Modernizing an old, deep white porcelain double sink in good shap

dreamojeanMarch 28, 2013

Any suggestions for whether and how to keep an old-line, heavy, white porcelain double sink, in great shape, that's one of those with a metal cover that slides across from one side to the other, and is particularly deep on the left side and less deep but still very adequate on the other, and is really heavy? It's resting on an older metal under-sink cabinet and I don't know if it's too heavy to rest on wooden cabinets or if we should keep the sink/metal cabinet unit and modernize around it - or just let the sink go. I am adding a kitchen back to a brownstone and want stainless steel appliances, probably cream or white cabinets and a modern decor that respects the traditional brownstone details and has a bit of a "country kitchen" aspect to it - in other words, eclectic, and on a budget. I love the old huge white sink but am not seeing how it will fit into this modern kitchen. One person suggested getting a higher end stainless steel faucet to modernize the sink. Any other suggestions? I'd love to hear from others who have figured out how to keep an antique and still end up with a nice design, or who have let the old sink go to make the design work better. Thoughts?

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I think you could certainly rest this on a quality wooden base. There are several vintage looking appliances available. Keeping it is very doable. I have been searching for a sink like this! Does yours have double drainboards? Post a picture, please. If you do take it out, know that it has some resale value that could help your budget. Keeping it could also help your budget. I would keep it if I could make it work with the function I wanted.

    Bookmark   March 29, 2013 at 8:36AM
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Thanks to someone here I discovered this site. There are several articles there about the types of sink I believe you may be describing.

I got several books from my local library on things like bungalow kitchens and kitchens from the magazine Country Living. I found some helpful photos.

Do a search on for photos of vintage sinks.

Despite the fact that no one seems to use overmount sinks any more, we searched high and low to find a replacement for our current 1970s or 1980s version white Kohler sink with a large bowl, small disposal bowl and drainboard. We are having our new countertops designed to use it.

    Bookmark   March 29, 2013 at 9:20AM
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Suzi AKA DesertDance Zone 9b

Wow! That looks exactly like one we are removing and replacing for our kitchen remodel, except ours is off-white! We intend to keep it and install it in my potting bench outside under a deck.

Our sink has stainless faucets, but the above resemble the faucets in all the bathrooms.

I have always had white porcelain, and if the one in our current remodel was white, I'd keep it too! Not liking that beigy off white color at all!


    Bookmark   March 29, 2013 at 10:07AM
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The sink sounds great for an eclectic kitchen. You can definitely use a wooden cabinet, if it is properly reinforced and modified to accept the sink. Or, just use the metal cabinets you already have. If they aren't looking good, take them to an auto body shop or a powder coating shop for a new coat of paint. Just find one that is already familiar with painting cabinets, furniture and other odd things.

    Bookmark   March 29, 2013 at 2:19PM
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Here is the sink in question

    Bookmark   March 30, 2013 at 5:14PM
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The key to using a sink like that is to take everything else sleek and modern and away from it's farmhouse vibe. A Kohler Karbon faucet and shiny glossy red cabinets maybe? Glossy wenge? Concrete floors?

    Bookmark   March 30, 2013 at 6:34PM
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Circus Peanut

Needinfo, that's a really fabulous farm/utility sink installation. I wonder how irritating wiping around the edge of the sink would become over time? In fact I think it's a modern Kohler utility sink with their Cannock faucets. Great look! Here's the photo:

Contemporary Kitchen by Burlington Interior Designer Joanne Palmisano

    Bookmark   March 31, 2013 at 7:38AM
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in the end we realized/decided that the 42 or 43" wide sink was just too big for our under-10-foot long kitchen (12 feet long including the fridge), and that the biggest sink we could get would be 30" unless we want to skip a dishwasher. 24" would be better for a sink for our space but I prefer a double sink even 28" 70/30 double basin sink. so off the above sink goes to the backyard perhaps, or perhaps it will be given away.

apparently the cast iron sink is around 500 pounds, so not used lightly. we're in an old house so there's something to be said for a lighter sink. we're also on a parlor floor (and the sink was removed from a third floor apartment)

oh well! I love the sink but practicality prevailed.

    Bookmark   June 26, 2013 at 4:43AM
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Last follow up - in late July we found someone to take the sink and a very happy Manhattanite renovating a Harlem house took the sink from me in south Brooklyn. I could barely give the thing away! But finally the right person picked it up and I'm frankly relieved to have it gone, LOVED it but space limitations were what they were.

Meanwhile I've got my Kraus 60/40 stainless steel undermount double sink ready for installation, hopefully within 2-3 weeks as part of the kitchen. Boy do renovations drag on...

    Bookmark   August 13, 2013 at 2:55PM
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Good for you for finding a new home for it. I know that takes time and effort, but we try to do the same when we remove doors, light fixtures, etc. and will continue to do so. Freecycle and Craig's List are good ways to adopt things out. It's a good feeling to know things we can't use will go on to be used in another home.

One of my pet peeves about the current HGTV shows is how they love to have folks trashing old items with sledge hammers, and heaving them into trash bins. (I guess I am too old and frugal for the times.)

Hope your renovation goes well!

    Bookmark   August 13, 2013 at 3:06PM
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As an old house lover and salvager of old house parts (as space allows whether or not I actually have a reason for them at the time), thank you fo finding someone to take the sink! Our house has one of the ones with the drainboard on the side, and even though the porcelain is so worn it's sort of grayish on the bottom now it was one of the things I loved the most about the place when we bought it. I hope your reno goes well, you have good old house karma now, lol.

    Bookmark   August 13, 2013 at 4:28PM
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