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Unread 03-23-2020, 11:50 AM   #1
JOhn Jrs
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Cutting tile and keeps cracking 47 x 47 inches.

I have a tile that is 47 x 47 inches about 3/8 thick porcelain. Problem is tile cracks on surface about 3 inches long. I have tried a track saw with diamond blade with water. I have tried a small hand held tile saw cheap hd version. I am now using a sidewinder that is cordless with diamond blade and water. I have the tiles flat on table with rubber play mats (like the kind that interlock and use on workshop floor) under. I though maybe not perfectly flat and moved to flat cement surface with mats on top. Then i tried cutting very little bits with each pass with saw. Then tried taking full pass ie cut all the way through. Then even tried score cut in top then score cut on bottom. Then cut the middle. I have attached pictures. I am open to ideas as to proper way to cut with out buying $1500 bridge saw. Thanks for any ideas.
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Unread 03-23-2020, 06:41 PM   #2
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John,

This is why we like to handle a tile before we bid a job. Not all tiles are made as well as each other. This may just be the inherent flaws in the tile. Keep trying until something works. Maybe take one to another area pro and ask him to cut with his equipment.

FWIW a decent bridge saw will cost more than $1500.
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Unread 03-23-2020, 08:52 PM   #3
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You might try a variable speed grinder with a diamond blade. it might be that the saws are spinning too fast creating too much vibration
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Unread 03-24-2020, 09:47 AM   #4
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Thank you both for your thoughts. I am going to try and grind 1.5 off in little bits and see how that does ie sanding the edge down with diamond grinding wheel. I will use a hand grinder for this I know its not the way it should be done but worth the time to get this done if it works. Thanks again all
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Unread 03-24-2020, 10:50 AM   #5
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Tried it with angle grinder cutting small pieces out and snap. 69 dollars down the drain. It is snapping in mostly the same place. Any more thoughts ?
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Unread 03-24-2020, 06:10 PM   #6
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Put tile on edge and sanded down 1.5 inches. It work but wouldn’t do it again. I would like to know which was the trick. on edge like glass or grinding down was it. Stay safe out in this different time.
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Unread 03-24-2020, 08:38 PM   #7
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I had a similar issue recently with a Lowes 12x24 porcelain tile. I had to cut out a rectangle in the middle of some tiles for the floor registers... went through 6 tiles to get one "good" cut that still fractured on the surface but didn't completely break.

The tile behaved like glass, would just break end to end whilst cutting. I started to drill out the corners with my hole bits and it still cracked. Placed the tile on a sand bed to dampen all vibration and it still cracked....tried all my tools, wet saw gently, grinder new blade gently....and ...it...still...cracked

Some tiles just have this potential stress in them that make them hard for certain cuts.
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Unread 03-25-2020, 04:54 PM   #8
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Years ago I had some 12x12 porcelain that had stress in it. I wanted to cut a 4x6 out of the middle of a tile for a soap dish. I was installing them over a bath tub. Best I remember it took 7 tiles to get it cut. The last one stayed together after cutting it very slow. But, after turning off my saw, I could hear the tile cracking in my hand. After several seconds it broke while holding it. I ended up making a U shape cut for the soap dish, which was not a problem with this tile.
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Unread 03-25-2020, 08:02 PM   #9
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Thanks all. When cutting for valves it broke talk about frustration. I am going to get a 4 inch diamond bit for shower valve and try again. Do they make something to adhere to back and front of tile and cut then take off. Thanks again.
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Unread 03-25-2020, 08:12 PM   #10
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I've never seen anything like that. Not sure how you could keep it out of the way when cutting.

On the job above, I also had problems drilling the 1 3/8 holes for the valves. I was lucky that most of them landed close to the grout joints.

If you have any tiles left, I'd think about returning them for something else.
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Unread 03-25-2020, 08:18 PM   #11
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I like this blade for shower valves and toilet flanges. Don't try to cut all the way through on a single pass

https://diamaxinc.com/productslist/c...contour-blade/
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Unread 03-26-2020, 12:18 AM   #12
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I've heard that the excess tension gets built up in the cooling process. If the outside of the tile is cooled but the inside is still too hot, there's tension built up in the tile.

I know that doesn't help the problem at hand, but at least now you know why. Assuming what I heard is correct.
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Unread 03-26-2020, 06:55 AM   #13
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If push comes to shove maybe a stone fabrication shop will water jet them for you, John. You're in NoVa, there's no end of stone shops.
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Unread 03-26-2020, 10:54 AM   #14
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Any ideas on cost for water jetting or who to recommend? I am thinking it’s worth a shot if I can find someone to do it.
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Unread 03-26-2020, 11:20 AM   #15
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No idea I'm afraid, I've never needed such a service. But I do know this area has a ton of stone/solid surface fabrication shops.
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