**No glues, construction adhesives, epoxies, or similar should be used at any time when installing butcher block countertops. These adhesives will inhibit hardwood's natural movement and will create tension in the top and / or what it is adhered to. This will lead to warping or cracking in your top or damage to your cabinet’s frames or whatever it is adhered to.
**We build every piece to have a distinct top and bottom. This should be apparent either from the appearance of your piece or the profile (which is only applied to the top). We ship every piece top side up, but if you have any questions about this don't hesitate to ask.
1. Acclimate your hardwood top:
Once received, bring your top into the area where it will be installed, unwrap it, and store it flat and lifted off the ground. It's important to give the butcher block time to acclimate to the conditions in your house– 5 days is adequate for the wood's acclimation process.
Your countertop should not be left uninstalled for more than 10 days. If it remains uninstalled for longer than that period of time then you are risking any cupping or bowing by leaving it unsecured and allowing it to move freely.
2. Preparing your cabinets:
A. If your cabinets have open tops: Install blocking to create a surface that you can attach your butcher block countertop to. Use a quality grade of 3/4" plywood or 1x stock boards to do this. Install the blocking flush with your cabinet tops by first drilling pilot holes at an angle through the blocking and then screwing the blocking to your cabinets making sure to use properly sized screws so that you don't screw all the way through your cabinet wall.
B. If your cabinets have closed tops: Install furring strips. Use 1/4" plywood and cut these strips 2" shorter than the cabinet depth. Repeat every 12"-16". You can install these strips with kitchen and bath sealant. This provides a little air space and prevents cupping over time in humid environments or in environments with varied climates.
3. Determining and preparing your installation points:
Your installation points should be located along the perimeter of your piece. This includes any corners and should be repeated every 24” along the length and width.
The hole that you drill in each installation point should be 1/8” larger than the screw threads itself (for example: #8 screws require a ¼” hole). The oversized hole allows the wood to expand and contract freely along the width as needed.
4. Assembling pieces that have joints:
If your piece has either a butt joint or a miter joint you should have received the wood tenons and draw bolts needed to complete this step in the process.You will need an 11mm wrench or a 5mm allen key depending on the draw bolts you received.
Add a bead of flexible caulk to the inside of the joint and insert the wood tenons into the mortis milled along the inside of the joined edges on one of the pieces and bring them together. Once the pieces are together slide the draw bolts into the channels milled into the bottom of the pieces and tighten them until the pieces are snug. Remove any excess caulking that was pushed out the top and sides of the joint. Repeat this process on any joined pieces.
**The caulking is not necessary, but it is recommended to create a sealed joint and help prevent any water damage.
5. Position your piece for installation:
Position your butcher block as it will be installed. Find the center of each hole you drilled with the boring bit. Pre-drill into the butcher block using a drill bit adequately sized for your screws, making sure to mark your depth so as not to drill all the way through your butcher block.
6. Fastening your piece:
Either use a washer head screw that works with your hole size or fit each of your installation screws with a large fender washer. Tighten screws only to the point where they pull the butcher block snug with the cabinet– do not over-tighten. You should still be able to move the fender washer if you use some force. If you cannot move the fender washer, your screw is too tight and is preventing the wood from expanding and contracting as necessary and it needs to be loosened.
If your piece is 1” thick or less it is recommended that your screws thread at least half way into your piece and if your piece is 1.5” thick or greater it is recommended that at least ¾” of thread is fastened into your piece.
7. Sink and cooktop installation:
If you have an under-mount sink it is essential to caulk around the perimeter of the sink where it meets the bottom of your top. Not only will this prevent any water damage to the bottom of your piece, but it will prevent any mold or mildew buildup.
If your top is being installed with a drop-in cooktop and insulation is required per manufacturer’s specs then it is necessary to install as instructed to reduce the transfer of heat. This will prevent any damages that may occur due to long-term exposure.
8. Care and maintenance:
Please refer to our care and maintenance instructions in the “more info” footer of our website to extend the lifetime of your piece.
9. Supporting overhang:
You may refer to our overhang guidelines to determine whether additional supports will be needed for your order.
10. Standalone tops:
Some of our tops have been used for dining tables, desks, and more. The directions above are specifically related to tops that will be fastened to & fully supported by base cabinetry. Should you desire to use a different variation of attachment, please ensure that your top will be supported along the width to prevent cupping, or feel welcome to inquire about other stability options.
Please reach out to an Armani Fine Woodworking team member with any additional questions
regarding installation or how to care for your hardwood top.