The stone floors you're interested in could very well have a history that stretches back millions of years. This is how
long it can take to form some types of stone! High heat and intense pressure combine to create blocks of stone like marble, granite, travertine, slate, and limestone, all
of which are used for stone flooring. Over time the earth's crust grows and erodes, pushing these minerals up, where they
grow into enormous rock deposits that form quarries.
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Making Stone Flooring
Stone is extracted in multi–ton chunks from the quarries using high–speed equipment
studded with diamonds. Quarrying was once done by hand, but the process became much simpler with the advent of diamond wire
cutting systems. As the hardest natural mineral, diamond is able to cut through solid stone with ease, making stone
quarrying a much faster and more efficient process.
Each stone block that is to be used for stone flooring is taken to a plant to be cut into multiple slabs using high speed
gang saws. Featuring blades about 12–15 feet long, gang saws make simultaneous parallel cuts into the stone blocks at
very high speeds, and they have to be cooled with water to prevent overheating. Even so, it still takes a gang saw about two
days to completely cut a 20 ton block of stone. From there, each slab is sent through a polishing machine for the desired
finish, which might be a bright polish or a rougher texture. Each slab is also calibrated at this time, working the surface
down until the slab has a fairly uniform thickness.
These stone floors are next taken to a fabricator's facility, where the slabs are customized. This process includes
shaping and polishing the edges using diamond–studded saws or router bits, and sometimes cutting the slabs down to
create stone floor tiles. From there, these brand new completed stone floors head to the store to be sold.