back of the sink or should I keep the top deck all one piece and just be careful and bridge that opening (sink cutout) whenever I have to move it?

Also looking for any tips in making the countertop itself. I’m planning to add thickness to the front edge using 2 pieces about an inch wide, stacked. So the pieces are horizontal across the front. I’ve seen it with the 2 pieces glued together and then glued to the top deck vertical, but I think the horizontal method would be easier for me.

Edge cleanup with router. I know I need to radius any inside corners (back of the sink cutout). Edge treatment for the front is just easing the edge. Like a 1/8 round over. I’ll make a “ladder” frame for support under the counter top. That will be 1” thick. Edge thickness will be built to 1-1/2”.

I’ve never done this before so any tips are appreciated. I only have enough material to make 1 counter top. :)

7 replies so far

View ChrisK's profile


1794 posts in 2502 days

#1 posted 04-12-2012 12:52 PM

I would Google the various themes of your build and try and build a plan from what you find. I know that you can seam the Corian with a colored epoxy and sand the seam so that it is not visible. As I have gotten older I find I try and make my projects modular so I can move the more easily. I think you will find that the seaming process while not hard will take a few practice runs.

-- Chris K

View FreshSawDust's profile


68 posts in 1750 days

#2 posted 04-12-2012 01:33 PM

I just finished this one. Things I learned: You can never have too many mixing tips because that glue dries crazy fast. Do as much of the project off site as possible, that dust is nasty stuff. A cyclone type pre-filter for a shop vac hooked to your random orbit sander is worth it. The stuff is strong (and heavy) but for the sink I would either cut it out after it is in place or prepare to piece it in. Good luck!

-- TJ - Perryville, Missouri

View Bill White's profile

Bill White

4407 posts in 3381 days

#3 posted 04-12-2012 01:35 PM

Makin’ it in one piece is an invitation for the awshi* bird to land on your shoulder.
As Chris said, practice your seams and joints before doing final fab.


View Charlie's profile


1100 posts in 1707 days

#4 posted 04-12-2012 01:39 PM

Yeah, I’ve been searching for build advice and tips. There’s precious little information on how to actually fabricate the top. I have enough material that I could practice seaming and building up the edge, but the color matched adhesive is $44 a cartridge, the gun is $75, and you need a new applicator tip for each session. The top is so small, that 1 adhesive cartridge is about double what I need, but I may end up buying an extra one just for the practice session. I’m just not sure what the “open” time is on one of those cartridges. If you need to use it once you open it, then I’ll definitely need an extra. If I can clean it and cap it and hold it for a day or so, that would be ideal.

I also need a bucket of spring clamps :)

A local guy just told me to build it and bridge it across the front any time it’s going to be lifted off the build table. And if it’s being moved, bridge the front, lift it by the bridge, and then bridge it again toward the back of the sink cutout. He says that should keep it stable enough to move easily. “Set the back edge on the cabinets, Slide it back to the first bridge, remove that first bridge, slide it back to the front bridge, and then slide it back into position.”

View dhazelton's profile


2284 posts in 1717 days

#5 posted 04-12-2012 02:51 PM

Why not lay down the whole piece and make the sink cutout afterward? 4 inches is enough space to get a jigsaw and router or sander into. You’d have an expensive cutout left over, but maybe you could use it elsewhere in the kitchen later, like little shelves or something.

View bruc101's profile


1075 posts in 2962 days

#6 posted 04-12-2012 03:57 PM

I’m a certified solid surface fabricator and have been since Corian was introduced and have two tops going in my shop right now.
PM me your phone number and I’ll call you and walk you thorough it.

-- Bruce Free Plans

View Charlie's profile


1100 posts in 1707 days

#7 posted 04-12-2012 05:10 PM

A most generous offer and I thank you. PM sent. The actual build is a ways out, but all help is appreciated. I like to plan ahead. :)

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