Frequently Asked Questions
The price of the monument is mainly determined by the size, color, shape, and finish.
The larger the stone the more expensive it will be. The price varies by color so some colors are more expensive than others. The more intricate the shape of the monument is the more expensive it will be. Generally, the more sides of the stone that are polished the more expensive it will be.
When you purchase a monument from us it will include digital proofs for your approval, the granite, the sand blasting and standard artwork on the front of the monument, a cement foundation (laser and hand etching not included), and the monument setting.
The automated and hand technology today has made almost anything imaginable in granite possible to create. There are very few things that cannot be done. If you have an idea for a unique design, we would love to hear it!
See our colors gallery for more information.
Concrete tends to break down over time. Sometimes just due to the elements while other times the ground will shift and cause it to crack. Granite foundations will never break down.
Yes, vases come in a variety of shapes, sizes, materials, and colors. Contact us for more details.
Yes, we have the ability to dig up and reset existing monuments.
Yes, most of the time we can dig up, reset, and replace the foundation.
Yes, we have done many veteran memorials honoring our veteran’s. We have done many different variations and would look forward to discussing your ideas with you. Check out our Veteran Memorials gallery to see what we have done.
We would always prefer to meet with you in-person, however, we understand that is not always an option. We do not have an online store, but we can work with you through e-mail or over the phone.
You can contact us with your location and we can get you in touch with a sales representative, or you can go to our contact page and look at the list of vendors.
The general rule is 60-120 days. Cut off dates to apply depending on color.
They come from all over the world. Many colors come from the United States, India and China.
Yes, we are lucky to have many quarries located nearby.
American Bouquet – Milbank, SD
Autumn Brown – Ortonville, MN
Autumn Rose – Milbank, SD
Bellingham / Eternal Beauty – Bellingham, MN
Carnelian – Milbank, SD
Diamond Gray – Isle, MN
Diamond Pink – St. Cloud, MN
Jasper Quartz – Jasper, MN
Lake Superior Green – Isabella, MN
Mahogany – Milbank, SD
Rainbow – Morton, MN
Rib Mountain – Wausau, WI
Rockville White – Rockville, MN
St. Cloud Gray – St. Cloud, MN
Wausau – Wausau, WI
Wisconsin Red – Wisconsin
Colors coming from within the United States take about 1 month for us to receive. Colors coming outside the United States take 3-4 months for us to receive.
Yes, we carry some colors stock. Contact us for more details.
Sandblasting is the process using an air compressor and sand to blast unprotected areas of the stone. This etches the artwork and information into the stone while leaving the rest of the stone protected.
Shape carving is the process of using a specialized air compressor to gently craft sand blasted designs into a 3-dimensional shape.
Laser etching is a design service that uses a machine to etch a photographic image onto a jet black stone.
Our on-staff artist uses diamond tipped knives to draw on the stone to produce hand etched artwork.
Setting is the monument industry term for installation. Monument setters install monuments in cemeteries.
The foundation is made of either concrete or granite. It is what the base and tablet sit on top of. It comes included with the purchase of any monument.
Serpentine, or serp, refers to the curved shape of the top of a monument. This bell curve shape is the standard shape of a monument.
Cemetery lettering is the service of traveling to cemeteries with portable air compressors and air hoses to blast in designs and dates in the cemetery itself.
That is where the upright tablet is polished on all 5 sides – front, back, left and right side, and top.
The upright tablet is polished on only 3 sides – front, back, and top. It is rock pitched on the left and right side.
The upright tablet is polished on only 2 sides – front and back. It is rock pitched on the left side, right side, and top.
Rock pitching is the action of taking a chisel and hammer and breaking away the stone leaving a rough, rocky surface know as rock pitch. You can decide on the finish of your monument, meaning if you want the sides to be rock pitch or polished.
A standard base has a polished top and is rock pitched on all four sides. A base with a 2″ polished margin has the top 2″ of the base polished on either one or all four sides.
If you have a color other than Jet Black and you want a hand or laser etching then you must do an insert. An insert is piece of black granite that gets glued into a recessed area of the monument.
Jet Black is the only color we will laser etch a design onto. Laser etching can have near photographic detail, but in order to see the detail, the stone needs to be as solid dark as possible.
Jet Black is also the best color to hand etch on. Hand etching can be done on other dark colors, but the best color is Jet Black.
A sexton is the name of the individual who manages the cemetery grounds.
At some point we will need to know certain information in order for us to set the monument in the correct place, facing the correct direction. Here are some things we need to know:
- How many plots is the monument going to sit on? Do you own one, two, or more plots?
- Which spouse will be on the right side of the stone and which will be on the left side of the stone?
- What direction is the stone going to face?
- Where exactly in the cemetery does the stone go? This is extremely helpful in larger cemeteries.
- Are there any rules and regulations that would affect the design of your monument?
You do not need the answers to all these questions to begin the process of ordering your monument. We can discuss these things as we need them and can help you figure it out. Our sales representatives are often knowledgeable of the cemeteries that they work with and can instruct you on their rules and regulations.
Our sales representatives are often knowledgeable of the rules and regulations and have relationships with the local sextons. If the cemetery is owned by the city then the city office will often have information for you as well.
It is necessary to know how many plots you own to know how much space you have for your stone. This will impact how large or small your stone can be.
Many people come springtime are hoping to get their monuments set by Memorial Day. This is the busiest time of the year for us and so we have order deadlines.
- Import Color Orders: January 1st
- Domestic Color Orders: March 1st
In the fall, we will set monuments until it gets cold enough that the ground freezes. This prohibits us from digging and ends our monument setting for the winter. If you want your monument to get set before winter, here are our deadlines which give you a good chance of having it installed:
- Import Colors: June 1st
- Domestic Colors: September 1st
Memorial Day deadline: March 15th
Fall Deadline: September 15th
Yes, if the order is signed before the deadline, we guarantee that your order will be finished barring any unusual setbacks due to mechanical failure or weather complications.
Because colors that come from overseas take much longer to receive. This means they must be ordered much earlier in advance.
No, outside of washing the monument from dirt or rain drop spots, there is no upkeep to maintaining the polish or lettering of a granite monument.
This all depends on the nature of the damage. Please take pictures to send us so we may see what the damage is. Many times mowers will scratch or chip stones. This type of damage is more common with short or ground level stones and is not something we can fix.
Unfortunately, it is always possible that someone would steal vases or anything made with bronze. It doesn’t happen often but it does happen. Monuments are safe from theft due to their weight and large size.
Yes, we do letter fieldstones. We can either do it in the shop or out in the field. We like to receive pictures or to view the stone in-person first. Some fieldstones are not suitable for blasting.
Eastern SD, Southern ND, Northern Iowa, West and South Minnesota, and the Greater Minneapolis-St. Paul Area
The 19 problem is when companies would put a 19 on the stone for the spouse that has not passed away yet. They did this assuming the spouse would pass away before the year 2000. This proved not to be the case for many people.
- Sand blast out the 19 and put in the real date in the recessed area.
- Fill in the 19 with an epoxy mixture. Let it set. Blast the real date over the top. The epoxy will not last forever and will erode away. This is not a permanent solution.
- Bring the monument into the shop and saw ¾” off the face. We then re-polish the face and re-blast the whole monument. This creates a perfect looking memorial.