Forum: Flags and Slabs
Topic: The dreaded black limestone
started by: Thepinkpavingco

Posted by Thepinkpavingco on 10 Nov. 2015,22:36
heres a couple of pics of a driveway we did earlier this year may i think. it looked lovely when we finished now just lookout the state of it
any comments welcome.

Posted by R&A Pressure Washing on 10 Nov. 2015,23:04
Pretty typical of Black Limestone, it's faded to late to do anything this year to damp & cold, but it will need a good clean and sealing with a colour enhancing impregnating sealer next spring.
Posted by Andy Meechan on 11 Nov. 2015,18:51
If it's a daft question please forgive me,


Whys the vast majority of the drive been done with slabs yet there's maybe six or seven patches that look like they're made up of units that look more like the size of block paving or setts?

I can see they're a different colour but why the different sizes?

Just made me wonder

Posted by rab1 on 11 Nov. 2015,21:51
my guess would be client choice...
Posted by R&A Pressure Washing on 11 Nov. 2015,23:42
I didn't want to say anything, but personally I think it looks horrible, but as you say maybe clients choice?
Posted by lutonlagerlout on 12 Nov. 2015,00:47
installation wise it looks great
cant for the life of me work out those patches of setts/blocks
run out of flags?
black limestone== you pays your money you take your chances

slim and none,and slim is outta town

Posted by Thepinkpavingco on 12 Nov. 2015,00:47
we used the cobble areas to try and break the area up as it was quite plain looking.
Posted by PavingSuperstore on 12 Nov. 2015,11:20
Stonemarket uses this effect on page 85 of their brochure with the Vintage Stone Frost paving. It adds a bit of texture to the finish, however in the pictures above it's a shame the setts have become lighter in colour than the surrounding stone.
Posted by lutonlagerlout on 12 Nov. 2015,18:42
danny  after all you have read on here regarding black limestone why did you agree to lay it?

the 3 stone that I refuse to lay are black limestone, rainbow sandstone and chinese granite

these 3 make up the bulk of all the complaints I have read on this site over the last 9 years

the installation is nigh on  perfect  but it just looks aged now

were the setts the same colour to start with?

cheers LLL

Posted by PavingSuperstore on 12 Nov. 2015,19:04
Personally, I don't mind the way black limestone weathers as long as YOU KNOW it weathers and becomes a mix of mid grey shades. It's hard work if you want it to stay black and there are better options if it's the black look you're after.
Posted by Thepinkpavingco on 12 Nov. 2015,20:03
the customer was adamant on the black so advised sealing it after install quoted them to do it but they refused.
the setts aren't setts at all they are alpha antique cbp from brett silver haze colour.

Posted by R&A Pressure Washing on 12 Nov. 2015,20:29
That Silver Haze paving isn't going to go black imo. It will darken a bit with sealing but never going to match the Limestone if it does get sealed next year.
Posted by Thepinkpavingco on 12 Nov. 2015,21:56
never intended for it to match, but to contrast
Posted by Bob_A on 02 Oct. 2019,20:35
Quote (lutonlagerlout @ 12 Nov. 2015,18:42)
the 3 stone that I refuse to lay are black limestone, rainbow sandstone and chinese granite

I know this is an old thread but what can go wrong with Chinese granite ?
I'm considering mid-grey granite G654 whatever that means

Posted by Tony McC on 04 Oct. 2019,09:26
Of the multitude of Chinese granites used for external paving, the 654 isn't too bad. It's certainly less problematic than the 603, which is now more-or-less exhausted, but it still has its quirks, chief of which is its tendency to have variable porosity which can result in funny-looking damp patches and a tendency to stain as soon as you turn your back on it.

Here's something I wrote for an enquirer just a day or two back.....

That is a particularly sensitive material to use, and I'm more-or-less convinced now, after a couple of decades of scepticism, that it really ought to be pre-sealed before being laid because it is so bloody precious when it comes to bedding and jointing.

It really must be laid on either < trass bedding > or < silver sand with white cement > otherwise it is almost certain to suffer with < reflective staining > and, if you've not had it pre-sealed, get it sealed in situ. The big problem with that is working in the New Year is probably the worst possible time for in situ sealing! The stone needs to be BONE DRY for an effective sealant to work.

Posted by Bob_A on 04 Oct. 2019,12:20
Hi Tony I know there's no guarantee but if the 654 isn't normally too bad and I know I've been warned but I'm going to chance and not pre-seal down to cost, If I remember correctly Lithofin isn't exactly cheap.
The patio is at the other end of the garden where my summerhouse is and next doors Leylandii. The reason for a granite patio is to allow easy sweeping of the bits that come off next doors Leylandii and hopefully reduce the amount that's picked up and trodden into the summerhouse.
I'll see how it goes, keep the area as clean as possible over the winter and if necessary seal it next year when its dry and warmer.

Your advice you gave to the enquirer a day or two ago, was that a direct answer to 654 or a coverall answer to all problematic stones?

Thanks for your help :)

Posted by Bob_A on 04 Oct. 2019,17:54
Just had a thought would a coat of SBR to the underside of the planks act as a sealer from moisture below and something that could be done any time of the year. Then if necessary seal from the top when the weather is better?
Posted by Tony McC on 07 Oct. 2019,09:08
The quoted advice was about granite in general but the enquirer was wondering whether to opt for G654.

A primer coat of SBR/cement *will* minimise the risk of moisture seeping through from beneath, but it can;t do anything about the 'picture framing' effect that often occus when these porous granites are jointed with either a cement- or a resin mortar.

Posted by Bob_A on 07 Oct. 2019,13:18
Thank you Tony for your comments on this thread and the others I've posted in recently.
Most appreciated :D

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