ARCH - A curved masonry construction spanning an opening and supported at its sides or ends. Usually made from cut stone voussoirs, (interlocking wedge-shaped blocks) that carries downward pressure out to side walls or lateral abutments.
BASALT - A dense textured (aphanitic) igneous rock of a lava flow or minor intrusion composed essentially of labradorite and pyroxene, often displaying a columnar structure. Basalt is relatively high in iron and magnesia minerals and relatively low in silica, generally dark gray to black, and feldspathic. A general term in contradistinction to felsite, a light-colored feldspathic and highly siliceous rock of similar texture and origin.
BROWNSTONE - A reddish-brown sandstone whose color results from a high amount of iron oxide as interstitial material, typically used as a building material.
BRUSHED FINISH - Textured surface obtained by brushing a stone with a coarse rotary-type wire brush.
CLASS 2 PERMEABLE BASE: Consists of 70% 3/4" gravel, 20% plaster sand and 10% pea gravel.
CLEAVAGE - The ability of a rock mass to break along natural surfaces; a surface of natural parting.
CLEAVAGE PLANE - Plane or planes along which a stone may likely break or delaminate.
COURSED VENEER - A wall treatment achieved by using stones of the same or approximately the same height. Horizontal joints run the entire length of the veneered area. Vertical joints are constantly broken so that no two joints will be over one another.
CUTTING STOCK - a term used to describe slabs of varying size, finish, and thickness which are used in fabrication treads, risers, copings, borders, sills, stools, hearths, mantels, and other special purpose stones.
FINISHES - Surface treatments. The surface of stones may be finished in a number of different ways. In general, smooth surfaces tend to emphasize color and veining, while rough finishes tend to subdue the veins and markings. Commonly available as:
- Bush-hammered - A pounding action that develops a textured surface
- Flamed - A rough finish that is developed through intense heat
- Smooth - machine finished by saw, grinder or planer
- Honed - dull sheen, without reflections
- Polished - mirror gloss with sharp reflections, the smoothest finish available, resulting in a high luster (gloss) appearance
- Machine Tooled - 4-cut, 6-cut, chiseled, axed, pointed, etc.
- Chat Sawn - irregular and uneven markings
- Split Face - concave-convex
- Rock Face - convex
- Thermal - planed surface with flame finish applied by mechanically controlled means to create surface coarseness
- Brushed - obtained by brushing the stone with a coarse rotary-type wire brush
GRANITE - A fine to coarse-grained, igneous rock formed by volcanic action and consisting of quartz, feldspar, mica, and accessory minerals. Granite-type rocks include those of similar texture and origin.
HAND DRESSED (also known as ROCK FACED ASHLAR) - A finish given to both veneer stone and cutting stock, created by establishing a straight line back from the irregular face of the stone. Proper tools are then used to cut along the line leaving a straight arras and the intended rustic finish on the face.
HEARTH STONE - Originally the large single stone or stones used for the floor of a fireplace; now most commonly used to describe the stone in front of the fire chamber and in many cases extending on either or both sides of the front of the fire chamber.
LEED RATING SYSTEMS - The Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Green Building Rating System™ is a third-party certification program and the nationally accepted benchmark for the design, construction and operation of high performance green buildings. LEED provides building owners and operators with the tools they need to have an immediate and measureable impact on their buildings’ performance.
LIMESTONE - A sedimentary rock composed primarily of calcite or dolomite. The varieties of limestone used as dimensional stone are usually well consolidated and exhibit a minimum of graining or bedding direction. Limestones that contain not more than five percent magnesium carbonate may be termed calcite limestone, as distinguished from those containing between five and forty percent magnesium carbonate, and from those that contain in excess of forty percent as the mineral dolomite. Recrystallized limestones and compact, dense, relatively pure microcrystalline varieties that are capable of taking a polish are known as marbles.
NATURAL CLEFT - This generally pertains to stone formed in layers in the ground. When such stones are cleaved or separated along a natural seam the remaining surface is referred to as a natural cleft surface.
ONYX - A variety of quartz in crystalline calcium carbonate form. It is
characterized by a structure of parallel bands, each differing in color or in
the degree of translucency. Onyx is considered to be a marble because it
can take a polish.
PORPHYRY - An igneous rock in which relatively large and conspicuous crystals (phenocrysts) are set in a matrix of finer crystals.
QUARTZITE - A compact granular rock composed of quartz crystals, usually so firmly cemented as to make the mass homogeneous. The stone is generally quarried in stratified layers, the surfaces of which are unusually smooth. Its crushing and tensile strengths are extremely high. The color range is wide.
RISE - Refers to the heights of stone, generally in veneer; the vertical dimension between two successive steps.
ROCK (PITCH) FACE - Similar to split face, except that the face of the stone is inclined to a given line and plane, producing a bold appearance rather than the comparatively straight face obtained in split face; stones laid up in a masonry wall with natural faces as received from the quarry, or dressed to resemble natural stone.
SANDSTONE - A sedimentary rock consisting usually of quartz cemented with silica, iron oxide or calcium carbonate. Sandstone is durable, has a very high crushing and tensile strength, and a wide range of colors and textures.
SAWED EDGE - A clean cut edge generally achieved by cutting with a diamond blade, gang saw or wire saw.
SAWED FACE - A finish obtained from the particular process employed to produce building stone. Varies in texture from smooth to rough and is coincident with the type of materials used in sawing; characterized as diamond sawn, sand sawn, chat sawn or shot sawn.
SLAB - A lengthwise cut of a large quarry block of stone approximately 5'x 8' in size.
SLATE - A very fine-grained metamorphic rock derived from sedimentary rock shale. Characterized by an excellent parallel cleavage entirely independent of original bedding, by which cleavage the rock may be split easily into relatively thin slabs.
SMOOTH FINISH - The surface texture produced by planer machines plus the removal of objectionable tool marks; also known as smooth planar finish or smooth machine finish.
SOFFIT - The finished underside of a lintel, arch, or portico.
SPALL - A stone fragment that has split or broken off the face of a stone, either by the force of a blow or by weathering. Sizes may vary from chip size to one and two man stones. Spalls are primarily used for taking up large voids in rough rubble or mosaic patterns.
SPLIT FACE (SAWED BED) - Usually sawed on the stone bed and split by hand or machine so that the face of the stone exhibits the natural quarry texture.
TOLERANCE - Dimensional allowance made for the inability of men and machines to fabricate a product of exact dimensions.