I'm designing a bar counter, and am considering terrace decking planks for a counter top: enter image description here I imagine the benefit of it would be drainage of wet rings from cold glasses.

My questions are:

  1. Why it's not widespread?
  2. What kind of wood would be the best for it. The cheapest is pine, there's something called 'thermal wood' readily available marketed as durable option.
  3. How should it be covered and treated?
  • 4
    I would think it would collect water, not drain it and would be very difficult to keep clean.
    – Ashlar
    Sep 21 '16 at 20:11
  • 2
    Have fun sanding and finishing that surface too!
    – Steven
    Sep 21 '16 at 20:46
  • Along the lines of Ashlar's comment, it would collect a lot of gunk and grime and would be very difficult to clean. I cannot say whether or not it would pass inspection but I suspect a food safety inspector would not be particularly fond of it. That said, it would still look nice if you poured enough epoxy on top to flatten out the top surface (Edit: just as Graphus mentioned in his answer).
    – rob
    Sep 22 '16 at 23:14

Why it's not widespread?

A grooved surface can only act as drainage if it is installed at an angle. And a sloping bartop might not be that popular with patrons!

If it's not at a suitable angle it will act to collect the water and just allow it to sit there, also extremely unpopular with patrons I would guess, plus it would make it much harder to wipe condensation or spilled drinks up when the inevitable happens.

On top of all that think of the potential for that profile to trap dirt. A health inspector would probably take one look at it and 'ask' for it to be replaced.

How should it be covered and treated?

If you decide to go ahead with this material anyway I think there are really only two good options and that is epoxy or fibreglass. Both applied thickly enough to fill the grooving completely :-)

  • It also appears to be pine, which is not a very durable material, especially for a bartop which would usually see a lot of abuse. Most bar tops use hardwood, and then get a very thick and durable finish put on top. Oct 4 '16 at 10:59

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