DEAR SAM: What are the features and differences between vinyl floor tile and vinyl asbestos tile? Also, I have a piece of blackboard slate about 2 by 5 feet that I would like to cut into pieces about 8 inches wide. What would be the best method of cutting this slate?

ANSWER: There is a distince difference in the compostion of pure vinyl floor tile and asbestos vinyl, the former being softer, translucent and primarity used for kitchen or powder room. It stretches to ply wood well and with the use of while mastic, the variations of the tile's colors are clearly emphasized. It's easily cleaned and has a high gloss.

Asbestos vinyl tile is a combination of asbestos in asphalt with a percentage of vinyl to provide additional gloss. It is used most frequently with cement slab construction, whether in the house proper or for basement recreation rooms. Because of its hardness, it is suitable for use with floor radiant heat, since it will not show the indentations of furniture weight.

Because of the hazards in the manufacture of asbestos, there has been a curtailment in its availability and use.

Your interest in salvaging your blackboard state can be achieved with an electric saw, using a masonry blade. If you don't own the saw and blade, it would be better to take the state to a marble cutter, listed in the telephone directoty. The cost should be small but check first by telephone.

DEAR SAM: Noticed with interest your article as attic louvers and vents. You may be asked about power vents. Enclosed is our answer to energy problems. A powe vent exhausts hot air in summer and helps prevent ice and moisture build-up during the winter.

ANSWER: Thanks for your description brochure on the Lomanco Model 2000 power vent, which can be installed in pitched, horozontal or vertical position, namely, in a sloping or flat roof, ir in a gable.

In 4-blade fan of 12-ince diameter operates quietly and efficiently with a minimal HP motor (13/810). It is certified for 1290 cfm, (cubic feet per minute) to accordance with tests at 0.03 static pressure at the air movement laborataries of Texas A&M University.

This venting fan has a built in automatic thermostal, factory-set for turn-on at 100 degress Fahrenheit and turnof at 85 degrees, in addition, it has a safety feature which he will automatically turn off in the event of fire, extreme temperature, or overload.

Its drawn aluminum circular hood measures 26 inches in diameter and is warranted not to chip or crack; also, the one-piece baseplate (20x23 inches) provides complete water protection.

Another model is suitable for attachment to existing ventilating systems. It includes four drilled brackets for mounting between 16 or 24-inch, on-center studs or rafters. Thus it is possible to convert a natural air-movement to a more efficent power movement.

With the correct amount of house ceiling insulation (R-22), this type of power ventilation should comfortably both in summer and winter. For a copy of Form No. K-77, write to the distributor, Winde-McCormick, Inc. 11 Wheeling Ave. Woburn, Me. 01801.

DEAR SAM: I would like to insulate and panel a pantry with three outside walls, but I do not have enough room to spare to put up 2-by-4 studs for the insulation. Is there something to install against the plaster walls before paneling to keep out the cold and heat?

ANSWER: I believe that you are referring to styrofoam. TG,available in sheets, which are tongue and grooved for an air-tight insulation. The 3/4 or 1-inch thinkness should be suitable and may be glued to the existing walls with Dow Mastic No. 7. Subsequently, you may obtain gypsum board with grainboard finish on one side which weill provide you with the panel effect desired. This, too, may be glued to the new styrofoam with the same mastic.

The total thinkness of both insulation and gypsum board will amount to 1 1/4 or 1 1/2 inches, which will suit your requirements of maximum space allowance for the pantry. The R factor (resistance to heat flow) for one inch think insulation is 5-41. If you prefer R-11 or twice the amount, you could use 2-inch sturofoam.

Another way to insulate the inside walls of the pantry would be to blow in fiber glass between the studs. Qualified applicators would break small holes between each two studs and fill the cavity to its capacity, viz, 3 1/2 inches. The bracing studs at the corners may require additional holes however, you will not need to patch any holes but to cover them with tac paper as a vapor barrier and they apply the usual quarter inch prefinished wood paneling. You should mark simultaneously the location of the vertical studs (16 inch-on-centers) for easy nailing with brads the panel ito the studs.

Samuel Fishlyn welcomes questions on home improvements and will include as many as possible in this column. Write to him in care of Box 62, Newton Center, Mass, 02159.