Substructure, reinforcements, supports, backsplashes and field seams are installed at the customer's jobsite. Before leaving your shop, carefully clean the fabricated materials and remove as much of the dust as possible. You want to minimize the dust and mess in the customer's house.
Transporting Pre-Fabricated Materials
- Do not try to load or unload the materials by yourself.
- Use gloves
- Plan for adequate manpower at the job site.
- Wrap all corners and surfaces with bubble pack, cardboard of foam.
- Secure the countertop materials in the vehicle or vehicle racks.
The top should be in a full vertical or fully supported horizontal position.
- Remember not to complete cutouts, and brace these partial cutouts for the drive to the customer jobsite.
- Allow the materials to reach room temperature before fabricating and installing. You should allow up to 2 hours if temperature differential is dramatic.
During this time the materials will expand or contract depending on the circumstances.
- Seam materials work best in a temperature range of 60 degrees F (15 C) to 90 degrees F (32 C).
- As previously mentioned in this manual, do not to apply solid substrates, especially around heat generating appliances in the installation. Wood and related wood products do not conduct of dissipate heat produced by heat generating appliances.
- Substrate materials to avoid MDF, Particle, OSB, ETC.
- If the cabinet has full dust covers, it is recommended to remove at least one half of the cover prior to top installation.
- You can use a full substrate with approved wood or wood product materials on furniture, table tops or related service counters, provided that no heat generation is present to accentuate the expansion and contraction properties of the top.
- Remember that the cabinets must be leveled and shimmed where necessary to 1.6mm tolerances prior to countertop final installation.
- Apply perimeter support strips to the cabinet surfaces. You will need to install center support stringer materials across the cabinets for support.
These support strips can be nailed with a finish nail or screwed into place provided the head is below the surface of the wood support that will come in contact with the HI-MACS® countertop deck.
- Place stringer/support strips 304mm apart.
- After the support system is installed and leveled, you will be ready to begin installation of the HI-MACS® top.
- Use 100% silicone adhesive to bond HI-MACS® surfacing materials to dissimilar materials such as wood, steel, aluminum, etc.
Do not use Liquid Nails or similar panel adhesives.
The purpose of the silicone is to allow the top to "breathe" and expand/contract as it needs to.
Silicone allows for this to take place. Panel adhesive restricts this motion resulting in failure to the top and voiding the warranty.
Key Reminders to a Successful Installation
- Keep seams 76-100mm from inside or outside corners.
- Leave 76-100mm between the seams and sink, countertop cutouts or seam above dishwasher.
- Use proper substrate materials. Avoid particle or MDF board.
- Support all overhangs over 152mm
- Create sharp, accurate seams and tight glue lines. Not too tight. You want to ensure the adhesive is not all squeezed out.
- Apply seam adhesive evenly and thoroughly so that all seaming surface areas are properly covered.
- Allow the seam adhesive to completely cure before finishing the sanding. Avoid the belt sander in this exercise.
- When finish sanding, apply even and equal pressure as well as controlled motion as the surface area of the top is covered on an x and y plane. Change sand papers as necessary to ensure an even finish.
Loading occurs more frequently as you use finer sand paper grits.
- Use 100% silicone adhesive.
The fabricators that pay close attention to details and quality throughout the fabrication process ensure their customer's satisfaction and minimize costly call backs while maximizing the relationship for future work and / or referrals from the customer.
Establish a procedure of good will after the job is completed by providing them with the following information and reassurances.
- Review the quality check list of your fabrication with the customer. They will get a chance to appreciate the craftsmanship and care you put into their top.
- Leave a warranty card for the customer to fill out and send in for registration.
- Review care, maintenance, and longevity procedures with the customer.
- Provide the customer with and review the "Care and Maintenance" kit. Review commonly used products they should incorporate into their own care and maintenance program.
- Review maintenance procedures and your recommendations for the installation and finish they have chosen.
- Describe the dangers of placing hot pots, pans, etc on the countertop. Also, review the negative effects of heat generating issues in sinks dishwashers and countertops.
- Leave color-matched materials in a trivet or cutting board or fixed color match materials below the sink on the cabinet wall and stress their importance.
- Contact the customer after a month or two to see if they have any questions or concerns.
- Provide your company sticker or label to the inside cabinet door or inside cabinet wall below the sink for future maintenance or top refinishing or questions relating to their top.
Sometimes this is helpful, especially after the original customer has moved.