This is just a comment I had on a conversation about "granite" machine tops!

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Blog entry by Joshua Howe posted 04-21-2009 05:11 PM 836 reads 0 times favorited 3 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I work in a granite shop doing counter tops for a living and also have a MFA from the University of Montevallo with a concentration in sculpture. So I have cut, ground, and sanded just about every stone you can think of. As far as Uranium I think you would be more likely to get lead poisoning from a pencil(FYI-pencils have graphite in them, so don’t worry!) But kidney stones maybe a problem if you are cutting marble on a regular(calcium) But if you are CUTTING man-made stone on a regular you do need to worry about silica poisoning where the silica in the dust gets trapped in your lungs and starts to harden(my shop calls it rubber lungs)
And as far as the tops are concerned I have only looked at one closely at homedepoots rigid tablesaw and it isn’t an actual granite surface it is what we call man-made stone like silestone, cambria, or any other quartz material. And yes chips are a possible but the strength of these quarts is close to cast iron I have gouged cast iron and repairing a gouged cast iron piece is difficult not every one has the ability to weld potted metal but we can all go to Lowe’s or home depot and by a two part epoxy and tape two pieces of wood on a corner and mix epoxy pour and sand square. A lot of us, use these materials to mix with saw dust to fill in spots in something we are building. So having the ability to repair a saw top with stuff already in the shop I would consider a luxury. And as far as strength a piece the size they are putting on these machines I have thrown across the shop(sink cut out waste) and dropped off tables while working on them and they don’t break in half worst case they chip a corner and I can’t say this is true for cast iron. I have casted bronze (16’ tall sculpture in quad of Montevallo “Becoming”)and cast metals can be under tension when cooling because of shrinkage and if it is dropped later in its life can cause fractures or warping! BUT THIS IS ALL JUST MY OPPINION!

-- Wood,clay,metal, and stone are all just materials, until an artist's hand touches them.--TreeFormDesign

3 comments so far

View PurpLev's profile


8523 posts in 3070 days

#1 posted 04-21-2009 05:41 PM

thanks for the post, interesting read. and helps knowing since I just got my ‘granite’ (I guess it’s not THAT) top table saw.

-- ㊍ When in doubt - There is no doubt - Go the safer route.

View Todd A. Clippinger's profile

Todd A. Clippinger

8901 posts in 3521 days

#2 posted 04-21-2009 06:21 PM

This is a great perspective from someone handling these materials in a way that most of us do not.

Thanks for the insight.

-- Todd A. Clippinger, Montana,

View Beginningwoodworker's profile


13347 posts in 3094 days

#3 posted 04-22-2009 12:23 PM

Nice insight.

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