Storage before Installation
- Upon receipt open the parcels to check for any damage, if there is any, please call us immediately.i
- If they are not being installed straight away, repack them.
- Finish all major building work before your worktops are delivered.
- All render and plaster must be thoroughly dried out.
- Store them flat and off the floor supported by evenly spaced blocks.
- If they are to be installed in a room with an Aga, they should be acclimatised in this environment for several days before being fitted.
- Don’t leave them in an unheated room – especially a garage.
- Don’t leave them where they will be exposed to high levels of humidity.
Installation of Worktops
It is imperative that the worktops receive at least two coats of oil on all surfaces and edges before installation. Particular attention must be paid to end grain edges and all surfaces which are hidden after installation. If this is not done, the worktops may bow and split as a result.
Like all natural products, wood will ‘move’ in service with changes in the ambient humidity. Tops should be firmly fixed in such a way that they can accommodate this movement whilst preventing bowing. Drill oversize holes from the underside of the carcass using a washer between the screw and the fixing point, alternatively use L-shaped brackets. This should be done at 200mm intervals front to rear and a maximum of 600mm intervals along the length. Corner joints should not be glued when the bolts are tightened. However, a clear silicone may be used, especially in wet areas.
Any minor marks caused by installation can easily be removed by lightly rubbing the area with 240 grit sand paper or fine nylon wool. Any dents caused by dropping objects on the top, can be removed with a damp cloth and an iron. Please contact us for further details.
The oil should be applied using a soft paintbrush. Remove any excess after 15 minutes with a soft cloth. It may be necessary to lightly sand the tops, with a 240 grit paper, between coats to remove any roughness. Alternatively, you can apply the oil using nylon wool, never use wire wool as it will cause discolouration.
The First Weeks Of Use
Proper care and treatment in the first few weeks will pay great dividends in the long term. A course of oil treatment is imperative to build up a surface that is impervious to stains ensuring a long and trouble free life. Water should not be allowed to lie on the surface but wiped off immediately. Hot objects should not be in direct contact with the surface. It is only the oil that protects the surface whilst bringing out the natural beauty of the wood. After the initial coats, tops require re-oiling when water on the surface smudges rather than forms defined droplets. When the tops are oiled they will immediately darken, but will take a few months to mellow down to their final colour.
When delivered, the wood is pale straw in colour. With the application of sunflower oil it darkens considerably, but any variations in the colour of the boards are actually exaggerated. However, with further applications of oil, these variations fade rapidly. Within several months, all Iroko assumes a deep, uniform, chestnut brown patina irrespective of original colour. Do not use Olive Oil as it will not be absorbed by the wood. You will need to oil the worktops every day, last thing at night, for the first week. Then once a week, with the interval between treatments gradually increasing until you are eventually just wiping the worktops over with an oily rag once every 3-4 months. It is important to remove excess oil after 15 minutes to prevent a ‘Gummy’ surface forming.
Ash, Beech, Cherry, Maple, Oak and Walnut Worktops
With your order will be a ½ litre can of Finishing Oil, a blend of oils, resins and dryers, resistant to water, alcohol and food acids. This is usually enough to give the tops their first two coats before installation. Four or five further coats will be needed. A maintenance coat about twice a year, or when the surface looks dull will be all that is necessary. It is important to shake the can well before use to thoroughly mix the contents. Cans of oil should be stored in a cool dark place with the lid firmly sealed. Do not store the oil where it may be exposed to frost or sunlight. Once opened, cans of oil should not be kept for more than 12 months. When you require more oil please contact us.