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Stone experts: What's up with quartzite?

Posted by sochi (My Page) on
Tue, Apr 27, 10 at 22:36

Mostly a curiosity question here: there have been at least a half dozen threads over the past couple of weeks on white/grey quartzite counters (luce di luna, quartzite bianco, white princess, white fantasy, super white, others). There seems to be some consensus out there that quartzite is harder than granite, and most people with first hand experience with quartzite counters report no etching, no staining (in fact one quartzite counter owner just reported that she could "set a bon fire on her quartzite and put it out with vinegar" and it wouldn't damage the stone, lol. However, there are a couple of people out there who have tested samples (some sealed samples, others perhaps not), who say that the quartzite (luce di luna) either etched or stained or both.

This leads to my question: Can a quartzite, even the same type of quartzite, have some slabs or sections that can etch and others that don't? I'm just wondering what I'm missing here, or what I don't get, forgive my ignorance. I would think that all light coloured stone, quartzite, granite, white quartz, etc. could stain if you tried hard enough. But I'm surprised about the reports of etching etc. Anyway, any insight anyone has would be much appreciated.


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Stone experts: What's up with quartzite?

I didnt save all the information I had on the difference between quartzite and the different kinds of granite but I did save this in my kitchen remodel file. If you look around you should be able to find a site that tells you the Mohs hardness, a measure of hardness from 1 to 10 with 10 being the hardest, and properties of most of the stone sold in the USA. The list was by popular name of the stone and also gave other names it may be sold under. This is what it said about white fantasy quartzite:

Quartzite is a metamorphic rock formed when quartz sands are subjected to extreme heat and pressure due to tectonic forces. Pure quartzite is white. The individual quartz crystals are generally visible.
Like a marble, color and patterns in quartzite are the result of impurities. Quartzite is very hard (unlike a marble), having a Mohs hardness of 8 (it easily cuts glass), and is not acid or water soluble.

I dont know why some would etch and some dont but mine doesnt. I have spilled vinegar, lemon juice and such on it without any problems but I always clean it up right away. Red wine and coffee doesnt stain it even if I dont see it until I clean around DHs sink in the morning.


Sorry I didnt save that site but if I remember correctly stonegirl posted a link to it. Is she still around and posting here?


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RE: Stone experts: What's up with quartzite?

I really do not know much about the specifics of quartzite. But, I am a geology student. So, I will share the very little that I know....to add to what partst said, quartzite is in fact a metamorphic rock (rocks altered by energy (heat and pressure). Quartzite is derived from sandstone. Marble is also a metamorphic rock- derived from limestone. Whereas granite is actually an igneous rock (rocks that solidify and crystallize from molten state). So, not knowing much about their durability kitchen-wise, it seems to me that although in hardness they would be quite comparable, granite seems as though it would have less porosity.

But, as I said, I am only a student, far from expert. I am very interested in hearing an experts opinion as quartzite is the front runner for my up-coming remodel- in large part due to the fact that DH saw your counter, Sochi, and actually gasped (I haven't seem him that interested in ANYTHING I have showed him thus far)!


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RE: Stone experts: What's up with quartzite?

I guess you haven't gotten to it in your geology classes yet, sunshine, but quartzite and marble are totally different in their characteristics. There are both metamorphic but their chemical composition is very different.

Marble is made of mostly calcite which means calcium carbonate. Acids react with calcite which is why it etches. It is also a relatively soft compound. It starts out as limestone.

Quartzite is composed mostly of quartz (normally at least 90% but it can be as high as 99% quartz) - SiO4 (the 4 should be subscript. Quartz is extremely hard (much harder than calcium carbonate) and it doesn't etch because it doesn't react with acids (at least not any strength of acid you'd be using in the kitchen).

My counters are Azul do Mar quartzite. It has more impurities than the mainly white quartzite. The impurities make it mainly blue or aqua. It does have some pure white bits and we have no staining issues. It's bullet proof once installed. It was so hard that it took a long time to fabricate.

I'm not sure why some have luce di luna samples that have etched. Quartzite should never etch. My guess is that there are slabs that look similar and are being sold under the same name but that aren't quartzite. BTW, sealing changes porosity by filling in the holes but it doesn't help with etching as the surface of the stone is still exposed.


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RE: Stone experts: What's up with quartzite?

Marble derived from limestone (lime, which is calci.. -)
Quartzite derived from sandstone.
Sounds clear to me. Good to know. Of course they are different.


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RE: Stone experts: What's up with quartzite?

Thanks everyone, you have all significantly increased my understanding of quartzite and stone in general.

cloud_swift, I bet your azul do mar is spectacular. My fabricator also had some difficulty with our quartzite bianco (luce di luna) due to the hardness, and probably because of thier limited experience with quartzite. So far (only eight or so weeks of use so far though) our quartzite counters are perfect, not a hint of etching or staining.

myonlysunshine - I love your husband's reaction! lol The quartzite bianco was actually our second choice, but I've certainly grown to love it. So far so good.

Any sense if quartzite is as readily available as granite? Does it all come from Brazil, or all over the world? I know that there are huge areas of quartzite in Canada, but have never seen or heard of Canadian quartzite, not for counter use at any rate.

Very informative, thanks again everyone.


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RE: Stone experts: What's up with quartzite?

sochi, I'm not sure if vrjames still visits here but he had great information on quartzite-see link.

He stated Super White, White Fantasy, and some others were commonly referred to as quartzite but are actually granite with some quartzite as well as soft spots that can scratch and etch like marble. This may explain why some of us reported etching when testing samples. Super White was sold to us as granite, not quartzite.

BTW, your Luce di Luna is absolutely gorgeous!

Here is a link that might be useful: link


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RE: Stone experts: What's up with quartzite?

I just brought a sample of quartzite home. I was concerned because it has a resin coating. I did some tests based on other peoples posts. I put food coloring, wine, vinegar, lemon juice and oil in different areas. I noticed ethching with the vinegar but was surprised there was no stain left by the food coloring. I lightly tapped it with the back and tip of a butter knife (stainless steel) and it left marks that I could not remove (I got the idea from watching my friends child bang a stainless butter knife on a tiled table at a restaurant the other night and that did not leave a mark).

Do quartzite slabs usually have a resin coating? Does anyone out there have granite or quartzite that does not knick or scratch when a stainless utensil hits it or am I asking too much?


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RE: Stone experts: What's up with quartzite?

mona76,
From all my research in the past 2 months into quartzite, if you have a sample that etches then its not a quartzite. Chemically its just not possible because it doesn't react with acids.

Now also during these 2 months of researching and looking for a particular quartize, I've had veterans of the stone business offer me all kinds of stones as quartzite. Because someone says its a quartzite doesn't really mean it is. I've been fooled a number of times and not by rookies.

I just returned from another trip to a stone yard that swore up and down they had my stone and even sent a grainy iPhone photo of it and on arrival today it wasn't it. I have another visit Monday of yet another yard that has my quartzite. Hopefully 600th time is the charm.


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RE: Stone experts: What's up with quartzite?

Thanks padola07. I have a feeling it's going to be a while before I find something decent. I had quartzite put into my kitchen but the island had a million chips. They tried to fix it but couldn't so now they have to rip it out and replace it. However, I have to find something new because they can't find a match and I don't want this stuff anyway if it can't be fixed. What a pain! It's been 3 months now. I can't wait for my kitchen to be done but it's worth the wait to get something that is going to look good and last.


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RE: Stone experts: What's up with quartzite?

padola07 - I'm sorry you hit another dead-end with the iPhone quartzite. I hope the 600th time is a charm for you.

mona, I just went into my side yard and went at my extra quartzite (luce di luna) slab with a ss knife. I intend to use that slab for my bathroom one day, so I just "experimented" on an outer section that probably won't end up on my counter. Now I didn't go at it with a hammer, but I did probably hit it and try to cut it about 30 to 50 times with the knife. I tried to simulate dropping a knife on it from about a foot. No chips, nicks, gauges, nothing, nothing I could see and nothing I could feel.

I'm sure if you really tried you could chip it, I'm sure with enough effort any counter surface, stone or man-made, could eventually stain or chip, quartzite included. But from what I've read so far, and based on my (admittedly limited) two months experience with my quartzite, it would really take significant effort to do noticeable damage. I'm pretty confident that it is at least as hard as granite, and from what the experts tell me, probably harder.


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RE: Stone experts: What's up with quartzite?

My White Princess did not etch at all when tested with lemons, vinegar, tomato and red wine. It did leave a faint shadow after 48 hours with the red wine blob. The shadow kinda disappeared after a few days. I guess the liquid evaporated and the color left was just too faint to detect?

Regarding taking a knife to it--I think dropping utencils or a pan on a counter is a reasonable accident and one that you wouldn't want to have to worry about. I did drop a few butter knives on the test piece and came up with no chips or gauges, but I didn't slam a pan on it which is something that could conceivably happen (dropping by accident).

Hope you find your dream counter padola!


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RE: Stone experts: What's up with quartzite?

Mona76 -Are you confusing Quartz counters with Quartzite? I've never heard of a natural stone having a resin coating.


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RE: Stone experts: What's up with quartzite?

Natural stone sometimes has a resin coating - it can fill in pits and a lot of stone has it. However a real quartzite shouldn't chip. It is really really hard and strong.

Our quartzite hasn't had any chipping issues. It was so strong and uniform that our fabricator was able to fabricate long thin sticks (about 1 cm by 2 cm) of it as trim for our rangetop.


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RE: Stone experts: What's up with quartzite?

Are you sure you're talking about quartzite and not quartz? The reason I ask is because quartz is a much harder and more dense stone than even the hardest granite. Quartzite, on the other hand, I've had pieces literally crumble in my hand before. In fact, the only stone in the last few years that I've sealed before grouting was quartzite specifically because of how coarse and absorbtive it was. These are quartzite:

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RE: Stone experts: What's up with quartzite?

Yes, I'm sure I'm talking about quartzite. Quartzite is composed almost entirely of quartz. It seems that what has happened to "granite" is happening to "quartzite" - some are using it for stone that isn't truely quartzite.

There is also orthoquartzite which is similar in composition to quartzite but only partially through the metamorphic process so that it is more stable than sandstone but not nearly as strong as quartzite. That may sometimes be sold as quartzite.


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RE: Stone experts: What's up with quartzite?

I have been shown the quartzite that they say "cuts like sugar", scratches easily and is very high maintenance. Is it really a quartzite or something else? I don't know but it wasn't the quartzite I was looking for though it looked like it.

Anyway, I found my slab yesterday and its breathtaking. its white with straight gray veining and literally out of nowhere there's 2 brown horizontal veins among all the gray veins going across the bottom and middle of the slab.

I'll post pictures tonite.


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RE: Stone experts: What's up with quartzite?

Congratulations padola07! It sounds fantastic, I can't wait to see pictures. Worth the wait I guess??


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RE: Stone experts: What's up with quartzite?

This is interesting. I have silver quartzite tile in my foyer that I installed myself. It's hard as steel and slow to cut with my little tile saw. It's super durable.

I do remember, a long time ago, a stone person said that some stone that is called quartzite is really a type of marble. But I don't remember which is the real deal.


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RE: Stone experts: What's up with quartzite?

Tanem, stone that needs to be replaced must be quartzite because it does crumble when you take a hammer to it unlike granite that just chips (I didn't take a hammer to it, they showed me in the showroom). The one I wanted to replace it with must be quartz because it's not crumbly like the quartzite. However, this one does have a resin coating so I am staying away. I know it's a natural slab and maybe the resin is the only way they could make it look nice. I will have to continue with my search. Now I know what to look for thanks to this forum.

Sochi, thanks for sharing your experiment. All the info here has been very helpful.


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RE: Stone experts: What's up with quartzite?

Sochi,
Here's big foot. I found it with unusual brown stains and fell in love right away. You can't really see it but the thick vein in the bottom is a mixture of gray and brown.

I was into plain man-made quartz for a while so i'm suprised I like this slab but I love it especially the browns.

Any idea what mineral those stains are?

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RE: Stone experts: What's up with quartzite?

Gorgeous! When I first saw slabs of Luce di luna I was thrown off by the "shifts" - the areas where the stone clearly shifted probably thousands of years ago, but that is actually my favourite part of the counter. You've got a beautiful triangular-shaped "shift" in the upper middle there, I love it.

Is the brown-gray veining a little rust coloured? I have some as well, it picks up the walnut cabinets a bit. Are the stains rust coloured too? I'm not sure what causes it. Anyone out there have any ideas?

I also thought I was going for Caesarstone Blizzard before I saw Luce di luna here on KW. Although I still really like the solid white quartz products, compared with the drama and movement of this quartzite I had no choice. And no granite-like specks and flecks. What's not to love?

Really beautiful, congratulations again. How far did you have to travel to find it? How long before you can have them installed?


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RE: Stone experts: What's up with quartzite?

You know every slab I've seen (mostly online of course) has the shifts but its never bothered me because its geometric. or as geometric as nature gets. Almost looks like a clean fault line.

The brown is a dark-ish rust color. Once I saw it I saw my medium brown cherry cabinets. I loved them because the brown seems like it doesn't belong there. Nothing in the slab suggests there's brown coming and then pow!

I can still appreciate the cleanness of man-made quartz but the recent blitz of quartz bashing didn't help at all. I wanted white counters but since I don't have really really dark cabinets to provide good contrast, i felt stark white counters will not work.

I only had to drive 2 hours to this location in NJ but I've driven further multiple times. Just this saturday I drove 3 hours to go see what I thought was luce di luna but it was a stone called panna nessa which is a really pretty sandy white quartzite with little movement flowing east to west. Tough to see in the picture below cos it was really sunny but trust me its modern kitchen friendly stone.

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They'll be templating friday and installing a week to 10 days after that. I am hoping to get a contemporary build up edge if I can be fully convinced by the fabricator that the mitered edge will be clean and stable and not chip.

Thanks for introducing me to my counters! That slab is the wallpaper on my phone. I can't stop staring at it.


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RE: Stone experts: What's up with quartzite?

Click here to view these pictures larger

My quartzite has the same qualities you describe, sochi, and it also has the brownish veins. I also see what looks like veins of granite that show up white with flecks of grey. Do you see anything like that in yours?


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RE: Stone experts: What's up with quartzite?

That stone is absolutely gorgeous!!! All this talk about quartzite is really making me confused about my decision on quartzite or granite. I'm so undecided!!!


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RE: Stone experts: What's up with quartzite?

Wow, all the quartzite is beautiful.

Sochi, I have found quartzite not to be very available--most places do not carry it. I would love to find a place that has large quartzite remnants to use in my master bathroom.

Anyone know of quartzite sources in the MA/NH area?

TIA.

Denise


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RE: Stone experts: What's up with quartzite?

jumab,
I don't think the issue should be quartzite vs. granite because they both have similar properties in terms of durability and yeah quartzite is a little more expensive on average but not that much more expensive. If you find a stone you like you shouldn't really care if its quartzite or granite. If its a marble then thats a different story because the physical properties will come into play.

Good luck


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RE: Stone experts: What's up with quartzite?

Thanks Padola. Reading so many different threads about different counters is overwhelming while trying to make a decision. Funny thing is, I have a backsplash picked out before my counter so my decison-making is a little backwards, lol. I haven't purchased either yet but I did really want to get things figured out soon!


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RE: Stone experts: What's up with quartzite?

I just found a beautiful slab of quartzite today and without being able to give me a firm quote, stone folks estimated it was 6x the cost of granite. Is this typical?


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RE: Stone experts: What's up with quartzite?

jumab,
Don't worry, it takes time but when you find your stone you'll know right away. I've been looking since last October and I just found my stone on Monday. Since you have a backsplash picked it could help you narrow down the color range for your counter tops. There's so much variety available that there's a "soul mate" for everyone.

carriea,
Obviously there could be very exotic quartzites that are 6 times the cost of some granites but thats certainly not typical. What I was told is that quartzite is the cost of high end non-exotic granite. Expect to pay around $70-$95 depending on your location and slab.

My fabricator who's purchasing my slab from a distributor told me i had an expensive stone and I only paid $72 sq ft (includes delivery ,install,sink cutout, standard edge). I received a quote for another quartzite that was $85. If someone is giving you too high a quote sometimes the problem is their unique cost of acquisition and not necessarily the market value of the slab.

Someone gave me a quote of $150 on the same stone I was quoted $85 on. By the way these are New Jersey prices.


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RE: Stone experts: What's up with quartzite?

This thread is killing me as I am waiting on pins and needles for my quartzite quote! :-) My GC is framing our addition and not concerned at all with the wait.. meanwhile I cannot focus until I know whether I am going to be able to get the quartzite counters or have to go totally back to the slab drawing board. Regarding availability, our yard had only one lot and after missing it on my initial walk thru it was love at first site when I saw it the 2nd time thru. I will not be surprised if it is super $$, I just picked out the most expensive black roof shingles on the market according to my contractor.. so apparently I have what my MeMa called "champagne taste and a beer pocketbook." sigh.


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RE: Stone experts: What's up with quartzite?

Mona, if the stone you have etches, then it isn't quartzite. It may be some time of natural stone but it isn't quartzite. Quartzite is made from silica - and that doesn't etch. Stones that etch usually contain calcite. Acids dissolve some of it away similar to what happens when you soften an egg shell or bone by soaking it in vinegar.

And if it crumbles, it isn't quartzite. From the wikipedia entry on quartzite (and supported by other sources I've read on it): "a proper quartzite is so highly cemented, diagentically altered, and metamorphosed that it will fracture and break across grain boundaries, not around them."

An orthoquartzite might be crumbly. It is sandstone that hasn't metamorphized (or at least isn't as far along in that process as true quartzite). I suspect that some are selling sandstones or other stones as quartzite.

Padola, reddish browns are often produced by having some iron impurities in the stone but I suppose that some other impurities could cause the color. Our slabs have some brownish bits. We also appreciate the way the brown ties in with our cherry cabinets.
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Our slabs were $54 per square foot - that's the price for the slab based on the sq ft in each slab, not installed area. It didn't include fabrication and installation, but blue is an unusual color to find in large natural stones so it tends to carry a higher price. I think the price reflects the color more than quartzite vs granite. Some fabricators charge more for fabricating quartzite because it is harder - takes more time on the machines and causes more wear on the bits. Some also will charge more when the stone is more expensive because if they ruin it with a mistake during fab they may have to eat the expense of buying a replacement slab. Ours didn't charge for either but he did say they were going to have to be extra careful because they didn't want to end up eating the cost of a replacement slab.


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RE: Stone experts: What's up with quartzite?

To get back to the question about quartzite. The problem seems to be that some rocks that the design industry calls quartzite are NOT actually quartzite at all and do not have the same qualities of hardness (7 on the mohs scale, just like quartz) and impermeability. This drives me crazy. What is so hard about using the correct name for the rock? Very few of the so-called granites are actually granites and many aren't even igneous rocks, they are metamorphic.

I recently saw some beautiful stone tiles that are called quartzite, but are in fact a "mica-schist" which is much more porous and not uniformly hard like a quartzite.

One way to tell if a rock is hard is to scratch it with a knife. A swiss army knife has a hardness of 5.5 on the mohs scale and will scratch marble but not most so-called granite and not Quartzite(7 on the mohs scale). Glass has a hardness of 6 so quartzite should scratch glass.


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RE: Stone experts: What's up with quartzite?

cloud swift, your quartzite is simply stunning. Wow. Thanks for the info on the reddish brown colour, makes sense that it would be iron impurities.

carriera - I have the same pricing info as padola, so 6X granite seems a little crazy. What name did they call your quartzite? Is it white/grey?

denisef05 - It is hard to find, I agree. My city didn't have any of it, I had to go to a large city a two hour drive away. It might be worth sitting down with a phone book (or google) and calling all the stone yards within a two or three hour drive. Or find a good fabricator and ask them what stone yard has the best exotic selection of stone slabs.

Thanks for the info lnmc, I think you have nailed it. What many people think is quartzite simply isn't. A caution to anyone buying quartzite - don't necessarily trust that the fabricator knows what they are talking about as quartzite still seems relatively rare, they may simply not have been exposed to the real stone. Definitely get samples and test everything on it - the real quartzites should pass the test with flying colours.

padola - that sandy white quartzite is lovely, but your choice is even better! :)


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RE: Stone experts: What's up with quartzite?

sochi:
yes, in my efforts to seek out a substitute for marble, the quartzite I was looking at was white with gray and a bit of golden brown veining. I don't remember the exact name. I am trying to block it out once I heard the price!!!


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RE: Stone experts: What's up with quartzite?

hi padola07,
i was hoping you could tell me where you saw and took the 2 pics of Luce Di Luna you posted on May 5th.
thanks so much!
layla


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RE: Stone experts: What's up with quartzite?

Hi all,

Love this website. It has been SO helpful. We fell in love with Quartzite Bianca (aka Luce de Luna), but Sochi's posting of her Quartzite Bianca countertops sealed the deal. Am disappointed though, to hear of those with white quartzite that has etched and would like to see if we can spot commonalities between cases of etching versus non-etching, if possible, before we have our QB installed.

For those with white quartzites, it would be helpful to know..
1. What is the name of your material? (e.g., Super White, Quartzite Bianca, Aspen White, Luce de Luna);
2. What sealer did your installer use and how many coats did they apply? (sealing doesn't affect etching, but I'm still curious);
3. Have you ever left food on your countertops overnight?;
(I was told quartzite can etch but typically from food left overnight)
4. What product do you use to clean your countertops?;
5. What city/state did you purchase your white quartzite? (I've been told Quartzite Bianca, aka Luce de Luna/Aspen White is from the same quarry in Brazil..);
6. For those whose stone etched, is the etching still there after a few days?
7. What etched it? (oil, acid)
8. Were you able to get the etching out? How?

Thanks very much!


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RE: Stone experts: What's up with quartzite?

Hi all

We fell in love with Quartzite Bianca but after all the posts of etching I had to find out what was up. It just didn't make sense that some of the same material was etching, while in other cases it was not. Turns out, according to the Marble Institute of America, that if a supplier at the quarry puts resin or sealer on it before it is shipped to the distributor (where you buy the stone), it effectively makes it highly susceptible to etching. This explains why some of you got a little lemon juice or other acidic material on it and it etched while others with this material can drive a bus over it and nothing happened. Theirs was not resined or sealed at the supplier.

At least according to my fabricator, once the slab has been resined, there is nothing that can be done. Fabricators can't polish it out because the pores have been impregnated. Apparently suppliers apply resin not so much to protect the stone (after all it's harder than granite) but to "enhance" some physical characteristics. Either they don't know, or don't care that they have taken a stone whose primary attributes is non-etching, and turn it into marble (well, not as bad at etching, but worse than if they hadn't put resin on it).

I am not referring to the sealer the fabricator puts on to protect the material from staining. I'm talking about what they do at the quarry before it is shipped.

If anyone has information about Quartzite Bianca (aka Luce de Luna, Aspen White) available in the Pacific NW (Oregon, WA, Idaho) that has NOT had resin applied to it, PLEASE LET ME KNOW! We have a hold on one slab in Seattle with the only distributor who carries it around here, but it has resin on it.

Very sad I know. If you have one that has etched, and the place you bought it from said it would not etch, you have every right to go back there and demand that they replace it with quartzite that resin has not been applied to.


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RE: Stone experts: What's up with quartzite?

I recently found a slab called coconut white and was told it was natural quartz. The fabricator tells me it stains easily and is very expensive. I am not confident they have correct information, and I am also not sure if coconut white is quartz or what everyone here is calling quartzite. I have searched the internet and cannot find information about coconut white. Could it be called by another name? I saw a picture of eternal princess that looked similar, but cannot be certain. Anyone heard of coconut white and know if it is durable enough for a kitchen?


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RE: Stone experts: What's up with quartzite?

Finding out more about etching quartzite..

A third generation person in the stone biz said you never heard about them putting resins on stones until about ten years ago. Now they resin almost all stones at the quarry to increase their yield (resin helps with brittle stone, enhances color, etc.) Some stones don't need resin, but it's become industry practice. Some quarries cut corners and use lower quality resins that are causing naturally acid resistant stones, such as quartzite, to etch. Higher quality resins do not cause quartzites to etch.

I decided to test the resin theory on a sample of SuperWhite quartzite. If etching was related to resin, and this particular supplier used a lower quality resin--the side closest to the resin (polished side) would etch (they only put resin on one side), and the unpolished side would not. And that's what happened--only the polished side, nearest the resin, etched.

Then I tested a sample of Quartzite Bianca. This came from a retailer that is known for dealing with reputable suppliers. This sample would not etch on the polished side after several minutes, hours or even overnight.

If your quartzite has not been installed yet, there are some options as it relates to etching. First ask if your retailer will slice off a small piece for you to sample. Use concentrated lime juice (little plastic bottles) versus fresh limes. Test it at different time intervals: after several minutes, couple of hours, overnight. If they won't provide you a sample, once your slab is on hold with your fabricator, test a corner of it. If it etches on the polished side, try testing the non-polished side. It's tougher to see etching on the non-polished side, but you can tell in good light, or ask your fabricator to hand polish a small area before you test, to improve visibility. If it does not etch on the back side, while it costs more, your fabricator could polish the back side and use that for your countertops.

kan:
I haven't heard of Coconut White, but I've heard good things about sealers protecting even marble against stains. Many offer a 15-year warranty against stains, even paying to replace countertops due to staining (you'd want to read the warranty for the fine print; I know the fabricator has to be certified to apply the product so the manufacturer knows it was applied correctly. There are other stain remedies, such as using a poultice. Try googling cristola quartzite to see if that resembles coconut white--it's a very expensive quartzite.

Good luck.


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RE: Stone experts: What's up with quartzite?

I was told by a reputable company that they used to think Coconut white was quartzite, but now believe it is a marble. Hope that helps. I fell in love with it, and was disappointed to hear this, but glad i found out before buying it!


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RE: Stone experts: What's up with quartzite?

padola07 Hi I was just wondering where in NJ did you find that gorgeous luce di luna stone? I am having no luck in Long Island NY and want to make a trip to NJ to search. Please let me know which yards you visited and where you found this amazing lot... Thanks Do you have finished pics? I'm not that savvy with searching on this site ...


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RE: Stone experts: What's up with quartzite?

bump


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RE: Stone experts: What's up with quartzite?

This is a great post - My fabricator told me that Quartzite was too soft and would scratch and etch, so now I'm wondering if what I was looking at was quartzite or not. And I'm thinking of taking glass and knife with me to the stone yard next time. They also told me SuperWhite would crack easily, even when installed. I had no idea that the fabricators and stone yards had no idea what they were talking about until I read this!


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RE: Stone experts: What's up with quartzite?

My

Superwhite

Is

Etching.

:*(

I have marks from cans.

I have etch blotches.

I now have coasters (albeit crystal ones) on the island.

I

Also

See

Scratches

None of this happened on the sample.

:*(

It is still beautiful.


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RE: Stone experts: What's up with quartzite?

I got a sample of what was called "super white" at our local stoneyard - they called it a granite, and it was polished. It looked like your counters Bee, and others online called super white. I laid a lemon slice on my sample and it etched ever so slightly - so I am surprised that your sample piece did not. It was also very hard to break off a sample piece (that from the stoneyard guy) and on the brittle side. I think it is really pretty stone, regardless of whether or not it etches.


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RE: Stone experts: What's up with quartzite?

Um, are people aware this is a thread from two years ago?


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RE: Stone experts: What's up with quartzite?

I'm not sure it matters if it was a thread started two years ago - it appears that much of the info contained in it is still relevant - quartzite is being used a good bit (particularly on GW, it seems) and getting to know a bit more about the composition and possible issues is certainly good to know, right?


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RE: Stone experts: What's up with quartzite?

I've seen a lot of old threads being bumped. When I first saw it, I was wondering why Sochi was asking about quartzite if she already had it....then I saw the date.

I think it is valuable to bump old threads that are still good info. Not like we are voting on the light over my sink.....still. Although in 2 years we still might discuss that.


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RE: Stone experts: What's up with quartzite?

One thing I learned from shopping for stone is that assistants in the yard are not always educated when it comes to various rocks of the earth, their hardness, resistance to the elements, etc. I've been told that marble was quartzite and it was once identified to me as granite. You have nothing if you don't have something in writing as to the composition of your stone.

Bee, I am so sorry that your stone is etching but also so grateful that you shared that with us. You kitchen is drop dead gorgeous and I doubt that anyone but you would take notice to the 'character' in your countertop. You are the "Oprah" of GW and I'm sure I speak for all of us when I say -- well done!

Along with countless others, I have learned so much from this group!


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RE: Stone experts: What's up with quartzite?

Bee so sorry about the etching. Your kitchen is beautiful! I have Danby marble, sealed with Granite Shield (the so called permanent sealer) and the etching is very minimal and really not noticeable to anyone other than me. I mean guests don't come in, bend over and turn their head sideways to get the light just right to see the etches like I do!


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RE: Stone experts: What's up with quartzite?

Bee - sorry about the etching! Do you think re-sealing it with another type of sealant might help? Or does the sealant not help for etching? I hope it isn't staining at least.


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RE: Stone experts: What's up with quartzite?

We have Quartzite Bianca and had our fabricator test it (ketchup/lime juice/oil) prior to installation and no stains or etches. Unfortunately, after installation, turns out it etches with water.

The issue is the resin applied at the quarry (all stone over the past decade has resin applied, mostly for color enhancement) is reacting to acids. You don't think of water being an acid, but it can be depending on the pH. Technically, what etches is a reaction between calcite in the stone (e.g., marble, limestone, travertine) and an acid. Since quartzite does not contain calcite.. etching is caused by the reaction between the resin and the acid which explains why two people with the same stone experience different things re: etching. Depends on the quarry and resin used.

I've removed the etching with baking soda, which also means water is not etching the stone, but the surface.. Your fabricator can also rebuff the stone to get the etches off. Won't cure the long-term problem, but can get rid of what etching you currently have.

As to sealers.. once I read about people with this stone having oil stains, I researched sealers. I was told silicone-based sealers do a great job repelling water, but attract oil based stains, so I switched to a product by Stone Products (www.superiorstone.com) which is a flouropolymer--a smaller molecule than silicone which means it fills the voids better and does not attract oil stains.


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RE: Stone experts: What's up with quartzite?

We have Quartzite Bianca and had our fabricator test it (ketchup/lime juice/oil) prior to installation and no stains or etches. Unfortunately, after installation, turns out it etches with water.

The issue is the resin applied at the quarry (all stone over the past decade has resin applied, mostly for color enhancement) is reacting to acids. You don't think of water being an acid, but it can be depending on the pH. Technically, what etches is a reaction between calcite in the stone (e.g., marble, limestone, travertine) and an acid. Since quartzite does not contain calcite.. etching is caused by the reaction between the resin and the acid which explains why two people with the same stone experience different things re: etching. Depends on the quarry and resin used.

I've removed the etching with baking soda, which also means water is not etching the stone, but the surface.. Your fabricator can also rebuff the stone to get the etches off. Won't cure the long-term problem, but can get rid of what etching you currently have.

As to sealers.. once I read about people with this stone having oil stains, I researched sealers. I was told silicone-based sealers do a great job repelling water, but attract oil based stains, so I switched to a product by Stone Products (www.superiorstone.com) which is a flouropolymer--a smaller molecule than silicone which means it fills the voids better and does not attract oil stains.


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RE: Stone experts: What's up with quartzite?

I have a question -- your water etches do they resolve themselves with time? I have always heard with quartzite that after a few weeks these etches go away?


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