Getting back to nature

April 18, 2001
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Rock Solid fabricates a broad range of stone materials and pieces for cut-to-size projects.

When it entered stone fabrication, Rock Solid in Virginia Beach, VA, purchased a Marmoelettromeccanica America bridge saw from Regent Stone Products.
When Rock Solid originally established operations in Virginia Beach, VA, it was strictly a fabricator of solid surfaces, such as Dupont Corian. But, as granite continued to move into mainstream residential design, the company found itself with more and more inquiries for natural stone. As a result, the company invested in stoneworking equipment to meet the demands of the region.

The company specializes in kitchen counters and vanity tops for high-end residences as well as multiple pieces for hotels. When it decided to add natural stone to its product selection, it purchased a variety of Marmoelettromeccanica equipment from Regent Stone Products, which is also located in Virginia Beach.

Equipment includes a Marmoelettromeccanica America bridge saw and a Marmoelettromeccanica Master 3500 edging machine. According to Greg Simon, the shop foreman, the bridge saw is particularly useful because of its tilting worktable. The table tilts all the way to the ground, which eases slab loading. Simon reports that two workers can load a slab onto the machine in only 10 minutes. This cuts the overall process of loading and cutting a slab from four hours to two hours, he said.

The Master 3500 also offers an advantage to the company, as it can be used to process the inside edges of undermounted sinks. The machine has an attachment that raises the machine and allows it to run along the inside of the sink. Previously, this work could only be done by hand. With the attachment, an eight-hour job is reduced to two to three hours, according to Simon.

In addition to innovations in machinery, Rock Solid has found success in its transport items. ¿The [new] carts have changed the whole business,¿ Simon said. In completing an order with various pieces, such as a residential kitchen, the cart is wheeled around the shop, collecting all of the different pieces for the project. Then, once all the items are collected, the entire cart is shrink wrapped and lifted onto a truck with a forklift. This saves an entire hour of labor, according to Simon, and the cart can pass through any standard 36-inch door.

For all projects, the company does its own installation and templating, and it also has its own cabinet shop. Rock Solid¿s customer base includes Virginia as well as North Carolina, Kentucky and Tennessee. Presently, the company does approximately three jobs per week in granite. And while Rock Solid continues to process manmade materials, the firm is looking to increase its business in the stone industry. Future purchasing considerations include a straight line polisher and a CNC machine.

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