Natural stone is a beautiful, unique and timeless wonder.
Understanding a little about the nature of marbles and granites will help you to appreciate the importance of a specialised cleaning and maintenance program.
Dimensional natural stone is quarried from massive deposits or formations, many millions of years old. The resulting blocks are cut to required thickness, and usually have one surface honed or polished. Tiles and slab panels are mostly cut to size in the originating factory, and then packed for further shipment.
Items such as bench tops, vanity tops and furniture are generally made to your specific requirements from polished random slabs. All of these finishers have something in common: each surface is essentially a cross section of the material - as it originally appeared in the massive deposit. A processed surface reveals the unmistakeable character of that piece of natural stone.
Natural stone is strong and stable to live with. It exudes a rich, organic, beautiful surface and has a confident, timeless “presence” in any environment.
The beauty of a natural stone is that no two pieces of slab or tile are the same of slab. It has its own unique colour, veining, and natural characteristics such as hardness and porosity.
Each has its own style. A one-of-a-kind presence and personality.
If your goal is a surface solution for the way you live that is truly unique, undoubtedly individual and purely personal, natural stone is a solid choice.
To help you better understand, we’ve put together some technical information.
There are two basic types of stone used in the building industry:
Natural stone can be grouped into three classes.
Here are the names and definitions of some of the more popular natural stones:
Marble is a derivative of limestone. It is a calcareous rock with a mid-range in its hardness, formed usually by fine grain crystals. This composition contributes to a mirror like polish finish, which is exceptional in stone. Marble is characteristically soft and easily scratched or etched by acids. There are countless types of marble from around the world.
It is suitable for internal use. The incorporation of marble will turn any room into a graceful and attractive living space.
Granite is an igneous stone of volcanic origin that is extremely hard, dense and very resistant to high wear and tear, with superior abrasion resistance and compressive strength. It is an ideal stone for use as a bench top, in flooring and in food preparation areas. Hundreds of colours and varieties of granite exist.
Granite is an excellent material for internal and external building use because of its hardness and resistance to all types of weather.
Composite stone (also called Engineered Stone) is a man-made surface product manufactured from up to 93% quartz (one of nature's hardest minerals) and high-quality polymer resins and pigments that are compacted under intense vibration, vacuum, and pressure into dense, non-porous slabs. The quartz slabs are then post cured, gauged to precise thicknesses, and polished to an enduring shine. This results in surfaces that retain the cool, tactile qualities of natural stone while offering design freedom with almost unlimited application possibilities.
Composite stone is ideal for virtually any interior surface from kitchen countertops, bathroom vanities and splash backs, to wall paneling and interior furniture, and also offers an attractive and versatile finish for commercial and institutional buildings.
The natural quartz gives the product depth and radiance while at the same time strength and consistency. It doesn’t require sealing because it’s non-porous. That makes it highly resistant to staining, very hygienic and easy to maintain. Today, Composite Stone is available in a wide array of colours ranging from subtle neutrals to dazzling bright colours.
Onyx is a calcareous material with a very fine, tight grain and many veins running concentrically to one another. This translucent stone is synonymous with luxury living. It takes a high polish, which contributes to its beauty.
Limestone is another sedimentary stone, it’s formed from calcite and sediment and comes in many earthen colours. It is rarely polished in slab form and is suitable for internal and external use.
Travertine is a crystallized, partially metamorphosed limestone, which because of its structure, can be filled and honed and is dense enough to be a type of marble.
Travertine may vary in colour from white to silver-grey, to yellow, red, and dark brown. It is easy to work with. The surface is suitable for a honed, polished or antiques finish, which can compliment any room. It is mainly used for internal applications; however it can also be used externally in warm climates.
Sandstone is a sedimentary stone that is primarily composed of loose grains of quartz sand that are rough in texture. A number of varieties are available.
Slate is a metamorphic stone that has a sheet-like structure. It is composed of clay, quartz and shale, and comes in a multitude of colours including reds and greens.