How to cut flat slate for beds

Step-by-step manufacturing instructions

flat, slate, beds

What actions will need to be taken when constructing structures depends on what material you are going to use.

Maintenance. Replacing Bed-Slats

The very first step is to prepare the sheets in advance by cutting them into the required number of parts. Then, on top of the surface of the earth, it is necessary to draw the approximate contours of future beds. Then you need to make trenches. It is in them that the cuts of corrugated slate sheets must be installed in the vertical direction.

Slate sheets must be well covered with earth on each side and tamped. To keep the structures better, you can prop them up with metal stakes from different sides.

If you plan to build slate beds yourself, then this will also not be too difficult. The length of the slate flat sheet is 1.75 m. In order to have as little residues as possible, it is better to cut the sheet into two parts, with lengths of 100 and 75 cm. Metal corners, which must be prepared in advance, will help to connect the parts thus obtained. They need to be cut, holes made into them, where the bolts will be inserted, treated with anti-corrosion agents.

It is not worth it to be engaged in hammering slate sheets. It is best to dig them in the trenches that you dug in advance. It will undoubtedly take more time from you. But in this way you can ensure its safety and integrity to the slate. And also the ability to use over a long period of time. The beds that will be fenced in this way will be able to rise above the total territory of the summer cottage up to about 15 cm in height.

Precautions for making slate beds

You cannot do without cutting the slate strips into the desired parts. For this reason, all necessary precautions must be taken.

To begin with, it is best to use a respirator to avoid getting dust on the mucous membranes of the eyes and nose. Which tool to use for sawing depends on whether the site has the ability to use electricity. If possible, then it is better to use an angle grinder. If there is no electricity, then you can make cuts using an ordinary saw.

If you have chosen a wavy flat slate, then it must be cut strictly perpendicular to the direction of the wave. In order to avoid mistakes, it is better to make outlines in advance using chalk on top of the slate.

Before you start cutting the slate, you need to moisten the cutting area. In order to speed up or facilitate the sawing process, small holes must be made on the lines that you mark with chalk using a nail. But all such events must be carried out with extreme caution so that the slate strips are not damaged.

Flat slate for beds. the pros and cons of using

Plants in slate beds begin to grow faster. Slate also has a protective function for plant roots from various pests that may be in the ground, in particular from bears. Also, the beds can protect well from the fact that the roots of weed plants can penetrate into your garden.

But there are also some disadvantages when using slate beds. If the strips are very hot, then increased evaporation of moisture in the soil can occur. Therefore, plants that grow in such beds will need to be watered a little more often than ordinary ones in order to prevent the soil from drying out.

You can also find different opinions regarding the fact that the asbestos contained in the strips can negatively affect the nutritional quality of the crop, that there will be an increased level of toxicity.

But this negative effect can be avoided by simply painting the stripes. Also, by painting the strips, you can extend the life of the slate strips. And the resistance against frost and moisture also increases. The most important thing is to choose the right paint. Most often, for such products, compositions containing acrylic are used, and which dry quickly. Or it is possible to use liquid plastic.

Slate beds: features

In order for the beds to be strong and able to serve for a long time, it is very important to choose the right material for their creation. In our case, we will talk about special slate strips designed for beds. The advantages of such boards lie in the properties of asbestos cement. It is with the help of this material that the design of the beds and flower beds is made. The main advantage is the low cost of the material. For this reason, many summer residents choose this particular material for equipping their beds.

Slate strips can have different sizes. from 16 to 40 mm thick, up to 3 m long. Slate sheets can be used in roofing construction, in the construction of fences, floors and other structures. Corrugated and flat slate can also have different dimensional characteristics, structure and color. Weight depends on the dimensions and thickness of the slate sheet.

The advantages of slate beds are as follows:

  • Thanks to the low weight of the strips, the beds can be quickly and easily set up.
  • Due to the fact that the composition contains asbestos, the beds have high fire resistance.
  • Provides good resistance to temperature fluctuations and weather conditions.
  • Such structures are not afraid of putrefactive processes.
  • Can be used for 9-10 seasons, unlike wood, which is only enough for 3-4 seasons.
  • Strips can be easily processed.
  • Have aesthetic appeal.

The downside is the fragility of the material, which will not allow it to withstand a heavy load.

High beds of slate

It is considered more convenient to process beds that have high sides. Thus, it becomes more convenient to take care of plantings and harvest. In what cases and for what purposes can such structures be built on the site. There are several reasons for this.

If the territory of your summer cottage has a difficult terrain, or there is a need for:

  • preparation of a unique soil composition for growing certain crops.
  • good drainage.
  • regulation of the fertile soil layer depending on the type of plant root system.
  • early planting of seedlings in spring.
  • free growth of plants without the need for tying (cucumbers and tomatoes can grow well by hanging their shoots down).
  • giving fences a certain shape, not like a rectangle, to create a creative design for a summer cottage.

It is also important to keep in mind that if the walls of the finished slate beds are more than 40 cm above the soil level, then they require additional screed with wire. In oppositely installed slate strips, holes must be made into which the wire must be pulled, the ends must be twisted. But be sure to count your efforts so as not to overdo it. After all, slate sheets are very fragile and can be easily damaged, even if you press a little more when twisting the wire.

How to make slate beds with your own hands

To correctly make a bed of slate strips, you must follow some recommendations:

  • First you need to make the walls of the beds from slate from pre-prepared strips. Install and strengthen them.
  • Fill the walls with fertile contents.
  • Arrange row spacings.

Beds with flat slate sides have their own optimal size. The side walls require installation in the ground to a depth of 40 cm. The walls should be up to 0.7 m high. The width of the beds should be up to 1.5 m. It is necessary to adhere to the east-west direction. The length can also be up to 11 m.

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In the first layer, you need to create a cushion of compost, sawdust and other organic fertilizers. On top of the pillow, you need to pour fertile soil. A separate topic for discussion is the creation of gaps between rows. Correctly designed aisles will help make your site more neat, and will also serve as a certain strengthening for structures.

At the very beginning, the soil near the rows must be tamped. Row spacing can vary. it can be lawn, gravel, or concrete. It is possible to engage in the formation of a lawn if there is an optimal distance between the structures. This will help you to better prune your plants.

In slate buildings, it is best to cultivate annual crops. Good for creating a spicy garden bed. Perennial plants are not recommended to be planted in such slate beds. Also, as in ordinary beds, the soil can freeze slightly in winter.

Flat bed slate

When the new spring-summer season begins, many summer residents begin to think about how they can equip their beds. By properly organizing the available plot of land, you can freely and conveniently grow the crop you like. And also to get the required quantity and quality of the entire crop as a whole. Slate beds are gaining increasing popularity among many summer residents. Such a landscape design emphasizes the neatness and orderliness of the beds in the summer cottage.

Therefore, many people have a question, but how to make the beds with the help of slate on their own. To do this, you need to read a little useful information, have a great desire and a certain amount of time. And also do not forget about the main material. sheet or flat slate. Also, this option of fencing will well allow you to reduce your strength and bring the time for the ripening of the crop closer.

Slate fences can warm the soil well, which allows plants to grow and develop faster. How to properly build beds with slate, you will learn by reading our article.

We make Mittlider beds from slate and not only

Vegetable grower Mittlider is the founder of the tall slate strips for the cultivation of strawberries. But the material for the beds can be anything: slate, boards or any other building material. It is important to pay attention to the sizes, which may differ from the standard ones. The width of the bed for growing strawberries according to the Mittlider is only 45 cm.This size is considered reasonable according to the Mittlider:

  • no effort is required to remove weeds.
  • berry bushes grow freely, do not interfere with each other, which has a positive effect on their fruiting.
  • the root system is less likely to rot.

A layer of 20 cm of sawdust, shavings or wood chips must be laid inside the garden bed. Lay fertile or compound soil on top. The row spacing is about 90 cm. The row spacing needs to be covered with agrofibre to avoid weeds overgrowing the paths.

As a layer for a slate bed, the use of sawdust is well suited. This will ensure moisture is retained and can be used as fertilizer. Sawdust also helps to avoid the appearance of cracks of various nature in the upper soil layer.

Many summer residents do not use slate because of the nondescript color, preferring wood. But one should not neglect the use of slate stripes just because of the color. After all, this can be easily fixed. You can use the colorful materials that we mentioned above. Or you can start decorating with various willow twigs. This venture will be appreciated by both the owners and guests of the summer cottage.

A much larger amount of harvest can be obtained precisely by growing a particular crop in such beds than on a plot without any restrictions. Due to the fact that such beds can maintain an optimal temperature regime well, the plant grows faster, absorbs fertilizers better, and the absorption of nutrients is better.

It is not so difficult to build structures using slate, the main thing is to do everything right. And then you can use these beds to grow many crops over a long period of time.


At a time when experienced craftsmen did not yet have grinders and other similar power tools, steel cutters were used to cut sheets. The main requirement for such cutters is as strong as possible steel.

  • A metal ruler is pressed against the mowing line of the cut;
  • Further, based on this ruler and with great pressure, several dozen cuts are made. The number of cuts depends on the strength of the sheet and the quality of the cutter;
  • When the groove from the cutter reaches half the thickness of the material, the sheet is placed on the edge of the table and breaks off with a slight pressure.

The technique of working with a steel cutter is extremely simple.

The problem is that flat sheets can be cut with a cutter anywhere, and corrugated slate according to this pattern is cut only along the wave.

There is a professional tool that can perform such work, but it is often taken only by people engaged in such work, in everyday life it can be used in few places.

There is a professional tool for working with slate and slate.

Using the technology described above, slate can be cut with a sharp high-strength steel boot knife, but only the blade “sits down” quickly during such cutting and few people agree to spoil a good knife.

Our wise people have adapted to make such cutters from a broken hacksaw blade for cutting metal. A groove is machined on the reverse side of the blade, as a result of which a peculiar tooth is obtained, which perfectly cuts sheet materials.

And to keep it more comfortable, the handle is wrapped with electrical tape. The tool, of course, is far from ideal, but its inexpensiveness can be called an indisputable plus here. After all, you would have thrown away the broken canvas anyway, but this is how it will go into action.

A hacksaw blade cutter is an inexpensive and fairly effective tool.

By the way, with such a folk cutter made from a hacksaw blade, you can cut not only asbestos-cement sheets, but also textolite, gitinaks, as well as any types of plastic.

High beds of slate sheets

Consider how to make a high bed. First, let’s remember its parameters.:

  • Length. 10 m;
  • Width. 1 m 30 cm;
  • Height. 70. 80 cm;
  • The height of the submerged part of the slate. 40. 50 cm.

We dig a trench along the perimeter of the garden bed, remove the fertile top of the soil and set it aside. We install the slate sheet strictly vertically. For a wavy canvas, we make an allowance for 1 wave. We fill the trench with soil and carefully ram it. We provide reliable fastening of the sheet with iron pins.

At the next stage, we are engaged in layering fertilizers. We do this in the following order:

  • We cover the bottom with a metal mesh to protect it from rodents;
  • We lay out wood and cellulose waste;
  • Create a layer of sawdust;
  • We crush it with plant waste;
  • We spread peat or unripe compost;
  • Place the previously removed fertile land.

Water each layer with water and tamp well. For garden beds over 40 cm, use a wire tie. After drilling holes in opposite sides of the ridge, pull the steel thread through them.

What are the advantages of high slate beds? In them, the owner will find many positive aspects that help to increase the yield. Firstly, good drainage will prevent water stagnation, and the gardener will be able to control the composition of the soil and add substances beneficial to plants.

It is difficult not to notice a high bed, so the plantings will be more protected from trampling. At the same time, the soil remains loose and receives a sufficient amount of air. With a good compost layer, tall slate plantations can better maintain the temperature within the enclosed area (the surrounding soil remains cooler during this time). For this reason, they are also called warm beds.

For residents of cold regions, this gives an indisputable plus. Seedlings can be placed in the heated soil earlier. Plants take root faster and adapt to outdoor conditions. The harvest ripens earlier and pleases with abundance. If climbing plants grow in the beds, it is not necessary to tie them up. As they grow, they themselves will hang down.

What is the height of the beds? It depends on the quality of the soil. In fertile areas, the structure does not need to be lifted high. For warm compost beds, at least 50 cm is required.In case of unexpected frosts, it is recommended to insulate the structure with plastic wrap.

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Three ways of cutting

Asbestos-based roofing sheets have been in use for over half a century. At the moment, there is a wave and flat slate. Specifically in the roofing business, the wave option is more popular.

But for flat sheets, the scope of application is much wider, in addition to the roof, walls are sheathed with them, fences are made of them and even used as sides for beds in the country. But wherever this material is mounted, cutting is needed everywhere.

Arrangement of beds with straight or wave slate is a fairly common practice.

Benefits of slate fencing

Among the advantages of this material, it should be noted that on its basis it is possible to create fences for very long beds. over, it will be quite simple to install the sides at the same height, since this material can be easily adjusted in level. Also, asbestos-cement plates have a number of other advantages:

  • due to the ability to quickly heat up in the sun, this material contributes to an increase in soil temperature by several degrees, so that plants are much faster supplied with the necessary amount of nutrients;
  • asbestos-cement sheets are highly durable and reliable;
  • these products are distinguished not only by their practicality, but also do not create difficulties in use;
  • affordable price;
  • long service life of slate sheets;
  • the use of asbestos-cement strips for fencing the beds makes the latter more attractive.

If desired, asbestos-cement sheets can be coated with paint of any color, which will give the site more decorative properties. All this makes them more popular than wooden structures.

How to cut slate without dust. hazardous dust

Today, in the wake of the craze for everything environmentally friendly, slate is considered perhaps the most dangerous roofing material. How. it contains asbestos, a dangerous mineral! True, the majority has absolutely no idea how exactly this substance acts, and how much it contains different objects and things around us. Consider, if you decide to get rid of everything that contains asbestos, immediately throw away the money! In their manufacture, asbestos is used to increase the service life and strength of banknotes.

However, seriously, asbestos for a person in the bound state in which he is in products is completely harmless. A slate on the roof of a house or barn does not create any dust, and if you are so worried about it, just paint it. Fortunately, today slate paints have been specially developed for these purposes, having high adhesion to such surfaces.

The danger is posed by asbestos dust, which arises in the process of active actions. sawing products, dismantling structures, grinding.

That is, asbestos-containing slate itself is no more dangerous than the same plastic roof, since asbestos is bonded with cement, but if you start sawing or grinding it, then the dust that appears, penetrating into our lungs, can really cause chronic bronchitis and other troubles, which are treated with great labor. Starting repairs in order to get rid of all asbestos-cement structures, you just provoke the spread of such dust. It is not for nothing that in the United States at the peak of the campaign to combat asbestos at the state level, a quite sensible decision was made. it is much safer to get along with asbestos than to fight it.

Therefore, do not rush to get rid of all asbestos-containing. use it as you used it before. However, when performing any tasks, try to protect yourself. The easiest way to avoid dust getting into your lungs and eyes is to wear a respirator and goggles, and stand downwind before cutting the slate. If you have to work indoors, before cutting the slate, wet it properly. Much less dust is emitted from wet products when cutting. In addition, it is much easier to cut products just after soaking. therefore, experienced craftsmen put damp rags on the cutting site before cutting the flat slate for several hours.

While cutting, send those present in the room to breathe air. even street smog is not as harmful as asbestos-cement dust. First of all, children should leave the room. due to their short stature, they breathe air just at the level where the dust is most. And one more important safety measure, as they say, for the future. never throw the remnants of building materials or construction waste on the road. Over time, the machines will crush pieces of the same slate, and in hot weather the air will be filled with dust from asbestos.

Maintenance of slate beds

Finished beds must be well watered. Moisture will accelerate the process of fertilizer decay, and heat and minerals necessary for plant development will begin to be released into the soil. A bountiful harvest of a plant in a created warm bed will give 5 years. Subsequently, you will have to create new nutritional reserves. It is advisable to do the saturation of the beds in the fall, so that they gain strength until spring. If you want to create a greenhouse, the beds are simply covered with polyethylene.

Compared to low slate beds, high plantations yield higher yields. And if you really ennoble the garden, then it is better with warm slate zones. If desired, the plates can be painted before starting work, and then the summer cottage will not only be useful, but also attractive in decorative terms.

It is quite possible to cut asbestos-cement slate with your own hands. I can assure you that the methods presented above work, the only difference is in the quality of the cut edge. If you have any questions, write in the Комментарии и мнения владельцев, I will try to help.

Slate is still considered the most popular roofing material.

How to cut slate for garden beds without an angle grinder

Before building a slate bed, the material should be cut into strips of the required length and width. This work is not as easy as it seems, since the material is quite dense. Additional complexity is the relative fragility.

Cutting of flat slate is performed using an angle grinder and a stone disc. The high cutting speed and hardness of the disc prevents the appearance of chips. In order not to damage the material, a wooden strip is placed next to the cut. If the sheet needs to be cut in the center, then it is laid on a flat surface, which is not a pity to damage. an earthen solid area, for example.

It is better to do the work together: one worker cuts the material, and the second holds the sheet, and also pours cool water over the cutting area. In this way, it prevents overheating of the disc and spraying of asbestos dust.

Sawing wave slate for beds is also more convenient and faster with an angle grinder. You can also use a jigsaw and a fine-toothed hacksaw. However, this method takes a long time. To facilitate cutting with hand tools, it is recommended to pre-lay a wet cloth on the sheet so that the material becomes more elastic.

You can cut corrugated slate for beds in the “old-fashioned” way. It is good because it makes cutting faster and produces less noise. How exactly to cut. along the waves or across, does not matter.

The slate is placed on a flat surface and the line of the cut is marked with a ruler using a good steel cutter. Then the ruler is set aside and the mark is deepened.

A pipe or rail is placed under the sheet parallel to the mark and lightly pressed on both sides of the cut. The material splits along the mowing line completely silently. With some skill in this way, you can get strips up to 10 cm wide. If you don’t even have a hacksaw, you can get by with a hammer and a slate nail. At the same time, holes are made with a nail along the marked mowing line. The more, the better. Then, under the slate, parallel to the mark, place a bar or pipe and press on it so as to break off the strip along the mowing line. If there are enough holes, then in order to separate the sheet, it is enough to knock along the mowing line with a hammer.

Is slate in the beds harmful to health

The asbestos in the roof is a hazard. If it gets into the respiratory tract or into the digestive tract in the form of dust, the substance causes severe poisoning. However, this is not at all about the substance associated with cement, but just about the one that has lost this connection. Perhaps this is for 2 reasons.

  • Material damage. breakage, chipping, cutting. Most often, it is the latter that turns out to be the cause of poisoning. When constructing a roof, it is often required to trim and adjust the sheets in size. During cutting, asbestos fibers are destroyed and asbestos in the form of dust enters the air, therefore all work with asbestos-cement slate is carried out in a mask or respirator.
  • This material is durable, has been used for more than 20 years. However, by the age of 10–15, especially with intensive use, it is deformed. Although resistant to moisture, it gets wet during prolonged rains. With the onset of cold weather, the remnants of moisture freeze and gradually destroy the structure of the material. Over time, it delaminates and forms asbestos dust. On the roof, she poses no danger.
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Asbestos sheets for beds should only be used new, with a completely preserved structure. No matter how much the material is used as a fence, if more than 10-15 years have passed since the release of the slate, it should be replaced.

The material has another drawback, which is not hazardous to health, but presenting an inconvenience. It heats up quickly and well in the sun. In this case, heat is transferred to the soil in the garden. The soil dries out faster, and the garden has to be watered more often.

Mounting knife

The blade must be sharp, the knife strong. You can only cut soft slate. First, an incision is made under the ruler on one side, then the sheet is turned over and bent along the mowing line. Next, the remaining thickness of the coating is cut.

In the absence of other tools, you can cut the sheets with an assembly knife, but this method is more suitable for euro slate

Dust and Noise Free. How to Cut Wave Slate Quietly?

If you have to trim slate indoors, where it is important not only to avoid the appearance of dust, but also to do the job as quietly as possible, then in the case of even sheets of slate, a cutter made of good steel will come in handy. A sheet of slate is laid on a flat place and a line is drawn under the ruler with a cutter. Then, removing the ruler, the line deepens and expands, pressing harder on the cutter.

There is little left to do. put a rail or pipe under the sheet, placing them parallel to the cutting line of the cut, and slightly press. If you tried in the previous step, then there should be no problems here either. Wavy slate can be cut with a cutter only along the wave. having stuffed your hand, you can cut off even very narrow strips of about 10 cm, and note, completely dust-free and with minimal noise.

Hardscape Materials Inc. Cutting And Trimming Flagstone

How to cut the slate if there is only a hammer from the tools? Then a method belonging to the category of “grandfather’s tricks” will come in handy. Indeed, when there were no grinders and jigsaws, and for using a good hacksaw not for its intended purpose, the grandfather could slap his grandson with a savory slap on the head, this was the only way they cut the slate. Although the word “cut” somehow it is wrong to call this method. Rather, they break it. However, they break without dust and unnecessary noise, so the method will always be relevant.

So, you will need not just any, but a slate nail. Pre-mark the line for the cut, it is important that it runs along the bottom of the wave. That is, if the line runs along the top, just turn the sheet over. Holes are punched with a nail along the mowing line. the more often they are located, the better. Then a pipe or wooden block is placed under the sheet and gently pressed on the edge of the sheet to break the slate along the mowing line with holes. The evenness of the line depends on the number of holes and the accuracy. Sometimes, in order for the desired piece to come off, it is enough to tap on the mowing line of the cut with the side of the hammer.

Currently, there are many types of roofing materials, slate is no longer among the most demanded. In many operational parameters, it is inferior to modern roofs, the only advantage can be considered a relatively low cost. The technology of laying absolutely all roofing materials involves their adjustment to the dimensions of the roof slopes, and it is impossible to do this without cutting. The production technology of the work largely depends on the physical characteristics of the roofing materials.

Types of slate

Among roofers, slate is called several types of materials, their individual technical parameters have a direct impact on the choice of cutting method and tool.

We will consider existing cutting technologies for all types of slate. This will take into account the practical experience of professional roofers, new tools and technological capabilities.

Is it possible to use slate for beds

A variety of building materials are used as fences in the country: plastic, brick, metal, wood, as well as other roofing materials. The latter are distinguished by excellent resistance to rain, snow, cold, sunlight, which makes them very practical, and slate is no exception. over, almost all existing options are used, except for tiles and roofing material:

  • Asbestos-cement. fences for beds made of flat slate are most often found in the country. The material is very affordable, easy to cut, and lasts a long time. They are made from cement. 85%, water. 5%, and asbestos fibers. 10%. The latter in their pure form pose a threat to human health. However, in a bound form, and even in a small amount, they do not pose a danger. Slate is resistant to moisture, temperature extremes, fading and is not afraid of fire at all. But this material cannot be called decorative.
  • Metal. sheets of alloy steel or aluminum with a polymer coating that protects against moisture. In fact, only aluminum is suitable for fences, since when cutting steel sheets, the edges remain unprotected, and such a fence quickly rusts. The aluminum sheet does not lend itself to any kind of corrosion, it is absolutely resistant to the action of water, cold, temperature, fire. The appearance of the fences is very attractive. However, such a solution has a drawback and a significant one. it is an expensive option.
  • Ondulin is a soft version, made from cellulose, bitumen impregnation and mineral additives. Such material is completely safe, as it does not include any ingredients harmful to health. Ondulin is resistant to moisture and sunlight, but does not differ in high mechanical strength. High beds of ondulin cannot be made.
  • Transparent. PVC roofing material. The option is very original and decorative. Plastic is lightweight, resistant to moisture, cold, ultraviolet radiation, but is afraid of fire. PVC slate is quite durable, it can be used to protect beds of any type and configuration.

In fact, the vast majority of gardeners, despite the somewhat suspicious composition of asbestos-cement slate, use it. The reason is simple: affordable price.

How to make slate beds with your own hands

Beds in a dacha made of slate are also feasible for a novice home craftsman. It is easier to build a fence from a flat version, since it is easier to cut. To work, you need a saw, an angle grinder or even a hacksaw for metal, metal corners and fasteners. With a long length of the bed, pegs are also needed for additional support posts.

Before starting work, you should determine the size of the beds and mark the site for it. The location of the embankments is determined by their nature. If it is formed in the garden, the slate acts as a fence. The place for it is chosen taking into account the characteristics of the soil. If you make a bulk bed, you can place it on any site, since a suitable soil is simply poured into the resulting structure.