There are specific blades for cutting different types of floor tiles. That might be news if you are still a newbie handling tiling projects. But talking about diamond blades and which one is the most appropriate for cutting a type of material depends significantly on our cutting needs.
Knowing how the blades work and how they are created will help us better understand what type of floor tile cutting disc we need or which one is the best for cutting our floor tile or the material.
Before we start learning how to choose the most suitable diamond blade for your tiling project, it is essential to define the subject.
What is a diamond blade?
Diamond blades are among the must-have tools you need to create perfect flooring. They are super-abrasive and are made up of a circular body, mostly steel, called “core.” The core has the cutting material in a continuous crown or segments. This cutting material, which we call the diamond band, can be joined to the disc core in different ways. Still, the most commonly used by RUBI is laser welding.
The diamond grains can be attached to the discs in 3 different ways: sintering, electroplating, and vacuum brazing. But in the case of specific discs for cutting ceramics floor tiles, we will generally be talking about sintering.
In the sintering process, the diamond particles are mixed with the metal binder and consolidated by pressure and temperature, creating a system with different layers of diamond that are exposed as the tool wears. Visit http://modularhomesmidwest.com/how-to-square-a-room-for-simple-floor-tiles-installation/ to read about How to Square a Room for Simple Floor Tiles Installation.
Types of Sintered Diamond Blades
- Continuous strip: Provides the best finish for your floor tiles. Used for cutting and mitering ceramic or other stone-facing materials, with thickness <25 mm.
- Turbo: This type of blade showcases a great combination. It allows you to cut your floor tiles faster and achieve high-quality finishes.
- Viper: It is the evolution of the TURBO blade with higher quality and speed. It is totally indicated for high hardness materials.
- Segmented: This blade is the fastest. Maximum speed and better cooling of the blade. For cutting different types of floor tiles materials >25 mm thick.
- Turbo segmented: For cutting all types of floor tiles materials at maximum speed.
- J-Slot: State-of-the-art technology. High speed on the most complex materials. Specially designed for straight cutting of porcelain stoneware. Eliminates the tensions generated during cutting.
The higher the cutting speed, the lower the quality and vice versa. The most balanced speed-quality ratio discs are the turbo and viper types.
How to choose the right diamond blade?
Now that we know how the blades work, how they are created, the types and their characteristics, we must take into account 3 aspects when choosing a diamond blade for cutting your floor tiles:
1. What type of cutting we are going to do
Depending on the type of cutting we will do, we must think about what kind of machine we will use: an electric device, a grinder? And consequently, what type of cooling we are going to have.
We have to bear in mind that discs are cut by friction and super-abrasive tools. This friction generates high temperatures during cutting, and this gives rise to 2 types of cutting: wet cutting and dry cutting.
In dry cutting, the only cooling is provided by the ventilation generated by the rotating blade itself. Dry cutting discs can be cooled with water for more excellent durability and a better finish. Still, wet cutting discs should never be used without water.
We have cutting discs for both dry and wet cutting. So before deciding, we must know which machine we are going to use and the type of cooling.
2. Types of materials we need to cut
The 2nd thing we have to consider is what kind of floor tiles materials we are going to cut. When we talk about cutting ceramic floor tile materials, both fall into the group of siliceous materials. These materials, mainly composed of silica, have a medium-high hardness. However, some can also have very high levels of abrasiveness.
Among the most common siliceous materials is the group we are interested in: ceramic materials such as tiles, glazed stoneware or porcelain stoneware. Glass and granite are also included in this group.
Therefore, due to the hardness of these materials, we will need a combination of small grit, with a high concentration of diamond and a soft bond, which wears at the same time as the diamond to avoid blunting of the disc and to have a good performance of the tool.
3. Cutting speed vs. Finish quality
The 3rd aspect to consider is whether we need cutting speed or finishing quality.
This will depend on the type of cut we are going to make. It is not the same to make a straight or diagonal cut, where we may need speed, as it is to make a mitre cut where we will need precision and finishing quality.
Not all discs are suitable for all types of cutting. To cut your floor tiles, you need blades with sufficient reinforcement and core thickness to withstand the 45º cut without breaking. The minimum core thickness for mitre cutting varies depending on the diameter of the blade.
In short, we must take into consideration whether we are going to do wet or dry cutting (depending on the machine we will use), the hardness properties of a material such as ceramic, and whether we need cutting speed or quality finishes.
Colour Classification of Diamond Blades
As well as the blades listed above, at RUBI we have many other models of discs for your cutting preferences. Therefore, to make it easier for you to choose, we use a colour classification to make your choice easier. Each colour tells us what use or application the disc is originally designed for:
Red: suitable if we mainly want to cut porcelain
Violet and dark green: for discs that cut general building materials.
Green: for general ceramic material
Blue: for hard materials
Orange: for abrasives
Grey: for marble
Yellow: for rescue
Diamond blades are available in different sizes, colours and quality. It is important that you consider your tiling project’s needs before making a purchase. You will find this guide helpful when choosing the right one for your tiling project.