Once you have completed the layout of any cutouts, then layout the location(s) for the rod(s). Be sure the rod(s) will extend beyond the cutout area by at least a couple inches on each side.
Place the top face down on a smooth, soft, flat, and clean surface on a work or saw table.
Select a blade that is 1/32 in. to 1/16 in. thicker than the 1/8 in. width of the rod.
Mark the blade about 1/16 in. to 1/8 in. deeper than the 1/4 in. depth of the rod.
Cut the rod slot in the marked section on the bottom of the stone. Be sure to extend your cut far enough for the full length of rod to fit in (allowing for the curve of the blade).
Check the rod in the slot to verify the fit.
Remove the rod with a putty knife or a regular screwdriver.
Clean the stone and allow it to thoroughly dry.
Abrade the rod with a course grit abrasive, clean it, and allow it to thoroughly dry.
Mix a flowing consistency adhesive and pour it into the slot of the stone.
Quickly insert the rod fully into the slot. Then wipe the excess adhesive over the slot to completely cover the rod.
Allow the adhesive to cure completely before moving the stone.
About the Author: Frederick M Hueston, columnist and author, is director of the National Training Center for the Stone & Masonry Trades (NTC) located in Asheville, N.C. NTC offers hands-on training to industry professionals on topics ranging from basic fabrication techniques to on-site repairs. NTCs website can be found at www.ntc-stone.com.