Tight Miters for Laminate Countertops

Installers suggest ways to draw the joint tight. August 29, 2005

I am installing a laminate counter-top with two miters. My first question is, what is the best way to make a good tight joint? And my other question is, is adhesive needed and if so what is the best type? In the past I have just screwed the counter-top down with 1.25 inch screws through .75 inch mounting strips. Any help is appreciated.

Forum Responses
(Cabinet and Millwork Installation Forum)
From contributor B:
My second question is in relation to the counter top installation itself - not the mitered joint.

From contributor D:
Drawbolts make for nice tight miters. I use carpenters glue on the miters unless there is a sink very close to the joint then I use silicone. Generally there is no need to glue a countertop and if for some unforeseen reason you have to remove the top you will be happy you didn't use glue.
There are times when you can't get access to screw down a top so construction adhesive is the only way to fasten it.

From contributor J:
Try tight joint fasteners from Rockler. They require a dowel centering jig and drilling a few holes – and it’s not too complicated.

From contributor B:
I watched as two guys installed some tin counters in a rustic cabin. They had a bucket of 3/4" X 4" square blocks pre-drilled with a 35mm hole about 3/8" deep.

They screwed these blocks to each joining top, and then used ratcheting bolts to draw the tops tight. The same principal as routing for dog bones, flip bolts etc, but they said they found this to be much easier. So I tried this the other day with a miter-fold laminamte top. The joint was over a 90 degree corner base so access was easy. It worked very well and the customer was surprised how inconspicuous the seam turned out.