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Wood worker needs to cut metal.

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  • Wood worker needs to cut metal.

    I have a bunch of wood tools but none for metal, which has not been a problem until now. I won't be cutting enough metal in the near future to justify buying anything more than a couple good hand tools...However...

    The ideal situation would be to put an abrasive cutoff wheel in my Ridgid 10" compound miter saw. I have cleaned out a portion of a back room outside of my shop for this project (the metal portion) to keep it completly seperate from the wood shop...sparks and all that.

    I have vacummed off the entire saw, removed the dust bag unplugged it, ready to move it into the other room, and lost my nerve. Is there any reason why I couldn't do this?

    Thanks

  • #2
    Re: Wood worker needs to cut metal.

    Tell us a bit more about the project that you will be undertaking, how much metal, what size/gauge, etc...

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    • #3
      Re: Wood worker needs to cut metal.

      Originally posted by Section 8 View Post
      I have a bunch of wood tools but none for metal, which has not been a problem until now. I won't be cutting enough metal in the near future to justify buying anything more than a couple good hand tools...However...

      The ideal situation would be to put an abrasive cutoff wheel in my Ridgid 10" compound miter saw. I have cleaned out a portion of a back room outside of my shop for this project (the metal portion) to keep it completly seperate from the wood shop...sparks and all that.

      I have vacummed off the entire saw, removed the dust bag unplugged it, ready to move it into the other room, and lost my nerve. Is there any reason why I couldn't do this?

      Thanks
      I used to, until I bought a cut off saw, just don't try to plunge it fast, let the blade do the cutting. Be safety wise when attempting this and I am not responsible for telling you its ok, because I never said it was....
      Great Link for a Construction Owner/Tradesmen, and just say Garager sent you....

      http://www.contractorspub.com

      A good climbing rope will last you 3 to 5 years, a bad climbing rope will last you a life time !!!

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      • #4
        Re: Wood worker needs to cut metal.

        I wouldn't recommend that you do what you're proposing to do with your miter saw. That's just not the function the saw was designed to do. FIL has an el-cheapo cutoff saw that he got at Harbor Freight for around $50. He doesn't give it a whole lot of use but he's had it for years and it's still going strong.
        ================================================== ====
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        • #5
          Re: Wood worker needs to cut metal.

          Hack saw,
          Push sticks/blocks Save Fingers
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          attributed to Samuel Johnson
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          • #6
            Re: Wood worker needs to cut metal.

            I cut a lot of barn steel and 1/4" round steel but i use a skill saw with a metal blade , it works great . Mitre saws have a habit of kicking back .
            John from Belgrave ont.

            www.extremebirdhouse.com

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            • #7
              Re: Wood worker needs to cut metal.

              Originally posted by Section 8 View Post
              I have a bunch of wood tools but none for metal, which has not been a problem until now. I won't be cutting enough metal in the near future to justify buying anything more than a couple good hand tools...However...

              The ideal situation would be to put an abrasive cutoff wheel in my Ridgid 10" compound miter saw. I have cleaned out a portion of a back room outside of my shop for this project (the metal portion) to keep it completly seperate from the wood shop...sparks and all that.

              I have vacummed off the entire saw, removed the dust bag unplugged it, ready to move it into the other room, and lost my nerve. Is there any reason why I couldn't do this?

              Thanks
              Wouldn't advise it. I know I've tried some things over the years with tools that weren't designed for the task and I got away with it until ..... Fortunately for me I didn't suffer a loss or cut, but I've had things fly by or up at me where a blade or disc has grabbed, stuck or seized and I'm glad to be able to tell about it. Problem is you can get away with it for a while and then you get a little lax not remembering what the original tool was designed to do and then that's when it will remind you in a not so subtle way. My vote is to buy the right tool - even a cheap one -for the job.

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Wood worker needs to cut metal.

                I use my Jigsaw and Sawzall with metal cutting blades most of the time, I have cut aluminum on a TS using a carbide blade kept for that purpose. My bandsaw can be slowed down for a metal blade to be put on it.

                If you are doing a lot of exact cuts for this project, a cheap chop saw is the best bet. You can probably rent one, also, if its just one project.

                Go
                Practicing at practical wood working

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                • #9
                  Re: Wood worker needs to cut metal.

                  one thing i use alot to cut small or thinner material is my 4-1/2" grinder and one of these cutoff wheels http://www.dewalt.com/us/products/ac...ategoryID=4468

                  dont push them just let them go through the material slowly and they work great without binding.
                  cutoff saw is really nice to have around also, but if you are just cutting small stuff then you can change the cutoff wheel for a grinding disk or wire brush on a grinder.

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                  • #10
                    Re: Wood worker needs to cut metal.

                    If your thinking of cutting steel I wouldn't do it.I've no idea how much plastic your saw has but those hot sparks will pit it and if/as the abrasive/steel cuttings build up on plastic it'll be melt down time.If its alu..ive done that on mine.
                    Sam

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                    • #11
                      Re: Wood worker needs to cut metal.

                      I use a sawzall with a combo or metal cutting blade and the workpiece cinched in a vise or clamped to my workbench.

                      I've done with with 1/2" steel rode, aluminum and steel angle-iron, 1/8" x 2" steel flat bar, and so on. It's not the *most* precise approach, but it works great within 1/16" or so. ;-)

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                      • #12
                        Re: Wood worker needs to cut metal.

                        Section 8

                        Please post more info about what you are planning to cut and how much. As for installing any manor of a metal cutting blade in a compound miter saw, please don't. It's just not safe and it can also damage your saw. There are better ways depending on the job.

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                        • #13
                          Re: Wood worker needs to cut metal.

                          Most cut off saws come with a clamp to secure the metal being cut properly. Thats #1, #2 is you really have to consider the amount of spark being directed through your MS. Have you ever looked inside the blade cover of a cut off saw after a dozen cuts. Unless you never want to use it again for fine woodwork I would advise against it and pick on of the many suggestions that the rest of the guys were kind enough to post.

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                          • #14
                            Re: Wood worker needs to cut metal.

                            I would not recommend using a (wood) miter saw for cutting metal. As several other posts have said too, it is not intended for this purpose. I bought a cheap chop saw on sale at Lowe's and it works great for cutting steel. The built-in clamp is essential (especially if you are cutting rounds) because the metal often gets too hot to hold by hand and it can easily get away from you and get jambed in the blade. The hot sparks from the steel will ruin the plastic parts (e.g. blade guard) on your miter saw. The chop saw also has a metal blade guard for good reason. I once watched a coworker (mis)using a chop saw when the abrasive wheel shattered, luckely he didn't get hurt. If this ever happens on a miter saw the plastic blade guard probably won't protect you.

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                            • #15
                              Re: Wood worker needs to cut metal.

                              I used a cheap circular saw (with a $4 steel cutting/abrasive blade) and a sawzall with a metal cutting blade to cut 3" by 3/16" steel angles.

                              I first made a cut about no deeper than 1/2 of the steels thickness. This is to avoid kickback. Then, I use the sawzall to cut the already weakened steel. After that the abrasive blade and and skillsaw came in handy for giving the edges a somewhat decent polish.

                              During any stage of cutting steel (or any material for that matter) use protective clothing, gloves and eye protection.
                              In order to understand recursion, one must first understand recursion.

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