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Stone cladding is a thin layer of real or simulated stone applied to a building or other structure made of a material other than stone. Stone cladding is sometimes applied to concrete and steel buildings as part of their original architectural design.
Stone cladding often refers to lightweight simulated stone products with a concrete-type base. These stone cladding products are often fitted to lightweight substrates to reduce the material cost of construction; this would typically comprise
- timber stud frame
- waterproof barrier
- fibre cement sheet
- expanded metal mesh
- mortar scratch coat.
Then, using a mortar mix, the stone cladding would be affixed to the wall. In the USA, a typical installation on a lightweight substrate would use plywood backing as an alternative to fibre cement sheet.
Alternatively, stone cladding can be a natural stone that has been quarried and then cut into thin pieces to reduce weight.
Being heavier, natural stone cladding often needs mechanical fixing to be adhered to substrates. Mechanical fixing could be using shelf angles, or perhaps a product called stone clip.
Several methods or systems are available for installing stone on the exterior of buildings.
- Ashlar — solid and clad/veneered stone wall style
- Pebbledash — exterior decorative veneer
- Stone veneer —'stone 'cladding'
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