How to Cut Slate by Hand

Will Milner

Slate tiling gives an attractive, rustic look to a room but can also be used to create a solid, long lasting, non-flammable roof. Working efficiently with slate does take some practice, but it certainly can be picked up in the time it takes you to transform your home.

Slate tiles can cut by hand.

What's more, the tools you need are not especially expensive. Practice some cuts on scrap pieces before attempting to cut important pieces.

  1. Determine which side of the tile is the face-side. You can tell by looking at which side has the beveled edges. Place the the tile into the slate cutter face-side down.

  2. Position the tile under the blade on the angle you want to cut it. Hold the tile in place with your weaker hand and apply pressure on the blade with the other.

  3. Nibble rather than slice through the slate with the blade. Use short strokes that grind off the slate. Slowly slide the uncut tile under the blade as you cut the line.

  4. Warning

    Keep fingers well clear of the cutting blade.