‘Can I use mitre joints between two adjoining solid worktop surfaces?’
The last ‘Question of the Week’ this November comes from Martina in Worcester, who is looking to order some solid worktop surfaces from us, but is curious to know why we suggest butt joints rather than mitre joints.
“I am in the early stages of deciding upon which worktops to go for, and I noticed that in all your photographs of wooden worktops, they are butt jointed rather than jointed with a diagonal mitre joint like I’ve seen on other types of worktop.”
Thanks for getting in touch with us – we think you’ll definitely be making the right choice if you choose to order wooden worktops from us.
Commonly mitre joins are used on worktops where there is little or no movement of the material with changes in temperature, such as composite or stone worktops. The mitre join can look quite neat in this scenario, but isn’t usually recommended for solid worktop surfaces.
A straight butt joint is secured using three (or more) worktop bolts which are secured into recesses on the underside of the worktop. This joint is very sturdy, but also allows wood to move as necessary as the temperature of the wood and surrounding environment varies. With a mitre joint, any movement – especially shrinkage – may show instantly at the front of the joint.
Another consideration that makes butt joints better is that it is much more aesthetically pleasing. If you attempt to line up the staves on a wooden worktop together in a diagonal formation, the natural variation in the grain and colour of the timber means that the join does not look neat.
However, if you feel that you must use a mitre joint, certain precautions must be taken; for example, if your worktop has a radius, please ensure that the “hockey stick” does not extend past the 10mm bull-nose radius. In any other circumstance we would strongly advise that you do not use a mitre joint.
For more detail instructions on fitting a worktop, please visit our Solid Wood Worktop Installation Instructions. For cutting any worktops we recommend the use of a worktop jig. Find out how to use them by reading our Jigs Nutshell Guide.
All the best,
Ben @ Worktop Express
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