How did they fasten old counter tops? - Router Forums
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post #1 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-14-2015, 07:43 PM Thread Starter
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Default How did they fasten old counter tops?

Renovating the kitchen of a 1972 stick built house and am using the existing cabinets but replacing the counter tops. Assumed they screwed the counter top from underneath but did not see any screws or wood to screw to. The countertop is laminate that is glued on top of plywood. Tell me that they did not set the base cabinets then nail the plywood to the cabinets then finish by gluing the the laminate to the plywood top.

The reason I fear that is the overheads are nailed to the walls.

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post #2 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-14-2015, 07:46 PM
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Originally Posted by Marco View Post
Renovating the kitchen of a 1972 stick built house and am using the existing cabinets but replacing the counter tops. Assumed they screwed the counter top from underneath but did not see any screws or wood to screw to. The countertop is laminate that is glued on top of plywood. Tell me that they did not set the base cabinets then nail the plywood to the cabinets then finish by gluing the the laminate to the plywood top.

The reason I fear that is the overheads are nailed to the walls.
be afraid... very afraid...

This would have been the week that I'd have finished chewing thru the restraints...
If only new layers hadn't been added....

Stick....
Forget the primal scream, just ROAR!!!
"SNORK Mountain Congressional Library and Taxidermy”
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post #3 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-14-2015, 08:07 PM
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...more than likely...or glued it on...

You might try getting underneath in the cabinet with a Fein tool and a metal blade to slice the screws/nails.

If you're getting rid of the ply, cut it up from above with a saw leaving the pieces suspect of being screwed in from above and then deal with the smaller pieces after removing the bulk of the top and ply...might be easier than all that crawling underneath...anything to save the cabinet frames. Tools to keep handy...pry bar, sledge, hacksaw blade, Guinness on tap...Don't ask...

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post #4 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-14-2015, 08:10 PM
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post #5 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-14-2015, 08:14 PM
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...more than likely...or glued it on...

You might try getting underneath in the cabinet with a Fein tool and a metal blade to slice the screws/nails.

If you're getting rid of the ply, cut it up from above with a saw leaving the pieces suspect of being screwed in from above and then deal with the smaller pieces after removing the bulk of the top and ply...might be easier than all that crawling underneath...anything to save the cabinet frames. Tools to keep handy...pry bar, sledge, hacksaw blade, Guinness on tap...Don't ask...
and lift w/ a jack as you cut along...
the multimaster will cut through any glue too...
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This would have been the week that I'd have finished chewing thru the restraints...
If only new layers hadn't been added....

Stick....
Forget the primal scream, just ROAR!!!
"SNORK Mountain Congressional Library and Taxidermy”
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post #6 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-14-2015, 08:53 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the replies. You gave me some great tips, video's etc. to use toward Plan B

I wish I could say that I am not surprised anymore by the things I have run into renovating this house.

Galatians 5:13
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post #7 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-14-2015, 11:19 PM
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Better nails than screws, huh? Let's hope anyway.

Uh-OH. I just thumbed through the Cabinetmaking and Millwork (circa 1967) book my dad used in college to teach a course. It shows a web frame under the counter top - basically a rectangle made of 1x material to support the top.

Quoting..."Assemble the top piece and it's frame and nail it on. ...Apply plastic laminate to the top and edges." GULP!

Hope this helps.
Mike

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post #8 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-15-2015, 12:54 AM
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All of the above. I used to just put my mind in neutral, slip the goggles on, and start breaking/prying/peeling the old laminate off. I've heard that warming it helps but never tried that.
The old contact glue should be so brittle that it lets go fairly easily... (as others often say, 'your mileage may vary').
Just pray that the plywood was screwed or nailed and not glued.
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post #9 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-15-2015, 06:44 AM
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Default Sawzall, chisel, and a hammer

Take off all the doors and remove the drawers. Take out the kitchen sink, dishwasher, and stove or cooktop. They all create places to get a start.

You have to start with a sharp wood chisel, as thin as you can get. The idea is to make some space to get a sawzall blade between the top of the cabinet and the c-top at the front edge of the cabinets. As carefully as possible, cut any fasteners you can.

Lift and wedge the chisel between the cabinets and the ctops and repeat. Once you get a start, you just have to rinse and repeat.

When you have the front reasonably loose, you have to raise the front of the ctop up enough to get a fulcrum point installed to then pry down to get the back edge of the ctop to come up a little. Then back to the sawzall. Being small helps here. Hold the blade as parallel to the back of the cabinets as possible to keep from jamming the blade and breaking it. Cut the fasteners.

Lastly, if you can't find or get to the fasteners in the back, you'll need to wedge a spacer in between the cabinets and ctop and cut as much as possible with a skilsaw.

It's a fun job
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post #10 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-15-2015, 07:02 AM
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When I bought this old house, I tore out all the interior walls, sheet rock and started over. I found that "they" had no plan for the studs. "they" each time they got to a window or a door, "they "started the lay out all over. Makes siding a problem. And by sticking a stud in where ever they needed one, each sheet of rock had to be cut to fit. I ripped out the old cabinets and replaced them. The counter tops were screwed from the top down and then laminated. "You didn't expect this to be easy did you"?

When the enemy is in range, so are you.
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