What You Should Know About Stone

Natural and precast stones vary significantly in their geographic origin, mineralogical composition, and physical and mechanical properties. There are numerous types of stone to select, with each one exhibiting specific qualities of compressive strength and abrasive resistance.

  • Marble
  • Granite
  • Slate/Flagstone
  • Sandstone
  • Limestone
  • Precast Stones

Additionally, these qualities would dictate appropriate diamond-blade selection to effectively handle cutting requirements. Your choice of stone requires a specific type of diamond Blade.

General Characteristics of Stone

The complex nature and variables of Natural and Precast stone make it difficult to generalize their overall physical and mechanical properties.

Unless the operator has had experience in cutting a particular stone, there are methods that can help predict the stone's sawability, and so determine the “best” diamond blade. The American Society of Testing and Materials (ASTM) recognizes several physical property measurements that can identify a stone's hardness:

Uniaxial Compressive Strength (UCS)
Measuring basic rock strength parameters. Commonly measured in Pounds Per Square Inch (PSI)

Cerchar Abrasivity Index (CAI)
Measuring a rocks abrasivity for determining cutting wear rates. Defined by a graduated numerical scale: lower numbers indicating less abrasive qualities, and therefore greater hardness

Mohs Hardness Scale
A scale of hardness applied to minerals that ranges from 1 to 10, and comparatively indicates a mineral's scratch potential. The higher the number the harder the mineral.

Shore Scleroscope Hardness Test
A dynamic indentation hardness test using a number to indicate the height of a rebounding hammer off the surface of the material. The higher the number the harder the material.

It is recommended to review all data relating to a stone's hardness and abrasive qualities to effectively choose the proper diamond blade. No singular Property Measurement Test can define the characteristics a stone would exhibit during the cutting process. As a general reminder for stone diamond blades: tests and industry experience has documented that stone exhibiting a greater degree of hardness and abrasive resistance require softer bond matrices.