What are some uses of soapstone rock?


Quick Answer

Soapstone is commonly used to create a variety of crafts including pots and pans, statues and vases. Wood-fired heating stoves constructed from this material benefit from soapstone's thermal properties. Soapstone also has many architectural applications and is widely used to construct countertops and other interior surfaces. Soapstone's ability to withstand heat makes it an ideal market for welders and fabricators.

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Full Answer

Soapstone is a type of metamorphic rock comprised mostly of talc. Soapstone's many historical uses include serving as a construction material for woodburning masonry heaters, gravestones, and decorative and ornamental crafts. Soapstone is easily carved and resistant to heat, and soapstone molds were historically used when casting softer metals such as pewter or silver. Some soapstone artifacts such as bowls, cooking slabs and smoking pipes date back as far as the Late Archaic period.

Scandinavian peoples began to make use of soapstone during the late Stone Age through the Bronze Age, casting knife blades and spearheads using soapstone molds. Today, soapstone is found in electrical panels, sinks and even marking pencils. Soapstone is commonly used as an alternative to natural stones such as granite and marble. Soapstone's ease of shaping and carving plus its resistance to heat, acids and alkalis make it a suitable material for a wide range of uses.

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