How To Cut Table Glass


Cutting glass is often more scary than difficult. Glass can be sharp and easy to mishandle and most people have learned to handle glass with a healthy respect, but this doesn't mean you can't cut glass, even glass that is fairly thick. With simple tools, used properly, you can cut replacement glass for a coffee table and it will be sturdy enough for everyday use.

Things You'll Need

  • Glass cutter with a wheel
  • Towel
  • Table glass
  • Small plastic tub
  • Felt
  • Oil
  • Methylated spirits
  • China graph white pencil
  • Metal straight edge
  • Safety glasses
  • 80-grit emery cloth
  • Select a glass cutter with a wheel. These look like a pen with a cutting wheel on one end.

  • Place your glass on your work table. Wipe off the surface of your glass so that there is no debris or grit on it.

  • Mix mineral oil and methylated spirits together in a small plastic tub. Insert scrap felt 3 to 4 inches long.

  • Roll the cutting wheel of your glass cutter over the felt to pick up some oil.

  • Mark your glass using a china graph white pencil. Position a metal straight edge along your line. Put on safety glasses.

  • Hold your glass cutter perpendicular to the glass between your thumb and second finger. Start 1/8 inch from one edge and run the cutter smoothly along the straight edge all the way to the end of the glass and off onto the towel. Do not go over your cut line.

  • Turn the glass so that the scribed line is directly over the table edge. Place your hands spaced well apart on the off-cut side of the glass. Bring your hands down with a sharp motion.

  • Sand the edge of the glass with 80 grit emery cloth to remove any sharp edges.

Tips & Warnings

  • Be decisive. When you make your breaking motion it is important to be swift and not tentative.

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  • Photo Credit glass chess set image by Stephen Orsillo from
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