Another quartz seam question - want input

Marc JohnsonAugust 6, 2014

We're in the homestretch ... counters done, backsplash done ... last things to do are plumbing & knobs (and a bunch of little odds and ends).

I'm absolutely loving this countertop - we totally nailed it for look, color, and scale (if I do say so myself!), BUT, I'm planning on talking with the countertop folks tomorrow to resolve a few things, and I wanted to get input from the collective expertise here.

Left: the edge where top meets waterfall. I'm seeing a 1/2" line and it definitely "feels" rough, plus there is a little chippage where the mitered edge meets. I'm hoping they can add a little more epoxy and sand/buff it out a little more?

MIddle & Right: the seam. I'm not happy with the edge facing out - there's a noticeable gap towards the bottom (dark line) and I want that filled. The seam along the top is a little more noticeable than I was hoping for, but definitely not as bad as some I've seen. What I'm having a problem with is the roughness - when you run your hands over the counter, you feel a rough line where the seam is. Is that something that can be buffed/polished a little better?

I'll put "the big picture" in the next post so you can see how it all is coming together :)

Thanks in advance (especially Treb if you're watching!) for your input. I don't want to be unreasonable when I call them.

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Marc Johnson

The "big picture"

    Bookmark   August 6, 2014 at 8:02PM
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Marc Johnson

Close up of waterfall corner

    Bookmark   August 6, 2014 at 8:03PM
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Marc Johnson

Close up of seam

    Bookmark   August 6, 2014 at 8:04PM
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Sorry I can't answer your questions, but can I ask what brand/color of quartz that is? Your kitchen looks great!

    Bookmark   August 6, 2014 at 8:06PM
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Marc Johnson

bowbat - thanks much! We used Hanstone Specchio White. Not as "blingy" or "chunky" as some of the other recycled products ... a little more pattern and "interesting" vs. Eco Polar Cap. It's got just enough mirror in it to sparkly without being overpowering - and there are grey/blue/green chips in it which really work with our green accent color.

    Bookmark   August 6, 2014 at 8:17PM
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I have a solid colored quartz. You shouldn't have chipping--I believe that's the result of smaller/cheaper shops not changing their blades often enough. The seam should not be visible in a photograph and should look like a hair by eye. Hard to tell from your photo if it's the width or a poor epoxy match. My fabricator used an electronic device with suction pads to pull the two slabs together. So yes, your fabricator could do much better. If you need a photo of mine for ammunition, I'll be glad to post it when I'm on my laptop.

    Bookmark   August 6, 2014 at 8:20PM
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Marc Johnson

Mayflowers - thanks, a picture would be awesome. It's probably about 3-4 hairs - about the width of one of the flecks in the material. If they can make it smooth and undetectable to touch, I think that would satisfy me. Here it is blown up.

The chips are at the 45degree joint - which I was expecting to be a potential weak spot.

This post was edited by marcojohnson on Wed, Aug 6, 14 at 20:32

    Bookmark   August 6, 2014 at 8:28PM
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I have a few photos and don't do Photobucket, so there'll be separate posts. These were taken with professional camera equipment and lighting. Can you find it? Look near the left corner of the drawer on the edge.

    Bookmark   August 6, 2014 at 9:23PM
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Close-up of the seam.

    Bookmark   August 6, 2014 at 9:24PM
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Machine that sucked the slabs together.

    Bookmark   August 6, 2014 at 9:25PM
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Oldryder is the owner of a fabrication company.

Here is a link that might be useful: Good seams

    Bookmark   August 6, 2014 at 9:28PM
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Your corner can be made to look much nicer with a little effort and expertise. All solid surface joints, and yes, quartz is considered a solid surface by industry standards, are to be considered "inconspicuous", not "invisible". Yours look very nice.

Methelmethacrylate seams shrink as they cure, that's why they're overfilled and scraped to flush after curing. If you scrape off the squeeze-out while it's wet, it will shrink below flush, creating a more noticeable seam. I'd hit it with some cyanoacrylate, catalyze, and scrape it and see how it looks and feels.

I'm not aware of any quartz manufacturer that recommends top seam polishing and I wouldn't recommend it here. The technology just isn't here yet and I've bought and tried almost every system and taken the classes.

Fabricators should retard catalyst on white seams. Adhesive manufacturers and fabricators like consistent set up times, but if the adhesive is mixed in a baggie instead of being shot through a mixer tip, a third of the catalyst can be removed. The seam takes longer to set up, but it is much less likely to yellow. If your seam yellows, it probably won't show up for at least a month or so. You can see a picture of a yellowed white seam on my IKEA Tampa thread.

It is very difficult to evaluate seam quality from laptop pictures.

    Bookmark   August 6, 2014 at 9:30PM
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What's scary is what happens a few years down the road. We had the same ''machines" may_flowers shows, but as time has passed, our lines have grown darker.

I scrub with various options but now the seam is much more definite and the scrubbed areas look like they need to be polished. (3 years or so later). (Torquay - 3 years later)

    Bookmark   August 6, 2014 at 9:59PM
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I'm betting on contamination. Get some hydrogen peroxide from the beauty supply store, #40, and soak your seams. I think you'll be surprised.

    Bookmark   August 7, 2014 at 6:38AM
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That seam defiantly looks off. The color looks to dark in the photo. My quartz seam is nearly invisible. I can feel it just enough to know it's there.

    Bookmark   August 7, 2014 at 6:48AM
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Marc Johnson

Chrissy - that's more what I was hoping for. Let's see what they can come up with to make mine look more like that!

    Bookmark   August 7, 2014 at 2:46PM
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Marc Johnson

Treb- your expertise *and wlllingness to share* is so helpful. Thanks!!!

    Bookmark   August 7, 2014 at 3:57PM
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Thanks. I appreciate your comments.

    Bookmark   August 7, 2014 at 10:18PM
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Thanks Trebruchet for all your knowledge. Oldbat2be, im curious if you tried the hydrogen peroxide and what your results are? I am having my quartz installed in a week and am thankful for the expertise so I know what questions to ask to make sure the seams are inconspicuous. We will need to slabs and the seams are going to be behind the sink (farmhouse Bib sink) and behind/in front of stovetop.

    Bookmark   October 10, 2014 at 2:17PM
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