make a cast-iron, molten iron is poured into a mold. An enamel
coating is fired on for color, shine, and durability. These
sinks lesson noise and vibration more that many other materials,
although they can be extremely heavy. If you’re interested in
one of the bigger models, make sure your builder is comfortable
working with cast iron.
Every company seems to have its own secret recipe for composite
material. Whether a sink is made of quartz, granite, or other
minerals mixed with an acrylic- or polyester-resin base, these sinks
usually feature speckled color, resistance to stains and scratches,
and easy care.
its name suggests, a fireclay sink consists of a clay base, which is
fired at intense heat to produce a durable, glossy finish. The
glazed surface resists scratches and abrasion, and it won’t rust,
fade, or discolor. Some manufacturers offer fireclay sinks
with painted designs that are fired onto the surface, these add
considerably to the cost.
popular for bathroom sinks and fixtures, vitreous china has made its
way into the kitchen. This material is clay coated with a
fired-on glaze. Hard and nonporous, vitreous china boasts a
glasslike shine. It is similar to fireclay in construction,
durability, and cost, but vitreous china is less porous than
fireclay. Also, the nature of the construction process makes
it easier to mold larger objects, such as double-bowl kitchen sinks,
out of fireclay.
Known for its easy care and stone-like beauty, solid surfacing
consists of a polyester or acrylic base, with different ingredients
used by each manufacturer. Available in almost every
color of the rainbow-from vibrant primaries to subdued pastels, plus
patterns that mimic stone - it also resists scratches and chips.
Although many manufacturers now offer ready-make models, solid
surfacing is known for its customization potential. Because
the color runs through the entire material, minor burns or scrapes
can be sanded out with relative ease.
Stainless steel has come a long way from its humble roots as an
inexpensive builder-grade sink. There’s a new generation of
16- and 18-gauge sinks that are thicker and less noisy than their
less expensive predecessors. Stainless-steel sinks contains a
percentage of chromium and nickel, which is indicated by numbers
such as 18/10 (18 % chromium and 10% nickel). The metals
impart a rich glow and add corrosion resistance. You also can
choose a stainless steel sink in any number of finishes, from a
mirror like shine to a satiny luster.