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Slate & Tile Roofing Materials

Tile Roofing Buyers Guide

Are you needing to replace your roof and trying to figure out what’s the best roofing materials to use would be? We have done a lot of the work for you by scouring some of the best blogs and YouTube videos about various types of tile & slate roofing materials. There is no denying that metal roofing has advantages over natural tile roof tiles for longevity, but at the Stone cutter’s Journal, we are obsessed with aesthetics – so that’s what I want to discuss. The natural beauty of slate or tile roof materials. Here’s what you can expect to learn in this comprehensive guide that we have created specifically for homeowners that are replacing or repairing their roof.

Local-Stone-Roofing-Tiles-by-Black-Mountain-QuarriesWe will then go into some detail specifically about the roofing type and topic in regards to the installation of the roofing material. Pros and cons of each product and the potential lifespan and durability of that product. Another topic that we will discuss is specific styles of homes and the types of roofs that aesthetically fit in. One of the most important details is how to save money on your roof. Is it replacing this roof and it’s not an insurance claim do you want to do your best to make sure if paying out-of-pocket you’re getting the exact options colors and performance you want. (more…)

Thin Stone Veneer

Without a doubt, when you choose a thin stone veneer for any type of construction project that you have in mind, no matter if it’s your entryway, your whole house, an interior fireplace, or an accent wall, you will instantly add stunning, natural beauty to your home. On top of the aesthetic appeal you get with the usage of a stone veneer, a natural thin stone veneer dramatically increases the value of your residence due to the fact that the usage of stone has long been held in such high regard by potential home buyers. Some like to refer to it as timeless elegance.

Thin Stone Veneer


Interior Stone Veneer

You know darn well that if you use an interior stone veneer for one of your inside design projects, you will have indeed made a bold and dramatic statement! You will be telling all of your guests that you have a love for the natural stone look in your living environment that is just downright elegant. You probably could add a few more adjectives like warm, inviting, and sophisticated to go along with that if you want.


Thin Brick Veneer

Reclaimed Brick Veneer

Just as the name sounds, thin brick veneer is just that. It’s thin! Now let me explain why we are so excited about our thin brick veneer line. First of all, and I’m sure many of you will agree, that just like the elegance and sophisticated beauty that all of our thin stone veneer products offer you, there is just something about the look of brick that can literally take your breath away. Not only is it beautiful to look at but it can also increase the value of your home.

Thin Brick Veneer


The Beauty Of Natural Thin Stone Veneer

Thin Stone Veneer Projects Gallery

I have a lot of friends and clients who have stopped by our site, and even though they have said that they like the look and feel of what we have done here at Thin Stone Veneer, everybody keeps suggesting that I should have had some sort of gallery to kind of showcase some of the work we have done using the products that we sell.

So with that said, welcome to our thin stone veneer, thin brick veneer, and Philly cobblestone showcase gallery! Just so you know, this page will most likely be a steady work in progress because of the number of jobs we already have scheduled for this remodeling season.  Here you can see the beauty you can bring into your home with all the products that we currently carry at Thin Stone Veneers. (more…)

Philly Cobblestones

When you remodel with Philly Cobblestones, let’s face it, you are actually bringing a piece of our countries heritage into your home. Just the thought of using materials that were used centuries ago along the streets of Philadelphia should make this stone material at least a choice that should be considered when it comes time to redo a kitchen or maybe a walkway or drive.

Philly Cobblestones Driveway (more…)

Installing Natural Thin Veneer Stone

What’s the difference between traditional ‘full thickness’ stone and thin stone veneer?

Traditionally, stone veneer installed on the outside of a structure is 3-5” thick with an average weight of 45-50 lbs/sqft. The first (lowest) course rests on the brick ledge, with subsequent courses each resting on the one below. Masonry ties are used to secure the stone veneer to the wall. This method has a long and distinguished history as a strong, time-tested method of installation. However, in the past, there have been some limitations regarding the ability to use natural stone such as narrow or no ledge, possible weight restrictions, or height restrictions to name a few.

Natural thin stone veneer is created using the same high quality, full thickness stone and processed through special diamond-bladed saws to cut off the outside layer. This produces veneers with nominal thicknesses of 1 1/4 to 1 ½ inches at an average weight of 10 to 15 lbs/sqft (depending on stone selection). Recent breakthroughs in stone manufacturing technology also enable us to create 90-degree corner pieces. Using these pieces gives you the benefit of using real natural thin stone, while the appearance of full thickness veneer. (more…)

How to Build Roof Trusses for a Shed

As a side project, I decided to build a shed for my wife.  Since my experience is mainly with stone and tile, I turned to a buddy or some assistance when designing roof trusses.  The following are some details of my research about shed and roof building, as well as some general guidelines for building a shed yourself.

All About Roof Trusses

Roof trusses are triangular structures that provide support and stability to the roof and distribute the weight of the roof away from the exterior walls of the building.

Trusses are usually made from wood in residential design and from steel for commercial building design. They take the shape of a triangle because of that shape’s natural ability to disperse pressure through its entire structure making it extremely stable and rigid.

There are a number of different designs for roof trusses and the best design for any building will depend on.

  • the stresses the building roof is likely to experience
  • the aesthetic preferences of the homeowner
  • and the size of open areas within the building
  • the type of extreme weather conditions prevalent in the area where the home or building is being built.

Many home builders order roof trusses from a manufacturer and have them delivered to a building site because building roof trusses is labor-intensive and prefabricated roof trusses save time and money. If delivery to an area is a problem, or if the building design calls for a specific type or size of truss that is not readily available, the trusses may have to be built on-site.

So when considering roof trusses for your home, they should not be chosen based on the looks alone. An experienced architect or engineer usually helps to make the determination on the roof truss design best suited to the building under construction. Someone with training specific to this area will be able to make the most use of the room in your home, giving it a spacious feel while still looking beautiful. A different type of roof truss design can be used in various areas of the home, making it possible to customize the look you want in different rooms, while still maintaining the same exterior appearance. While some roof trusses may be practical for the weather in a particular area, they may not be able to accommodate the desired design specifications for the building. Good architects and engineers consider both the building design and the stresses the roof will be subject to when choosing a truss design.

Building a shed can be a weekend project for someone who enjoys working in the house and yard. In order to create a sturdy shed, proper framing techniques must be utilized. Building a shed may require a permit in some areas, so be sure to check before starting.

Roof trusses for sheds are simple to build and will create a strong roof for a small storage building or workshop. The trusses should be assembled once the floor of the building is complete.

Here are general guidelines on how to build and assemble roof trusses for a shed:

  1. Measuring and Materials

    Each truss requires two beams and one bottom cord, which are built from two-by-fours. The number of trusses needed depends on the length of the building. Trusses are usually installed every 16” on the center. Measure the slope of the roof and multiply that by two, and then multiply that figure by the number of trusses needed. Multiply the width of the building by the number of trusses, and then add this to the first number. Add an additional 10% to cover board feet lost in cuts.

  2. Cutting Rafters and Cords

    The upper ends of the beams are cut at forty-five-degree angles. If the desired pitch of the roof is less than 45 degrees, it can be adjusted.  Both ends of the bottom cord are cut at 45-degree angles to fit between the rafters and join them together. Triangular gussets made from 1/2” plywood are used to join the rafters and cords. Six gussets are necessary for each truss, and one of the angles on each gusset should measure 90 degrees, with the other two measuring 45 degrees. Gussets should extend inward past the joint of the rafters and cords and be flush with the edges.

  3. Assembling the Trusses

    Truss assembly should be done on the ground, first. Use the floor of the shed and align two rafters in a corner. Use a stop of 1” by 3” wood on each side of the corner to hold the beams in place. Make two more stops and install them flush with the bottom cord to keep it from slipping during assembly. Make sure the beams and cord fit snugly together. Using glue and screws or nails, attach a gusset to each of the three corners of the truss. Turn the truss over and attach gussets to the other side.

  4. Installing the Trusses

    The trusses are installed after the walls are framed and sheathed. One truss is attached with screws to both the front and rear walls of the building, and if the walls were framed 16” on the center, one truss should attach at each upright in the wall. It is important to make sure the trusses are plumb (perfectly vertical) when attaching them to the frame to avoid gaps and weaknesses. When the roof sheathing is attached to the trusses, they should again be checked for whether they are still plumb.

It is not difficult to build roof trusses for sheds since the area of a shed is small and a simple design can provide adequate strength. Larger structures require designs that are more complex because larger buildings have greater stresses created by compression and tension. The principle of using triangles to distribute the stresses evenly is constant in every truss design.

Truss Resources


Thin Stone Veneer directly from the source – the Quarry

thin stone veneer_02The elegance of stone veneer is unrivaled and it gives any home or business a beautiful and natural look. Stone veneer also carries some rustic essence to it, which means you can easily recreate a traditional look on your interior dcor. However, you need real stone veneer to have a beautiful home and not settle for those engineered, manufactured or cultured stones flooding the market today.

So I discovered a new way to get my stone veneer all natural and unique. The secret is in purchasing the stone veneer direct from the source the quarry. There are plenty of merits to gain by choosing this option and I will highlight just a few, most important ones, so you can give this option a try sometime.

First, purchasing direct from the quarry ensures I get the real deal instead of the many knock-offs in the market today. It may not be easy spotting a knock-off as they look similar to the original stone veneer. However, I have learned to look out for the red flags fake stone veneer wears off easily with time and you can tell this from how the interior appears overly exposed after a couple months.

Here is another great tip you may not have known about buying from the source you get things cheaper. I know most of us don’t like doing the extra work of getting the product directly and would rather have a factory pick the stone polish and sell it as finished product. But trust me things are much cheaper at the source as there are no middlemen to deal with. And think about it getting a cheaper price at the quarry is cost effective, especially for that huge construction project you have coming up more volume for low price. On the other hand, if you only have a small section to work with, you buy low volume at a good price.


thin stone veneer_01

Buying from the quarries allows me to choose whatever style I want the stone to be. And there is lots of variety straight from the quarry than what you will get from a store. I can go with a ledgestone, Biltmore, dimensional ledgestone, Tuscan, mosaic, stone jewel, closeout, old world or fieldstone. Each stone veneer type comes with a different color to blend with my home or office. Alternatively I can decide to mix up a few colors and textures in case I want to try something different.

I can become even more unique and have my stone veneers cut out more for a different look. If you haven’t heard about thin stone veneer, its a new way to still have stone veneer but with a dash of unique that separates you from the rest. Thin stone veneer is flexible enough cut to different angles to achieve a different look inside any house. With thin stone veneer, it is possible to have the stone cut in 90 degree angles to fit unreachable corners. This thin stone gets reinforced with masonry ties to secure the construction. By far, the blend between thin stone veneers with masonry ties has proven the toughest and stable compared to using full thickness stone.

Building with only natural stone veneer is the best investment I can make for my home or office. It allows me to maintain the original tones and hues of natural stone, have the stone in its full thickness, and select whatever style or texture I want it to have. And more importantly, buying my thin stone veneer straight from the source is cheaper as opposed to involving middlemen between. My advice is, go the extra mile and buy from a quarry, it gives you the freedom you cannot get from a website or store.

Why Buying Stone Veneers Directly from a Quarry is a Great Idea

As someone who is a fan of small weekend projects, I often find myself buying DIY supplies and materials. Not too long ago, I decided to replace the flooring of my deck with thin stone veneer I have always admired the way in looks so natural and I also love the fact that it can last for years without suffering any damage. As I was buying a large quantity, I knew that I couldnt get enough from the shop where I usually buy my supplies. I contemplated going to a quarry not too far from my home and I was glad that I did because it turned out that buying stone veneer directly from the quarry has some advantages.

1. It turned out to be much cheaper that I expected. When I asked the quarry operator why, he explained that the risen why the price of stone veneers has been rising every year is because there is a middle man most of the time, sometimes even two. By the time veneers get to my local shop they have been handled by the guy who got them from the ground and then maybe one or two more people and everything has to make some money. Buying from the quarry is so much cheaper because you avoid the middlemen.

2. I was glad I went to the quarry because I was able to choose the color of stone that I wanted. It turns out that there are so many different colors when it comes to stone veneers. I was able to choose a color that goes well with the rest of the exterior of my house. Did you know that you can also choose thick stone veneers if that is what you prefer? Like I said, going to the quarry was a great idea.

3. I was able to get the cut of stone that I wanted. I hadnt thought about this to begin with. I was simply going to buy stone veneers and install them in my deck. It turned out, as the quarry operator explained, that different projects look good with different styles of stone. I was able to find a cut that was going to look beautiful for my project.

4. Another advantage of buying straight from the quarry is the fact that I was able to choose strong stones. When thin stone veneers are handled by middlemen they dont always get to their intended destination in good condition. They can develop cracks which you will only find in the process of doing your project. Buying from the quarry allowed me to choose only the best and strongest stones.

5. I was able to get my stone veneers cleaned up a little but they didnt lose their natural look. When veneers come out of the ground they are usually a bit rough. Some vendors chip away at some of the edges to give them a better look. Others dont and the one doing the project has to take sometime before they install every stone to make sure that it is looking good. This wasnt going to be a problem for me they were willing to clean the stones at the quarry.

6. Initially, I was worried about how I would transport the stones. It turns out I didnt have to be. The quarry has a truck that they use to transport stones for people who dont live too far. Those who buy stones from them but live beyond a certain radius can pay a small fee and their thin stone veneers will be shipped for them.

If you have a project coming up soon you should seriously consider buying your thin stone veneers directly from a quarry.