How to Perfect Concrete Templating: Expert Tips and Craft Concrete Cures

Tune in to The Concrete Podcast this week for an extensive conversation on templating methods applicable to concrete countertops, sinks, fireplace surrounds, and more. Brandon offers insights gathered from two decades of hands-on expertise.

Additionally, we delve into the recently concluded Fundamentals workshop and introduce our new philanthropic initiative, the CCC, CRAFT CONCRETE CURES. This initiative aims to unify the concrete community to support fellow artisans in times of need. If you're interested in joining us, please don't hesitate to get in touch.




Hello, Jon Schuler.


It's a beautiful morning.

It's a beautiful morning, isn't it?

It is.

It is.

It's a beautiful morning.

You're supposed to do the chorus.

I don't.

Know that whole song?




Dude, it's like a 19.

I don't know when that song came out, the 80s maybe.

I remember.



When I was a kid, I was always playing on the radio.

It's a beautiful morning.

It was a good song, great song.

Maybe the Best Song I know, the chorus, but that's all I know.

Well, I didn't know who sang it, but it was a good song.


I mean, I'm, I I'm on my computer.

I could look it up, but I'm not going to, dude.

Yesterday we wrapped up the 1.5 Day Fundamentals Workshop from Concrete Design School.

It went as good as a workshop could go.

It was.


It was just great on all levels.

The attendees were amazing.

We had a couple of alumni in the class had been to a hero's quest but wanted to you know they got all that advanced information, but even to come and get the basic building block information as well.

Yeah, that's awesome.

Yeah, it was awesome.

And everybody was engaging and interactive.


And we made pieces.

We actually templated pieces for my studio.

So it was you know a real world scenario where we actually made real templates and then made the molds and cast the concrete, cured the concrete, finished the concrete.

It was just a lot of fun.

It was a good time and we did it in a day and a half.


You know there was there was some people had opinions, you know, and some other training groups that you can't teach fundamentals in a day and 1/2 it takes five days and I think my response would be I.

Think that depends on your experience and how long you've been doing it.



It might take them five days.

It took me a day and 1/2 and we nailed it At a day and a half.

We we covered everything we sought to cover and more.

We had time set aside to answer questions to show photos to to go you know people how do you do this how do you do that.

And and we'd go through it all.


It was just a great time phenomenal time.

So super excited about it.

We have another one coming up February 10th and 11th.

You can go to if you wanna sign up for that, but it was just a lot of fun.

Well, that's awesome.

And you know, just to add to that, if if I ever heard that, which I have not, I have not heard that, you know, it should be 3 days instead of five or or whatever that you can't do it in one.


I personally haven't heard that.

But what I would say if if that was a debate anywhere out there with anybody, is that I don't see why you couldn't do it.

And if it did get strung out for whatever reason, maybe find it, you know, want to add more days.


But if it got strung out, when people come for fundamentals, fundamentals are pretty quick and they usually, you know, pretty simple.

It's the foundations, you know.

It's the.

It's the building block.

So you know, templating, how to mix your concrete, how you know how to.


Tools, how to use the tools?

How to batch concrete?

How do you factor like?

I mean something simple and I keep going back to it.

We've talked in the past, sorry is how quickly you got me lined out on the track saw.

Yeah, we went through that a lot.

Of track saw.

I don't use a track saw and and and so it only took a minute and so fundamentals is really, you know, very simple and very easy.


It shouldn't be much more than a day and a half to two days.

And sorry, I could go off on this.

And I truly believe regardless of where a person thinks their experience level lands, it's so easy for a person who's been doing it for a long time to ignore the fundamentals.


So having going back and refreshing on anything again from you know steps and mixing your concrete to steps and curing your concrete and you know what all of this means versus some of that bad habits.

I think a lot of us can develop fundamentals is and it doesn't have to be it's they're pretty simple and go pretty quick.


I agree.

And you know, one of the feedback I got from the attendees, which was really good, was that it was so good to come into a professional shop and see how it's set up.

And you know, I was thinking about that because there's demo days.

The distributors or manufacturers of materials will do demo days and how people come in where they'll show how to use the materials.


And those are cool.

But the downside of that is you're going into a warehouse and you know, they just have pallets and mix sitting around and they're mixing up some stuff important, but you're missing the entire experience And that entire added benefit of seeing a real working professional shop laid out well, that's clean.


That is, you know, 20 years of trial and error.

You know, over the 20 years there's been many iterations of how my shop's laid out and where I'm at today is different than I was five years ago, 10 years ago, 15 years ago, 20 years ago, 20 years ago is a hot mess, you know, and I've just been progressively sharpening that sword and getting it better and better and better.


And so that was that was feedback I received.

Those people are really excited to come to a shop.

Another part of that, Jon, is you know the Concord Design School I just want to touch on quickly is the quality of the experience quality.

So for us, the quality of information is paramount.

The everything that we teach are are things that we use in our daily practice for the last 20 years of being professional concrete artisans that started our businesses and built them up.


This is what we do.

And another part of that is the quality of the space.

If somebody comes to a class, and I've done classes, I did a class many years ago at a distributor's place and it was horrible.

It was cold, it was dirty, it was dingy.


We're sitting in folding chairs and the quality of experience was bad, you know, and it was unfortunate because it was a concrete design school class that we did at this other location that just really kind of reinforced the idea in my mind, that people are coming, they're paying good money and they need to have a good experience when they come to our shop.


It's clean, it's bright, it's comfortable.

You know it's warm in the winter, it's cool in the summertime and it's reflective of what a professional concrete artisan space should be.

And so the quality of of that is important as well to to us.

So when somebody comes to this, they have a great experience.


So anyways, I just want to hit on that real quick because that's important to me.

Quality is in our core values all the way whether we're talking concrete and the whole 9 yards, you know, So having that experience is kind of an extension of your of the core values.


Yeah, yeah.

And if somebody, Yeah, if somebody, it feels like they made the ultimate mistake and went to a training class that just didn't deliver on what they expected for whatever that was.

I just want to reiterate, we've talked about this before, but I just want to reiterate, you're always welcome at a concrete design school workshop.


We'd love to have you so you know, if you had a bad experience.

Of experience, yeah.

Regardless of a person's, you know, there are people are always welcome.

And I think, and I know I keep circling back to this, but I I think the idea, the singular idea of bringing fundamentals really into the light will help.


From the absolute newbie to a person who let's let's call him the DIY, that just wants to make their own vanity but really wants to make something nice all the way to again, let's say something like like me using myself an example, blah blah blah, years of experience.


Well, you know, sometimes going back in a nice refresher on fundamentals, it can be so helpful to to break out of your bad habits and get back in line and make quality product.

Exactly, Exactly.

Where I was going to go was, you know, maybe you went to another class and had a bad experience.


Don't let that shape your perspective of what training is supposed to be, because it's not all training is like that.

So I just want to you know, say to people because we've had people in our classes that had gone someplace else and had a bad experience and this is different.

So, you know, I I encourage you to to retro.


But yeah, the fundamentals, Jon, I'm excited about it.

It's something that we overlooked for a lot of years.

We were just focused on the advanced, we're focused on fabric forming, on upright casting, on dusty creed, on all these different things.

We're focused on the advanced.

And we were completely, it was an oversight on our part.


We were completely overlooking the fundamentals and unfortunately a lot of people went to bad training and got off on the wrong foot and spent many years doing things the wrong way until they landed in our class and they're like, oh, I or just.

Gleaned bad.



Well, but they say that's not what I was told.

You're like, what?

What did they tell you?

No, no, no, no, do not do it that way.

But it kept being just reinforced it, man, we should really catch people early on in their journey and show them the right way to do things.



Well, and that's part of it.

As you very well know, we've talked to this how many times over the years we focused on the advanced because and this is maybe my own arrogance now talking.

I thought so many of the fundamentals were, I don't know.


I mean easy like, well, who doesn't get that?

And but it's it becomes clearer and clearer as we come along that.

And I keep going back to some very advanced people and you read, you know, some of the comments they make or you talk to them in a phone call and then you realize that like, oh wow, no, you you've forgotten what concrete One O 1 is.


And so let's come back to the fundamentals.

And some of the problems they may be having or difficulties in their own shop is because some of the early foundation blocks of the fundamentals have been missed, forgotten, or just plain never learned.


Or just learned from somebody that didn't know what they're doing?

Oh yeah, I learned inappropriately.


And they just got bad information, you know, bad information in, bad information out.

And so if you took a class with, you know, somebody that doesn't do this for a living and they gave you information they read in a book that was written 50 years ago, you're you're going to have a rough time of it.


And so then when you land here and you're like, well, I didn't know you could do it that way.

Well, that's how we do it.

That's what we do on every client project.

This is the way.

And so that blows our mind.

So I think it's important that we.


Or you know, similar we've seen in Back into my Chemistry days is you read articles written by somebody who let's say you know never worked with the antibiotics or never worked with the medications and this and that.


And they they were maybe well known for writing the article.

And then when the article was challenged either by peer review or other, it just fell apart miserably.

And you know, and that can happen in any industry.

I know it's happened in ours a lot.


And so yeah, man, I'm, I'm really, really excited to bring fundamentals on board.

So I think it's great.


So February 10th and 11th, we've had registrations.

It's 100% on.

We'd love to have you, so please check it out.

Concord Design School.


Next thing, Jon, is something that's near and dear to my heart, and that is.

This one I'm excited about too, yeah.

Don't steal my Thunder, Jon.

Don't steal my Thunder.



We go, What is it?


My God.

What is it?

Get it out before I say it.

So the the philanthropic aspect of our industry is important to me and it's been important to me for a long time.


I've done fundraisers over the years for concrete artisans like Dusty.

When he broke his heels, we came together as a community and raised funds.

When Brandon Browning's shop was hit by by a tornado, we came together.

You know, I've also done fundraisers.

Caleb Lawson?


Yeah, Caleb.

Yeah, Yep.

I've also done fundraisers for for organizations I feel strongly about, like Saint Jude's and other organizations.

So over the years I've done things where we've raised funds for those.

So philanthropic's been important to me and it's important to you as well.

And we've discussed this when we started Kodiak and really got it going you and I were talking about we really want to do some kind of community focused philanthropic aspect of Kodiak.


We've been kind of 20 different ideas.

And so I think I I've been 20 different ideas for a name and the name that I'm coming up with.

I like acronyms.

You like acronyms.

ECCUHPCGFRCOPP, you know me, you know.


So I like acronyms and CCCI like and I'm thinking CRAFT CONCRETE Cures is a good name for a loose knit organization of people that come together to help our fellow artisans in a time of need.

Yeah, I know.

I'm excited about it, man.



So for me it's like a philanthropic loose knit organization spearheaded by Kodiak Pro, but where we work together with the community.

When somebody is is having a hard time, whether that is financial, whether that is health, whether that is environmental like their their shop was hit by a tornado, whatever it is we we can come together as a community.


We can kind of be the organizational force behind it.

We can come together as a community to either raise funds, donate materials, donate training, whatever we can do to help these people get further along in their journey and help them in their journey and so craft craft concrete cures.


Craft concrete cures.

Yeah, yeah, CCC.

I love the whole craft concrete, craft concrete.

Yeah, Craft Concrete cures.

I like it.

Yeah, so I I registered the domain name Concrete

Concrete will be the domain for it.

But if you're interested in being a part of this, you're interested in joining forces in a philanthropic effort To help your fellow artisans reach out to us.


We'd love to have you on the team.

And if you're somebody that's maybe struggling right now, maybe there's something going on in your life.

Unfortunately, as much as we think we're, we know everything going on in industry, we don't.

And so if there's something going on and you need some help, reach out to us and we'll see what we can do to help you and to put together some some effort to to help in that situation and.


I'll try to reach out to even.

I mean we just talked about materials and training and you know there's so many things that I think could be very helpful the people because you know, I know for us personally we can only raise so many funds.

So I'll say I'll try reaching out to various vendors and and organizations and you know see what we can put together because there's a there's a lot of thing that craft concrete cures craft concrete could could help people.


I think and I'm dude, I hope everybody else could get excited about it.

I think it'll be cool.

I know a lot of people have talked about similar things so meaning you know a way of coming together and and helping community and I'm going to reach out to the some of those people too and see what efforts can be made and they spoke about it but you know maybe in their life at the time it it just didn't quite come together so.



I'm hoping us spearheading something like this can get it off the ground and I look forward to helping a community as much as we can.

Absolutely, absolutely.


I mean, I I've done things on my own, and there's only so much I can do.


But if we can get a group together, if we need a collective together, if we can come together as a community, and it's not just me, but it's me and you and them and that guy and this person, we all come together as a force multiplier and think of all the good we could do.

So yeah, I'm excited about craft concrete cures.


Craft concrete, craft concrete cures.


So there's that.

Craft concrete, yeah, yeah.

OK, so that's all the news that I have.

We're gonna talk about, we're gonna talk about today.

Jon Schuler.

How to?

How to yes?

Sir, now this is actually one you and I have spoken about that I struggle with, mostly because of the materials I've been using.


So yeah, I know this is a great one.


Is that what you struggle with?

Yeah, my etcetera, etcetera is my blah, blah, blah, my Earpods.

Oh God, yes, yes.


Jon, this is something that you and I were discussing because you were asking what do I use?

And this is templating.

How to template.

And this was a a big aspect of our fundamentals workshop was templating.

Because templating is a very important skill to have if you're going to be making artisan craft concrete for customers and you need to go into a space.


You know walls are never square.

Cabinets are never set perfectly to the walls.

There's always these situations where you need to make an on site template.

Maybe it's a fireplace around.

I've made templates for all kinds of things over the years.

Huge large format tiles that need to fit a room, but the room's not square, so you need to make a template of the room to make the tiles.


There's been a lot of different situations where I need to make a template, and when I first started, the template material I used to use, which turns out you you currently use, was Luan, otherwise known as door skin.

It's very thin plywood and luan, so I'd rip it down on a table saw.


I think Dusty still uses Luan, but I'd rip it down on a table saw into strips, say 3 inch wide, strips by 8 feet long.

You take it to a job site you know you could you could maybe score it with a knife, but it's a little bit difficult to score and break cleanly and hot glued together.


But you'd end up with these. 10 snips.

Yeah, 10 snips.

But you'd end up with these big pieces that then you'd have to in the field determine where you want seams.

You need to go ahead and divide it cuz you can't get this 20 foot template in the back of your truck, so you gotta cut it up.

And you know there's just there's downsides to that material.


That's what I started when I first started my company 20 years ago.

That's what I started with.

But I had a friend and this friend, his name is Sam Graham.

Such a good name.

Sam Graham and Sam and I, dude, Sam is awesome.


I still love Sam.

So Sam and I, I met Sam at a trade show in Phoenix when I was 24 years old, and I had a concrete booth and he was 24 years old, years old, and he had a Corian booth right across from me.


And he was doing really cool thermoformed Corian and just all this cool stuff with Corian, right?

So the way I loved Concrete was the way he loved Corian.

And I had two, two employees.

He had two employees.

My shop is 1200 square feet.


His shop is 1200 square feet.

We were like just the same person, just two different materials.

And but he was further along in this journey as far as knowing how to do things.

And so he had, you know, worked in other big companies making solid surface stuff and learned their their methods.


And so we're talking about templating.

And he was like, oh, dude, yo, no, we use fluted polypropylene.

And I was like, what's that he's like, well, it's like that plastic cardboard, you know, the cheap signs on the side of the road, like election signs or, you know, buy a mattress this weekend for half off, whatever it is, we buy houses, cash those signs.


You see, that's a plastic cardboard material, and that's called fluted polypropylene.

And the benefit of that is you can rip it in the strips.

And so if you, let's say you go to a plastic supplier and that's where you're gonna buy it from, is a plastic supplier that sells to the sign industry or whatever, you know here in Wichita, it's Regal Plastics.


Regal was also in Arizona, but when I was in Arkansas, it was Mr. Plastic.

But there's no matter where you live, there's gonna be some kind of plastic supplier fairly close by.

But you go to them and let's say you buy 10 sheets that are 4 foot by 8 foot sheets and then you.


Stack those 10 sheets and rip them through your table saw all at once in three inch wide strips.

Well, the table saw blade will just slightly melt the edges together, which is a good thing because it creates these bundles of 10 strips or five strips or whatever you want.

But it creates these bundles that are self adhered.


So when you throw them in your truck, they stay together and that's pretty cool, Super cool.


I mean these are just like the little little benefits and then you get to the job site and you just flex it and they all pop apart.

And so then when you're there you don't need 10 stamps or anything.

You just use a a a carpet knife.


But I'm gonna go through the process Jon of but let me, let me let me finish telling you what the benefits are.

So the benefits are you can easily cut it with a knife.

You can easily scribe it to a wall with a knife.

So let's say there's some crazy bump outs in a wall.

You can push it up to it and just use your knife and and you know, your hand to go along the wall to scribe the plastic to that shape and then push it in so it's nice and tight, which is easy to do with that material.


Luan's a lot harder, especially 'cause it has grain to it and you're trying to like cut it and maybe need a Sander to try to do it.

It's it's a lot more difficult.

This you can do with a knife.

But the big, big, big benefit is when you do a big template, maybe it's AAU shaped kitchen and it's, you know, a total of 60 feet of lineal countertop.


When you're done, you can just fold it up.

You don't have to break into pieces.

You can just fold it up, take a spring clamp, clamp it together and put it in the back of your truck.

Go to your shop and then unfold it and it it takes its shape again.

So that's the biggest benefit in my opinion is the flexibility.

So but anyways, OK so let's go through the process of how to make a template.


There is a process.

Are you ready?

Yeah, 'cause I'm ready because I I'm getting ready to throw a question at you, 'cause I haven't used this stuff, but my hot clue gun, I have the industrial hot glue gun.

Oh, hot glue.

I think you said hot clue.


Yeah, I don't have a hot clue.

Well, I want to give you a hot glue here in a minute I.

Got I got no hot clues.


So I have the industrial GE hot glue gun that you know has the extra hot glue.

How does this stuff in your opinion, how would that hold up to it?


Does it because it is a what it is it going to melt under that condition?


So I use the three M Scotch Weld hot glue gun, which is an industrial hot glue gun that's super hot as well.

Yeah, OK.



I think that's what I have.

Yeah, the Scotch Weld is orange.



So that's three, three M, you said.

GEI didn't know GE made hot glue guns.

Oh, I'm sorry.

Yeah, yeah.

Well, that NO3M.

Three M OK, yeah.

So I have the same gun has like little short glue sticks like they're 3 inches long.


So that's Scotch Weld.


And I'm.

Not a baby.

I get the big sticks.

Well, if you have the true industrial one that has short glue sticks, that's by design.

I know, man.

Yeah, man.

The real ones had the big.


Big sticks?

No, no.

I think you got the big stick for a different reason, but no, you the short.


Stick compensating with my.

You use your thumb, you put it in this little thing, you use your thumb to push.

And they and the Scotch, well, they're short glue sticks.

And there's a bunch of different varieties of glue sticks they sell for like, different applications.

Woodworking, metal fabrication, plastic, all this different stuff.


And Three M has like a chart that shows which glue stick to buy for your application.

And and the glue sticks are super expensive by the way, the glue gun itself was probably like a hundred 150 bucks, but the glue sticks are like 3 or 400 bucks for a box.

But the box lasts you for years.


So you know, I think the last time I bought a box was like four or five years ago and I still have it.

So you know it's just it's one of those things you bite the bullet, you buy it and then it's kind of a non issue.

That being said, while we're still talking about glue sticks before we start on this whole thing or glue guns is if you're doing a lot of templates on site, which I don't do a whole whole lot because I don't do a whole lot of countertops anymore, but I used to.


But if you do a lot of countertops, a lot of the times when you're on a job site the electricity is off at that job site.

A lot of times on a construction site the electricity is off and that's problematic if you have a electric cut glue gun.

And so Sam, his guys had propane powered hot glue guns and the benefit of that is you don't need electricity #1 and #2, they're instantaneous.


Where hot glue gun that I use, you got to plug it in and wait 5 minutes for it to really get going these you pull the triggers and it's instantaneous propane.

So I always, I thought those were so cool I never bought one.

But if you're doing a lot, maybe you're a company that's doing a lot of templates.


You might want to buy a propane hot glue gun.

Well, it's interesting you're saying that and I'm just kind of cutting to this chase.

So here's number one cuz See, I don't.

I mean, I was listening to you about the to the guns and I'm like, man, my my guns were nearly 400 bucks.


Were they?

Well, let me put my emails.

I'm gonna just put in.

I'll see if we can find when I bought mine.

So I.

Literally just went to Amazon.


Go to Zorro.

Go to Zorro.

Don't go to Amazon.

Then it was more I just saw a Zorro 1 pop out for 1200.

All right, let me see here.

I just typed in three M hot glue gun.



Pops up.

Yeah, Zorro right there.

That's one of.

That's the one I had the 120 Volt blah blah blah 6.

This says it 145599.

Here's my order.


I bought 3 M Scotch.


I paid $134 on Amazon for mine and this was in 2013 so I don't know.

Let me see if this thing still even exists.

Let me click on the link currently unavailable.

Oh, that.


Could be, yeah 'cause the ones on Amazon.

Now the three M, hot melt, quad, rat converter, palm trigger, blah blah blah is $362.00.

And those are the ones that get the extra hot.

Yeah, hold on.

And the other one.

Hold on, Jon, They're the three M, you know, 345.


I mean, those are the.

Ones Yeah, you're right.


So I'm.

I'm looking it up.

And the one I spent 134 on in 2013 is now 360 or 308 dollars.

Yeah, it's crazy, huh?


But yeah, what you what you what you do want to look for IS3M Scotch Dash Weld Hot Melt Applicator is what you're looking for.


And let me let me look up.

Let me just cut and paste this.

Yeah, now I want to look at one and see where the propane ones 'cause that sounds a lot a lot easier.

OK, so here here's this.

With those, go ahead, I'm.

Sorry, here's this SO3M.

There's different ones.


The one I have is the thumb press and that one's the one I have is now 608 dollars.


Yeah, nuts.

But there's one that's the palm press. 1 kind of.

You have the long glue stick, not the short glue stick.

And that one's $141.00 at MSC Industrial Supply.


I'm looking at it right now.

I just did a Google search on three M hot melt applicator.

So there is a three M hot melt applicator at MSC Industrial Supply, MSC Direct.

The MSC part number, I'll just give it to people if they want to look it up.

It's 77326742 and this is $148 or I'm sorry, $141.88.


A $141.00.

So that's not bad.

That's reasonable 141.

So anyways, let's not go down this hot mount glue gun thing.

We'll talk about this all day, right?


Are you ready though, Jon?

I'm ready.

Are you ready?


Am OK, let's do it pins.


Of needles.

Pins of needles.

I'm about to give you a hot clue.

OK, so let's just use the example of a kitchen, because that's what you're gonna be doing.

And the the process is the same whether it's a window sill or it's a fireplace, hearth or whatever.


So there's the depth.

And a normal kitchen countertop is gonna be anywhere between 20 to 22 inches typically in depth, so from the wall to the front of the cabinet.

So let's just say for this hypothetical example that is 22.

OK, I'm gonna cut a bunch of strips, a bunch of pieces of these strips at say 25 inches approximately around there around 2526.


I don't care. 27.

Get crazy with it, It doesn't matter.

But just cut a bunch of strips, OK?

And those are gonna go front to back.

And so on.

Cabinets, there's gonna be a vertical wall where every cabinet meets the next cabinet, you know?

So here's the cabinet that's four feet.


Here's a three foot.

There's a 2 foot, but there's the two walls joined together and that's where I'm gonna put my strips.

And I'm gonna put a little dab of hot glue on the top of the cabinet on the top of the wall and stick that strip touching the wall and overhanging the front of the cabinet.


So it's gonna protrude out, pass the front of the cabinet into the room however many inches he cut bigger.

So if it's 26 and that's 22 cabinets, it's gonna stick out four inches.


So I'm gonna go around boom, boom, boom, boom, boom.

On every one of those walls I'm gonna put 2 little dabs of glue and stick a strip all the way around the kitchen.


And this goes pretty quick 'cause you just gang cut a bunch of strips and just pop, pop, pop, pop, pop.

And then when you get to the end of the cabinet then you're gonna take a little bit more care and you're gonna put a couple dabs of glue and you're gonna stick it so it's right to the edge of that cabinet.

You know, it's not hard to do, it takes you all three seconds, but you just boop and use your hand to make sure it's right to the edge and you do it on on the sides.



The the next step is you're gonna take long strips and you're just gonna start on the back wall and I set the strips against the back wall.

Then I kind of flip it forward so I can see exactly where I need to put the glue and just boom boom boom on every one of those front to back strips, those 26 inch strips I cut, I put glue and I flip that strip over and hold it down.


And I usually have a helper so we can all kind of hold it down and push it tight to the wall and we just boom, hold it, hold it for 510 seconds for that glue to set good.

And you should continue that around that whole back wall you go around.

So now that's done.

The next step, and this is what I love about this whole process, is you determine how much of an overhang you want on the front of that cabinet.


And so, you know, hopefully they have the doors on site.

If they don't, then you know the thickness of the door and you talk to the client.

How much overhang do you want?

I've done a lot of kitchens that have 0 overhang.

They're just flush with the front of the door, which is a very European look and I like it a lot.

So when it's a nice modern kitchen, smooth doors, and they have the countertop end flush with the cabinet doors, that's a nice look.


But a lot of times people want it to extend past an inch, you know, past the front of the doors.

And that's what I did in my kitchen.

So at that point, if they have the door, you measure out an inch past the door and make a tick mark on that piece that's protruding out into the room.


So with a sharp edge, make a tick mark, boom, next one, measure out, Boom, next one, measure out, boom all the way around.

That's gonna be my overhang.

And then I apply glue and stick a strip and just split that, that tick mark I made with a Sharpie all the way around.

You score.


The pieces are sticking out too far.

That overhang, we made it bigger on purpose.

We score it, snap it back, cut it off.

So it's so it's not protruding at all.

Cut it back.

Pop, pop, pop, pop, pop.

All this in a normal kitchen, all this, we're we're not even at 10 minutes yet and we're done right.


And then the next step, which is very important, is to go around and make notes.

And the notes are critical because once you leave, you forget everything.

There's no reference point, yeah.

We all do that.

The important notes, and I've learned this over the years, of what's most important, the important notes, is number one, you need to mark every place you want a round over.


So when you're later on building your forms, you're gonna apply silicone to create a round over.

So that's gonna be a nice eased edge.

And you want that on the front edges where you're gonna be leaning against the countertop, but you don't want that on the back 'cause that's gonna create a round over on the back, and that's for dirt and water.

And you want to be tight to the wall being a round over on the front, so you need to indicate that on your template.


For me, I just make an X, so just go along anywhere.

We're going to be doing caulk.

I just put X about every foot XXXXX all along those edges.

And then where it's a wall, like let's say it's hitting a wall or it's hitting a vertical cabinet, a tall cabinet, I'll make a note.


Wall, wall, wall, you know, all the way around.


The next things you need to to note is the center line, specifically of the sink cabinet, and it's pretty easy to do if there's the doors already installed.

You can just eyeball straight down the opening in the door and just make a perfect tick mark on your template of the center line of the doors.


The center line of the doors are more important than the center line of the cabinet, meaning that sometimes there's a filler strip or whatever.

But the alignment that people are going to see visually when the countertops are on is the center line of the door.

So you want the sink and the faucet to be centered on the centre line of those cabinet doors more than you want it to be centered in the cabinet itself.


Because not the the doors aren't always centered on the cabinet is what I'm trying to say.

So the important reference point is the centre line of the doors.

So I'll just eyeball down the centre of the doors and make a tick mark.

I make a note center line of cabinet and then Jon, I reach up underneath the template and I take the Sharpie and I trace the inside of that sink cabinet up on the underside of my template.


So the template's overhanging, you know, it's overhanging the side walls of the the cabinet.

I reach up underneath and I trace it and that has saved my butt so many times because when the client gives you the sink template later, there's been a lot of times that sink's not going to fit.

And so when I get that template, that cardboard template or paper template and I unfold it and I match it up to the centre line of that cabinet and then I can see the actual size of the cabinet.


There's been many, many, many times that it's it's incompatible with that cabinet And I'm glad I made that tracing so I would know because had I not it would have been a problem when we showed up on the job site.

So that's an important, that's a very, very important step that a lot of people miss when they make a template is tracing the the underside of the sink cabinet or tracing the sink cabinet on their side of the template.


And then you just go around and you you make any notes dishwasher and I'll mark the the width of the dishwasher and marks where that's at.

Any other important notes stove, I'll I'll mark where that's at.

So you just make all the notes you can.

Then you write this side up in form or this side down in form depending on which which way your template is.


If you're doing upright cast then you'll you'll write this side up.

If you're doing upside down like I do, then you'd write this side down in form.

So that way you know when you get back to your shop and you flip it over that that's the way it's supposed to be.

Because the other thing you're going to do is when you get back to your shop, you're probably going to transfer the notes on the front to the back and then once that happens you're like which side's which?


I don't know.

You know, they both have notes on it and I don't remember which way it went.

So if you write this side down in form, then you know when you go to form it later to flip it over.

So that's down.

So that's what I do.

I also write the date.

I write the client name, I write the colour if they've chosen the colour so that's on the template and make any permanent notes and then I fold it up and I take it with me.


The other thing is if you are going to need to to break it into pieces.

So let's say you're doing a kitchen that needs to have the template or the the countertops broken into two or three pieces.

Make pertinent notes on the center line of cabinets and the edges of cabinets just make tick marks of of what those are.


Make little notes.

Center line of cabinet, Edge of cabinet, center line of cabinet, edge of cabinet.

Because later on you don't have to make the determination at that moment.

Later on when you get back to your shopping laid out and then decide I'm gonna break it right here or I'm gonna break it right here.

But you need to have a reason, a visual reason for the the seam line.


You don't just have a seam in this weird location.

It's not centered on the the drawer pools or not centered on the edge of a cabinet.

So if you have purpose with your seams, it looks great.

I've gone into kitchens where there is no purpose to the seam.

It's just this arbitrary location, and it looks out of place.


It draws your eyes to it.

It it just looks sloppy and amateur.

So if you just make notes of center line of cabinet, edge of cabinet, center line of cabinet, edge of cabinet, you don't even need it yet, but you'll need it down the road.

It's good to have that information on your template.

And then I take it back to my studio.


I unfold it.

We make a determination of, OK, now that we got it here, we take measurements.

All right, well, you know a lot.

A big a big constraint for me is I cast on 4 by 8 melamine.

So if it's AL shaped, kitchen in this direction is 6 feet, in this direction is 8 feet.


Well, it's not going to fit on a 4 by 8 sheet of melamine.

So I need to make a determination of where I'm going to break it at.

So it's going to fit.

This piece will fit on this 4 by 8.

This piece will fit on this 4 by 8.

So once you make that determination then I will take some additional strips of fluted π propylene.


I'll draw my seam line with Sharpie and I'll just but two pieces of polypropylene up to that seam line, hot glue it and then cut my template right there.

I'll just cut through it.

And then I have two temp 2 templates that now join together perfectly.

I have one I can form part A, another I can form Part B, and when they go together it's a perfect fit on the job site.


So that, Jon, is how I make a template.

Any thoughts?

Or do you have anything you do differently?

No, that's better than me right now using the Luan tin snips.

You never cut it just right, you know.

So I'm always adjusting everything you just described.


I mean when I, we just finished a vanity I just a couple months ago backsplashes that went up the wall and we're trying to get.

I mean these walls were all wonky.

You know it's it's an older home and lots of stuff that's been done to it over the years.

So as I'm trying to scribe the wall, you know, with A and I got my Festool Sander and I'm trying to sand the loo on and I'm trying to stick it up there, you know, all of this material, the fluid this would a fluted, excuse me, polypropylene would have been so much easier like ridiculously easier craft concrete cures.


I'm really excited about that.

And I'm serious about that.

I'm serious about anybody that wants to be a part of that.

Please reach out and we can start working together.

Because this, I do want this to be a community effort and a community organization where we come together as a community and I think a lot of people want to do things to help others, but they just don't necessarily have the organizational network to do it.


So we want to facilitate that organizational network.

So that's what we want to help with.

Yeah, excited.


All right, buddy.

All right, buddy.

As always, thank you very much and we'll talk to you later.

Adios, adios.


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