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Old 10-07-2004, 04:12 PM   #1
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Corian Counter Tops

My wife and I use our 2001 19' Bambi frequently and we cook a lot. We have installed a Stainless Steel backsplash over the stove and have replaced the carpet with Pergo flooring and now want to replace the formica with a solid surface product like Corian or LG Hi MACS. Has anyone done this?

We would like to raise the counter surface,or lower the stove top, so that when the stove is closed (with a piece of Corian attached to the top surface) the counter would be a smooth surface from the wall to the sink.

We have seen this done in the large motorhomes we have looked at and think that it would make our small kitchen more user friendly.

You really wouldn't believe the meals we (mostly she) have been able to prepare. I am keeping a log book and hope to share the meal plans with the forum when I get the time to properly reference the recipes.

At any rate if anyone else has done this to their AS I would appreciate any and all advice.

Thanks in advance.
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Old 10-07-2004, 04:50 PM   #2
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I think it is a really neat idea and have though of it myself as well. I haven't done this, but I know it can be done.

Just remember a few things. The axle rating (single) is about 4500. The more you add to it, the less cargo weight you'll be able to carry (clothes, water, LP gas, etc).

The 19' Bambi only has 820lbs of cargo capacity. Take 25 gallons of water, 60lbs of propane and you now have only 545lbs of capacity before you overshoot the axles. Pots, pans, provisions will also no doubt weigh you down as well. The standard tires can only handle 2300 or 2600lbs each. Given the fact that you have already added the floor, I'd take a look at what you are tipping the scales at fully loaded before I added the additional weight of corian to the countertop(s). Again, not because I don't think it wouldn't look cool or can't be done, just erring on the safe side. If you had a double axle, I'd be less concerned.
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Old 10-07-2004, 04:51 PM   #3
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Corian Counter Tops

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rod Pease
My wife and I use our 2001 19' Bambi ......would like to raise the counter surface,or lower the stove top, so that when the stove is closed (with a piece of Corian attached to the top surface) the counter would be a smooth surface from the wall to the sink...
Don't know how it would work in a Bambi, but look at RoadKingMoe's (and a couple others) kitchen(s)......

http://www.airstreamphotos.com/photo...ll/si/Kitchen1

I did something simlar with Granite in the 345 MoHo, the overall layout in the 345 is very similar to RoadKingMoe's 34'er.
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Old 10-07-2004, 06:36 PM   #4
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One of the things to remember is that the corian type product comes in sheets as thin a 1/4 inch. This could go over (has to) a plywood base. If you do the math right I bet the total increase in weight would be minimal.

Depending on what is below the stove, dropping it further into the counter for a smooth cover would likely be the easier way to go. Raising the counter will add more material, and more weight.
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Old 10-07-2004, 08:40 PM   #5
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Thenewkid64 is right, the amount of weight added will be less than about 40-45 pounds. I've redone the countertops, except for the bath vanity, in my Excella 25 by replacing the 3/4" plywood/plastic laminate with 1/2" thick corian. To raise the corian up to the new height just epoxy strips of plywood to the bottom of the corian where it is supported on the cabinet base below. I epoxied 1/4" plywood to the bottom because I wanted to match the original height of the 3/4" OEM countertop. To raise it more, use thicker strips.

Do not use solid wood for strips unless they are no more than 12" long and spaced at least 1/8" from the next piece in line! Solid wood like oak will shrink and swell as moisture content varies with climate changes. Long pieces of solid wood can swell and stretch and the corian is not strong in tension so this growth in length will likely cause the corian to crack.

Corian is the best of the solid surfaces for this application because it is denser and stronger than the polyester resin based solid surfacing materials. The 1/2" thick corian is strong enough to resist the jarring and racking typical of the cabinets while traveling down the highway.

At the edges epoxy a strip of corian to the bottom of the outside edge to make a decorative thicker edge. Then use a router and a good carbide bit to give the edge a decorative treatment. I used a 5/32" radius Roman Ogee bit and am delighted with how it turned out.

For my corian, I found an auction on Ebay where a guy was selling 5 corian countertops. I was the only bidder and I picked up all 5 for $125. Add the price of the router bit and several packets of white epoxy and the whole price came to about $200. I was able to put corian tops on the night stands either side of the queen bed, on the kitchen countertop, and swing up shelf, on the tv cabinet beside the fridge, on the fold down computer table to the right of the entry door as you come in and on the new battery box where the OEM sofa used to be. With all that corian, I've maybe added a total of 65 more pounds to the weight of the trailer because of the corian instead of what was there before. I've replaced the sofa with a pair of Ekornes chairs.
The corian gives the space a bright and airy feel.
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Old 11-16-2004, 12:06 PM   #6
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Corian Counter top now in my Bambi

We found a counter top man who would install just what we wanted, and it is now in place. I will share photos as soon as I can figure out how to post them.
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Old 11-16-2004, 12:26 PM   #7
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Photos uploaded

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Originally Posted by Rod Pease
We found a counter top man who would install just what we wanted, and it is now in place. I will share photos as soon as I can figure out how to post them.
I uploaded three pictures, but I am unsure where they went.
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Old 11-16-2004, 01:00 PM   #8
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Found the photos

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rod Pease
I uploaded three pictures, but I am unsure where they went.
Click on User name and go to this members photo gallery.
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Old 11-16-2004, 03:21 PM   #9
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Rod,

Your counter top man did a very nice job. Now what are you going to do about the fabric on the dinette? We have the same fabric on ours and it's already starting to wear out in some place and just hideous in outhers. I can't believe "autumn oak" could look so bad.

Mark
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Old 11-16-2004, 03:32 PM   #10
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Very nice countertop! That really looks slick!

I have to ask, do the tools stay on the magnetic strip when travelling?
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Old 11-16-2004, 03:43 PM   #11
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Rod,

Your counter top man did a very nice job. Now what are you going to do about the fabric on the dinette? We have the same fabric on ours and it's already starting to wear out in some place and just hideous in outhers. I can't believe "autumn oak" could look so bad.

Mark
We will re-upholster,probably after vacation next year.
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Old 11-16-2004, 03:46 PM   #12
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Quote:
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Very nice countertop! That really looks slick!

I have to ask, do the tools stay on the magnetic strip when travelling?
Yes. Only the small paring knife (not in the picture) has ever fallen off. We carry that one in a drawer for that very reason.
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Old 11-16-2004, 07:48 PM   #13
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The counter top turned out beautiful and the lowering of the stove turned out great. We plan to purchase a 30' Safari Bunkhouse and I was thinking about replacing the counter and dinette with corian, too. I will probably go with corian to match the formica as close as posible to preserve the look of the interior design, just upgrade it a little because we like the corian better than the formica. There is so little in the kitchen it shouldn't be all that expensive. And maybe we can get a close out like Bob Thompson did.
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Old 11-17-2004, 08:17 AM   #14
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Our Safari came with an option package that includes Corian countertops, along with other items like heat pump, spare tire, black water flush, and fantastic fan. Corian is okay, but really does not affect our use of the trailer in any meaningful way. The other package items do have value. I would not recommend extra effort just to have Corian counters in a trailer. Everyone's priorities will differ though...
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