While the primary focus of Surface Fabrication remains the high-end surfacing options, such as natural stone, solid surface and engineered stone, we know a lot of fabricators are working with a variety of materials or are considering doing so. Surface fabricators are trending toward the one-stop shop and away from the single-material focus. So, we have gathered some information on a few of the options out there. Maybe something will catch your eye. If not, it’s always good to know what you’re up against.
Abet Laminati offers Tefor, a 100 percent recycled, nonporous, high-impact decorative surface made from phenolic dust and nonvirgin polypropylene. In addition to basic black, Tefor is now available in six new design-driven colors — green, brown, rust, yellow, navy and gray. It is waterproof, durable, can be easily wiped clean and is chemically inert. The company also offers Silver, a collection of high-pressure laminates with real metal surfaces in six patterns. Each intricately designed pattern looks as though it were hammered into the silver laminate to create texture. The patterns range from a floral wallpaper look to circular dots and swirls to contemporary hammered designs. Suitable for vertical applications, the Silver collection is available in 48 by 120 in. sheets (4 by 10 ft.). These aluminum surfaces are phenolic-backed and protected by a lacquering and anodizing process.
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Aristech Acrylic LLC introduces Alura, the next generation of solid surface countertops. Alura is designed to combine the best features of solid surface and post-formed laminate so homeowners enjoy all the durable benefits of solid surface for a reasonable upgrade over laminate. Alura is sold to fabricators as presanded blanks that are mitered together with the same equipment used to fabricate post formed laminate tops and end capped prior to installation. It is available in 16 colors. Countertop blanks feature a coved backsplash or single-roll blanks as well as high bars and islands with a choice of three edge profiles. In addition to saving fabrication time, Alura renders itself ideal for the new home construction market with built-in features like a ½-in. scribe stick to speed up installation time.
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Craft-Art Wood Countertops are built from a selection of more than 20 different wood species using only First European Quality lumber. Some of the most popular wood species are black walnut, distressed black walnut, antique heart pine, teak and tigerwood. All lumber is hand-selected and matched to highlight grain, color and texture. Tops are available in plank and edge-grain style using full-length boards or they can be constructed end-grain style, which creates a checkerboard-type pattern. Any sink fixture can be accommodated. The countertops are waterproof, heat/stain-resistant and food-safe. They are finished with an organic tung oil-based varnish that penetrates into the wood fibers to create a permanent finish that will not crack, chip or peel.
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DiamondTech introduces DiamondTech Glass Tiles, a modern collection of richly colored tiles whose strong shades are reflective of those found in nature, come in four series: Stained Glass, Mosaic, Platinum and Dimensions. Each of these tiles features a unique look that will suit any type of life, taste and style.
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offers its 3cm thick solid surface, which requires no buildup, seam plates or fabricated edges. By eliminating up to 75 percent of fabrication labor, Eos has become an affordable premium surfacing option. Many fabricators report that 3cm Eos bridges that elusive gap between laminates and solid surfacing.
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Formica offers three alternative surfacing options — Veneer wood surfacing, DecoMetal and laminates. Veneer is offered in five collections: Modern, Traditional, Metropolitan, New Classic and Exotic; with a total of 30 distinct veneers. All wood veneers are derived from sustainable forestry practices. DecoMetal is designed specifically for adding a high-tech look to any vertical interior. It is available in solid metal or metal laminate and in nearly 50 patterns and colors. The company also has introduced its Riverwash finish series of high-pressure laminates. The laminates are designed to combine the look and feel of real concrete or metal with the durability and value of high-pressure laminate. The collection is offered in two design patterns, Crete and Rust, and six designs: Realcrete, Sandcrete, Claycrete, Plaster Rust, Iron Rust and Bronze Rust.
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Geoquartz is the latest technology in engineered quartz tile. Made up of 93 percent natural quartz, the product has been used on projects as large as the Atlanta-Hartsfield International Airport to the smallest residential job. Geoquartz is extremely resistant to scratching, chipping and finish dullness, while providing a material that is virtually nonporous. It is available in more than 50 colors and in addition to tile, the product also offers slabs in thicknesses of 1.2cm, 1.5cm, 2cm and 3cm. Prefabricated countertop programs are also available.
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Green Mountain Soapstone offers soapstone surfacing available in both Original and Ice Flower styles. The product’s durable, dense surface is designed to possess all the beauty of granite or marble with none of the drawbacks. Soapstone is inert, meaning that acids and alkalis won’t etch it as they will other stone surfaces. The product is also impervious to temperature changes. It is available in exceptionally long and wide slab sizes, and standard 30-in.-wide slabs. Seams can be made tight, smooth and inconspicuous. Sinks are available in three styles: Chicago Wright, Boston Williams and New England Double Bowl.