Brothers Howie and Sal Lisboa grew up in the stone business so it was only natural that they gravitated towards it when starting their own company in 2015. Located in Deerfield Beach, FL, Distinct Stoneworks utilizes state-of-the-art equipment to primarily cater to the high-end residential market in southern Florida.
“I come from a natural stone background,” said Howie Lisboa. “I’ve done every job. My father was in the stone business and he had a pro surfer working for him who was always telling stories. I liked to listen to him. My mom always said you can’t just stand around, you have to do something. So I would help in the shop.”
Drawing on his experience from when he was younger, today Howie and his brother run an efficient shop and continually work to improve upon the process. Distinct Stoneworks operates out of a 5,000-square-foot facility that is equipped with automated machinery.
“Last year we took the plunge and went to a digital shop,” said Lisboa. “As far as equipment goes, we are pretty much a ‘no-lift’ shop. Safety is important and we are very conscious of OSHA’s new mandate. We cut everything wet.”
The first investment the company made was in a LT-55 Laser Templator from Laser Product Industries. “We were plotting everything, but wanted to go digital,” said Lisboa. “We were the first in the area to embrace it. It gives a different perception to our customers. Our installers could identify a clear difference right away.”
A K600 five-axis CNC stoneworking center from Sasso USA is the company’s largest investment to date. “We did a lot of research before purchasing it,” said Lisboa. “Cost was a factor, but also service.”
The fabricator explained there were some learning curves, but the Sasso team has been very helpful. “We are very happy with our post-sales support,” he said.
The CNC serves as both a router and saw. “It does everything,” said Lisboa. “We program it from our office.” While production is contingent on the intricacy of each job, Distinct Stoneworks completes a minimum of 10 kitchens per week. “Our business is pretty much 100% referrals,” he said. “We sell to everyone who walks in.”
Additional equipment in the fabrication shop includes a Sasso TE Experience edge polisher, which the company bought a few months ago. “This helps with the commercial market we are starting to enter,” said Lisboa.
Distinct Stoneworks also uses Slabsmith software. “We have had it about a year,” said Lisboa. “It’s great to inventory all of our material. We have integrated it with our website. We now have all of our remnants online.”
A Gmm Tecna 36 bridge saw, which Lisboa affectionately calls “Old Faithful,” also plays a vital role in the production process. The company purchases its tooling and accessories from a host of suppliers, including Granite City Tool, GranQuartz, Regent Stone Products and Tool Jungle.
With a staff of 10 to 12 workers, Distinct Stoneworks makes it a top priority to offer top-notch customer service and to produce high-quality products. “We keep growing each year so we must be doing something right,” said Lisboa, adding that he and his brother are committed to continuing to build upon their company’s success.