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Author Topic: Vendura counter repair : Results  (Read 1330 times)


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Vendura counter repair : Results
« on: March 09, 2012, 12:48:35 PM »
OK, we had two cracks in our countertop, one was straight, and the other was a four-armed starcrack.

I contacted Vendura and ordered a repair kit. It was $35 plus shipping and has enough resin/mix/and hardener to do a couple of yards of crack, much more than I needed. I also spoke to Steve at Vendura and he was very helpful about the repair.

There were a couple of things in the instructions that I found a bit confusing. The pamphlet talks about "stitch-grinding", which I had never heard of and Google turned up zero. But Steve explained about drilling a series of 1/16 holes side by side in the crack to open it up just enough to let the resin flow in. In retrospect, I think he meant that you use the drillbit to cut out a narrow trough through the crack, being careful not to go right through the laminate, in case the resin would drain out below. He suggested halfway through the laminate, which came to about 3/16ths.

The second confusion is that the pamphlet states that you have only three minutes to get the resin into the crack, and even less if the temp is greater then 70 degrees F.  I have worked a good deal with resins and that seemed awfully fast to me. I think they mean that the resin STARTS to harden at three minutes, because I found it fairly workable at 30minutes at 68 degrees F. My point is, you don't have to rush.

So I did the first crack the way they said. They advise to use a Dremel tool using a 1/16 bit, but my Dremel wont take anything that small so I just used my 12v cordless drill and it worked fine. 50 little holes later, I taped it up really close to the row of holes with three of four layers of painter's tape, so that the level of resin will be a little "proud" above the crack.

Then you mix the resin. It is 3-part: the resin, the powder, and the catalyst. You mix all the resin and powder. You can select how much mix you're going to need and save the rest back in the powder container. Then you pour on a teaspoon or so of the catalyst, which is a clear oily fluid, then BEFORE MIXING you pour off the catalyst again into it's container so you haven't added too much. Sounds complex, but easy really. Then pour the resin into the crack, or spoon it on with the mixing stirrer or whatever.  Then I waited a couple of hours, the resin wasn't quite hard yet, and when I pulled off the tape there was a neat little repair line, sitting about 1/16 or so above the surface.

For the second crack, I changed my technique. The starcrack had allowed the counter to drop on one side, and I wanted to get more "grip" to stop it moving about. So I shimmed it up to level, and this time I dug a more substatial trough, going as deep as I dared. And along the way I discovered that my Dremel kit has a 'scribing' tool, with a pointed end, and it was simply great at getting into the crack and widening it out.  This time I planned to leave an inch-wide strip between the tape, instead of a 1/16th wide strip, thinking that it would reinforce the countertop more. It did, I think, but it was much more sanding, and I'll need my orbital sander to finish it (it's at home of course). I'm not sure I'd do that again, and I don't think I'll get it as nice as I did the first crack.

Final results on the first crack were very good. The counter has faded over 11 years so the new resin leaves a faint brown line. But I'd give it 8 out of 10.