Making the Right Choice with Natural Stone

Making the Right Choice with Natural Stone

Words: Brett King, Fond du Lac Natural Stone, Inc.
Photos: As Noted

When it comes to building or remodeling, there are endless amounts of building materials to choose from today. Natural stone has always been one of the most premium products for just about any construction project. With better production capabilities and more choices for wall systems, there are far more natural stone options to choose from than we have ever had in the past.

Natural stone is a material that has always had timeless elegance, beauty, and authenticity. Mined directly from quarries, it offers a wide range of colors, textures, and patterns that add elegance and functionality to any project. Whether you’re looking for rustic, traditional, or contemporary looks, there’s a natural stone to match your vision.

Fond du Lac Natural Stone

When choosing natural stone, understanding whether you need thin or full veneer for the application is important. Each project is unique, and knowing the options will be helpful in making the right decision.

Here are a few things to consider when choosing thin veneer:

  • Virtually the same appearance as full veneer.
  • Labor to install thin veneer is generally less expensive due to the thickness and weight of the material. There are more new-generation masons installing thin veneer than traditional full bed stone, so the cost per square foot is usually quite a bit less.
  • Freight costs are significantly less due to the reduced weight; thin veneer is cut ¾” – 1 ¼” in depth, compared to 3 ½” – 5” for full veneer.
  • By reducing the weight, the cost for a brick ledge and/or angle iron in load bearing areas can be virtually eliminated. This is one of the main reasons natural thin veneer stone is preferred for remodeling.
  • Many more color and texture options can be achieved when blending stones quarried from other regions, which is more cost-effective when they’re fabricated from one facility.

A few things to consider when choosing full veneer:

  • Full veneer can be structural and work well with full brick combinations.
  • It may enhance energy efficiency.
  • More durable in “high impact” areas.

Ultimately, the choice between natural thin veneer and full veneer will depend on your project’s specific requirements, budget, and design preferences. Some projects may benefit from the lighter and more cost-effective natural thin stone, while others may demand the durability and insulation properties of full veneer stone. It is essential to consult with a professional mason or contractor to determine which option is best for your project.

Fond du Lac Natural Stone

In the last 20 years, fabrication and installation technology has changed natural stone for the better. Production equipment has evolved to produce material faster and with higher quality than in the past. This allows our industry to meet the demands of all types of projects, both large and small, all over the globe. With the introduction of pre-blended mortars, drainage planes, exterior grade cement boards, and many other building products, the system of natural thin stone installation has evolved for the better and continues to be a viable product in the building industry. 

Natural thin stone can be used in various residential and commercial applications, including interiors, exteriors, fireplaces, outdoor living spaces, landscape walls, and much more. Its adaptability to both traditional and modern designs makes it a versatile choice for any project. With so many styles and colors available, it’s nearly impossible to not find the right stone to fit the desire of the end user.

Natural stone has a place in history… where the past is always present, making it worth the investment to choose natural stone.

About The Author

At Fond du Lac Natural Stone Inc., we strive to provide quality natural stone material in both full and thin veneer, as well as stone landscape materials such as flagstone, wall stone, steps, and outcroppings. We pride ourselves on being active in our industry and staying in tune to not only design trends but also new application techniques, in addition to any building code changes that have an impact on our industry. This, in turn, helps to provide our customers with the best experience when using natural stone.

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