Cutting and laying slate tiles for a hearth


G

Gidon

I have seen some 30x30cm slate tiles in B&Q that we would like to use for
our hearth. Probably going to have to do it myself because the fireplace man
/ builder isn't keen.
Does anyone know if this thing:
http://www.diy.com/bq/product/product.jhtml?PRODID=24915&CATID=188262
will cut slate tiles ok? Or is there a better way?

Also the floor is concrete, and where I've ripped out the old hearth is
quite uneven. Do I need to get this flat? If so what's the best way? And
then do I use standard floor tile adhesive/grout? Where does one get this
sealant you're recommended to use with the slate - couldn't see it at B&Q?

And another thing - I'm putting down thin engineered wood floors. What's the
best way of fitting around the hearth allowing for the expansion?

Any other tips or warnings?

Many thanks,

Gidon
 
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S

Steve Firth

Gidon said:
I have seen some 30x30cm slate tiles in B&Q that we would like to use for
our hearth. Probably going to have to do it myself because the fireplace man
/ builder isn't keen.
Does anyone know if this thing:
http://www.diy.com/bq/product/product.jhtml?PRODID=24915&CATID=188262
will cut slate tiles ok? Or is there a better way?
No idea, can't be bothered to look. You can cut slate using ceramic
floor tile cutters of the "score and break" type. All you end up with is
shards. What you need is a water cooled/lubricated diamond cutter.
Suitable models from plasplugs and B&Q own brand. About £30 maximum.
 
A

Andy Dingley

This is a ceramic tile cutter, slate is stone.
So ?

Some of this depends on your slate. Most tiles in the sheds are
Chinese (the stuff with the brown iron oxide colouring especially) and
are quite soft. Lakeland green slate from Honister would be quite a
different story.

Of the many little stone saws about these days, the Plasplugs ones
seem to be better than the Lucky Golden Hedgehog brand. But get the
bigger of the two models they sell.
 
D

Dave Plowman

This is a ceramic tile cutter, slate is stone.
I've cut marble, concrete and brick with mine, as well as 'normal' tiles.
It has a diamond cutter.
I'd say the aggregate in concrete is likely to contain stone as hard as
any.
 
D

Dave Plowman

It has a diamond cutter.
But it still looks like a toy if it is underpowered it will be a PITA to
use. Barely a fun thing with thin tiles.
He'd have more fun hiring a large leckie cutter and a diamond blade. Set
the machine in a workmate or something. Perhaps one man holding it in
and the switch on and the other doing the actual work. Dusty though.
If it's only a hearth there won't be that many tiles to cut. And the
Plasplugs will do them ok if they're within it's thickness range, with not
much mess - just some water. Just don't force it. It's more than adequate
on normal wall tiles.

And even although it's slower than a 'proper' machine, it will still be
faster than going to hire and return one.
If it was me I'd trawl around looking for someone roofing then mark out
the cuts I want and drive them around in time for tea break with a
tenner in my hand.
I've not seen roofers using a wet diamond wheel cutter - they don't need
the standard of finish this will achieve.
A belt sander would get the rough out of it using very coarse red paper.
Dusty though.
The Plasplugs will give a near perfect cut. Have you ever tried one?

Mine is one step up from the small one. Cutting ordinary concrete paving
slabs which were red gave the most beautiful edge - rather like those
polished 'stone' floors you get in public buildings.
 
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G

Gidon

Thanks all - I think I'll give it a try - as Dave says I don't have many to
cut - perhaps 5. And the cost of hiring is the same price as a tile cutter.
Cheers,
Gidon
 
T

The Natural Philosopher

A said:
use for

fireplace man


This is a ceramic tile cutter, slate is stone.

However, they do work if fed slowly with lots of water.

I've done about 65 sq meters of slate all cut with a diamond cutting wheel.

It will, at a pinch, even cut 18mm thick marble. Slowly...
 
T

The Natural Philosopher

Michael said:
But it still looks like a toy if it is underpowered it will be a PITA to
use. Barely a fun thing with thin tiles.

Its good enough.

He'd have more fun hiring a large leckie cutter and a diamond blade. Set
the machine in a workmate or something. Perhaps one man holding it in
and the switch on and the other doing the actual work. Dusty though.

Been there, done that. Accuracy is crap and edges look terrible.

If it was me I'd trawl around looking for someone roofing then mark out
the cuts I want and drive them around in time for tea break with a
tenner in my hand.

Even more like hard work.

A belt sander would get the rough out of it using very coarse red paper.
Dusty though.

Been there, done that too.

The tile cutter works on flooring slate. It even works on roofing slates
and tiles, except that the requirement ther is for speed, not accuracy,
so an angle grinder is better.
 
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D

Dave Plowman

However, they do work if fed slowly with lots of water.
Yes. Make sure you keep it topped up.
I've done about 65 sq meters of slate all cut with a diamond cutting
wheel.
It will, at a pinch, even cut 18mm thick marble. Slowly...

IMHO, this is no bad thing for the DIY tiler cutting expensive tiles. You
really don't want to rush it.

I clamp my one to the workmate, and prefer cut tiles outdoors where the
small amount of water only goes over me, and there's plenty of light.
 

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