Specialty trade contractors distinguish themselves by the level and quality of training they provide to their employees.
Superior Tile & Stone recently demonstrated its commitment to training by providing the newest members of its terrazzo team with a specifically designed training program tailored to the needs of an apprentice terrazzo mechanic. Superior set up a full scale training facility in a portion of its 30,000 square foot fabrication and warehouse facility. Superior’s master terrazzo mechanics, Steve Young and Michael Jackson, delivered the training and guidance to each member of the team. Steve and Michael walked the men through the installation process from start to finish providing each with extensive hands-on training of every aspect of the installation process. After 7 full working days, all six trainees are ready to apply their newly learned skills and knowledge.
The following images display the entire process:
A little over a year ago, leading contractors including Superior Tile & Stone, recognized that field employees – irrespective of their years in the trade, their labor affiliation, or the quality of their initial training – need continuing education with respect to new products and related means of installation.
The two largest tile employer associations, Tile Contractors Association of America (TCAA) and National Tile Contractors Association (NTCA) joined together with the International Masonry Institute (IMI) and the International Union of Bricklayers and Allied Crafts (IUBAC) to develop a series of certifications that will help distinguish the skilled tile installer from the less-skilled. The program is known as ACT. ACT is a new set of certifications that recognize the importance of qualified installers and the role that the installers play in the success of any tile project.
The current specialty areas of ACT are: large format tile floors/substrate preparation, mud work, shower pans, and membranes. It is anticipated that additional areas will be added as the program expands. In order to be eligible for certification, an installer must be experienced (completion of BAC/IMI apprenticeship program and/or training provided by the Ceramic Tile Education Foundation (CTEF), and then the installer must then pass a written exam and a hands-on test related to each specialty area.
Recent editions of the TCNA Handbook as well as Arcom MasterSpec recommend requiring qualified tile installers, such as those certified under ACT. Superior Tile & Stone has the largest number of ACT certified installers in the United States.
Superior’s history with Terrazzo dates back to the 1950s. Superior installed the tile and stone in the majority of the initial Bart stations throughout the Bay Area and joint ventured with a number of terrazzo specialists to complete the platforms, stairs and entries. Today Superior is directly responsible for the terrazzo installations in a number of schools, hotel/casinos, federal court houses, hospitals, office buildings and restaurants.
Recently, Superior Tile & Stone and All American Tile & Terrazzo joined forces. Jeff Young, former owner of All American, has closed his company and is heading up the terrazzo division at Superior. Jeff brings over 30 years of Terrazzo experience with him. The combination of All American’s and Superior’s experience and financial strength provides customers with the reassurance that when Superior is selected for a terrazzo project, the job will be completed as specified, on time and within budget.
Additionally, every terrazzo project is custom. Even if you are selecting a color, from a standard color-pallet, prior to any manufacturing, samples are produced for your custom floor. Work will not begin until you are completely satisfied with the sample. Contact Superior Tile & Stone for assistance with your custom terrazzo color design. (Samples are provided at no charge to the design community.)
With over 60,000 square feet of fabrication facilities in Northern California and Las Vegas, Nevada, Superior Tile & Stone has the capacity to meet the most rigorous fabrication schedules while consistently delivering the ultimate in artistic stonework.
Superior shapes the finest granite and marble slabs with a variety of precision cutting machines incorporating precise laser technology and dynamic computer control. These systems assure accuracy and enhance flexibility of design while simultaneously providing enormous cutting capacity.
Superior’s high production water jets are each outfitted with two beds and dual heads to enhance Superior’s ability to meet difficult schedule requirements without sacrificing precision design and fabrication specifications.
Multilple Comandulli automatic multi-spindle belt edge polishing machines are remarkable for their edge quality, performance and production on every kind of material.
Multiple robotic CNC finish and shaping machines working in conjunction with four high speed inline polishers cut, route, shape and polish stone for large and small projects. These machines provide the capacity to finish thousands of lineal feet per day of the most integral edge designs imaginable.
Before a piece of finished stone leaves Superior’s factory, Superior’s artisans carefully inspect and, where necessary, touch up the finished product by hand to ensure that Superior exceeds its customers’ specifications.
To protect its workers and the environment, Superior performs all of its fabrication using wet processes, and recycles water and stone cuttings – processing over 20,000 gallons of water per day. The net result is environmentally conscious, consuming no more water than an average household!
Efficiency and dedication extend to the shipping department that delivers the finished product, often within 24 hours.
Superior’s team of artists, craftsmen and technicians demonstrate their pride of workmanship in the finished product. Delicate beauty lies within the world’s strongest materials. Homes, office buildings and hotels enhance their spaces with the charm and durability of granite, marble, tile and stone.