Maintaining the tradition of Carrara White marble

September 10, 2004
/ Print / Reprints /
ShareMore
/ Text Size+


It is impossible to drive through the Apuan Alps of Carrara, Italy, and not breathe in the history of the region. Since the days of Michelangelo and beyond, the area has been a source for pure white marble that is renowned around the world. Many of the companies that have been quarrying Carrara White marble have been in the trade for generations, and they operate their business on an international level. A prime example of this can be found in Mazzucchelli Marmi, which has diverse quarrying and fabricating operations both in Italy and the U.S. And true to its Carrara roots, the company operates a quarry for White Carrara C and CD marble, which has been passed among the Mazzucchelli generations.

The quarry has been in operation since pre-war times. In an area where existing and former quarries reach into the hundreds, Mazzucchelli's quarry is simply referred to as “Cava No. 55.” Company President Vicenzo Mazzucchelli explained that the quarry was owned by his father, and the equipment and extraction methods used at the site have evolved as technology changed.

Machinery in the quarry includes drills, diamond wire saws and chainsaws as well as a range of heavy equipment for maneuvering material around the site. These include front loaders, bulldozers and backhoes.

During the production process, large vertical cuts are made with a Lochtmans diamond wire saw. The diamond wire is threaded through drill holes that are carefully made so that the cuts will follow exact specifications. The lower horizontal cut is made with a QS 2000 chainsaw from Quarry Service of Carrara. The saw has a cutting arm measuring 3.7 meters, which can execute a 3.5-meter useable cut. The relatively small size of the saw allows it to work efficiently in narrow spaces.

As a result of these drilling and cutting operations, large sections of stone measuring 6.5 meters high x 12 meters wide x 3.5 meters deep are freed from the quarry face, and they are further cut into useable blocks with the diamond wire saws.

Bulldozers are used to push waste from the quarry floor, and the waste is carted out and eventually crushed into powder for calcium carbonate.

The quarry yield is mostly sold as blocks, although Mazzucchelli sells 20 to 30% of the production as slabs or cut-to-size work.

Did you enjoy this article? Click here to subscribe to Stone World 

Recent Articles by Michael Reis

You must login or register in order to post a comment.

Multimedia

Videos

Image Galleries

The Stone Fashion Show at Marmomacc in Verona

As usual, stone suppliers from Italy and around the world relied on the Marmomacc fair to showcase some of the latest stone materials to the international marketplace. The following is a look at just some of the stone materials on display in Verona.

Stone World Magazine

Stone World July 2014 cover

July 2014

Check out the latest issue of Stone World, which includes a review of the 2014 Coverings conference.

Table Of Contents Subscribe

Contemporary Stone & Tile Design Magazine

CSTD Summer 2014 cover

2014 Summer

Check out articles about the Windy Creek Casino renovation,the El Alear Condominium complex in San Pedro Garza Garcia, and a Coverings product review.

Table Of Contents Subscribe

STONE STANDARD

Are you aware of the new stone standard – ANSI/NSC 373 Sustainability Assessment for Natural Dimension Stone?
View Results Poll Archive

The Stone World Store

How_To_Polish_&_Restore_Mar.gif
How to Polish & Restore Marble Flooring

This video will show you step-by-step how to resurface and polish marble flooring from grinding and removing lippage and scratches to achieving a highly reflective polish.

More Products

Stone Guide

2014 Stone World Stone Guide

The directory for Stone, Equipment and Supplies - the single information resource readers turn to.

Stone Industry Education

stone industry educationStone Industry Education is sponsored by Stone World Magazine and Marble Institute of America. The SIE events will help you: strengthen your skills, build your business, and  increase profit in your shop.  Check out stoneindustryeducation.com to register for upcoming fabricator and installer seminars.

STAY CONNECTED

facebook logo Twitter  YouTubeGoogle+