Things You'll Need
Work carefully and slowly, in order to prevent shattering or cracking the stone while you're trying to cut it.
Wear your safety goggles constantly while cutting and chiseling ledgestone with any tools to avoid contact with flying shards.
Ledgestone is a pre-cut, usually rectangular, cultured stone commonly used for decorating fireplaces, ledges, mantels, cladding walls and dry-stacked walls. Most ledgestone has been roughly cut into elongated, vaguely rectangular shapes that are usually between 4 to 7 inches wide, 3 to 6 inches thick and 10 to 24 inches long. Ledgestone is commonly cut from rocks such as basalt, granite, bluestone or other sedimentary rocks. Although it's a cultured stone, which means it's already pre-cut, using it for construction often requires more project-specific cutting.
Set up your cutting area in an open space away from anything you don't want getting dirty. Whenever you cut stone of any kind, it produces a lot of dust or splatter (if water is used) so you want a clear work area. Arrange your tools in this space so that they are all easily at hand and ready for use. Run an extension cord to the cutting area so that you can connect your stone saw and angle grinder to a power source.
Perform all smaller cuts and finer edging with your angle grinder and a chisel. Measure your cut carefully and mark it with a line on your stone using a pencil.
Run your angle grinder along this line on both sides of the stone. Then, hold the stone down on a flat surface with the part you'll cut away and discard over open air; hit this part with your mallet until it breaks off.
Chip it smoother using a chisel and the mallet. You can also use the angle grinder to further smooth down the fracture line. If your ledgestone is on the thinner side, you'll probably be able to do all your cutting using just the angle grinder.
Cut your larger pieces of ledgestone using a masonry saw. These are specialized, gas powered saws which have a diamond-coated disc blade attached to a chainsaw like handle and motor. A masonry saw is useful for cutting larger, thicker pieces of ledgestone smoothly straight through. You can even use it to cut lengthwise for a couple of feet. Just mark your cut lines on the ledgestone with a pencil or make a light groove with the angle grinder, then apply the saw blade to the stone firmly and in a straight line. Apply water to the cut and the blade regularly to avoid excessive friction heat.
Stephan Sawyer is a writer and translator from Vancouver, Canada, currently living in Central America. He has been writing and translating for various clients since 2007, specializing in topics related to business, marketing and finance. Sawyer studied communications in university and is a fluent Spanish speaker.