Yes, the Sheerstone coating has been tested to Australian, European and USA Standards 2924.2 -1998 and this report is available on request.
Sheerstone has a Food safe certificate.
Yes, Sheerstone may scratch over time, but so does marble and most natural stone. In fact if we were to put glass or even a sheet of stainless steel down these would also scratch. Use common sense – i.e. use a chopping board, and avoid dragging heavy items across the surface.
However, with proper care, this should be minimal. Getting the applicator back once every couple of years can freshen it up and make it look new again – with no need to recoat the whole bench.
The stone’s surface needs to be chemically washed and/or ground deep enough to remove all visible signs of anything that was not part of the original stone. Our licensed applicator can advise you on this. The amount of surface grinding/honing will vary depending on the level of damage and the type of stone. The standard process used by others to rejuvenate the stone is to surface grind and hone using water and paste from coarse through to fine diamond disc, requiring several messy processes depending on the level of shine required.
Once this is complete, you are still left without any protection from etching and staining. With the Sheerstone process, the stone is restored by a deep grinding process and a stain remover if necessary, before the coating is applied. Any fine scratches from the grinding process simply disappear. Once the UV coating is cured (which is instantly) it is vacuum dry sanded to the desired finish.
The only way to fix etched stone is to mechanically grind the surface until you get to unaffected stone below the etching. The depth of the grinding will vary depending on the severity of the etching, and how long it has been allowed to continue as the pitted surface will continue to collect acids.
Surface staining is where a chemical or substance has left a coloured mark on the surface. This stain/mark may be sitting on the surface or may have penetrated the stone – depending upon how porous the stone is. Sealers will buy you some time to protect against the offending chemical before the surface is permanently stained. This will vary depending on the sealer, stone and chemical involved – some chemicals can stain in minutes. Etching is a totally different problem. In many cases, stone surfaces are actually etched not stained.
Marble and limestone are composed of calcite, which is highly sensitive to the acids in everyday food items, which corrodes the surface (etching) damaging the polished or honed finish. Even acids in water can affect some stones, leaving a white ring from a glass left on a bench top. Etching can appear as a blotch or dull spot, have a lighter coloured (white) bleached appearance, feel rougher, or feel and look as if the surface is pitted. Severe etching can lead to the surface crumbling and flaking. Some stones like marble and limestone can also be porous and are susceptible to both staining and etching at the same time. Some stones such as sandstone and basalts are not receptive to a high-honed or polished finish due to their open grains. This can make them more susceptible to staining and etching and bacterial infestation.