Fastening Stone Countertops

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Ways to hold marble tops in place. May 10, 2005

I need to fasten a series of marble countertops to cabinets we built (standard face frame cabinets). What is the best way to accomplish this? We usually do not work with marble, soapstone, etc.

Forum Responses
From contributor D:

From contributor R:
...or Liquid Nails.

From contributor O:
Please! Liquid Nail a block of wood to the marble top, then screw into the block of wood. I may have to remove the countertop one day.

From contributor C:

Silicone would not be the right material for this job. And although the previous poster has a good idea, thickness constraints will probably prohibit that approach. The granite and marble installers would spread mastic on the plywood decks with an 1/8" v-notched trowel and set the top onto that. No reason to reinvent this wheel.

From contributor P:
I've never seen plywood decks used around here unless that is for thinner marble. I would use the block method or our installer's epoxy brackets underneath, then screw in place. We use 1 1/8" silestone. Honestly, unless you have a peninsula or island top with overhang, you don't need much to keep them in place.

From contributor O:
When wood blocks are glued to the marble top, it takes a little forethought. You must drop your corner blocks down the thickness of the blocks glued to the marble. You don't have to pre-glue them or anything, just let them set up in place. Just in case you want to salvage them at some point, no plywood decks here, unless it's 3/8'' thick marble. Then mastic them down, unless it's a counter lever (ever wonder where that term came from?). A little latex caulking will hold them in place.

From contributor A:
We install all the time. Just put a dap of epoxy every couple feet. Make sure it is supported evenly or it will crack in time. The correct epoxy is only $30.00 from Regent Stone. They can tell you the best for your application. They have a school on site, also.

From contributor G:
Our granite supplier (which has been in business for 30 years plus) uses epoxy on the seams and silicones the tops and backsplashes to walls.

From contributor T:
I've had good luck with this for several years. On the plywood base for the marble top, centered over lower boxes and depending on the length of the top, cut two or three square holes. I make them 12" x 12". Save the blanks you've cut out. Then, place the marble top and center it as it is to be installed. Once the top is located, go inside the box with the twelve inch square 3/4 ply blanks you've cut out of the ply sub base. Apply some Liquid Nails to one side of the pieces and place them up through the respective openings, adhering them to the bottom of the marble. Hold them in place until the Liquid Nails sets up with a scrap piece of wood cut to length, and lightly wedged between the cab bottom and the square blank. Use just enough pressure to hold them snug without damaging the lower shelf in the cabinet - it doesn't take much pressure.

On the backsplash, there is no choice but to adhesive them to the wall. I use silicone because it releases easier if they ever need to be removed. The top is secure under its own weight and the plywood plugs keep it from moving laterally. The space between the plug and the hole, the width of a jigsaw blade, allows for expansion of the ply. And the top can be removed and reinstalled by just lifting it off.