Cutting and laying slate tiles for a hearth

I have seen some 30x30cm slate tiles in B&Q that we would like to use for our hearth. Probably going to have to do it myself because the fireplace man / builder isn't keen. Does anyone know if this thing: http://www.diy.com/bq/product/product.jhtml?PRODID $915&CATID8262 will cut slate tiles ok? Or is there a better way?
Also the floor is concrete, and where I've ripped out the old hearth is quite uneven. Do I need to get this flat? If so what's the best way? And then do I use standard floor tile adhesive/grout? Where does one get this sealant you're recommended to use with the slate - couldn't see it at B&Q?
And another thing - I'm putting down thin engineered wood floors. What's the best way of fitting around the hearth allowing for the expansion?
Any other tips or warnings?
Many thanks,
Gidon
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No idea, can't be bothered to look. You can cut slate using ceramic floor tile cutters of the "score and break" type. All you end up with is shards. What you need is a water cooled/lubricated diamond cutter. Suitable models from plasplugs and B&Q own brand. About ฃ30 maximum.
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This is a ceramic tile cutter, slate is stone.
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On Mon, 3 Nov 2003 16:21:14 +0000 (UTC), "A K"

So ?
Some of this depends on your slate. Most tiles in the sheds are Chinese (the stuff with the brown iron oxide colouring especially) and are quite soft. Lakeland green slate from Honister would be quite a different story.
Of the many little stone saws about these days, the Plasplugs ones seem to be better than the Lucky Golden Hedgehog brand. But get the bigger of the two models they sell.
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But it still looks like a toy if it is underpowered it will be a PITA to use. Barely a fun thing with thin tiles.
He'd have more fun hiring a large leckie cutter and a diamond blade. Set the machine in a workmate or something. Perhaps one man holding it in and the switch on and the other doing the actual work. Dusty though.
If it was me I'd trawl around looking for someone roofing then mark out the cuts I want and drive them around in time for tea break with a tenner in my hand.
A belt sander would get the rough out of it using very coarse red paper. Dusty though.
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If it's only a hearth there won't be that many tiles to cut. And the Plasplugs will do them ok if they're within it's thickness range, with not much mess - just some water. Just don't force it. It's more than adequate on normal wall tiles.
And even although it's slower than a 'proper' machine, it will still be faster than going to hire and return one.

I've not seen roofers using a wet diamond wheel cutter - they don't need the standard of finish this will achieve.

The Plasplugs will give a near perfect cut. Have you ever tried one?
Mine is one step up from the small one. Cutting ordinary concrete paving slabs which were red gave the most beautiful edge - rather like those polished 'stone' floors you get in public buildings.
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Thanks all - I think I'll give it a try - as Dave says I don't have many to cut - perhaps 5. And the cost of hiring is the same price as a tile cutter. Cheers, Gidon
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Michael Mcneil wrote:

Its good enough.

Been there, done that. Accuracy is crap and edges look terrible.

Even more like hard work.

Been there, done that too.
The tile cutter works on flooring slate. It even works on roofing slates and tiles, except that the requirement ther is for speed, not accuracy, so an angle grinder is better.

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A K wrote:

However, they do work if fed slowly with lots of water.
I've done about 65 sq meters of slate all cut with a diamond cutting wheel.
It will, at a pinch, even cut 18mm thick marble. Slowly...

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Yes. Make sure you keep it topped up.

IMHO, this is no bad thing for the DIY tiler cutting expensive tiles. You really don't want to rush it.
I clamp my one to the workmate, and prefer cut tiles outdoors where the small amount of water only goes over me, and there's plenty of light.
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