You've got the do-it-yourself travertine project planned out, the surface substrate is finished and the travertine tile is neatly stacked and ready to go. You're almost there, but one last decision is proving to be a minor hurdle in progressing to the starting line: the important selection of edging for your travertine. Edging detail determines several important aspects of the job, so you have to select one before you start. There are several edging options to choose from -- each with a different level of difficulty and design look.
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Square, Slightly Sanded
The square, slightly sanded edging look is the easiest option for do-it-yourselfers. An electric hand sander is all that is required for this type of edging. Simply sand the rough, coarse, unfinished travertine edge, working your way through different grits until your reach the desired look.
The so-called chamfer edge is a 45-degree angle edge. The measurement of the angle -- edge to edge -- can vary depending on the angle size desired. For example, a chamfer (edge to edge) measures as little as 1/8 inch. On the other a chamfer edge measures a meaty 1/4 inch. Experiment with scrap pieces of travertine to see which size suits your project's look. Expert tile stone masons and tile setters "cut" the 45-degree chamfer edge with a carbide-wheel equipped 7-inch grinder. They polish things up with a diamond-pad-equipped 4-inch grinder.
Bullnose edging is labour intensive, but the results make the work worth the effort. Bullnose edging is similar to the "chamfer" look but instead of leaving the 45-degree angle as-is. the do-it-yourselfer sands the angle to achieve a smooth radius. Conduct trial bullnosing runs with extra pieces of scrap travertine to practice this edge detail.
Profile Wheel Edges
Wet tile saw blade manufacturers produce special blades called "profile" blades capable of cutting special edging called "ogee," additional special angles and edge details. Profile wheels fit most wet tile saws but may have to be special ordered. A profile blade gives the do-it-yourselfer a shot at creating a custom-edging look impossible to manually pull off.
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