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- Storm-Ready Design > Episode 9: Kitchen Finishes for the Storm-Ready House
Building a Template for a Kitchen Countertop
Bob’s in Punta Gorda for kitchen finishes to this storm-ready home. Jack Ballantine from Ambassador Kitchens joins him for the installation of the Cardell maple builder-line cabinets with solid wood framing, maple faces, and pressboard box construction. Richard Wagner of Wagner Cabinetry shows Bob how the upper cabinets are installed on the exterior wall and the base cabinets are set for level, shimmed, drilled in place, and finished with a toe kick and maple crown molding. Andrea Johnson from DuPont Corian shows Bob some of the more than 100 colors and patterns available. These solid surface countertops are stain and scratch resistant, non-porous, and easy to clean. The new colors, like Canyon, are inspired by nature and designed to bring the outside in. Scott Lawyer, the countertop fabricator, joins Bob first to create a template for the solid-surface counters that will be made in his shop, and then to install them. The Luan template is made from blueprints, checked at the site, and set on the Corian as a cutting guide. The Corian integral sink and counter are installed. The counter sections are joined and finish sanded for an invisible seam. Mike Goodrich installs the Whirlpool dishwasher for quiet operation.
- Part 1: Builder-Grade Cabinets in the Kitchen
- Part 2: Building a Template for a Kitchen Countertop
- Scott Lawyer of Solid Surfacetops is with Bob at the Punta Gorda house to make a template for the Corian kitchen countertops that will be fabricated at this shop. Lawyer has the fabrication work done off site because there are too many tools involved in the cutting, shaping, and finishing of the counters to do them on site. Lawyer creates a template from Luan plywood that is glued together to create the exact dimensions of the kitchen countertop. These templates will be laid directly on top of the Corian and used as cutting guides by the fabricators. Lawyer uses the blueprint to create the template then checks it against the kitchen space for any modifications. The system results in a perfect cut with little room for error. Bob is with Andrea Johnson of DuPont Corian to see the wide variety of colors and styles of Corian solid surfacing available for countertops, tables, sinks, and backsplashes. Johnson explains that while Corian once came only in white, DuPont now offers over 100 different colors and patterns. Corian solid surface countertops are non-porous, stain and scratch resistant, easily cleaned, and backed by a great warranty from DuPont. All Corian comes 1/2-inch thick. Counter edges are built up by the fabricator then cut and shaped to form a thicker edge. The kitchen counters are Canyon, one of the new colors derived from nature. DuPont's aim with the new palette is to bring the soothing colors of nature inside. Johnson shows Bob a number of other color samples from the line including silt, which will be used in the master bath and the hall bath. Johnson adds that those baths will each have counters with integral sinks, a seamless design offered by Corian and other solid surface companies. The cost for solid surface countertops varies depending on the color, amount and type of particulate added to create a textured look, and the price grouping from the Bob is with Andrea Johnson from Corain as Scott Lawyer of Solid Surfacetops arrives to install the shop-fabricated Corian countertops in the Punta Gorda kitchen. This counter features an integral sink that is attached to the counter by the fabricator in his shop. The seam between the sink and counter is made with liquid Corian that forms an impermeable and invisible seam between the sink and the counter. These integral sinks have no edge or grunge line, which makes for easy cleaning and a sleek look. The Canyon color chosen by the homeowners is dark, like the Porcelanosa metallic-look tile. Johnson remarks what a good job the homeowners have done matching the counter color to the tile. Bob adds that the cool, dark colors bring a soothing, cooling presence to the interior spaces of this hot-climate home. Bob then watches as the crew from Solid Surfacetops installs the counter pieces and creates an invisible seam. The two sections of Corian are fitted with wood blocks that will hold the clamps as the sections are glued with liquid Corian that matches the countertop and clamped tight to set. Once the glue has set and dried for about 25 minutes, the clamps are removed and the seam is sanded to give a seamless look to this two-piece installation company.
- Part 3: Installing the Dishwasher
When hurricanes strike again and again, as they did in Florida in 2004, the effects are devastating. Bob Vila and crew work to completely rebuild a damaged house, using new standards for storm-ready housing. Along the way, Bob investigates a home's vulnerabilities in extreme weather and learns why some building systems fail and others succeed.
Also from Storm-Ready Design
Bob is in hurricane battered Punta Gorda, Florida, to build a storm-ready home in Season 1 of Bob Vila. Bob visits two homes in the same neighborhood, one that was completely destroyed by Hurricane Charley in August 2004, the other that was built to exceed hurricane codes and was left unscathed by hurricane winds and water from the same storm. Scott Buescher of Mercedes Homes shows how enhanced building practices and technologies can create a storm-resistant home, while Lieutenant Governor Toni Jennings and Secretary of Community Affairs Thaddeus Cohen discuss rebuilding Florida. Building inspector Randy Cole and Mercedes Homes’ Jesse Gonzalez review the site and watch the pour of a three-stage steam wall that sits below grade and ties the slab foundation to the ground. The resulting foundation will resist water penetration from storm surge by allowing water to move around the foundation without encountering entry points. Bob reviews the house plans with Scott Buescher of Mercedes Homes and learns how the house is constructed as an integrated system. Building connections are emphasized and reinforced rebar and steel mesh are extended from the stem wall to the roof line in preparation for the solid concrete pour that will form the exterior walls.
Bob recaps construction of the stem-wall foundation and integral concrete slab, the vertical steel reinforcing, steel mesh, window bucks, headers, and spacers put in place for the cast-in-place concrete walls. Cameron Parker and the crew of Solid Wall Systems spray the aluminum wall forms with an organic oil spray to prevent adhesion from the concrete and set the forms for the pour. Bob joins Wayne Sallade, Charlotte County Emergency Manager, to review cleanup, demolition, and repair one year after Hurricane Charley. sallade explains that housing built in the 1960s through the 1980s, before the Florida Unified Building Code, had stick framing, gable roofs, and siding. "It didn't stand a chance," he says. Looking at surviving 1920s Florida architecture, it's clear that unified construction, concrete walls, protected windows, and hip roofsare the way to design wind-resistant homes. Back on site, bob watches the pour, learns how the walls and window openings will be vibrated to eliminate voids, and sees the bracing set to hold the walls square before leaving the site to let it cure overnight. Once the forms are removed, Jesse Gonzalez explains how a traditional three-coat Florida plaster job will complete the exterior once the structure has cured for two weeks.
This episode of Bob Vila will focus on roofs, how they are built and tied down to keep structures safe. Leslie Chapman-Henderson from FLASH, the Federal Alliance for Safe Housing, explains how FLASH brings information about safe housing technologies and practices to homes across America, to protect them against floods, winds, hail, and wildfires. Chapman-Henderson explains how a connected house works as a system to beat back the pushing and pulling forces of wind. Randy Shackelford of Simpson Strong-Tie shows Bob the embedded truss anchors that will tie down each truss member of the roof framing, as well as retrofit tie-downs and heavy connectors designed to fight wind uplift forces. Jesse Gonzalez walks Bob through the steel-framed interior that has a master suite and bath, and lots of open space. Bart Cox of Hanson Roof Tiles brings factory-extruded cement clay-look tiles that are pre-drilled for mechanical installation. Dave Peck of D. Peck Roofing explains that stiffer 5/8-inch plywood sheathing, 30 pound felt that is nailed, hot mopped with asphalt, and covered with 90 pound felt makes a strong, water-resistant roof deck for the tiles. Metal nailer boards keep cap tiles in place when wind strikes.
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