When it comes to versatile tools that can be used for many jobs, the angle grinder is hands down one of the best out there. One of the things that you can use an angle grinder for, granted you have the proper attachment, is cutting cement board.
Therefore, how to cut cement board with an angle grinder is what we will teach you today.
Is an Angle Grinder the Best Tool for Cutting Cement Board?
Indeed, the angle grinder is a fine tool to use for cutting cement board. It can be outfitted with a special kind of blade that allows you to cut through this material with relative ease. That said, although it is doable, it’s not actually the number one best tool for the job.
Yes, it does make quick work of the job, but it also produces a whole lot of toxic dust. Due to that large amount of dust created, it’s generally not the preferred method.
The preferred method for cutting cement board is usually with a handheld blade, either a scoring knife or a utility knife. With a scoring or utility knife, you would score a line onto one side of the cement board, and then use physical force to snap it the rest of the way.
It’s not the fastest method, but it does produce extremely clean cuts, and it also helps to prevent any of that dangerous dust from being created.
What Type of Disc Should You Use for Cutting Cement Board?
Angle grinders do of course have many different types of discs that can be attached to them, and they all serve different purposes. When it comes to cutting cement boards, you want to use a masonry cutting disc. This may also be known as a masonry cutting wheel.
This is a very special kind of circular wheel that features an edge designed specifically for cutting extremely hard and tough materials, such as masonry. While cement board may not be quite as hard as actual masonry, it’s still hard enough to warrant this kind of disc.
How to Cut Cement Board with an Angle Grinder
As you are about to find out, cutting cement board with an angle grinder is very easily done. As long as you have the right attachment, it’s only going to take you a few steps and a few minutes.
Step 1: Prepare the Angle Grinder
The first step here is to prepare your angle grinder by affixing the special masonry cutting wheel to it. Make sure that the bolt is securely attached so that the masonry cutting wheel cannot wobble back and forth.
Step 2: Measure and Mark
You obviously don’t want to do this freehand, so the next step here is to take your measurements. Measure the space in which the cement board will go. Take your measurements and transfer them onto the cement board using any appropriate tool, such as a T-square, a measuring tape, or a ruler. You are then going to use marking chalk to mark the line as needed. Make sure to use chalk, as it’s much more visible and wipes off much easier than pencil.
Step 3: Make the Cut
In terms of making the cut, you have two methods at your disposal here. First, you could cut halfway through the cement board, and then snap it with physical force, just like you would when using a scoring knife. You could also just use a masonry cutting wheel that is large enough to cut through the entire cement board in a single pass.
Which method you choose really depends on how thick your cement board is and how large your cutting wheel is. However, cutting it in a single pass is going to be the easier of the two methods, so this is what we will stick with.
Now, hold your angle grinder so that the cutting wheel is parallel with the line that you are going to cut. Make sure that the cutting wheel is completely vertical so that the cut will not be made at an angle.
Firmly hold your angle grinder and power it up to full speed, and then slowly move the blade down into the line that you marked in the previous step at one end of the cement board.
Once the angle grinder blade makes its way through the cement board to the other side, start slowly moving it along the line until you have completed the cut.
Mistakes to Avoid, Tips and Tricks
Lastly, here are some tips to keep in mind as you go about the job:
- Make sure that you use a special masonry cutting wheel. Any other type of grinding or cutting wheel will not work.
- Always wear eye and breathing protection when using an angle grinder to cut cement board, as there is a lot of dust created, which you don’t want in your lungs or eyes.
- Make sure to move slow and steady, because these angle grinders can cut pretty quickly, and you don’t want to make a mistake. Once you’ve made a cut, there is no going back.
There you have it, folks, how to cut cement board with an angle grinder in just a few easy steps.