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Unread 07-02-2007, 08:39 AM   #1
claassen
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Bruce's Basement

I'm laying about 350 sq. feet of 12" porcelain tile in our basement. I borrowed a wet saw from a friend. I know it's not a very expensive saw (I think it was about $50). I bought a new blade for it because the blade that he had didn't look like it had much cutting material left on it.
Based on everyone's experience here, is it even worth it to try to cut through porcelain with a cutter this cheap, or would I be better off renting a heavier duty saw? The 350 sq ft involves three different rooms that are not completely square, so I'll be doing a lot of cutting. From what I read on this forum, it's probably not a good idea for someone with no experience to try "snapping" porcelain tile.
Also, keep in mind that I'm a rookie and this is my first tile job. I've researched the heck out of the process, and think I can do the job, but I don't want to spend a ton of time on each cut, because there will be a lot to cut!
Thanks in advance!
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Unread 07-02-2007, 09:01 AM   #2
Mike2
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Hi claassen. We specialize in Rookies so welcome aboard. Is claassen your name?

From our photo album, here is a shower with granite tile all cut using a under $100 saw so anything is possible. http://johnbridge.com/vbulletin/show...03&postcount=2

Give that saw a try is about all I can say. What brand is it?
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Unread 07-02-2007, 09:52 AM   #3
claassen
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First name's Bruce.

I think it's a Q.E.P. 7" wet saw, but I can't remember for sure.

Thanks!
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Unread 07-02-2007, 11:09 AM   #4
4my3kids
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Talking

I am currently doing a bathroom project using a cheap portable saw ($89) and purchased a HotDog blade for it and had no problems at all! Good luck

bill
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Unread 07-02-2007, 11:09 AM   #5
he46570
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Hey Bruce. I'm a noob too, but just completed a 100 sq ft bath / shower remodel using that exact saw, although I was predominantly using 6x6 or 6x12 porcelain tile.

I found that even with maintaining a slow, constant speed, and keeping the saw wet, I still chewed through 3 blades before the end of the job. You really notice the blade getting 'dull' when it slows down and starts chipping. Perhaps the blade could have been 'sharpened' using techniques on this forum, but I didn't have the resources on hand to try it.

So I guess I'm saying it's possible, but be ready for a number of replacement blades. You can pick up some really cheap blades on eBay if you don't want to fork out for the ~$40 blades at Home Depot / Lowes.

Robert
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Unread 07-02-2007, 12:27 PM   #6
claassen
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Thanks for all the quick responses! Are there brands of blades that have proven to be more durable than others? I read on one forum that you should have the "right" blade for porcelain tile, but the blades I've seen don't indicate whether they're specifically for porcelain.

Thanks!
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Unread 07-02-2007, 12:30 PM   #7
4my3kids
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Mk hot dog blades for porcelain is what i am using and works great.
bill
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Unread 07-02-2007, 01:24 PM   #8
chuck stevenson
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Bruce,

A porcelain blade will be indicated on the blade or packaging. Get a cement block to dress the blade.

http://johnbridge.com/vbulletin/showthread.php?t=20672
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Unread 07-02-2007, 02:58 PM   #9
prescottrecorder
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And if you're saw seems to be true but your cuts aren't, it may be that you're having to push too hard to get a dull blade through the tile, so keep an eye out for that as an early warning signal.
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Unread 07-05-2007, 08:24 AM   #10
claassen
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Tap with a rubber mallet

As stated in a previous post, I'm doing my first tile job, so I admitedly am not anything even close to an expert on the subject. I did, however research the heck out of the process before even starting to make sure I had a good understanding. Everything I read said to lightly tap the tile with a rubber mallet after placing down on the floor, so that's what I've been doing (laid about 125 porcelain tile so far and only cracked one!). Yesterday, my father-in-law stopped by, and when he saw me tapping the tiles with the rubber mallet asked "where in the world" I learned that? He's been in construction for about 40 years, and both watched tile laid, and laid it himself and said he'd never seen, or heard of that.

Am I wasting my time with this step?!?
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Unread 07-05-2007, 09:07 AM   #11
Marge
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Bruce,

Not sure where you read you needed to do that with every tile, but you don't. You should be able to "press" tiles into place.

Also, I have merged your two threads so we can keep everything about your project in one thread. It helps us to have the history all together. If you would like to rename the thread to something more general, we'll be happy to do that for you.
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Unread 07-05-2007, 10:06 AM   #12
claassen
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Several tile books (such as Stanley's Complete Tiling book, and some others that I can't remember) all mentioned this. Guess you shouldn't believe everything you read...

Thanks for merging the two threads. As far as re-naming the thread, if you think that would best, that's fine with me.

Thanks to everyone who has responded for taking the time. I appreciate it!

I'm sure you'll hear from me again before this project is complete (Still have about 200 sq ft. to tile!)
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Unread 07-16-2007, 11:07 AM   #13
claassen
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Toe Kick under cabinets

Three Weekends, and 350+ tile later, all of the tile is laid (Still need to grout it all)! Thanks to all who helped me so far!

I have heard of people tiling the toe kick under their cabinets, and I've got a few cabinets in the bathroom that I need to decide what to do with. If I decide to cut tile for this, do I just set them directly against the wood toe kick, or do I need to put something special against the toe kick, first?
Also, do I just use the same Versabond morter that I've been using, or is there something different that I should use for this application?

Thanks again!
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Unread 07-17-2007, 12:33 PM   #14
claassen
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Never mind...

HD has toekick board for their cabinets - 5 bucks, and I can scribe to fit. Seems a lot easier than tiling the toekick so I think I'll go that route.

Thanks!
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Unread 07-20-2007, 10:21 AM   #15
claassen
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I can't believe I did this....

Okay, as I stated in my last couple of posts, I've laid all of the tile in my basement. That's my good news.
Here's the bad news:
As I was laying my tile, I wondered about the transition from the tile to the carpet (which is not laid, yet), but I didn't do any research to see what I would need. Well now it looks like almost all of the transitions that are made, are made to be laid when the edge tiles are laid (already done that).

It looks like the closest product I can find is the Schluter Reno T which appears to be for transitioning between two hard floorings. Now, I'm not sure what to do. Is there anything I can do? I want to make sure I protect the edge of the porcelain tile, while also preventing some stubbed toes.

There won't be much of a height difference, As I laid the tile directly on the concrete floor. With the tile and morter, and probably have about 3/8" variation between the tile and the concrete floor that the carpet will be laid on (with pad, so the carpet may end up being higher than the tile, but I'm not sure).

Thanks!
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