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Unread 03-22-2007, 05:28 PM   #1
NastyBurn
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Marble (or perhaps granite??) Questions...

Just got back from the marble/granite place and before I waste my life going from place to place I thought I'd ask you guys what you think.

First, I'm being told that for the tops of knee walls and window sills, soap dishes, etc. that marble needs to be used because granite it too thick? Is this true or am I being BS'ed?

Second, I've posted a picture of the 10 sizes that I need. It's a crude drawing, but it gets the point across. The key is that where there is an "x" on a line, that is where an eased edge is needed (@ top) (with the exception of the shower bench which I being told is usually a quarter round (more rounded)). I'm being told that people don't ease the bottom, although I would rather it that way. For purposes of comparing my estimate let's keep it with the top edges only being eased...

The material that I looked at is what he called Bocelli marble that was very light off/white... like a very very light sand color. Really was a nice stone. He gave me a lot of BS about why the soap dishes (the small pieces in the photo below) needed to be considered a full square foot.

Let me know what you think I should be looking at for this kind of work. His quote seemed WAAAAY overboard and you folks really know your marble/tile!!

Thanks!

Pete

P.S. It's a total of 10 pieces, the two rounded corners that don't have a measurement are 5" and 6" small corner shelves. Thanks again.

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Unread 03-23-2007, 06:58 AM   #2
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Hi Pete,
That's an awful lot of fabricated pieces. Are you looking at 2cm or 3cm material? To answer your first question about granite or marble for the top of the pony-wall, you can use whatever you like. Both materials are available in the same thicknesses so I don't know what he's talking about. It could be that your material is too soft for 2cm, but that can be remedied pretty easy with some stainless steel rodding and a little more cost to you.
Though your total materials will be much less than a standard kitchen counter, I expect that the many pieces will have driven up the cost to nearly equal a mucxh larger installation. You have to remember that each of those pieces will have to be templated, cut, shaped, and polished. There's an awful lot of labor in those teeny pieces.
What was the bid for the whole set?
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PS: Easing the edge on the bottom will cause water to roll under the reveal rather than drip. This isn't always a good idea as that moisture will find any void you might have left in the silicone at the underside seam.
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Unread 03-23-2007, 07:15 AM   #3
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Hi Pete,

I'm not an expert - I began to respond to your post because noone else had yet but I just saw Shaughnn's post. So I'll add some comments:

I agree with Shaughnn on the granite vs. marble - use what you like. As far as costs go, I'm sure you're aware that it depends on the material but $35-$45/ft2 is a typical entry point for 2cm marble or granite slabs in my neck of the woods. Small pieces of both (soap dishes, thresholds, etc) are made from leftovers so the material cost to the fabricator is basically zero, BUT the cost is in the labor of polishing, edging etc. so keeping it simple can save you some bucks. I happen to like the look of a standard edge, which keeps the costs down of pieces such as yours considerably.

One comment before going on a wild goose chase. Try to find a good fabricator in your area - not just a distributor with a fancy showroom, but someone who does the fabricating on site. I find that in-person visits to fabricators usually result in the best deal, they tend to work with you to give you the best deal, help you make decisions to minimize costs, and usually have a fair selection of in stock granite/marble that they will sell cheaper than something they have to order.

Hope something here helps. Good luck
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Unread 03-23-2007, 08:30 AM   #4
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Just one thing regarding the square footage question: We do (as a lot of other fabbers too) charge for the square footage of material used to make a certain piece. In some cases it might well be quite a bit more than what the actual finished measurements are, too.

For instance your soap dish: It will require a full 12"x12" piece (I am assuming the two sides on the corner end are 12" long) to fabricate the dish. Because the little piece that drops off once the radius is cut will be of no use to anybody, you will be charged for it. If it makes you feel better, you could ask the fabber to give it to you since you will be paying for it (and we have had clients that have asked for the drops, believe me )

Otherwise - I agree with what Shaughnn and Mike have posted

Edit: I'll try to draw a picture if my explanation did not make much sense. I am known to be of limited explanatory capacity
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Unread 03-23-2007, 09:35 AM   #5
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Dang! You folks are GREAT!

Thanks for all the input. The place I went to did all the fabrication there, in fact I had to go into his fabrication area since they were working on the stone... so they do do the work there.

None the less I think I was getting jerked around. It was 3/4" material... He said that granite is too thick and can't be done for my pieces. That, right then and there is when I suspected he was full of crap. But anyway...

What I *REALLY* want is GRANITE. I want I LIGHT COLORED, something that goes well with white subways, and that will go well with my "Wheat" sink. (American Classics Vanity top in "Wheat" color).

Anyway, the quote for that job in the marble that I talked about is $500

I understand about the waste, and I *DO* understand about the radius cut on the two small pieces, but the other smaller squares shouldn't be a full foot. I mean gimmie a break!

Anyway, so we can confirm that the guy lied about the granite being too thick?

What I should I be looking for as far as granite colors/styles, also what thicknesses, etc.

Thanks for all the help as usual.

Pete
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Unread 03-23-2007, 10:38 AM   #6
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Thought you folks might like to the see "estimate" he gave me. Hehe - as he was handing it to me he says, "Now this is a trade quote, not a home owner quote."

Yeah.

Right.

By the way take a look at how this "pro" spells the name of the marble.

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Unread 03-23-2007, 10:39 AM   #7
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Oh! An one more thing... 80% cash/check before job starts, and 20% cash/check at pickup. NO credit cards.

I'm sorry, the more I think about it, the more I think I went to the worst possible guy FIRST!

Lemme Know whatcha' thinkin'!
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Unread 03-24-2007, 07:34 AM   #8
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Bumpy.
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Unread 03-24-2007, 07:59 AM   #9
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Pete,
I avoid slab work, so perhaps I'm off the mark here, but $500 seems to be a very reasonable price for the amount of fabrication you are having done. What sort of price range were you expecting?
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Unread 03-24-2007, 03:49 PM   #10
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Based on the costs per foot for simple eased edges and stuff like that and the fact the material would likely be scraps... I figured around the $200-300 mark would be in line...

But if the folks here tell me I'm wrong, I'm willing to listen and learn.

Pete
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Unread 03-24-2007, 08:56 PM   #11
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Pete,
If you are unhappy with the price, you should shop around some more. If you get more bids that are in line with this one, then you'll have something to make your decision off of. If you get bids that are widely different, then you'll have to ask yourself "is the first guy trying to swindle me" or are the other guys low-balling because they aren't good enough to charge full rate?
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Unread 03-25-2007, 12:23 AM   #12
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From the consumer side, that seems pretty reasonable to me too. I just had a marble countertop fabricated from a remnant, so the material was essentially free. It still cost $1k for 7' long x about 24" deep with a square eased edge, a 4" backsplash and two holes cut for top-mounted sinks. That's probably less labor than your pieces combined, come to think of it. Ah, but they did come out to install it at my house.

Not sure where you live, but in expensive California, that seems to be the going rate. (I got two quotes; the one I took was slightly lower than the other, and in line with another counter I had done a couple years ago.)
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Unread 03-25-2007, 12:49 PM   #13
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Thanks...

So does that mean that you can or can't get granite in the thinner dimensions? (3/4")...

Or to rephrase it, what is the thinnest you can generally get granite?
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Unread 03-25-2007, 03:26 PM   #14
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Granite is generally available in 2 or 3cm thicknesses. Tile is generally 1cm or about 3/8" thick.
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Unread 03-25-2007, 03:43 PM   #15
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Jim, when you say "tile" do you mean granite tile or tile in general?
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