Stone Fabrication

The Process: from the Quarry to the Lorry

The Stone

When Mt Horrible erupted, a sheet of lava flowed over about 130 square kilometres west of Timaru, and cooled into long bluffs and ridges of a blue/grey vesicular basalt rock, run through with veins and features the equal of which is not found anywhere else in New Zealand.

This basalt is now known as Timaru Bluestone.

The Quarry

Our quarry is located about 15 minutes drive from our fabrication site in West Timaru. The quarry operation employs two full time staff to meet the supply requirements of our factory.

Equipment at the quarry allows for the excavation of boulders from the quarry face, and for the boulders to be cut down into billets, which are more manageable and easier to transport.

The Plant

The main operation of Timaru Bluestone happens at our plant on Coonoor Road in Timaru, which is a two acre site containing multiple large sheds and buildings to house all of the equipment needed to manufacture our bluestone products.

Here you’ll find bluestone at all stages of the manufacturing process, along with a 20-tonne excavator, and several forklifts for moving stone around the yard.

The Process

Machinery at the Timaru Bluestone takes the billets from the quarry through the cutting and finishing processes to packing on pallets.

The billets are first cut into slabs at the required thickness, then the slabs are squared off at the correct dimensions with a bridge saw. These trimmed slabs are then put through the polishing line where they are calibrated for thickness and the desired finish is achieved. The finished product is finally packed onto pallets ready for shipping.