How to Cut Laminate Countertop In two different ways

How to Cut Laminate Countertop In two different ways


How to cut a laminate countertop is covered in this step-by-step carpentry project. Cutting a laminate countertop isn't the simplest DIY job since you need to use the right equipment, follow the right procedures, and be patient. Making straight cuts and selecting a blade with tiny teeth (so you don't chip the laminated layer) are the two most difficult parts of the endeavor.

In general, there are a variety of tools that might enable you to complete the task fast and correctly. As a result, you may use a jigsaw, a table saw, a circular saw, or another type of reciprocating saw (ideal for curved cuts). In terms of the blade, pick one that is long enough to cut through the counter surface and has a fine, high tooth count (if it is also carbide tipped it would be great).

Masking tape over the cut lines is a fantastic trick, especially for inexperienced handymen. This will prevent chipping of the countertop's edge. Additionally, if you are using a blade with downward-facing teeth, you must set the cuttertop with the face up (highly recommended). Before drawing the lines on the countertop, take precise measurements since if the piece doesn't fit, the quality of the cuts won't matter.

Cutting a laminate countertop is a very simple procedure. You only need to trim a laminate countertop to length to accommodate your counter space because it comes in conventional sizes. Additionally, you could wish to add a sink to the countertop. In that case, all you need to do is mark the sink's outline and cut a hole for it to fit in.


How to Cut Laminate Countertop


Method 1: Using a Circular Saw to Cut Countertops


1- The counter area you wish to cover should be measured. In order to use them as a guide while looking for a laminate countertop, measure the area with a measuring tape to determine its length and breadth. Countertops are available in conventional widths and in a variety of lengths that can be customized.

When covering typical cabinets, a small overhang is permitted due to the customary width of 25 in (64 cm) counters.


2- Purchase a laminate countertop off the shelf. The standard sizes for laminate countertops range from 4 to 12 feet (1.2 to 3.7 m) long and 2 feet (0.61 m) apart. Purchase a laminate countertop that is as near to the ideal length as you can.

If you're lucky, the counter space you need to cover may be exactly divisible by 2, in which case you won't have to cut the countertop to size. If not, continue by trimming the countertop to size.

Advice: When you purchase your countertop from a retailer, you may also purchase matching laminate strips to cover the exposed portion of the countertop once you've made any cuts.


3- On a workbench or sawhorses, mount the laminate countertop. Place the portion of the prefabricated countertop that you bought on a secure work surface. Leave the portion that will be chopped off hanging.

For increased stability, you can use C clamps to secure it to the work surface. This is particularly useful for lighter, smaller parts that are more likely to move around.


4- To protect the laminate, mark your cut line and mask it off with masking tape. With a measuring tape, measure the distance from the portion you will cut off, then mark the location of the cut. To prevent the laminate from chipping during cutting, place a strip of masking tape across the countertop so that the mark you made is centered underneath.

To do this, you need use masking tape that is at least 1 in. (2.5 cm) broad.


5- The cut line on the masking tape should be drawn using a carpenter's square. Where you need to cut the countertop, draw a straight line with the masking tape all the way down. To make sure you placed the countertop in the exact right location, measure it once more along its length to the line you drew.

Always take extra care when cutting! If more trimming is required, you can always do so.


6- As a saw guide, C clamp a scrap piece of wood to the countertop. Add 1/16 in (0.16 cm) to the space between the saw's blade and the outside of its shoe (the metal guard). To make the guide rail, clamp the wood widthwise to the countertop measuring this distance in from the side you are cutting off.

Clamp the wood 3 116 in (7.8 cm) away from the line, for instance, if the distance between the saw's blades is 3 in (7.6 cm). A small margin of error is provided by the extra 116 in (0.16 cm). If any of the laminate chips, you can remove it by sanding it after cutting.

Clamp the wood to the counter's edge that you are not going to remove. In other words, attach the wood to the left side of the line if you are cutting off the end of the countertop at the right side.

For the guide rail, a piece of wood measuring roughly 1 in x 2 in (2.5 cm x 5.1 cm) would do.


7- Your circular saw's depth should be set to be 1/8 inch (0.32 cm) deeper than the countertop. Set your saw to just a little bit deeper than the thickness of the countertop that you measured. This will enable a precise cut across the entire countertop with the saw.

The thickness of the countertop will likely be uniform throughout. If it varies at all, it's a good idea to measure it in a few different locations and set your saw depth using the biggest number.

A laminated particle board saw blade should be able to cut through it.


8- Along the line and up against the wooden guide fence, make a complete cut. Before you begin cutting, keep holding down the power button on your saw to increase its speed. Place the blade and saw guard carefully against the beginning of the cut line and the wooden guide fence, respectively. To completely sever the countertop, push away from you along the line.

To ensure a smooth cut, always turn your circular saw on at maximum speed before cutting anything.

If you've never used a circular saw before, you can practice cutting through the scrap counter you're going to remove to get a feel for how it works.


9- To ensure that the cut edge is exactly even with your mark, sand it. To avoid chipping the laminate, sand with fine-grit sandpaper (like 120-grit) while moving downwardly. Once the edge is perfectly parallel to the cut line, remove the masking tape.

If you cut precisely along the line, you won't need to sand. Simply take off the tape, and you're done!


Method 2:  Making a Sink Hole with a Jigsaw


1- Place the sawhorses on top of the laminate countertop. Place the pair of sawhorses such that the area you're going to remove is between them and nothing is below. To prevent the countertop from moving while being cut, secure it to the sawhorses using C clamps.

Make sure you have enough space to work and move the jigsaw around.


2- On the countertop, use a pencil to draw a circle around the sink. The sink should now be upside down on the countertop where you want it to be placed. Hold it in place as you gently pencil-trace the shape.

Some sink manufacturers may include a template that you can use to mark the counter with the precise size cutout you need for the sink.

This is true for overmount sinks with mounting lips that rest on top of your laminate countertop.


3- Measure the mounting lip of the sink. The rim surrounding the sink that will rest on the countertop is known as the mounting lip. Measure the distance with a measuring tape between the lip's outside border and the sink's real basin, which will be positioned below the counter.

The counter must be carved out so that the sink fits as closely as possible. At the conclusion, you can make any necessary changes.


4- Mark your cut lines from the contour of the sink, then tape them over. Set a measuring tape to the mounting lip's width, then construct fresh lines by measuring inward from either side of the sink's shape. Apply strips of masking tape to cover them.

For instance, if the lip is 12 in (1.3 cm), measure 12 in (1.3 cm) in from the lines you drawn on all sides, and then lay tape along the new lines.


5- Cut lines should be drawn across the middle of the masking tape using a carpenter's square. Draw lines in the middle of each masking tape strip along the edge of a carpenter's square. This will demonstrate where to make jigsaw cuts to obtain an exact fit for the sink.

Just keep in mind that if the cut out is a little too tight, you can trim more off at the end to make the sink fit snugly. If you're unsure, draw the sink's contour a little bit smaller than you think you need to.


6- The center of the item you are cutting off is secured with a piece of wood. The section you are going to cut out should have it laid flat across the centre. To stabilize the portion you're going to cut off and prevent it from coming apart too soon, insert a single screw into the center of the piece of wood.

The ends of the wood will rest on the tabletop and support the cutout until you are finished cutting all the way around it since it is longer than the portion you are cutting off. You may spin it to complete the cuts with your jigsaw on either side of it by using just one screw in the centre of it.


7- Drill a hole large enough to accommodate your jigsaw blade into each corner. Choose a drill bit that is just slightly bigger than your jigsaw's blade. To allow you to slip the jigsaw in and out at the corners, attach it to your drill and drill a hole on the inside of each corner of the cutout.

In theory, you could get away with drilling only one beginning hole to accommodate the jigsaw. Making 4 allows for easier corner maneuvering, though.


8- Use your jigsaw to completely cut around the lines you drew on the masking tape. To begin cutting, insert the jigsaw blade into the hole in the corner. Once the cutout has been freed from the countertop, turn it on and begin cutting following the lines. Remove the cutout and throw it away.

Remember to rotate the piece of wood you bolted across the cutout when you get to the ends so you can complete the cut through that side.

If your lines aren't exactly straight, don't stress. Any small flaws will be hidden by the sink's mounting lip.

Tip: To prevent the laminate from chipping, you may purchase specialized laminate cutting blades for jigsaws that only cut on the downward stroke.


9- Once it fits, test the sink and make any necessary modifications. Check that the sink fits by lowering it into the cutout. If it fits into the cutout and the mounting lip sits flat all the way around, you are finished. If you need to remove more countertop to make it fit, use your jigsaw to do so.

Since the sink will cover the cutout's borders, you don't need to bother about doing it.

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