What can cut tile without a tile cutter

How and what to cut large tile?

The day comes when the tiles to be laid don’t fit in your tile cutter.

And there is an endless series of questions:

  • Which tile cutter to buy, mechanical or electric?
  • What length?. What if tomorrow the tile will be 5 cm larger than the current?
  • How often will you need a new tool?
  • Expensive or cheap. How much does common sense tell you to spend?
  • Where is the guarantee that the new tool will cut without problems?

How the decision was made, what were the arguments in favor of one or another option can be traced almost in real time.

Tubadzin PIETRASANTA POL tiles will be laid

Here, as in the tale of the stone at the fork of three roads. It depends on where you go, what you find and how much you lose.

Two main directions can be seen:

  • Cut tiles with a roller and then break.
  • Cutting with a cutting wheel mounted on various tools and appliances.

The difficulty of choice is also that both have quite a lot of options.

The first thing that comes to mind. you need a mechanical tile cutter with a cutting length of 120 cm. Cheap options fall away immediately. Of the available tile cutters from Battipav.

The first option is to cut large format tiles.

What stops you from buying is the thought that perhaps this tool will only be used once:

It makes more sense to take the second option. The rail is made up of several parts, allowing you to make it the desired length. The maximum possible. 340 cm. It is a guarantee that such a system is suitable for any possible tile format and will always be in demand:

Other brand tool manufacturers have similar systems. For example SIGMA.

The price of the tool stops. for a small amount of work the tool won’t pay off. In addition, for cutting corners and holes, you still need a turbine (angle grinder). How to combine two cuts?

And the main question: how will the tiles break?? A preliminary test of cutting with the tile cutter on the small side was not successful. Out of 4 attempts, two were unsuccessful:

An unsuccessful attempt to cut porcelain tiles on the short side

To the doubts have been added facts and reports of unsuccessful cases of using this method of cutting even with the Montolite system.

So began the study of the second case, which had many variations of execution:

Each option has its advantages. The machine (a good one) allows you to cut almost without chipping the tiles. Quickly and comfortably (without dust) get a 45 degree cut. But there are some disadvantages in the work and the main problem. the length of the cut tiles, which is impossible to keep up with:

And the main thing that keeps me from settling on this option is the practicality of such a machine on small volumes:

Electric tile cutter in an apartment with trim.

The second option lacks some of the disadvantages of the machine, but also has no particular advantages. That leaves the price of the question for both cases. The most interesting option is the Festool Diamant DSC-AG 125 Plus-FS cutting system for 500

While searching, I unexpectedly came across a very down-to-earth way to solve the problem of cutting large-format tiles:

What is so appealing?? Easy and cheap to do. The aluminum wedge is always handy. Clamps are not a problem. The cutting tool can be purchased at a reasonable price:

Makita electric tile cutters.

In terms of price, both are the same. But the variant with the battery has such characteristics:

That is, the speed is insignificant and the disk from the angle grinder is not suitable.

But you can go for the super economical option. just buy a Mechanic 125 Slider (19568442010) angle grinder attachment. For those who like “expensive toys”, this option will not suit. Too simple and cheap.

The nozzle for the angle grinder,

  • Make the table out of a pallet (throw it on the floor and cover it with a piece of drywall).
  • The guide bar is made of an aluminum wedge with holes at each end.
  • Clips. two self-tapping wood screws, screwed into the holes in the wedge.

The most expensive investment was the DISTAR 1A1R MULTIGRES 125×1,4x10x22,23 porcelain stoneware disk. Hardness 7D. The other two Distar tile cutting discs are not suitable for this application.

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The big disadvantage is the dust. If you want, you can find a similar attachment with a vacuum cleaner nozzle. But you have to get used to the hose that drains the dust. Cutting simply, with the nozzle is a new skill, it takes some getting used to, and then there’s the hose.

Features of cutting large format tiles with an angle grinder.

You start cutting tiles by cutting two ends. Then 3-4 passes over the entire cut, with gradual deepening or going straight to a full cut.

If you don’t make notches, the tiles break at the end unpredictably. tested:

Cutting tiles on both sides.

This rule of thumb is also true for wet cutting on the machine:

Tile manufacturers (or those who try to speak for them) attribute this to the fact that large-format tiles have a lot of internal stress. When cutting tiles the conventional way, they can splinter.

Similarly, when cutting holes in such tiles, it is advised to drill round holes in the corners of the future window first, and only then, cut:

Types of ceramic tiles and the peculiarities of working with them

  • Porcelain tile is a floor tile, durable, of great thickness. It is formed by dry pressing and burning at a very high temperature. It has practically no wear and tear and is resistant to acids, alkalis and other aggressive media. It is thicker than tile, can be cut with an angle grinder or similar tool, but is also shock resistant and can split.
  • Clinker is a strong and thick tile with a compacted base. It is produced by pressing or, more often, by extrusion, which allows it to be given any shape. It can be glazed or unglazed, resistant to wear, frost, neutral to aggressive media, does not absorb water.
  • Cotto is a durable tile for flooring and exterior cladding. It is also made by extrusion, is not glazed, and has a natural range of colors, from yellow to brown.
  • Cottoforte. pressed tiles that are made by double firing. The top side of the tiles is always covered with an opaque glaze. Such tile is very durable, most often used for laying floors in enclosed spaces.
  • Monocottura is a type of pressed glazed tile, which is made from clay. It is strong, dense and frost resistant.
  • Majolica. tiles, having a coarse-pored texture. The base of the tile is red clay. The outer side of the tile is always covered by an opaque glaze, with a colored image on top.
  • Faience. tiles, the basis of which, white clay. The outer surface is covered with glaze. Such tiles can decorate any surface, the main condition for operation. dryness. Below we will consider how and what to cut a ceramic tile.

Of course, it is most convenient to cut ceramic tiles with a tile cutter. But a good professional device is very expensive, and it is not profitable to buy it for home use. For a small amount of one-time tiling works is quite enough the usual glass cutter.

Conventional hand-held glass cutters come in these types:

  • Wobedite. with a stationary cutter made of cobalt and tungsten carbide. Inexpensive low quality tool, blunts quickly, cuts unevenly.
  • Roller. with a set of 3 to 6 round carbon-tungsten roller cutters, connected on a rotating plane., for alternate cutting. Makes a uniform cut, does not blunt quickly.
  • Oil-type. similar to the roller-type, only it has a reservoir of lubricant in the handle, which reduces friction and contributes to a high-quality, even cut.
  • Diamond is the best type of glass cutter for tile. Cuts with a soldered-in crystal with an adjustment screw. Amateur modification has an artificial diamond as a cutter, while professional modification has a natural multifaceted diamond that can cut tiles of any thickness.

Tile cutting method is about the same for all varieties of glass cutter, and not much different trimming window glass. You need to:

  • Organize a working surface: an even sheet of plywood, plastic, or an ordinary tabletop.
  • Soak the tiles in cold water for about half an hour.
  • Laying it face up and marking the points for cutting.
  • Using a ruler and marker (a pencil, a sharp nail), draw a line for the trimmer of the cut.
  • Press the ruler firmly and hold the glass cutter evenly and firmly against the surface. The direction of the cut is toward yourself, from top to bottom from the farthest point.
  • To break a tile along the line of the cut, putting a rail under it, or using the edge of the tabletop, using pressure on the hanging part.
  • Clean and grind the cut surface.

Alternative tools and their features

Let’s look at the most popular methods of cutting clay or porcelain tiles of applicable properties. This includes:

  • angle grinder with a huge disc. There are a number of types of these tools that can be used to cut ceramic. To do this, buy a proper diamond disc. Several varieties are available, depending on the grain size and cleanliness of the cut.
  • Electronic jigsaw. This is a successful and very handy tool, with which you can make an unstained cut, but to do this, get a special rathole for tiles. Its advantages. Versatility, in other words it is possible to make curvilinear cuts with a huge radius.
  • Glass cutter of manual type. Suitable for cutting smooth glazed tiles.
  • Drilling holes with a drill. This is a successful method, but to get a high quality end, after cutting you need to go over the place additional grinding tools, such as rathole and emery.
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Figuring out

Occasionally, it is necessary to make a curved cut. Trimmer line can be not only straight but also semi-circular. The tears are more problematic when they do not start at the edge. In such cases, you have to make a hole first, and then break out of it.

For shaped breaks, it is recommended (if it can be) to use the deepest risk in any way along the edge of the breach. This will reduce the number of possible chips.

tile, cutter

There is a special tool for breaking out. Wheeled pliers. But it is not advisable to get a special tool for a one-time job. So you can get by with ordinary pliers.

The hacking technique is very straightforward. Pliers (or pliers) are very compressed, the material is crumbled or squeezed and turned over sharply (only far away from the tear strip, more than 5 mm). Small pieces break off. If you try to break off a big piece at once, you can ruin the whole job. Some may break off behind the risk line.

Long, straight, and narrow pieces across the tile are broken off by turning the pliers sharply to the side. Previously clamping them along the mowing strip, takes the risk (scratch, of course, should be). In all cases, the tile may not break off along its entire length, and the function must be repeated on the remaining part. Then also carefully break the remaining sharp projections.

The most common method. take a risk and hit a sharp corner. In this way you can simply and quickly prepare most of the pieces.

Sawing is used if you don’t want to cut a piece along its full length. In all this, several sides are cut, and one is broken off on a solid rod or through clamps.

A sharper focus: Glass cutters and other tools

To cut narrow (three mm wide) clay tiles without using a tile cutter, tools with a sharp cutting edge are also used. Glass cutters, drills, knives, and other tools.

For marking with these tools use a ruler, a scratch is made on the top layer of the tile. It is recommended to make the cut on yourself, without interruption. It is necessary to control the pressure on the tool, so as not to destroy it and the material. After making the cut, break the tile against the edge of the table.

Pliers are used for making curved cuts in the clay tile. First of all, it is recommended to mark the outer side of the material with a marker. Then from the edge of the tile you need to start nibbling small pieces of material, squeezing the cutters. If necessary, you need to make the edges of the tile smoother with a raster and sandpaper.

Making a shaped cut with pliers

How to cut a tile

Experts say that it is most convenient to cut tiles with a tile cutter, because the tool is designed specifically for this purpose. To get a straight cut on the tile before the line for the trimmer cuts the cut with a pencil or marker. The tile is placed on the base of the tile cutter, aligning the wheel and the trimmer line. Then you need to lift the handle until the wheel touches the tile, and then move it towards you with a little effort. Only one pass with the wheel is needed for a high-quality cut.

After the tile is cut, it must be divided into two parts. For this purpose, “wings” are installed in the area of the lower third of the tile, which can be sealed with tape, so they do not leave traces. Now you can hit the handle with the palm of your hand a little bit or use more force if the tile is not cracked from the first try.

If the cut is overlapped by another tile during tiling, it is not necessary to grind the edge. But for laying into an inside corner, an even edge is required. To sharpen the kerf, use a special grinding stone (chosen depending on the type of tile) or sandpaper.

Using an electric tile cutter

This is an expensive professional tool that cuts any tile equally quickly, evenly and accurately. With it, you can cut straight and 45 degrees, drill holes and cavities, and carve shapes. Cut strips are less than 5 millimeters wide. Edges of the cut are smooth, slightly rounded.

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Some models work with a tile with one side dipped in water, others require only regular wetting along the cut. This method prevents the formation of dust.

The tool consists of a base, a knife and an electric motor, and the cutting process is as follows:

  • Water is poured into the tray at the level of the cutting disc, so that it is lowered into it by 2-3 centimeters (for submersible models).
  • The tile is clamped and slowly moved under the cutter on the marking. The force must be even to avoid chipping and jamming the motor.
  • To cut an angle repeat the procedure twice in sections with the desired angle.

Like any similar tool, an electric tile cutter requires safety requirements and the use of protective equipment.

For quality work, you need to change the worn discs and water in time.

Cutting with an angle grinder

Angle grinder is such a versatile power tool that it is difficult to imagine the repair of the room without it. Using an angle grinder you can also cut the tiles. For this you will need to have a diamond disc in your arsenal. You can also use a stone wheel.

You need to mark the cut on the tile with a nail or awl. It is better to do it from two sides: on the front of the tile, on the glaze, and on the inside of the surface. The cutting itself is better to be carried out in several stages. First with an indentation of 2. 3 mm to go through on one side, and then also on the other side. And continue to do so until the tile is divided in two. With this approach, the risk of splitting the tile is minimized.

Experienced craftsmen can use the angle grinder to make a curved tile cut, and even rounded holes.

Drill with nozzles

Strictly speaking, the drill is not suitable for cutting the strip. A drill and various attachments will cope with drilling holes of different diameters in the tile.

Holes of small diameter for dowels are made for fastening shelves, cabinets, decorative elements. Large holes are needed for bypassing pipes, meters, etc.

To work with ceramics, it is better not to use an ordinary drill bit, but a lance-shaped tile drill bit, commonly referred to as a “feather”. It easily passes the glaze layer and the top layer of ceramic and digs into it so that it passes tiles without chipping the surface.

When you have passed the ceramic, replace the “feather” with a concrete drill bit and continue the work.

Diamond tipped crowns are excellent bits for drilling holes for outlets, switches, meters.

Alternative tools and their features

There are several of the most popular techniques that are sure to come in handy. So, you can cut ceramic tile with the following tools:

  • angle grinder. It is a manual grinder that is used in cutting metal, wood, tile and other materials when replacing the nozzle. It can even cope with porcelain tiles. A diamond-coated disc is used in the work.
  • Glass cutter. This handheld device. Despite its diminutive size, it is excellent for cutting tiles, particularly glazed tiles. However, requires clarity and confidence in action.
  • Drill. Used for making holes and rounding. A regular drill bit or special bits like a crown or ballerina are used.
  • Pliers. The tool’s sharpened edges can cut the top layer of the tile and create a line for trimmer notch. True, it takes a lot of time and effort.

Basic tools for trimming tiles

Only diamond tool bits are suitable for cutting tiles. Toothed saws and weak drills will fail and damage the material.

Particular attention must be paid to safety when working with an angle grinder

If you want to make holes and semicircular cutting lines at home, use a drill with special attachments, wire cutters with carbide clamps.

To make holes in the tiles use a special attachment to the drill

The peculiarity of work with pliers consists in “biting off” fragments of ceramics along a pre-drawn contour. It should be remembered that only small pieces should be separated. In any case, it is important to grind after such procedures.

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