April 2019 archive

Choosing Non Slip Outdoor Tiles for the Patio

Most outdoor patios are built with some kind of masonries like poured concrete, brick, or stone paver products. However, it is also possible to use tiles on the patio. This is an option that offers people so many design choices to choose from. Laying tile is a great way to dress up your existing brick patio or concrete slab when it gets old.

Retailers

Retailers offering tiles for outdoor applications usually sell a very wide array of products. This includes some that you may have never thought would be great for outdoor use. Determining the right products to use will greatly depend on the application and climate. For instance, an unsealed sandstone tile would be great in areas with dry climate, but not suitable in those with damp climate. If you want to ensure safety, then non slip outdoor tiles are the best choice.

What to Consider when Choosing Tiles for the Patio

It is important to identify the factors that should be considered when choosing the best tiles for your patio.

Slip Resistance and Texture

These two are very important when it comes to outdoor applications. Moisture is inherent in outdoor patios and the texture of the tile should have some kind of “tooth” that will prevent users from slipping. In this case, it would be best to make use of non slip outdoor tiles.

Strength

Unlike with tiles that are used for indoor floors and walls, tiles for the outdoors should be strong and can withstand different weather conditions and temperatures. Their strength should depend on the level of use that is being anticipated. For example, a patio for retired couples needs different materials that those with active children running around.

Budget

The patio could be an expensive space and having tiles for it could cost more than simply tiling a smaller space like the bathroom. Given this, the cost is an important factor when selecting tiles for the patio. The range of prices could be enormous so make sure that you purchase only what you can afford while making sure that quality is not compromised.

Style

Your outdoor patio should blend in the entire look of your landscape, as well as the materials and architectural features of your house. Go for materials with textures and colors that are consistent with the look of the property.

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Weather Condition

If you are living in an area that is exposed to freezing and thawing, then you will be needing a tile that would withstand the most extreme changes in temperature and weather. For example, porcelain has a very low water absorption rate. On the other hand, sandstone is very porous. In case water gets absorbed by a piece of tile and the water freezes, the process could crack the tile or even break the joints in between.

Light Exposure

Although this one is not usually recognized, the sunlight that the patio gets could have a great impact on the tile that you will choose. Sunny and bright spaces require darker tiles, while for the shady and dim spaces, the tile should be made of brighter materials that can lighten the space.

If you want to enhance the beauty of your patio, then the use of tiles will be a great idea. Just make sure that you choose one that will not only offer aesthetics values but will also ensure safety and protection.

Water Jet Cutting: Finding the Best Machine for Your Shop

Bernard Stevens uses a computerized measuring machine to get exact measurements to create the geometry so the program can be written for use on the water jet. U. S. Air Force photo by Sue Sapp

A water jet cutting machine offers a variety of benefits for a machine shop. This includes the capacity to cut different kinds of materials that the hands can touch with exceptional precision. But with all the benefits it has to offer, it is no wonder why the machine is getting very popular and widely available in the market. Thus, finding the best one for your shop can be a bit of a challenge.

But, the question is, how do you find the right one? Here are some tips that will be of great help in choosing the one that will be most beneficial for your shop.

The Kind of Material to be Cut

A water jet cutting machine can cut harder materials but a grit material should be added to the water stream. Thus, if you regularly cut materials like an aluminum plate, stones, and mild steel you need to use a waterjet cutter that has enough grit tank that is easy to maintain, load and unload.

How Complicated the Cut Will be?

It is important to know how complicated the cut will be. If your shop specializes in complex cutting jobs for customized parts, then you should have a machine that has a fifth axis.

Buying a Used Machine

If budget is an issue, then buying a used machine means paying at least half of the new equivalents. The difference in the price of the new and used machine does not really offer so many benefits unless you consider the time you need to invest with a creditor as you have to pay the interest on a loan as a positive.

When Buying a Used One, Inspect the Machine

When buying a used waterjet cutter, be sure to inspect it well so you will know what you are getting. Here are the following things you need to inspect.

The Intensifier

A waterjet machine has an electric pump used to produce an intense pressure that is necessary for the water stream to cut through materials. Inspect if the seals in the pump are free of leaks and in good condition.

The Nozzle

Is the nozzle in an excellent condition- free of dents, rust, and cracks? If otherwise, replace it immediately. It is very important to determine whether the machine is damaged before you try to use it.

Electrical Cabinet

Check if the wires are in good condition and in proper order or if the electrical cabinet is a big mess of patches that could take forever to sort out.

Maintenance Documentation

A machine that is well-maintained will have a history of its maintenance records that will tell you the issues that the past operator has encountered and how it was fixed. If the seller fails to provide this documentation, consider it as a red flag.

Control System

Find out the control system that the machine is making use of. Does it have a fully-functional interface or some controls and functions are missing? Keep in mind that a damaged controller could greatly impair the functions of the machine.

By doing all the above-mentioned things, you can be confident that getting a waterjet machine will be a great investment that will offer your shop numerous benefits.