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Epoxy Resin Installation Guide

This information is intended to assist our customers during the installation of Duratop Epoxy resin lab tops and sinks. Upon arrival of all materials at the construction or job site, inspection should be performed to determine if any damage resulted during transit.  Any external damage should be noted on the Bill of Lading.  Internal damage should be reported to the supplier immediately.  It is suggested to handle valuable counter top materials with great care. Dropping or dragging could result in irreparable damage.


Duratop epoxy resin work surfaces and sinks should be installed in the final stages of construction. This will reduce the risk of damage by tradesmen using the countertops as workbenches or scaffolding. Be sure to store all epoxy resin countertops and sinks according to the guidelines provided with each shipment.

The materials required for on-site installation:

  • Safety glasses
  • Putty knives
  • Level
  • 4 or more C-clamps
  • 2 inch wide blue masking tape
  • 2-part [A & B] Smooth-on epoxy adhesive*
  • 4 or more equal size applicator sticks
  • Lacquer thinner or acetone
  • Silicone sealant (lab grade in matching countertop color)
  • Several pieces of hardwood blocking
  • Tapered shims made of wood or other suitable material.
  • Several pieces of cardboard in varying sizes
  • 2 or 3 pieces of lumber at least 1-1/2 times the width of the cabinet
  • Scotchbrite® Light Duty white finishing pads
  • Crystal Simple Green®; Scott’s liquid Gold; Murphy’s Oil; Sheila Shine
  • Several clean rags

    *While epoxy adhesive is suggested, other sealants such as lab grade silicone are acceptable.

Leveling the cabinets

  • To avoid problems during the installation of Duratop Epoxy counter tops, review and verify that all base cabinets are level.  Raise leg levels or shim if necessary.
  • “Dry-check” the epoxy resin countertops, curbs and epoxy resin sinks.
  • Study the epoxy resin top layout included with your shipment to properly place all the pieces. Each piece is labeled as marked in the layout.
    Caution: Epoxy resin tops and work surfaces are heavy. Always have assistance when moving and placing them and always use proper lifting techniques.
  • Place the work surface pieces on the cabinets to “dry-fit” and slide into place.
    Note: Installers are to prevent anything abrasive from coming into contact with the surfaces of epoxy resin work tops.  A light cardboard or paper sheeting should be placed over the counter tops to avoid scratching the surface.
  • When installing work surfaces with under mount sinks, line the sinks up below the proper cutouts with an even overhang on all sides.
  • Put the curbs in place and make sure they are the correct length.
    Note: If you find any damaged, incorrect fitting or missing pieces, notify the supplier immediately. Inspect each section of top before applying adhesive.
    TLS will not be responsible for removal of defective or damaged tops after installed.
  • After verifying the above and all tops and sinks have been checked and inspected, the installation may commence.

Mixing epoxy adhesive

  • The 2-part Smooth-On epoxy adhesive is the most important material you will use to install epoxy resin countertops. It is vital to be mixed properly.
  • Always use a separate stick to scoop each part of the epoxy adhesive,
    Parts “A” – Resin and “B” – Hardener and use the same stick each time to avoid “mixing” and contaminating the unused portion.
  • Mix on a clean piece of cardboard only that amount needed for the immediate sections of lab tops to be installed.
  • Begin with the dark pigment epoxy “resin” and mix the two parts thoroughly.
  • Spread the mixed epoxy adhesive about 1/4” thick on the cardboard to prevent it from generating its own heat and drying too quickly.
  • Set up time is approximately 3 to 4 hours and curing over a 24 hour period.

Installing Epoxy Resin Countertops

  • Place the counter tops onto the leveled base cabinets for a dry fit.
  • Using a straight edge or level, confirm that the two adjoining work surfaces form a completely flat surface. Use shims where necessary to adjust either height.
  • Lift and prop up the first two work surface pieces with wood supports.
  • Since epoxy resin undersides are rather smooth as formed in the mold, it is suggested to scratch the bottom surface with a 60 grit sand paper at the locations where the installers will apply the adhesive for attachment.  This will create a “roughened” area for better adhesive.
  • Place small amounts of epoxy adhesive at 24” [610 mm] intervals along the front and back edges of the cabinet top below the first work surface piece, removing the wood prop and lower the work surface into place.
  • Put a small amount of epoxy adhesive along the lower edge of the first work surface piece where the next work surface piece will abut.
  • Repeat the above steps for the second work surface piece and carefully lower it into place leaving a 1/8” [3 mm] to 1/16” [1.5 mm] filled seam between pieces as prescribed by WIC and other organizations.  (See below on filling seams).
  • Repeat this process for the remaining epoxy resin work surfaces in each area.


Filling the seams

  • Apply a length of 2” [50 mm] wide blue masking tape to each side of the seam directly on the edge of the joint.
  • Using a putty knife, press the epoxy adhesive down and into the seam. 
    An alternative is to apply an amount of the two part adhesive to the square edge seam with the putty knife on one side of the seam only.  Rest the section down onto the case work and slide the two pieces together with the appropriate seam separation.
  • Beginning at the back of the work surface, drag the putty knife toward the front of the counter top while holding the knife at a 45 degree angle.
  • Scrape the excess epoxy adhesive off the masking tape approximately 1/16” [1.5 mm] from the center of the seam on both sides.
  • Drag a clean putty knife across the masking tape one more time and then remove the tape.
  • Use lacquer thinner on a clean rag to smooth out the epoxy adhesive for finished seams.
  • Use a separate clean (damp or dry) rag to wipe away any excess adhesive.
    Note: Never attempt to sand, buff or polish seams or scratches.
  • Allow adhesive to harden overnight (at +77 degree F).

Installing the curbs

  • Cover the epoxy resins countertops with cardboard to protect the Duratop epoxy top surfaces from scratching. Place the curbs upside down on the cardboard.
  • It is suggested to tape the back and side of the counter top area approx. 1 1/16" from the back edge of the counter top. 
  • The area then should be sanded with 60 or 100 grit paper to create a rough sanded surface for better adhesion of the epoxy adhesive. 
  • Using a putty knife apply the epoxy adhesive and use a smooth stroking motion to run a bead along the bottom of the curb and along the edge that abuts another curb.  Wipe any excess. 
  • Set the curbs in their proper location and press in place, leveling to any adjoining section.
  • The splashes are to be supported so that they are not disturbed and remain in their 90 deg. position.
    : If the wall is uneven, the installation crew will need to shim the curbs to have an even front alignment.
  • Wipe off excess epoxy adhesive at the bottom of the curbs with a rag wet with lacquer thinner or acetone.
  • To insure that the epoxy resin countertops and curbs will stay in place, block and clamp the seams and allow the adhesive to harden overnight (at +77 degree F).

Installing an Apron section
The same procedure for the splash is to be performed with the apron piece. 

  • Measure the length required and cut accordingly either at an angle or a square cut.  Cut pieces can also be provided for field application only.  The factory will not apply apron strips prior to shipment.
  • Adhesive is to be applied to the top surface of the apron piece and adjoined with the bottom of the counter top, establishing the correct alignment to the front edge and sides. 
  • While holding in place, wipe away excess adhesive with a damp cloth and then clamp with
    ”C” type clamps preserving the alignments and eliminating the movement of the piece during clamping. 
  • Remove all excess adhesive that squeezes out during clamping.  Verify alignment again.


Installing Epoxy Resin Sinks

  • Using a rag wet with lacquer thinner or acetone, clean the rim of the epoxy resin Drop-In sink, along with the area around and inside the work surface lipped cutout.
  • Lower the sink into the cutout and inspect the fit. Remove the sink and apply two part Smooth-On epoxy adhesive around the vertical and horizontal wall of the cutout.
  • Carefully lower the sink back into the cutout.
  • Gently press the sink rim until level with the bottom of the rabbeted cutout.
  • Use a wet rag with lacquer thinner to wipe away excess adhesive.
  • Allow epoxy adhesive to harden overnight (at +77 degree F). After the adhesive has hardened, review the seam joint and refill as needed.
  • Using a rag wet with lacquer thinner or acetone, smooth off the seam. Use a separate clean (damp or dry) rag to wipe away any excess adhesive.
  • The same procedure is to be used for epoxy cup sinks.
  • Note: If installing polypropylene (PP) cup sinks or full size lipped drop-in sinks, scuff the contact surfaces under the sink rim with sand paper to increase adhesion of the adjoined surfaces.

Setting an under mount sink
Note: Verify that the sink fits properly on the sink supports provided by Total Lab Solutions, when required.

  • Using a level, check to assure the top of the under mount sink is flush with the top edge of the cabinet which is the bottom face of the underside of the lab top.
  • Adjust the sink supports if necessary from under the sink being careful not to upset its setting under the work surface.
  • Wipe the rim of the sink and the contact points on the bottom of the work surface with a wet rag soaked with lacquer thinner or acetone.
  • Apply a small bead of Smooth-On epoxy resin or chemical resistant silicone sealant to the top edge of the sink.
  • Carefully lower the sink epoxy resin work surface into place.
  • Follow the steps outlined on pages 2 and 3 for installing work surfaces, filling the seams and installing curbs.

Installing an epoxy resin sink outlet

  • Clean both the outlet and the recessed hole in the sink with lacquer thinner or acetone.
  • Scuff the contact surface under the outlet flange with sand paper to increase adhesion.
  • Apply recommended RTV silicone or epoxy adhesive to the outlet in a 1/4” [6 mm] bead around the bottom edge.
  • Insert the outlet directly into the recessed hole in the sink giving the outlet a 1/4 turn after making contact.
  • Check to verify the outlet is centered in the hole.
  • From under the sink, thread the retaining nut all the way up and carefully hand tighten until the upper outlet flange is flush with the sink basin.
    : Do not use tools or over-tighten the plastic retaining nut.
  • Wipe off the excess epoxy adhesive in the sink. Using a rag wet with lacquer thinner, smooth out the edges of the sealant seam.
  • Clean excess sealant with a clean rag (wet or dry).Scuff the contact surfaces under the outlet flange to increase adhesion.

Cleaning of the Duratop epoxy resin Counter Tops

  • Wipe down all epoxy resin countertops and work surfaces using Crystal Simple Green® or finishing oil. A white Light Duty Scotchbrite® Pad can be used with Crystal Simple Green® to gently rub out tough spots.

  • Protect the epoxy resin countertops from construction damage. Cover all tops with clean cardboard or heavy brown paper or foam pads. Under no circumstance should epoxy resin work surfaces be used as a platform for any overhead work or as a workbench for other tradesmen. The performance of Epoxy Resin work surfaces will not be compromised by normal marring, scratches or stains, but maintaining the appearance depends upon good housekeeping procedures.
  • Promptly remove all spills to ensure a safe working environment.
  • Do not use wax on epoxy resin countertops or epoxy sinks.
  • Clean work surfaces regularly using CrystalSimple Green® with a clean soft rag or a white Light Duty Scotchbrite® Pad. Finishing oil may also be used.

Note: Never attempt to sand, buff or polish seams or scratches. DO NOT SAND THE SURFACE OF THE COUNTER TOP, BACKSPLASH OR APRON PIECES.  The surface texture of the non-glare matte finish is molded into the sheet and any sanding will destroy the surface.   Removal of excess adhesive, prior to curing, is necessary to eliminate any raised areas at the butt joints or splash areas.  Excess Cement and residue must be removed before it cures. Cement is a permanent adhesive.

Epoxy Resin is the material of choice for the harsh chemical environment of the laboratory. However, epoxy resin products are subject to thermal shock and are not warranted against damage from liquid nitrogen or dry ice. Abuse caused by the improper use of these materials could cause cracking and premature sink failure.