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Unread 08-28-2004, 01:14 PM   #1
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Cutting Granite Tiles In Place

Hi,

I'm looking for some advice. I need to widen the hole for a drop in cooktop. Everything (tiles, kitchen, ...) is already installed and in place. It would be difficult to wet cut the tiles since I can't afford to get the flooring and cabinets all wet.

I only need to cut a 1/8" strip about 35" long along one of the edges. What is the best way to approach this? Would I be able to just grind away this amount without to much problems? Since this is on the inside of a drop in cooktop, it does not need to be the most beautigul/clean cut (although it would be nice).

What is the best way to approach this problem and with what tools? I have not wirked with tiles so I don't have any tile specific tools so a somewhat detailed description of the tool and where to get it would be helpfu.

Thanks ahead for any help.

Chris
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Unread 08-28-2004, 01:43 PM   #2
Shaughnn
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Chris,
Lay down a piece of masking tape to sraw your line on, to make it easier to follow. Use a 4" angle grinder with a blade rated for granite to cut through the line. Make sure to wear eye protection, ear protection and a dust mask. It will also help if you arrange for a shop vac nozel to be guided by a helper to follow your cutting.
I would set a wet hydro sponge on the counter, next to the line I intend to cut and let it "leak" onto my cut to keep the dust down and to keep the blade cool. It's a little sloppy in the immediate area of the cut, but it keeps the whole room from getting dlown out with dust. IF you arrange a splash barrier (I use a bucket of water which I can also use to replenish the sponge) then you won't even create any spray. When the cutting is all done, I can just use the sponge to wipe up the slurry and towel things dry.
Best advice is to take your time cutting and keep a steady hand.
Best of luck,
Shaughnn
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Unread 08-28-2004, 03:58 PM   #3
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Sounds like a good plan. Thanks for the help. Since I currently do not have a grinder, is there any particular model that would be good?
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Unread 08-28-2004, 04:39 PM   #4
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Maybe something like this?
http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg...&s=hi&n=228013

Good? Bad?
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Unread 08-28-2004, 04:44 PM   #5
Davy
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Dewalt is a good brand, find a diamond blade and you're in bidness. Amazon probably has them too, I know ebay does.
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Unread 08-28-2004, 04:55 PM   #6
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You may be able to rent one, with a granite blade, so I would call around. In the event that you can't find a rental or you just want to own a nifty new tool, here's some tips
The most important factor I find in choosing a grinder is how it feels in your hand. They are much the same mechanically, and one that you don't plan to use day in and day out doesn't have to be as reliable of a workhorse as the pro's invest in. Where is the switch and how easy is it to operate with a single hand (take that bar-handle off as it will just get in the way). Is the body of the tool too thick for you to comfortably wrap your hand around? You will need to keep control over the tool as it's whirling and buzzing and fighting to jump off of your cutting line. Make sure you have a good grip on it or you may ruin your work. You probably don't need to spend the extra money on a variable speed grinder, so limit yourself to the single-speeds and your search will be easier and cheaper. Next, how easy is it to change the blades? Some machines have locks and some require using two wrenches to remove the blade. Is the blade guard easy to adjust or is it fixed in one position? Does it have a blade guard. And while it's not usually a problem, make sure that the spindle will accomodate the blades, bits, wheels, cups and pads that you plan to use with your grinder.
I use a Makita 4 1/2" angle grinder with a 5/8" spindle. It has a "push/pull" thumb switch located on the top of the tool and a blade lock also located on the topside of the tool. The cord is long enough to keep the plug away from where you are working (leg fully extended) and not so long that I'm always tripping over it or wrestling with it. The 5/8" model has a stronger motor than it's lesser sibling and that translates to more RPM and more torque( which is dangerous if you don't have a good grip on it). This one came with a spiffy tote bag which I load up with a bunch of accessories for whatever my needs might be. I've even thrown a wire cup ito the bag and some *cheap* masonry and metal grinding/ cut-off disks in case I need to get medieval on something that's in my way.
Here's some pics so you can see what I'm babbling about
Best of luck,
Shaughnn
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Unread 08-28-2004, 04:56 PM   #7
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Or a little cheaper (Makita vs the Dewalt above).

http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg...698859-1853454

Chris
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Unread 08-28-2004, 08:07 PM   #8
FireWrks7
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Chris, you can go down to bLowes and find a Hitachi, DeWalt, or B&D grinder for under 50 bucks. Instant gratification without spending that much. Just try em out for size.


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