Marble is used throughout the world in a wide variety of applications from chippings in the terrazzo installation sector to tile formats, counter tops and even cladding for buildings, marble is a versatile material. Marble is a metamorphic rock composed of recrystallised carbonate materials, most commonly calcite ( limestone ) , dolomite or serpentine. The word marble derives from the Greek word ( marmaros ) which mean's shining stone. Marble can come in a variety of colours and the characteristic veins in some marbles are usually due to various mineral impurities such as clay, silt, sand, iron oxides or chert which were present as grains or layers in the limestone.
Marble is fairly staright forward stone to restore but there are a few bits of information that you need to know before you start grinding and crystallising it. Most marble can be ground to around 800 grit and then powder polished and the finish will be excellent and the surface will have a glossy appearance to it. Some marbles however have very little calcium in them so they will never naturally shine, you would need to put a fake finish on them to get a glossy appearance. Some of the marbles now being imported in from China are prone to this. The Chinese have technique of laminating marbles onto porcelain for strength. Some of the darker versions of this tile will not shine naturally even if they have been powder polished, the only part of the stone that might is the white streaks going through the face of the stone. Thasos is another marble that is very difficult to crystallise, you tend to get a good finish but dull appearance. Green serpentine marble is another that needs to be treated differently. You actually grind and crystallise this the same way you would granite.