Advantages of Gneiss
Gneiss is a natural high quality stone – it is one of the most preferred and practical cladding materials for construction purposes. It also has a high degree of durability, due to the fact it is a foliated metamorphic rock of granite origin. It was created as a result of processes that occurred beneath Earth’s crust for billions of years.
The stone has rough and non-slip surface, it exhibits high tolerance to various atmospheric effects and withstands large temperature fluctuations. Its physical and mechanical qualities account for lasting, stable and aesthetic results in construction, during linings, laying the flooring and for the decoration of different spaces.
Usage of Gneiss
Gneiss is also known as tikli; its extraction, processing and usage are widely developed in Bulgaria from the olden days. Today, it is used in the construction of public facilities, holiday villages, squares, hotel complexes, parks, offices, churches and monasteries, monuments, fountains, swimming pools, aqua parks, wells, barbecues. It is also used for the cladding of columns, staircases and walls and for the paving of alleyways, courtyards, pedestrian zones.
Very often gneiss features in the internal and external decoration of buildings and structures, as part of the lining of walls, floors and fireplaces. Stone decorative panels, unique details and ornaments can be all constructed from gneiss; thus, giving a unique and finished look of the interior and exterior.
Preferred Types of Gneiss and Their Application
Particularly preferred are the plates from beige gneiss – those are stones near Ivaylovgrad, mined from quarries. Some of them have rusty coloration due to iron particles. These plates can be used to create a specified decorative effect. They are also almost non-waste, have a flat and smooth surface and relatively uniform thickness. The slabs are used for creating a flat surface during paving, lining and creation of decorative ornaments.
The advantage of this kind of plates is their great hardness and strength; you would recognize the quality of the plates by tapping them; if they emit a high clear sound rather than ring hollow, then they have a great quality.
The stones are suitable for pavement of parking lots, alleys and heavily loaded pedestrian zones. Staircases can also be lined with those slabs; for this matter, however, each one should be cut, which is a very difficult task in itself.
Another type of preferred stone tiles are yellow gneiss slabs, mined in the region of Gotse Delchev. The stones are hard and beautiful, with a fine grain structure and yellowish-brown colouring, which in places is similar to concentric circles. Unlike the surface of beige gneiss plates, the surface of those slabs is not as smooth and flat. Nonetheless, it can still be used for the creation of stairways and sidewalks with smooth surface; the excess protrusions should be removed with a flat chisel and a hammer.
The gneiss slabs from the area of Gotse Delchev, which are pale cream in colour with darker brown shades in them, also deserve attention. One of the their most prominent characteristics is the presence of MICA particles that glimmer beautifully, when exposed to sun rays.
These plates have a layered structure, are smaller in size and are cut more easily; however, flakes are easily dislodged from their not-so – smooth surface. The slabs are especially suitable for stairs and wall claddings.
The usage of gneiss for stone cladding and flooring during construction and decoration adds to the natural beauty, authentic antique style and uniqueness of interior and exterior environments. That is why it is so favored by Bulgarian workers as a great construction material from olden times until today.