Marble is one of the most appreciated building materials for building/home architecture looks and finishes. Selecting marble at a particular budget can be a daunting task for end user. Here we plan to make an attempt to make your life simpler by giving you tips for Marble Selection.
Understanding Marble as A Building Material
Marbles are formed from calcite or dolomite crystals that are subjected to extreme heat and pressure in the interior of the Earth.
Though all marble are formed in the same way by nature, a marble may be unique and more highly sought after than others due to various factors like looks and availability. A high-end natural stone may have a distinctive look and precious rarity, as limited availability and high demand often create a gulf in pricing from one type to other marble type.
For example Calacatta Marble is unique in appearance and also extraordinary in that it is only available from one quarry in the world, located in Carrara, Italy.
Marble can be given a high polish with less effort than other polishable stones (such as granite and porphyry – reddish purple rock) but it is not just this thing that makes it so sought for.
Its typically large calcite crystals allow light to pierce without great absorption, bringing a depth to the stone that is unparalleled. The crystals at times sparkle like sugar.
The highest quality marbles are usually considered to be those with very little distinction from veining, spotting and other features, and the pure whites with evident translucence.
Marble choices customarily come down to aesthetics and what is factual in general holds good for marble: Beauty is in the eye of the beholder; pricing become secondary.
Available Sizes of Marble in the Market
- Height varies frrom 3.5′ to 4.5′ and length will > ~ 6′ (Thickness: 16 to 20 mm)
- Tiles will be available in different sizes usually 2′ * 1′ , 2′ * 2′, 1.5′ * 1.5′ (Thickness: 10 -12 mm)
How to Select "The" Marble
- Decide your budget. Area to be floored or cladded (wall application) is about 1.4 times the build-up area
- To reduce budget, Area to be marbled can be limited to dedicated areas only (like Living, Bedroom etc.,) and not the entire unit .
- Decide whether you are planning to go for slabs or tiles – the sizes chosen should lead to minimum wastage, area to marbled should be in multiples of slab size of chosen.
- Visit maximum marble vendors in your area, to have best bargain and choose from a variety of marble available ,within your budget
- Take help of architect/professional service to help in selection of marbles
Tips on Marble Selection And Installation
- If in a marble slab excessing filling is observed avoid buying them, you can easily make out a filled patched on slab. Check each one for such filling
- Marble slabs should be very near to a regular shape, if available in irregular size, pay measurement for a regular shape only
- Marble being very fragile, ask marble slabs with fiber back to avoid any crack generation in handling and transportation
- Before taking a marble check whether it has any through and through cracks(clean the marble for thorough inspection). If cracks are there then avoid picking those slabs. Waterlines should not be mistaken as cracks
- Since marble is a natural stone you may not find similar pattern soon in future. It differs from block to block. Always buy from a single lot
- While cutting marble to smaller manageable sizes before installation, mark cut sizes (sequence numbering) to avoid veins and patterns not matching, post installation on final mirror polishing.
- Uncut marble slab wastages can be in the range of 15-20%, ask for cut sizes, and compare the prize difference before finalising to go with cut or uncut marble
- Flamming treatment to marble slabs makes them antiskid, can be used for wet areas like bathrooms, exposed passages etc.,
- Marble are generally light in colour ,fix them with white cement only ,grey cement fixing to be avoided as it can be visible through marble
- Use virgin blades to cut marble slabs at site,this will give sharp edges to cut sizes
- Post polishing seal the surface with a sealer to avoid any absorption on marble spoiling its finished look
- Do maintain by periodic polishing to have the fresh look all the times