Tile which has just been cut can have razor sharp edges. These can produce some very painful injuries if not handled with care, and even then accidents can happen. You can help to avoid this by using a simple tool known a rubbing stone.
Smooth Your Edges
After cutting the tile for your installation with your tile saw, nippers, or snap cutter you can smooth over the edges with your stone. All you have to do is hold the stone so it is at a forty five degree angle to the face of the tile and rub it in a parallel motion over the edge to round it out.
This will leave you with a smooth clean edge and can even help to blend irregularities and imperfections in a tile’s glaze. It is also very important to use your stone to smooth over any edges that will be exposed after they are set.
Rubbing stones are used with all types of ceramic, porcelain, stone, and even glass tile and come in different grades or grit to meet the hardness or softness of the tile you are working with. Some stones are actually made so that they have a different grit on both the top and the bottom which can be very convenient.
Other Helpful Uses
A rubbing stone is very handy to have around because it can be used for quite a few other purposes as well. It makes a wonderful tool for filing off small portions from a tile so that it can fit in the installation. You can also use one for abrading or scuffing up the surface of ceramic tiles if you will be adding newer ones right on top of them.
For the concrete in your project they can work too. Any high spots can easily be leveled out of the concrete base you are using. And when installing fireplace tiles, once the surface has been cleaned you can use your stone to make sure that the surface you are adding your tiles to is totally flat.
When your tile saw blade won’t cut, you can use a rubbing stone to dress or sharpen it up. Often you can get away with doing this up to around four or five additional times depending on the blade your using instead of purchasing a new one.
This can save you a pretty decent amount of cash since a stone is very inexpensive itself and cheaper than buying a new blade. Some tile installers even use them to the grind the edges of Mexican pavers so they can be used for a tile border or trim.
It’s easy to see just how handy a rubbing stone can be. Whether for smoothing edges or keeping blades sharp they are a necessary part of every tile installer’s toolkit.
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