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Quartzite

Origin

Quartzite is a naturally occurring stone. It is known as a metamorphic rock because it has transformed from one type of rock to another. It begins as grains of sand, for instance from a beach or riverbed. These are compressed over time to become sandstone. The sandstone then remains buried deep below the earth’s surface for many millions of years. It is subjected to extreme heat and pressure, causing a degree of compression that cements the grains.
This process gives quartzite its supreme hardness. The name quartzite indicates not only a high quartz content but also a high degree of hardening during the formation process.
You see here a quarry that extracts the Mont Blanc stones. The large blocks are ready for transport. These are cut into thinner slabs that later become worktops.
You see here the quarry where the Belvedere rocks are mined. The photo clearly shows the great variation in the colour and structure of rocks mined from different locations on the mountain.
The rocks are extracted from mountain slopes in, for example, Africa and Brazil. “Mont Blanc” and “Pacific Grey” originate from quarries in Bahia province, Brazil, and “Taj Mahal” is mined in Cearà province. “Belvedere” comes from Angola in Africa.
At the quarries, rocks are blasted from the mountain and cut into heavy blocks. From here, they are shipped to Europe where they are cut into worktop-thick slabs and then polished.

Characteristics

There is a natural variation in the patterns, veins and colours of worktops made from natural stone. The minerals in quartzite have characteristic colours and structures, quite different from, for instance, graphite.
Quartzite can range in colour from black to white, with beautiful veins running across the slabs in a variety of contrasting colours. The veins develop from many years of varying pressure and random amounts of iron oxide, silica and other minerals present during the formation of these unique rocks. Some rocks have glass-like veins which can be mistaken for cracks. However, these do not weaken the stone in any way. They are a natural part of the material and do not entitle claims for compensation.

Belvedere

Belvedere

Pacific Grey

pacific grey

Mont Blanc

mont blanc

Taj Mahal

Taj mahal
Small hollows, holes and air bubbles are also natural elements of natural stone and cannot be avoided. These cannot always be filled, and some unevenness must be expected.
If you choose a stone from small samples or photos, it is extremely important to be aware that the sample may differ greatly from the actual stone worktop. All raw stone slabs are different. There may be large areas of vibrant colour and grain; others may be more homogeneous in colour. Such dissimilarities must be accepted.

Our range includes the four quartzite types shown above. You will find examples of whole worktops in the different types of stone at our website, under materials.

Properties

Quartzite has been given a hardness rating of 7 on the Mohs scale of mineral hardness. This is slightly harder than granite, which has a hardness of 6. This makes the material exceedingly durable.
Quartzite is only briefly heat-resistant. Therefore, it is important always to use table mats. The stone is resistant to acidic foods such as lemon and vinegar. It is not easily scratched but we recommend always using a chopping board. And you should note that scratches are always much more visible on dark stone surfaces.
You do not need to worry about daily wear and tear, but you should always use chopping boards and table mats.

Mohs scale of mineral hardness

The scale is used by geologists to compare the hardness of minerals or stone. A mineral can be scratched by other, harder minerals.
We recommend cleaning and maintaining quartzite in the same way as other types of natural stone.
Maintenance instructions are available on our website.
To clean a stone worktop, use warm water and a soft cloth, and wring out the cloth before wiping. Natural stone can withstand most cleaning agents. However, you should make sure to wipe off decalcifier, bleach and spirits as soon as you have used them. Do not leave acidic fluids on the worktop for a long time.
It is important to oil the worktop to protect the stone from penetration of various types of grease or fat. Use the stone oil delivered with the worktop, particularly on matt surfaces. A sealant such as Akemi Antiplet can be used to seal all stone surfaces. The surface must be meticulously cleaned beforehand. A cleaning agent such as Akemi Stenrens can be used to give the worktop a thorough clean.