"Single Pass" Bullnose Profile Blade/Wheel for Honed Marble? [Archive] - Ceramic Tile Advice Forums - John Bridge Ceramic Tile


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01-16-2009, 10:05 AM
We're doing a master bathroom in honed marble - white carrara, and will be doing a window & a couple of stub walls that will require bullnosing.

Since the marble is honed, not polished - I was hoping a profile wheel would do the whole bullnosing job without having to do any extra polishing afterwards.

I found a reference to a "single pass" profile blade on this forum - anyone know if this is a special kind of profile wheel that does both the profile & some polishing in one pass?

If yes, anyone have a link to this "single pass" profile blade/wheel I can buy?

Thanks for any help! :)

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01-16-2009, 12:23 PM
I haven't heard of a blade able to cut, bullnose and polish al in one pass.
not to say it doesn't exist but I highly doubt it.

they do make profile wheels but you need to buy a polishing kit and polish the cut stone.

01-16-2009, 01:21 PM
thanks for the reply - I did think it sounded a wee bit too good to be true! :(

01-16-2009, 02:15 PM
I use a profile wheel like this (http://www.tiletool.net/Diamond_Products.asp) and then polish it with Alpha polishing pads (http://www.alpha-tools.com/Product.aspx?PageCode=710).

01-16-2009, 03:38 PM
thanks again - appreciate the links.

01-16-2009, 03:48 PM

01-16-2009, 05:21 PM
I was working with honed travertine, so I don't know how this will compare to your stone... I used the alpha profiler and then sanded by hand using wet autobody sandpaper. I stopped at 600 grit and it blended in quite well with the honed surface of the travertine. I did about 60 linear feet, and it really didn't take that long, probably about 20 minutes a foot.

01-17-2009, 08:16 AM
Cool - thanks for the sandpaper option. From what I've seen honed travertine is basically identical to honed marble in terms of finish polish, so knowing 600 grit is what you stopped with is great info.

Alpha profiler - that must be the hand profiling tool. I may look that up, as the 10" wet tile saw we've been using for all our projects does not have an adjustable saw - we were thinking of trying to "shim" the tile up so a smaller profile wheel would work. I saw this suggested on a saw blade product page, not sure how practical it is! but heck that is a whole other problem...

John Bridge
01-17-2009, 08:28 AM
fjordrr, welcome aboard. :)

Any profile wheel with do. Then a quick going over by hand with 300 and 600 wet/dry paper will bring up the "honed" finish. Use the paper wet. You can buy it at Home Depot. :)

This is a piece of travertine done with 600 grit ... honed. :)

01-17-2009, 08:37 AM
Thanks for the welcome :) and will you look at that pic - nice! OK, I'll quit stressing about the final "polish" to honed.

Any profiling blade - well, I was going to go for a mid-priced one like in the above link - I 've seen them from $39 (yup - at Harbor Freight!) to about $250. I admit the $89 Felker caught my eye tho - being half Scottish :D

Whatever I do, it's gotta be ordered today tho!

01-17-2009, 09:09 AM
Here is a link to the Alpha profiler:


The tool has two guides, one that rests on the edge of the tile and one that rests on the face. As long as there are no voids in the edge of the tile, it's hard to mess it up. You need to use it with a wet grinder with thru spindle water. The whole setup wasn't cheap, but it was less than the local stone shops would have charged for the one job alone. I figure I could always sell it down the road and get quite a bit of money back.

One note - I found that the transition from radius to the face of the tile was sharp (not tangent) after profiling. I ended up doing a lot of hand work to blend the radius tangent to the face. Not required, but I think it looks a lot better.

If I didn't have much to do I would skip the profiler and make three chamfers in 22.5' increments on the tile saw and then blend it by hand. I've never used a profile wheel on a tile saw, but I imagine it would be a pain with stone that varies in thickness much at all.

09-27-2009, 07:31 PM
Hi all,

I know this post is old, but I have something to add. The original poster was doing about 200" of baseboard. Someone mentioned they had see a (6") profile wheel at harbour freight for $39. I purchased one and am using it on honed travertine and it is working great. I mounted it on my Taget Super Tilematic and adjusted it down to where I could barely see a hint of light from the top of the 3/8" profile, and the same at the side. It cut quickly, and effortlessly on the first pass without any problem. Just to make sure I moved it back and forth on the tray a couple times till there was no cutting sounds. I was using it on 18" x 18" a 1/2" travertine. Since it is only a 3/8" bullnose wheel it can't cut thru 1/2" travertine in on pass. I am using it for baseboard as well, and I just finished a nice corner shelf for the shower. For my baseboard I am using double stacked 2" rips, with the bullnose edge on the top rip, and also on the outside corners. I used a bullnose corner bead on the drywall with a transition piece that I made the bottom transition back to a square corner at the bottom. I recommend pre-cutting all your rips first, and then come back and profile the edge using a straight guide stop on the tray for the repetative cuts. I laid them along the perimeter of the wall so I could easily keep count. Cut a few extra while you have everything set up. I was able to use a lot of my scrap waste pieces from doing the floors. It only took me a couple practice pieces to get everything set and adjusted. I caulked my height lines all around the walls first and then set all the outside corners. Since I am doing double 2'' stacked rips, I stagger the joints from the bottom rip to the top rip. I used a little fine grit wet/dry sandpaper to quickly polish up the edges. I tried to post a photo of the corner shower shelf I fabricated yesterday, but I couldn't get it to post. As I get further along with my project I will take the time to figure out how to post some pics for you.


09-29-2009, 06:25 AM
I've been meaning to post back with a photo of our (almost) completed marble bathroom, but believe or not I haven't taken photos yet!

We ended up using an intermediately priced 6" bullnose profile wheel p/n621081 on an Imer fixed table saw & built a platform to raise the height to where we needed it. On the first test passes, we accidentally did a step bullnose, and liked it so much that is what we went with.

The profiling wheel worked great on the honed marble, only required a bit of hand sanding on the cut/profiled edges to make it look good. We profiled edges around the window, shower seat, and a bumpout in the wall we had by the shower to support the frameless shower door. Never did put up the marble baseboard, it looks good without.

These profiling wheels are a neat tool!

10-16-2009, 08:24 PM
Hi all,
I recently got a 6" profile wheel thinking it would work ok with my fixed dual rail tile saw I got from Harbor Freight. However reality hit and it just doesnt seem to cut the 1/2" marble tiles or profile them at all. fjordrr mentioned that he raised the height of his fixed saw.. I was wondering how I could achieve something like that to that the height for the saw is raised by 1 inch. Any suggestions? The saw has clamps which hold the tiles down (cant post a link for some reason but its item # 98265 at harbor frieght) so I would assume I would have to get some type of clamps to hold the raised time better. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!

10-16-2009, 08:38 PM
That is a 1.5 Horsepower 7" Bridge Tile Saw. I do not have much experience with this type but I have seen an older version of this recently. Friend of mine did a whole travertine install with it. It did not have a way to raise the saw height at all. It has an angle adjustment. If you got the 6" profile may be he means raise the tile up more by building a platform to put the tile on. If the tile is 1/2" or what ever it is, then use a piece of plywood to raise to correct height?

Just a thought. I had a similar situation (7 in saw, 6 in profile wheel). I returned it and got a 7 in one but could have actually kept it. Just would have had to raise the height because 6 in wheels have more choice than 7 in. I got the bullnose profile.

From what I read here and the liberry, it might help to cut as bevel first and then send it through the profile wheel. I actually followed that method and realized that it is less work on the wheel as well in addition to it being easier.

10-17-2009, 05:47 AM
Correct - we built a platform under the tile to raise it to the correct height for the profiling wheel, as the Imer we borrowed was a non-adjustable saw.

We actually never got it to the right height for a perfect bullnose, as the first platform try yielded a step bullnose we liked better.

10-17-2009, 11:34 AM
Thats 3 for 3 in yielding a step bullnose. We liked that better too but how are the corners working out? Maybe you are not doing a countertop like us. Just wondering. I have to try it out hopefully this weekend for the corner. On the side, I am thinking one side no edge so that it curves in? On the top corner just sand it to remove the sharp tile corner point?

10-18-2009, 06:51 AM
You are right we did not do a countertop, but we did run into that issue with the shower seat.

However, it is triangular so we only had the small end of the triangle to deal with. We managed to avoid the issue completely by not step bullnosing that "butt" end at all but rather shaped/sanded it to fit almost flush with the tile below. This would not work with a counter obviously.

I am interested in what others come up with, as I am thinking of trying the profile wheel on slate (or maybe even soapstone later) for countertops.