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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2013
    Posts
    2

    Default drilling inset into slate tile?

    I am in process of finalizing the purchase of an older home in need of complete reno. Plan on starting in the bathroom to make the wifey happy. I am planning on installing slate tile and was wondering if it is possible to drill shallow insets into the tiles for pennies? The pennies are from a saved collection we have been putting together and I thought it would be nice touch to add to our new home. Thanks for any insight you may provide.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    Houston Texas
    Posts
    2,969

    Default Re: drilling inset into slate tile?

    Welcome to the forum,

    Slate tiles, like all natural stone needs a deflection of no less than L720 for proper support, along with 2 layers of plywood totalling no less than 1.25" installed in a specific manner. Of course if you are going over SOG, you can skip that part as long as you have the proper expansion joints.

    Yes, you can buy a diamond core bit to make plugs where the pennies would be inserted. Use Laticrete 310 epoxy to set the pennies.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2013
    Location
    Jacksonville
    Posts
    10

    Default Re: drilling inset into slate tile?

    Aren't you supposed to put something over the tile before you drill to further ensure no cracking?

    I've heard a piece of tape can help but you're definitely the expert, Houston!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    SoCal
    Posts
    6,758

    Default Re: drilling inset into slate tile?

    Slate tiles are usually thin and brittle. Just be patient and don't break them.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2013
    Posts
    2

    Default Re: drilling inset into slate tile?

    Quote Originally Posted by dj1 View Post
    Slate tiles are usually thin and brittle. Just be patient and don't break them.
    Is there another flooring tile material that may be easier to perform this on. I thought I read something about porcelain tile being solid color throughout. Thanks for the insight.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Posts
    2,203

    Default Re: drilling inset into slate tile?

    Any kind of real tile is going to be brittle in nature so just go with what you like- you're going to need to bore slowly with any of them. Keeping the bit and tile cool will help- on walls use a spray bottle of water and an old towel on the floor under it. Spritz as needed. On floors (or any tiles not yet laid) create a 'dam ring' of clay to contain the water to where you're working. Roll the clay into a 'sausage', form a ring and press it in place around where you're working.

    And please post pics when you're done- we love to see other people's creativity!

    Phil

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