How to Start a Machine-cut stone manufacturing business.
Demand for machine-cut building and construction stone is very high in Nairobi and Kenya in general.
Currently, one has to wait for an average of 2 days to get an order as the queue is usually very long. The Lorries in the video below are all waiting to get a chance to load. Most of them will get their chance the next day.
In Nairobi, the best machine-cut stones are found in Juja near Thika area.
The most prudent method of acquiring land is to approach a land owner and lease a few acres of land.
You then acquire the stone cutting machine.
The machine has diamond cutting teeth which can easily cut through stone. See the video below.
The machine is laid on a rail track. The rail track sets the size of the stone. The most common stone sizes are 200mm thick, 150mm thick and 100mm thick. All stone size prices are the same.
The stone price varies with the quality of stone. When the quarry is new, i.e. the stones on the top layer of the quarry are soft; these can go for as low as 15 shillings each.
A Caterpillar Dozer is used to level the ground for the stone –cutting machine to move on. See the video below.
The stones on the lower section of the quarry are hard and sell for 27 shillings per piece.
A piece is of dimensions 200mm by 400mm by 200mm.
The soft stones can not be used on external walls or where the building structural design is made such that the masonry walling carries the load.
If used for structural walls, this can lead to the building collapsing. If used on external walls, they sip water into the house when it rains.
How to check the stone quality.
In the many years of experience in the course of my constructions, I have deduced an easy way to recognize a strong stone form a weak stone. A strong stone contains specs of glittering sand.
A weak stone contains specs of white spots.
Another easier way is to lift the stone till shoulder height and drop it against another stone. If it crushes, then its weak. The disadvantage of this method is that some porous stones will not break when dropped against other stones but when rained on, they sip in water into the house and get weak over time when exposed to rain. These kinds of stone should be used internally or when used externally, should be plastered.