Stone steps and sills
Stone elements have excellent characteristics for reuse: they are usually very resistant, nicely finished, well suited to various operations and well-known to actors in the building sector. It is therefore not surprising to come across them regularly in the stocks of reclamation dealers.
Steps, sills and walling stones found on the reclamation market often reflect regional characteristics related to soil composition and local construction history: Belgian blue limestone in Belgium, pierre de Bourgogne in the centre of France, gritstone from Yorkshire, etc. They are found in a diversity of formats. Some very sought-after elements can be found outside of their home region. Belgian blue limestone is well appreciated in the Netherlands and Bourgogne limestone is quite commonplace on the Belgian or British market, for instance.
Among common products, one can find:
- Doors and windowsills: around 20 × 30 cm in depth, on variable lengths. More fragile, these elements do not always survive dismantling. If cracked or broken, they lose much of their value.
- Interior or exterior steps: variable dimensions. Similar products to door and windowsills.
- Walling stone: fixed or variable dimensions. This material is relatively cheap to buy, but its use requires time and know-how.
Many specialist dealers are equipped to work the stone and offer services such as:
- Cuts: allow ~40 €/h for the size of the stone.
- Finishing work, e.g. sanding of the surface
- Some dealers also offer a delivery service.
Some prices recorded in Belgium, France and the Netherlands:
Sills and steps: 64 €/m
Cornerstone: 50 €/m
All types of rubble masonry: 60 €/t
Sized walling stone 75 €/t
In general terms: 4000 to 4500 €/m³ depending on the finish
Did you know?
Some reclaimed stone dealers also offer ranges of new products, some of which are artificially aged to give them the appearance of a reclaimed product. In Belgium, for instance, it is not rare to find elements made of so-called 'Chinese' blue limestone (which is just as likely to come from India or Vietnam). Its colour resembles that of Belgian blue limestone, but it is distinguishable by the absence of crinoids - small fossils of marine organisms. If in doubt, seek further information on the provenance of the reclaimed materials to be sure of their origins.