A honed or polished surface is achieved by grinding the cut face with successively finer grades of abrasive. A honed finish stops short of a full polish and is a viable surface treatment for flooring as well as for vanities because they scratch less. Softer materials as Limestone or Travertine cannot always be polished and routinely offered in a honed finish. Other marbles (Carrara) and harder lime stones that can be easily polished are sometimes honed to take advantage of the simple fact that minor wear and tear is not obvious on a surface that has an overall sheen rather than a mirror finish polish.
A polished surface is the only way to fully appreciate the colour and pattern of natural stone and is very popular. When a surface “closes” over and a polish is achieved the true colours of the natural stone can be fully appreciated, along with the intricacies of the pattern or veining. A polished surface is not an applied finish and cannot easily be replicated. Accordingly, a polished surface can be very easy to maintain, in addition to looking great.
Regular cleaning is important to guard against the build up of potentially damaging influences. It is advisable to reserve cleaning cloths and mops exclusively for use on your stone finishes – residue from other cleaning products can work against your best efforts! We recommend the use of clean white (or colourless) cloths for benchtops and vanities. There is no problem using synthetic sponges, but they do tend to leave streaks on a highly polished surface. Cooking oils, exotic recipes, sauces, wines, fruit juices and soft drinks are all present in abundance at any family gathering or party. It is important at any time to clean up spills as soon as they are detected, the longer they left unattended the greater potential for damage is, as marble and granite are porous products with a surface that can be penetrated.
Sealing a vanity top – as we always do before our finished products leave the factory – will protect against everyday spills and staining, but there are some influences found in the bathroom that will attack stone itself which will manifest itself by etching or removing the polish. Be careful with perfumes, toothpaste, and nail polish solvents – it is advisable to find a suitable glass or ceramic tray to stand your toiletries in. Don’t use harsh alkaline or acid based cleaners. Similarly don’t use abrasive cream cleaners or scouring products of any type. You can contact us and enquire about our marble and granite care products, which we have available for you in our showroom.
These man made materials are excellent for kitchen bench tops and vanity tops as well as for floors and furniture.
- resistant to scratching and chipping
- high impact
- stain resistant
- resistant to acid
- not effected by light and temperature
This materials are a agglomerate made of quarz, glass, granite or marble, and high quality polymer resins and they are available in a wide range of colours and textures. They are an attractive and practical alternative to natural stone.
Marble is formed from granular limestone or dolomite (i. e. rock composed of calcium or magnesium carbonate) that has been recrystallized under the influence of heat pressure and aqueous solutions. Commercially the term marble includes all calcium rich rocks, which can be polished, and it is an intensely hard substance, which will undergo little wear over a period of several hundred years.
Marble consists of a mosaic of calcite grains that are rarely show any crystalline form under the microscope, they are traversed by minute cracks, or in more severely deformed rocks, the grains show stripes which may be elongated in on particular direction or even crushed- they often occur interspersed with other rock types.
The purest of the metamorphic marbles are the white marbles from Carrara in Italy. These were preferred by Michelangelo and Antonio Canova, and are still favoured by modern sculptors.
The different character and colouration of marbles from different regions around the world is due to a variety of factors. Impurities may have been present in the original limestone, which reacted during metamorphism to produce new compounds. If present in large quantities these may colour the marble green, brown, grey or black. Bands of calcium silicate rock alternating with marble or forming patches or nodules can produce interesting decorative effects, but this type of rock is hard to finish because of the great difference in hardness between the silicate and carbonate materials.
Other forms of marble can result from later physical deformation and chemical decomposition of marble, often producing attractive coloured or variegated varieties such as green and yellow serpentine. Beautiful veined marble is formed when Earth movements shatter the rock, producing fissures that are afterwards filled with veins of calcite.
Travertine is in fact a variety of Limestone formed in a highly specific manner, although its aesthetic qualities are normally associated with the marbles. They are generally characterised by crevices and pits, and sometimes holes passing through the whole slab. These are sometimes filled with resin prior honing and polishing, but are often left in the tumbled or aged state.
Travertine is a dense banded rock composed of calcite (Calcium carbonate) which is formed by the evaporation of river and spring waters. Spring waters often deposit it as they flow from the ground. Deposits frequently resemble frozen waterfalls as they build up terraces around a spring, such forms normally occurring in areas of geothermal activity. Travertine also occurs in limestone caves in the form of stalactites and stalagmites.
These materials are available in a range of natural colours and can be supplied honed, worn edge or tumbled. The material polishes well and is thus often used for walls and interior decorations.
Granite is a light coloured plutonic rock found throughout the continental crust, most commonly in mountainous areas. It consists of coarse grains of quartz (10-50 %), potassium felspar and sodium felspar. These minerals make up more than 80% of the rock. Other common minerals include mica (muscovite and biotite) and hornblende. Granites are the most abundant plutonic rocks of mountain belts and continental shielders. These occur in great batholith that may occupy thousands of square kilometres and are usually closely associated with quartz monzonite, granodiorite, diorite, and gabbro.