Copper 101



(COPPER 101)

Copper is the oldest metal known to mankind. Copper has many uses besides copper sinks and it is used in plumbing, electrical wiring, cookware, etc. It has extraordinary antibacterial properties killing bacteria and germs such as E. Coli in 1 to 2 hours as opposed to days or even weeks for stainless steel and porcelain. This innate feature of copper makes it an optimal material for kitchen and bathroom sinks.

All of our products are 100% hand made from recycled copper and reclaimed wood. This tradition of copper crafts and artwork has been handed down from generation to generation by the families of our Mexican artisans since 1538.

We offer 3 main types of copper sinks:

  • Bathroom sinks
  • Kitchen sinks
  • Bar & Prep sinks

The most important factors when buying a copper sink are:


PURITY OF THE COPPER – All copper sinks should be made out of pure copper. Artesano Cooper Sink uses recycled copper that is 99.76% pure and lead free. Be aware of copper sinks manufactured in China and India due to their tendency to use copper alloys containing lead and low copper purity.

 COPPER THICKNESS – This is another area were we excel. The thickness of the sinks is important specially when manufacturing Vessel sinks and large pieces such as Kitchen sinks. Copper thickness is measured by a copper gauge number; the lower the gauge the thicker the sink. So a gauge 14 sink is thicker than a gauge 18 sink.

For our Bathroom Vessel Sinks  we offer sinks of gauge 14, these thick pieces are very unique and exclusive in the industry. We also offer gauge 16 and gauge 18 bathroom sink. Our Kitchen and Bar sinks are made of true gauge 16 therefore do not need sound insulation because they are not made from the thinner gauge copper sold by most of our competitors.

Even though gauge is important, the hammering and the different heat treat processes are vital factors in the strength and rigidity of a sink.

Here is a graphic representation of our gauge sizes:

Our recommended gauges are:

  • Undermount Bathroom sinks should be made of true gauge 18 or gauge 16 depending on the size of the sink.
  • Vessel Bathroom sinks should be made of true gauge 14
  • Raised Profile Bathroom sinks should be made of true gauge 16
  • Kitchen and Bar sinks should be made of gauge 16
  • This is one of our sinks called DALI in a true Gauge #14.

MANUFACTURING PROCESS & QUALITY OF THE SINK - Our copper sinks are created entirely by hand using the same ancient “martillado” (hammered) technique used centuries ago. Copper is smelted over wood fires in order to form sheets of copper and then literally hammered into shape and hand finished until the desired sink is created. The sink’s surface is then treated to accelerate the aging patina, this process is called "patinado" and it is done under heat giving the surface of the copper sink its characteristic color and durability.

 The most relevant factors to be considered during the manufacturing process include how the corners are constructed (interior edges and corners have to be smooth and free of burs), the welding technique, the finishing process and the proper dimensions and tolerances for ease of installation. Generally large Kitchen such as Farmhouses will require welded seams, make sure they are TIG welded using copper rod. All of our Farmhouses sinks use the TIG welding method.

 Also keep in mind when considering a smooth surface copper sink (specially a Kitchen sink) that this type of surfaces will show scratches and dents much more than a hammered surface.

Each sink is one of a kind. 


There are several installation types and every type is easy to install, and so the decision about which type to choose should depend mostly on the style of sink you want in your bathroom, kitchen or bar. We recommend you have the sink installed by a professional, someone who best understands plumbing procedures. A professional installer will be better able to adapt the installation to your particular needs.

The most common SINK INSTALLATION TYPES are:

  • UNDER MOUNT SINKS - Rim is flat and generally not exposed
  • DROP IN SINKS - Rim in rounded and is exposed
  • VESSEL SINKS - They can be fully or partially exposed
  • RAISED PROFILE - They are also called Self Rimming Sinks, where a small portion of the sink seat on top of the counter.

UNDER MOUNT SINKS - A style of sink that is positioned under the cutout of the countertop. The rim of the sink is flat and it is used to adhere the sink to the bottom of the countertop allowing the sink to sit flush underneath the surface of the counter. This type of sinks is also called Under Counter. Examples of this type of sinks are our Tamayo, Gordo and Bravo Bathroom Sinks.

DROP IN SINKS - These styles of sinks are dropped in to the cutout in the countertop with the rim (lip) exposed above the counter. The rim is what keeps the sink in position. These sinks typically have rounded rims and are also called Countertop or Top Mount. An example of this type of sink is our Ovalado Rolled Bathroom Sink. 


VESSEL SINKS - A style of bathroom sink that is designed to sit on top of the counter and be completely or partially exposed (show only a portion of the sink). When fully exposed the drain is leveled with the counter. These types of sinks are also called Over the Counter. You can see these types of sinks in Vessel Sinks Bathroom Collection. Some examples are : Dali, Degas and Bucket One Vessels.


RAISED PROFILE SINKS - They are AKA Self Rimming Sinks. A style of bathroom sink that is actually a hybrid of the drop in style and the vessel style. This type of sinks can be dropped into a countertop like a drop in sink, but kept partially exposed similar to a vessel sink. Generally these sinks have an apron (1 to 3" generally) that sits on top of the counter. Examples of this type of sinks are our Vitali, Doisneau and Avedon Bathroom Sinks. 


FARMHOUSE Kitchen Sinks are also called Apron Front sinks because of the apron panel that sits just in front of the sink and is left exposed for decorative purposes once installed. Kitchen sinks are Under Mounted. Examples of these types of sinks are our Farmhouse Straight Apron or our Farmhouse Curved Apron.



The way to keep your copper sink in optimal condition is to keep it clean and dry. For basic cleaning, simply use a mild soap and water; other cleaners are not necessary. A good habit is to wipe the sink dry after each use, especially in hard water areas. For extra protection, products such as Renaissance Wax may be applied to the copper surface periodically. These seals will help maintain the luster of the copper and provide better water runoff. 

Do not use corrosives such as chlorine or concentrated vinegar, abrasive cleaners or copper cleaners. To prevent discoloration or damage to the finish, avoid acidic substances (lemons, pineapples, citruses in general, ketchup, wine) left in contact with the copper surface. For example, when cutting acidic fruits let the water run so the fruit juices do not linger on the copper and thoroughly rinse the sink. These substances may remove the patina finish of a copper sink. However, if an acidic product removes some of the patina, do not worry the patina will naturally return over time – generally in a matter of days - and will once again match the surrounding area. During this period of re-patina, avoid waxing the sink. 

For bathroom sinks try to avoid leaving toothpaste and liquid hand soaps - on the sink for extended periods of time and make sure you rinse and dry the sink well. Some of these soaps have very strong chemicals. 

When using copper kitchen sinks it is very important not to place pots and pans extremely hot on the surface of the sink or leave them unattended – especially overnight - since the finish can be damaged or removed. But once again do not get discouraged since copper has an endless ability to regenerate the patina surface naturally. With regular use the copper will regain the patina finish and match the adjacent area. 



Enjoy our dedication.