Tag Archive | "stone"

Groves Releases 2017 Stone Handling Catalog

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Groves Releases 2017 Stone Handling Catalog

Posted on 06 January 2017 by cradmin

groves catalogGroves Incorporated has released the new 2017 edition of its “Stone Storage, Fabrication and Transportation Systems” catalog. The catalog features several new products, such as its Heavy-Duty Bundle Rack-Long; Heavy-Duty Backsplash Cart; and Heavy-Duty Drywall Cart, as well as a variety of fabrication tables and storage/material handling products for granite, quartz and numerous other slab and countertop related materials. It can be downloaded at Groves website or the company will send a printed copy to those requesting one.

You may also be interested in this article on Wood Powr Grip Vacuum LIfters.

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A Sad Reminder Why Slab Handling Safety Is Critical

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A Sad Reminder Why Slab Handling Safety Is Critical

Posted on 11 November 2016 by cradmin

This video put forth by the Marble Institute of America (now MIA+BSI) is a sad reminder of just why following the correct slab handling techniques with granite, marble, quartz or other heavy stones is extremely critical to the safety and health of fabricators and countertop fabrication businesses everywhere.

This is just the introduction to a much larger video offered by the association.

You may also be interested in this article on aerial lift safety.

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Improved Metabo Grinders Available from GranQuartz

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Improved Metabo Grinders Available from GranQuartz

Posted on 12 October 2016 by CRadmin3

granquartz-metabo-grindersGrandQuartz is now offering the recently re-engineered Metabo grinders. The improved grinders reportedly provide more torque and power with less vibration, allowing you to get the work done faster. According to the company the grinders now provide up to 50 percent more torque than the previous generation, up to 20 percent more power than previous models and up to 20 percent more overload capacity in extreme applications. The grinders are also equipped with a patented mechanical safety slip clutch that reduces the risk of grinder kickback. The anti-vibration systems can reduce hand/arm vibrations by 60 percent and extend wheel and tool life up to 100 percent (not standard on WEV-10-125).

You may also be interested in this article about polishing wheels from GranQuartz.

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New Ravenna Introduces Palazzo Stone Mosaic Collection

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New Ravenna Introduces Palazzo Stone Mosaic Collection

Posted on 08 September 2016 by CRadmin3

arbus-in-polished-soccoro-grey-nero-marquina-carrara-and-honed-cavern

Arbus in polished Soccoro Grey, Nero Marquina, Carrara and Honed Cavern

New Ravenna introduced Palazzo, a collection of mosaics by Sara Baldwin Design and Paul Schatz. The collection consists of 13 patterns that are handcrafted in Virginia from natural stone and were inspired by the expansive Italian palaces constructed during the Renaissance era. The Palazzo collection explores classic motifs from Roman and Byzantine design. Each piece of stone has been cut by hand, saw or waterjet and either honed, polished or left in its original organic state.

Sara Baldwin, founder and creative director of New Ravenna says of Palazzo, “Originally, I was developing a mosaic for a foyer and reflected on the purpose of the entrance to our homes. A foyer is often a small space that has the capacity to make a dramatic statement with elegant material and generous scale. Often we seek to bring outdoor elements inside a home’s design, which is why I love using natural marble. Its inherent striations are uniquely beautiful, reflecting the soul of the stone.”

Each pattern can be fully customized with the client’s material preferences to fit the scope of any commercial or residential project. Every mosaic in the Palazzo collection is made by hand in Virginia and can be installed indoors or out, on floors or walls. The collection is available at New Ravenna showrooms throughout the United States, Canada, Europe, Russia and Dubai.

You may also be interested in this article about the Dimension Stone & Tile Field Guide.

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FILA Offers MP90 Eco Plus Sealer

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FILA Offers MP90 Eco Plus Sealer

Posted on 01 August 2016 by CRadmin3

FILA MP90 Eco Plus SealerFILA introduced MP90 ECO PLUS Natural Look Penetrating Sealer. This water-based, solvent-free sealer is designed for use on polished or unpolished natural stone and polished porcelain tiles. MP90 Eco Plus helps to sustain the natural look of polished porcelain tile by preventing stains and making them easier to clean when they happen. The odor-free solution can be applied to surfaces with some residual moisture, which can reportedly reduce on-site application time by up to 80 percent.  The treatment is non film-forming and certified safe for food contact areas. MP90 ECO PLUS is LEED-approved and received GEV-EMICODE EC1PLUS certifications because of its low VOCs. It is suitable for use indoors and outdoors.

You may also be interested in this article about the Dimension Stone Design Manual from The Natural Stone Institute.

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Fabricator Profile: Rock Tops Is a Full-Service Fabricator

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Fabricator Profile: Rock Tops Is a Full-Service Fabricator

Posted on 06 June 2016 by cradmin

quartz_2-lgRock Tops Granite and Stone, LLC was located in Clovis, N.M., three years ago, but the company has since moved to Plainview, Texas. When the company was in New Mexico, it focused exclusively on fabricating quartz, granite and solid surface countertops for customers at big-box stores, but after the move, Rock Tops expanded into the retail market.

The characteristic of Rock Tops that makes the owners and employees the proudest is the fact that the company is full-service countertop fabricator that offers custom work and can complete quality work at lower prices than the competition. The prices at Rock Tops are discounted anywhere from 25 percent to 40 percent compared to the prices set by its competitors, and prices for granite installation start at only $35 per sq. ft.

The primary goals at Rock Tops Granite and Stone are to create beautiful countertops and to keep customers satisfied throughout the entire process. The company’s staff offers a diverse skillset and workmanship is always state of the art.

Read more of this Fabricator Profile here: Rock Tops

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Water Treatment Solutions Introduces Recycled Water Coolant Additive

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Water Treatment Solutions Introduces Recycled Water Coolant Additive

Posted on 09 May 2016 by cradmin

Water Treatment Solutions

This shows the potential improvement in water that can be made by using coolant

Water Cool from Water Treatment Solutions is a specially formulated coolant  that is added to the water in water recycling system for stone and quartz fabrication. It is designed to help stabilize pH levels, improve lubricity to extend tool life, keep water treatment equipment free of rust and manage biological contamination. It contains high levels of corrosion inhibitors to keep  equipment rust-free, even at dilution rates of 40:1. It also helps control septic odors in water and prevents filter cloths from needing to be changed prematurely.

You may also be interested in this article on Park Industries HydroClear systems for water treatment.

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M S International Releases Annual Product Brochure

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M S International Releases Annual Product Brochure

Posted on 17 March 2016 by cradmin

2016-02-MSIStone and quartz surfacing distributor M S International, Inc. has released its annual product brochure. The 2016 General Brochure contains design tips and information on new products. The brochure also has high-quality photography designed to inspire customers regarding their upcoming projects.

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2016 Countertop and Kitchen Trends

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2016 Countertop and Kitchen Trends

Posted on 19 February 2016 by cradmin

Although we are less than two months into 2016, this year’s countertop and kitchen trends have already started to become clear, and the Internet is abuzz with all the latest developments. As in past years, our annual countertop and kitchen trend roundup will include all of the relevant information we have sourced from across the Web combined with what we have been hearing from our audience, industry suppliers, countertop fabricators, other industry professionals and consumers.

Kitchens Going From White to Gray

gray tilesSeveral general kitchen trends will play a role in the specific types, shapes and colors homeowners will be choosing for their new countertops this year, and chief among is a softening of colors. A recent article published by Houzz declares that soft color palettes have taken center stage, knocking out glossy whites and bold primary colors.

In another trend report, Daltile claims that white has officially been ousted by gray not only in the kitchen but also in other rooms of the typical American home, including the bathroom, living room and bedrooms. I must’ve been ahead of the curve because we just had our living room repainted in oyster gray and chose a similar gray to accent the white ceramic tiles of our new backsplash.

However, I am certainly not alone, as the Washington Post reports that 61 percent of renovators painted their own walls gray, beige or white within the last year, with green and yellow trailing at 10 percent and 8 percent, respectively.

“Charcoal, grays and even neutral pastels like pale blue, pale green-gray and tinted whites are the new alternative to the standard white,” said Jane Lockhart, a popular interior designer in Ontario, KitchenAid-Black-StainlessCanada. She also said that new and remodeled kitchens will include light wood tones, such as walnut, white oak and whitewashed wood in place of bolder accents.

In a sharp contrast to white and other lighter colors, all-black kitchens have begun to make an appearance this year, and the color is being contrasted with metallics to create a look of luxury. Decorator’s Wisdom, a DIY decorating blog, reports that Kitchenaid has already gambled on this trend by releasing a new line of kitchen appliances in black stainless steel.

Kitchen Becomes the Heart of Home

This year, the trend to transform the kitchen as a central meeting place and utilitarian common room as expanded beyond belief. With the ability to take in information at will and on the go thanks to smartphones, hanging out in front of the living-room television is largely a thing of the past.

Couples, families, housemates and even single individuals are increasingly forsaking the comfort of the living room and are going straight to the kitchen where freestanding tables are quickly becoming passé. People now want the convenience of upgraded countertops, and with the range of support brackets available for overhangs, it is certainly no wonder. Islands, side counters and nooks are making kitchen tables inefficient, impractical and obsolete.

Countertops: Thin Is In

When it comes to countertops, the word on the street is the thinner the better, and compact sintered surfaces have come in to fill that demand. However, not everyone has the moolah for such extravagance, and granite and quartz remain top competitors. However, before we get to specific surfaces, let’s take a look at colors and styles.

An Angie’s List article on 2016 countertop trends written by Haley Johnston of Moss Building & Design hits the nail on the head when it states that “white marble tops the list of the most popular kitchen countertop colors.” Every brand, no matter the specific material, has come out with a slew of white marble-like designs. Some people with money have sprung for actual marble, but those who know better go for quartz or solid surface, and upscale laminate designs have entered the market and infiltrated the homes of people who could afford much more.

When it comes to style, homeowners have followed the eye-catching, floor-to-surface design that has come to be known as waterfall countertops. This is really just a countertop that extends beyond the horizontal plane to include an integral vertical surface of identical composition and color. Even if consumers decide against waterfall countertops, the trend for 2016 is to choose mitered, yet inconspicuous edging, which is notable for creating a sleek appearance with continuous lines.

A final style guideline for countertops, which has been great news for fabricators, is that they are quickly replacing kitchen tables. Where kitchen tables once stood, countertop islands are being built to match the surrounding countertops. These islands often include overhands and stools, and in addition to kitchen tables, they have largely replaced home-office desks. Home businesses are more popular than ever, and the kitchen has emerged as a central workstation.

Countertop Surfaces for 2016

As far as surfacing materials go, the big winners in 2016 are as expected: quartz and granite. Quartz continues to make the strongest gains, but granite remains the most popular surface after laminate, which once held its position solely on price but has come into its own with the help of modern designers and improved durability.

  • Natural Stone – Beyond laminate, granite remains the leader in countertop materials, and with good reason. It looks fantastic, has durability and is more affordable than ever, not to mention unique. However, it is losing market share quickly as quartz takes center stage in the arena. When it comes to natural stone countertops, though, many of us forget that there are alternatives to granite. Soapstone and slate have garnered loyal followings, and some end users are adamant in their promotion and defense against criticism, which has newly emerged this year. While many prefer natural stone, 2016 has brought out the factions.
  • Engineered Stone – Not too many years back, quartz remained relatively unknown to the masses, but its exceptional properties and range of colors and patterns have quickly brought this surfacing into the mainstream. Many fabricators and designers reckon that quartz will take second place only to laminate in the next decade.
  • Concrete – Glass fiber reinforced concrete (GFRC) is also edging its way into the market, but it has not been gaining as much strength as it did only a few years in the past. Likely it is held back by its need for sealant and a slower fabrication process. However, those who do it well have found a solid niche for themselves, and the look of masterfully customized GFRC is incomparable to anything else.
  • Sustainables – Eco-friendly surfacing of all types is quickly gaining ground, but perhaps Butcher Blockmore so with commercial and industrial builders than in the residential sector. The odd aspect about the rise of environmentally friendly surfacing is that it is being driven by consumers while largely seen as impractical or too expensive for these same consumers’ homes. On the other hand, hundreds of communities across the nation have successfully promoted sustainable lifestyles, and the trend to do all that is possible for the perceived health of people and the planet has been taken up by both baby boomers and millennials. (Read more about sustainable and eco-sensitive countertop products here, at our sister website www.GreenSurfaceResource.com.)
  • Sintered Compact Surface –Sintered compact surface is, by far, the hottest countertop material available – on an upscale price point. This seems to be the future or next generation of countertop material and new competitors are entering the market to get a share of the spoils.
  • Solid Surface – Still holding onto third place in material popularity, is solid surface material, a close cousin or perhaps parent to the newer quartz surfacing/engineered stone, originally branded by 9203CE_Dusk_Ice_(3)DuPont as Corian. However, fabricators report it is being relegated more to the bathroom, and its real growth seems to be in the commercial sector. Like it’s younger quartz-based relative, in the past, it has been driven by its nearly unlimited designs along with its hygienic properties. However, many predict it will be overtaken in the kitchen by engineered stone, which is growing doubly fast as solid surface. That said, lately, there has been an influx of new companies into the solid surface market and some unique new color options, so perhaps, this will spawn awareness and a return to growth for the product, but that remains to be seen.

Consumer Reports Weighs In

Caesarstone Symphony GreyThis year, Consumer Reports broke out and published an article on the top countertop trends of 2016, and it was very specific. Rather than general trends, this most-respected of consumer-review organizations named names, and the choices were largely based on the new products presented at Design & Construction Week in Las Vegas.

Formica LaminateThe surfaces Consumer Reports is backing as this year’s trends are as follows:

  • Wilsonart Solid Surface – Dusk Ice
  • Formica Laminate – Gray Josef Linen
  • Caesarstone Quartz – Symphony Grey

But for all of the 2016 trends, the real question from most countertop fabricators is how to keep pace with the economic upswing. Both new structures and renovations continue to make a steady comeback, and the ability to read and forecast trends, while inherently risky, often works to increase revenue, no matter how you choose to go about it.

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Coverings 2016 Announces Keynote Speakers, Featured Sessions

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Coverings 2016 Announces Keynote Speakers, Featured Sessions

Posted on 11 February 2016 by cradmin

In today’s competitive environment, the pressure is on to understand and respond to lightning-fast changes in design, business and technology. To help you stay on top of your game, Coverings has put together an impressive lineup of four Keynote Sessions and eight Featured Sessions. Add sessions by these speakers to your “must-see” list at Coverings 2016. The show runs from April 18 to 21 at McCormick Place in Chicago and registration to attend the expo is completely free.

Keynote Speakers

Don’t miss the Coverings 2016 Keynote Sessions featuring some of the industry’s top innovators and influencers. Covering every aspect of the versatile tile & stone industry, these sessions belong on your “must-attend” list.

Keynote sessions have a minor charge to secure your place and include either a hot breakfast or plated lunch.

coverings keynote

Featured Session Speakers

Coverings is the best educational and purchasing event in North America. In addition to the extensive conference program and exciting Keynote Sessions, Coverings offers Featured Sessions that are not to be missed. The free Featured Sessions at Coverings 2016 will connect you with the knowledge and information you need to succeed in the tile & stone industry.

coverings featured speakers

Read more about the show at www.coverings.com.

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