Countertop Design

April 30, 2017
Eskay Metal Fabricating Home Page

Wood Substrates (Wood Backers) for Stainless Steel Countertops and Copper Countertops

Fact - every countertop has a thickness but not all countertops are built the same. Whether manufactured from solid surface material, laminate, wood, granite, marble, or metal, most countertops are "built up".

Depending on the surface materials used, different substrates are used to give a countertop thickness and strength. Metal countertops require a substrate, fabricated from wood or metal, to raise the surface to a standard thickness of 1 ½". This height enables all drawers and doors to open without any countertop interference, and also adds support and valuable sound deadening to any metal surface, including stainless steel and copper countertops. Countertop edge designs with varing heights and shapes can be easily offset by modifying the thickness of the substrates.

Our material of choice for most residential applications is MDF board, which is laminated to the underside of a stainless steel or copper countertop with construction adhesive in two different layers for a standard 1 1/2" thick countertop. The first is a solid layer to add rigidity and sound deadening to the countertop. The second layer is applied in 4" strips along the perimeter and down the center to complete the required substrate thickness..
Click for a larger image
The drawing to the right illustrates a stainless countertop that has a rear and left end backsplash with a 1 ½" wood substrate build up. (Click on the image to enlarge)

For both residential and commercial applications, we encourage our customers to order their stainless steel and copper countertops with our factory applied wood or metal substrates for a turn-key application. In unique cases, customer provided wood substrates may assist with on-site handling of larger and odd-shaped countertops.

For special applications, substrates can be manufactured using various materials to meet specific building codes or environmental requirements. For substrates other than MDF, please include detailed specifications or requirements with your quote request.

Application Suggested Substrate
Wet or moist areas Marine Plywood, metal hat channels
Fire Code Rating Steel or stainless steel hat channels
Fire rated foam core
Industrial Heavy Use (2) Solid layers of MDF or plywood
Medical & Pharmaceutical Stainless steel hat channels