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Granite work recommendations?

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Joined: Jul 2 2004

Hi there,
I am trying to locate a contractor to modify on an existing granite countertop. If anyone here has had good experiences with someone on a similar project, I would greatly appreciate input as well as the contact info! Please e-mail recommendations directly to me at scottharringtonsATyahooDOTcom

Regards,
Scott

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Joined: Jul 12 2004

I don't have any specific recommendation for a specific contractor on granite, but having had to replace some tile and granite in my kitchen, I can offer some general suggestions:

You don't need a contractor to do most minor repairs and replacements in your home. Their inflated prices in the Bay Area and their unwillingness to do small jobs, makes them next to useless in small repairs.

Unfortunately, even if you find a contractor, they are not craftsmen nor artisans, and mostl likely cannot do a better job than yourself...given enough time and patience. In some cases, the contractors just fetch some guy from the local Home Depot parking lot to do the actual work. Typically such workers are no better prepared than you would be once you do some research and practice a bit.

I speak Spanish fluently, and on a two ocassions I rejected contracts at the last minute when Licensed contractors showed up with day-workers who were here illegally and were not craftsmen. Frustrated, I decided to do the work myself; and it came out quiet nice + I saved a lot of money. Patience and planning are key!

You don't mention the specifics of the work needed; but if you want a new install, then it is not that difficult. There are many places in the yellow pages that will cut, shape, and finish granite to your specifications. You will need to provide them with a template (including cut-outs for outlets and sink fixtures). They will even deliver it for you. You can then get help from family and friends to help you install it. Get a book or two from the library to tell you how to do the installation. Practice with a few scrap pieces of granite on a pice of concrete board or similar until you get it right.

If you want to do a repair, then:

1. if the area is small, you can have it matched with composite (ground granite pieces and resin) then polished. practice mixing and matching the resins on a board. you will not get a perfect match, but it will be close. Then, rent a wet-polisher to polish the cured resin. Again, practice, practice, practice! buy the resin from the suppliers in the yellow pages or check on the web.
2. if the section is large, then you may need to take out a section and then just replace it yourself.

It can be very dusty when cutting and polishing so wet-saws and wet-polishers are needed. Hence you need the specialized equipment when dealing with large surfaces. So it is best to remove the affected piece and take it to a local craftsman. In the San Jose area, there are many listed in the yellow pages and they are mostly located near Brokaw road/13th St/Old Oakland road.

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