For decades, laboratory casework consisted of wood with soapstone countertops. Thankfully, new advancements in technology have allowed for more variety when it comes to your casework options. When it comes to furniture and lab casework, it is essential that you learn more about material options so that you can purchase the right items for your space. Read on to find out which materials are best for specific spaces to build a lab that works for you.
In a laboratory setting, laminate is created with a melamine resin that creates a strong bond. Phenolic resin is added in and casework is constructed that is both decorative and functional. This material has a low cost and is easy to clean and maintain. On the negative side, this material is unable to withstand certain chemicals and bacteria and has low corrosive resistance.
This is the traditional choice for laboratory casework as it is durable and visually appealing. The material can withstand a certain amount of damage. However, wood will show discoloration, dents, chips, and scratches based on how the lab operates. This material is affordable and provides moderate durability. On the negative side, it has a low resistance to bacteria, fungus, chemicals as well as water and moisture.
Another option is to choose a steel material application for your casework. Most cabinetry created from steel is done so with furniture grade steel so that it has heavy-duty use. With steel, a special powder coat finish can be applied which helps to provide a resistance from chipping, peeling, and cracking. Steel casework is good for heavy duty applications, is more resistant to chemicals, scratching, bacteria, and fungus, and is moderately priced. On the negative side, it can dent on impact.
Go one step further with your steel application and use stainless steel to have a stronger, more resistant material for your casework and laboratory work benches. With a mix of nickel and chromium, stainless is resistant to corrosion and rust. The surface is non-porous, so spill all you like, and liquids will not be able to penetrate the material. When you want a high resistant to fungus, water, and moisture, this is the right casework material option. On the negative side, this is the most expensive material, it can scratch easily and dents easily on impact.
Consider Your Laboratory
When deciding on the material to use in your laboratory casework, you must think about how your space is used. Are you going to be experimenting with highly volatile materials? Will chemicals be used? By thinking about how the lab will be used, you can then choose a casework material that will be able to withstand the work of your laboratory.
Steel or stainless steel is an obvious choice if you will be working with liquid materials or items that might be damaging to other materials such as wood or laminate. If you are creating a lab with little experimentation, you could opt for the less resistant materials like laminate or wood.
Weigh the pros and cons of each material so that you make the right choice when it comes to laboratory casework. Contact us today to learn more about casework and the options we have for your lab setting.