Reply by JBrow

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Posted on Butcher Block Island

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1368 posts in 1314 days

#1 posted 08-03-2016 03:31 PM


I did not mean to suggest that you needed a stub wall to support your countertop, though if you include one, it could be used to support the countertop overhang. My description was intended to describe how I successfully supported our breakfast bar top at each end. If I had no wall to support one end of the breakfast bar, I would have used a bracket. In summary, no stub wall is, in my opinion required.

Since most of the countertop is supported by the cabinets, I doubt that securing the countertop to the cabinets in the traditional way would cause any problems. Fasteners though cabinets’ upper squaring corner brackets into the top is probably enough to keep the countertop from shifting or lifting off the cabinets (allowing for expansion and contraction of the top). As a result, I see no reason for a sub base for the countertop beyond making the countertop a little easier to fasten to the cabinets. Since a sub base for the countertop lying on the cabinets would elevate the finished countertop, some trim or other means would probably be needed to cover the edges of the sub base, unless you are making the cabinets and incorporating the countertop sub base.

Since the countertop is 2” thick, I suspect that no support of the cantilever is really necessary. I you are like me, I suspect you will keep people from sitting on the countertop; besides the bar stools will be an obstacle for anyone who might think hopping up there is a good idea. This being the case, load on the cantilevered area of the countertop will be small. Nonetheless, I just feel better by providing some support. The more brackets added, the greater the support so the question becomes how much insurance support is needed. Unfortunately the added support comes at the cost of inconvenience and diminished utility. The additional brackets will be knee bangers and can scratch up the bar stools.

One option, if unsure of the number of supporting brackets, is to install the absolute minimum you think you need. If after a while you conclude that additional support is required, adding the additional support would probably be easily done. This approach would allow you to locate any additional support brackets out of the way, based on how the countertop is used every day.

In summary, my approach would be to install the countertop without a sub base and no stub walls. Install two support brackets at each end of the countertop. If after a few months of use, you decide additional support is needed, add the support at that time.

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