Tag Archive | "Stone World"

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Stone World Publishes Guide to Sourcing Quartz

Posted on 13 December 2017 by cradmin

Before purchasing quartz slabs and working with them, fabricators should understand that there are some major differences between sourcing quartz and natural stone. For instance, most natural stone that appears identical probably has identical properties and performance, but this is not the case with quartz.

To help fabricators learn these differences, Stone World has published the Natural Stone Guide to Sourcing Quartz on its website. According to Stone World, the price and quality of quartz varies from manufacturer to manufacturer for several reasons, including customs duties, exchange rates, government politics and freight. However, the article covers the two most important variances: raw ingredients and manufacturing processes.

Quartz is primarily made of silica crystals that range in size from 3 mm to powder, but forming it into a slab requires a resin binder, catalyst, ultraviolet (UV) light inhibitor, pigment and a few pieces of specialized machinery for mixing, molding, compressing, curing, gauging and polishing.

Quality Challenges

Although the International Surface Fabricators Association (ISFA) established a quality standard for quartz several years ago, the organization does not have the authority to enforce it. Because of this, determining quality requires a fabricator to consider several challenges.

  1. Polymerization and curing
  2. UV light inhibitor to prevent premature fading
  3. Proper dimensions and workmanship
  4. Slab flatness
  5. Continuity of color, veining and particles
  6. Color reproducibility
  7. Gloss levels

Manufacturer Responsibilities

Manufacturers and suppliers have a responsibility to deliver quality products that can be proven with the following points:

  • High-quality equipment and processes
  • Quality ingredients
  • Slabs include detailed identification
  • Spec data sheets available
  • Properly maintained equipment
  • Warranty program

For more information, read the full article from Stone World.

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Tragic Loss at Stone World Magazine

Posted on 10 February 2014 by cradmin

Michael Reis

Michael Reis

Stone World magazine’s editor/associate publisher Michael Reis, 43, died suddenly on Feb. 7 while vacationing in Jamaica. Reis was a well-respected fixture in the stone industry after having worked on the publication for 20+ years. He not only helped shape the publication, but was a stout advocate for the stone industry in general, having received recognition and awards from a variety of stone-related entities.

As a tribute to his impact on the industry, he is being remembered via posts on the Stone Fabricators Alliance (SFA) website here. And more information about him and his years in the industry can be found on the Stone World website here. Cards can be sent to:

Alex Bachrach
Stone World
210 Route 4 East, Suite 203
Paramus, NJ 07652

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A Busy Year for the Countertop Industry

Posted on 29 August 2013 by cradmin

Chuck Sawyer photoGuest Blog by Chuck Sawyer of ISFA

This year has not only been busy and full of exciting changes for the International Surface Fabricators Association (ISFA) but also for the entire countertop industry. Partnerships and alliances are expanding within the industry and among closely associated industries, such as woodworking. Opportunities for general business education and countertop fabrication education have also never been greater or more successful than they are now and will be in the near future.

One of the ways that ISFA is helping countertop professionals to expand their knowledge and network with peers is by putting together Grass Roots Gatherings, hosted by industry supporters like Cosentino, Dixie Plywood and Oldcastle Surfaces. In addition, ISFA established a series of CEO Roundtable discussions in Cincinnati and Chicago, with upcoming events in Boston and Seattle. And with the popularity of the Roundtable events, we are planning a new version aimed at the new generation of business leaders in the countertop industry. This new event will be a conclave where the next generation of CEOs can learn about and share experiences on the topics necessary for leading successful businesses.

Organizations and businesses in the countertop industry are also expanding training opportunities. ISFA is hosting several training seminars, including hands-on training on stone and quartz fabrication and another on solid surface fabrication. A partnership between the Marble Institute of America (MIA) and Stone World is also providing a complete educational series that focuses on running a successful fabrication company. Additionally, ISFA will be providing some opportunities for learning at the 2014 StonExpo in Las Vegas by putting together several educational sessions that are being held at the show.

Another exciting event that will expand the reach of the countertop industry is a new partnership between ISFA and the International Woodworking Fair (IWF). In 2014, IWF will provide an expanded platform for the surfacing industry, which will include a full countertop educational track designed to reach the cabinet, woodworking and countertop industries. Additionally, a full-day Countertop Symposium will be held at IWF.

The big news, however, is that the 2014 IWF will include a new concept – the Countertop Pavilion, a dedicated section of the show floor designed specifically for members of the countertop industry. It will be a high-visibility opportunity for suppliers of machinery, materials, tooling and other products and services in our industry. For fabricators of decorative surfacing products it will be a great way to meet with suppliers, see machinery in action and be part of one of the nation’s largest trade shows.

IWF 2014 will be held at the Georgia World Congress Center in Atlanta on August 20-23, 2014. You can check out the web site at: www.iwfatlanta.com.

With all of these opportunities, it makes good sense to take advantage of them. As our fabrication shops are emerging from the “Great Recession” and we become busier and busier, it is all too easy to lose sight of the educational opportunities that can help to make a fabrication shop more profitable. Like the person who didn’t have the time to take a class on time management, don’t neglect the opportunities to participate and grow with the wealth of training offered by our industry!

Chuck Sawyer is the Executive Director of the International Surface Fabricators Association (ISFA) and can be reached at [email protected].

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