Whether you are putting down a layer of Rubber Gym Mats for a workshop, home gym, commercial gym, animal stall or kids play area, trimming rubber mats to the right size is probably easier than you think. As you know, it doesn’t require any power tools or sophisticated cutting implements. Here in NICE BACKYARD we offer readily cut rubber mats too just for you, but if you want to do DIY in cutting rubber mats to reduce wastage and eliminates labor on your part here are some steps that you can follow:
- Utility Knife
- Razor-Sharp Blade
- Straight Edge Guide
- Measuring Tape
Part I. Preparing Your Materials
- Equip yourself with the proper safety gear. Consider strapping on some cushioned knee pads to spare your joints unnecessary discomfort while kneeling for long stretches. To prevent possible injury, also avoid handling the utility knife while you are not wearing gloves.
- Select an appropriate surface to do your cutting. There’s a chance that the utility knife could scar the flooring beneath the mats once it clears the thick rubber. For this reason, it is a good idea to set up your materials in an area where minor damage won’t be noticeable, such as basement or garage floor. But if you don’t have a surface that’s ideal for cutting, you can also protect your subfloor with a layer of cardboard or plywood.
- Measure the area where you’ll be installing the mat. Extend the tape measure across the floorspace lengthwise then widthwise. Multiply the 2 numbers together to find the square footage of your area. You can also reference this number against the dimensions of the rubber flooring to determine how much material you will need to remove. Take note to make sure that you will write down the necessary measurements, so you don’t forget them, and the size of each individual mat should be clearly indicated on the packaging.
- Mark the specified dimensions on the mat. Drag a graphite pencil or piece of chalk lightly over the surface of the mat. This will make it easier to see where you will be cutting. A visual guide will also help to allow you to get on your mark again quickly. Using a straight edge also when tracing out your measurements will result in a straighter and more precise lines and the chalk or pencil markings should wash away without difficulty once your project is complete.
Part II. Making Clean, Efficient Cuts
- Lay the mat out flat. Unfold or unroll the mat and stretch it out over the floor of your work area. Thinner mats may bunch up in spots and create wrinkles or bumps, so be sure to smooth these out before you proceed. And if your attempting to cut interlocking sectional mats, put them together first to help them stay put. You can consider using a few heavy objects to weight down the edges of the mat while you work.
- Position your straight edge alongside the measuring line. Line up the tool so that the markings you made are visible. The straight edge will help guide the blade of the utility knife and keep you on track. Be careful not to accidentally cover up the line or the mat may end being slightly too big or too small for your floorspace. And if you don’t have a straight edge handy, you could also try using 2×4. The heavy board will provide the added benefit of holding the mat in place.
- Score the mat along the measurement line. Run the tip of the utility knife along the surface of the mat. Work your way down the length a few feet at a time. Dipping the blade of the utility knife in soapy water will enable it to glide effortlessly through the rubber.
- Continue slicing until the blade clears mat. Press down on the mat with one hand and carefully go back over the slit you just made. Apply firm downward pressure and use long, linear strokes to achieve cleaner edges. It may take you few passes to get all the way through depending on the thickness of the rubber. For a best result, keep moving from one end of the mat to the other rather than separating a single section at a time. That way, the whole strip will come away in one piece. Be sure also to keep the hand that you are always using to steady the mat clear of your knife.
- Fine-tune your cuts for a custom fit. Unlike other types of flooring that comes in rigid, angular sections, rubber is soft enough to shape any way you need. When properly trimmed, rubber mats will lay perfectly around corners, columns, alcoves and other tricky spots. Take your time maneuvering the utility knife around curves and contours to avoid making mistakes.
- Clean up your work area. Use a broom and dustpan to collect any small rubber shavings littering on the floor, you can also use portable shop vacuum. Inspect your work area closely when you are finished. As you know that the scrap rubber may not be safe to leave lying around if you have pets or small children.
With all this step, you can now cut your Rubber Gym Mats bought from Nice Backyard safely ?
Please click this link to see our Rubber Gym Mat & Flooring Products: https://nicebackyard.com/nice/product-category/rubber-gym-mats-flooring/