What and how can you cut tile

The history of ceramic tiles has more than one millennium. In ancient Rome, it was widely used to decorate palaces of nobility, and in ancient Greece - temples. Antique craftsmen created huge panels and amazing wall ornaments from colorful tiles.

Manual tile cutting

The scheme of cutting tiles with a manual machine.

History is silent about what tools were then used to cut tiles, but the fact that they knew how to cut it masterfully is beyond doubt. And since the tile is today made of the same materials as in ancient times, burning a specially prepared mixture of clay and sand in a furnace, then the methods of cutting tile that exist today are rooted in deep antiquity.

Why do I have to cut tile?

Performing finishing work, it is impossible to do without not cutting some of the stacked tiles. After all, no matter how hard you try to match the size of the tile so that it accurately, without a trace, falls on the plane of the wall or floor, the mathematical probability of such luck is very close to zero.

Electric tile cutting machine

The scheme of cutting tiles by electric tile cutter.

But even if you are fabulously lucky, even in this case the presence of gas, water and sewage pipes in the floor and walls, as well as exhaust openings, window and door openings will still force you to perform a tile fit to circumvent these obstacles.

Therefore, when undertaking to lay the tile yourself, be sure to familiarize yourself with the technique of cutting it and acquire the necessary tools and equipment for this job.

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Tile cutting tools

Tools that can cut tiles are conventionally divided into two types - professional and adapted. Choosing what you can cut tile, you need to focus primarily on the amount of work performed.

Professional tilers in their work use special tools for cutting tiles. But their work is expensive, and if the volumes are not very large, it is not economically viable to acquire them. Moreover, it is possible to cut tiles with ordinary tools, which any home craftsman can find or which are not so expensive, therefore, it is not expensive to buy them.

You can cut tiles with the following tools:

Tile cutting techniques

Tips for cutting tiles.

  • glass cutter;
  • grinder;
  • special hacksaw for ceramics;
  • special ring nozzle for tile;
  • manual or electric plitkorez.

Glass cutter - hand roller tool designed for cutting glass. Its roller is made of a very hard alloy that can leave a deep scratch on the glass. You can’t cut a thick floor tile, but it copes with a thinner wall satisfactorily. But still it is not suitable for large volumes of such work.

Manual tile cutter in appearance resembles ordinary forceps, but it acts somewhat differently. In the tile cutter, the tile is fixed by the clamps in a static state, and then an incision is made with the help of a special roller in the right place. Such a cut can be made to a greater depth than a glass cutter. This allows you to cut not only wall, but also thicker floor tiles. When choosing a manual tile cutter in a store, keep in mind that it is better to take a tool with a metal rather than a plastic corner, since the latter, although much cheaper, does not cope well with cutting floor tiles.

Electric tile cutter in its design is similar to manual, but is a more powerful tool. He easily cuts a tile of any thickness, and is also able to cut thin strips, which is difficult to make with a manual tile cutter, and even more so with a glass cutter. The advantages of electric tile cutters include the almost complete absence of dust during cutting, as well as the minimum amount of waste.

Tile Cutting Patterns

Tile cutting patterns.

However, the price of a good electric tile cutter is very high and with small amounts of work it can exceed the total cost of the rest of the repair. Therefore, it is acquired mainly by construction companies.

A special hacksaw on ceramics looks like a regular hacksaw with a removable tensioning blade. However, it itself has a special tungsten carbide coating. Work with this tool is characterized by exceptionally smooth and smooth cuts, which do not require additional grinding.

The ring saw is produced in the form of a ring nozzle with teeth, which is mounted on an electric drill. Designed exclusively for cutting in the tile round and semicircular holes for pipes, hoses or taps. The inconvenience of working with a hole saw is that the tool itself and the tile get very hot during cutting and require periodic cooling, for which they have to be dipped into a container with cold water.

The Bulgarian is a well-known universal tool. The Bulgarian cuts not only the tile, but even products from porcelain tile. It is functional for all operations when cutting tile: cutting thin strips, cutting grooves and curly cutting edges. But the work with the grinder has a significant drawback: when it cuts the tile, a very large amount of ceramic dust is obtained, so the grinder can be resorted to only when all other tools do not cope with the work or do not fit the price.

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Tile cutting technique

Any way to cut tiles, no matter what tool it is used for, is actually the same and is very similar to cutting glass. On the tile in the right place a scratch is made, on which then the tile is broken.

To scratch the tile turned out deeper, the tile is recommended to soak for 45-60 minutes in cold water. You should not soak it for a longer period of time, as irreversible changes may occur in the tile material.

Before you cut tile, you need to mark it.

Perform it with a marker or marker, as long as the color of the line contrasts well with the color of the tile. Then the tile is placed on a flat surface, for example, a tabletop, along this marked line is carried out with a roller cutter or a hacksaw blade, making a shallow incision. Then, moving the tile to the edge of the tabletop so that the cut is parallel to the edge of the tabletop, pressing the hanging end breaks the tile into two parts.

Cutting tiles with a manual or electric tile cutter is performed according to a similar technology, only in this case the tile is broken open not by hand, but by a special lever. But there is one small detail: if you need to cut a narrow strip (less than 1 cm long), then it is better to cut the tile with a grinder, because when you press on a thin strip there is a big risk that it will not break along the notch.

Cutting tile is not considered to be a difficult process, and anyone willing can cope with it. The only thing that you should not immediately cut the tile directly for decoration, it is better to select a few obviously defective tiles (and there are such in any batch) and practice practicing cutting on them to get a little hand.

Good luck!

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