How to Make a Bullnose Edge on Travertine


Travertine is a stone with a marble-type look that comes in a variety of shades of brown, gray and beige. It is one of the most popular architectural stones and is used for floors, walls, bathrooms and borders. Travertine requires proper care, as it is a porous stone. For this reason, it is seldom used in kitchens. Creating a bullnose, or curved edge, on travertine tile makes a nice finish for this versatile stone.

Things You'll Need

  • Safety glasses
  • Mask or respirator
  • 4.5-inch grinder
  • Variety of sanding wheels
  • Muriatic acid
  • Water
  • Install the tile. A bullnose edge should be ground down after the tile is installed and set firmly.

  • Mark the tile. Begin marking the edge of the tile at the 45-degree angle you'd like. Mark the edge and the top and side to note where you'd like the bullnose edge to start and stop.

  • Begin grinding. First use low-grit pads. Grind the travertine corner down to the 45-degree angle you've marked. Move along the entire edge and grind to the 45-degree angle all along.

  • Curve the edges. Use the higher-grit grinder disks to curve the angles. An 80 to 120 grit will remove the stone slowly enough to control the curve. After the curve is formed, use 240 grit to remove scratches and 400 grit to shine the stone.

  • Wash the stone. Using a solution of muriatic acid and water in a 1:10 ratio, wash the edge to give the bullnose the same honed look as the flat portions of the stone.

Tips & Warnings

  • Move slowly, taking off small amounts at a time to keep the curve even.
  • Do not try to bullnose a "filled" portion of travertine. If the stone has any fillers in it, those fillers will chip out as you grind, making it impossible to create a good bullnose finish.

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  • Photo Credit Marble texture image by Viacheslav Anyakin from
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