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  • no jigsaw, need help

    I have a little problem. I need to cut out a square in a sheet of paneling, roughly 35" x 44". My main problem is I don't have a jigsaw. Any suggestion on how to do it without having one?

  • #2
    How about a few c clamps holding a straight 2x4 at the right distance to use a circular saw?
    "Diplomacy is saying nice dodging until you can find a rock." Will Rogers
    "If a Monkey can do your job, are you in the right profession?

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    • #3
      You can also use ''C" clamps, a straight edge and a router with a 1/4 inch flute bit. Or drill some small holes to get a start and use a hand saw. Depends a lot on the type of paneling and the exactness of the hole needed. Will the edges of the hole be a finished surface or will they be buried? HTH

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      • #4
        Is the panneling already on the wall? If so, the VERY first step is to find out if there's any wiring/plumbing behind it. That'll make the difference as to what tool you use. If possible, make a hole with a drill using a depth set on the bit so you don't go too far in. Then use a small hand saw and cut a little hole in the center of the panel just big enough for you to see inside and see what's there. Use a flashlight and peek around as best you can. Once that's done, if there's nothing in the way, use a sawsall and cut a rough shape (don't go all the way to the edge; leave a small amount to finish by hand for a cleaner edge). Or, just use the handsaw.

        If the panel's not on the wall, just use a sawsall to cut the rough outline, then finish to dimension using a palm sander or hand saw.
        I put it all back together better than before. There\'s lots of leftover parts.

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        • #5
          After checking out for wiring and piping (as mentioned in the previous post), I'd simply use a small handsaw. If it's just panelling on top of drywall, that should be easy. If it's an older home with heavier boards, you'll probably want to give serious consideration to finding a jig saw

          I know we live in an age where, if you don't have a power tool the job can't get done; but really, it wasn't all that many years ago when people used to reach for their hand saw first. We used to use what was known as a "keyhole" saw. It was less than a foot long and had a very tapered blade... looking quite like an enlarged recip saw blade. I just looked at my Home Depot tool catalog, and they have two similar looking saws called "Jab Saws". These have knife-like handles instead of the more familier vertical grip handles, but they should work well. One is the Huskey Jab Saw #538 043 for $10.86 and the second is the Stanley "Fat Max" Jab Saw #796 981 for $12.99.

          So, if all you are cutting is this one hole, and it's only the panelling that you are cutting, take a look at either of these. If you want something cheaper, then buy a longer recip-saw blade and make your own handle by heavily taping one end.

          CWS

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          • #6
            It can be done with a circular saw and a panelling blade. Set the blade depth to the thickness of the panelling, Raise the blade guard, and set the front edge of the base plate flat on the panelling perpendicular to the cut line. With a firm grip on the saw, start the saw and carefully lower it onto the cut line. Realize the blade will cut back toward the back of the saw as it goes into the panel, so start forward of the corner with the adjacent side. Cut to the corner and stop just as the cut touches it. After cutting all four sides, finish cutting the corners with a chisel or a box cutter. If the panel is not on the wall, the blade depth can be set deeper to ensure you go fully through it. To stop tear out on the cut, cover the cut lines with making tape pressed firmly down, and mark the lines on top of it. If you have some thin plywood or scrap panelling, you may want to practice this technique first. This is one of those jobs at which a cordless circular saw excells. Hope this helps.
            If you don't feel comfortable with this procedure, don't use it. A backing saw (miter saw, tenon saw, dovetail saw) will also work. Tape a straight edge next to the line with double edge tape and carefully saw flat into the panel. When you start going through in spots, you can finish it with a boxcutter.
            For both procedures, make sure there isn't any nails on the cut lines. If there is, remove them first. Good luck
            Practicing at practical wood working

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            • #7
              ace hardware has a b&d jig saw for $25
              9/11/01, never forget.

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              • #8
                the paneling is on a wall. it is a stage wall, so there is no electrical or plumbing items to worry about. the square i need to cut is in the middle of the paneling, a 4' x 8' sheet of 1/4" smart siding osb. the circular saw trick sounds like it will work, but sounds a little hairy too. the wife want break on another tool right now, i just bought the new makita lithium hammer drill.

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                • #9
                  just set your saw to barley cut slightly more than 1/4 of an inch. Then carefully slide the blade guard back and hold it open with your thumb so both hands are on the tool. (covering my butt there ) make you first cut with the front of the saw touching the wall and when the blade has reached full speed then slowly let it cut into the wall. I have done this several times before and never had a problem. if possible you may consider using screws to attach a guide next to your cuts if being perfect is important.

                  Don't do this from a ladder unless it is secured to the wall or is not in danger of moving while you cut.
                  "Diplomacy is saying nice dodging until you can find a rock." Will Rogers
                  "If a Monkey can do your job, are you in the right profession?

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                  • #10
                    Use a hand saw for something that thin. A Japanese-style pullsaw works very well. It's quick and easy, with no complicated sertup and guides and not as dangerous as a power saw.
                    Joe Spear

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                    • #11
                      Woodmaker,

                      I would suggest a Rotozip or other spiral saw. It is low cost for the tool and bits. You can set the depth of cut. If the cut edges won't show you can freehand the cut. Otherwise, you can use double sided tape to attach a straight edge as a guide.

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                      • #12
                        I would use a cutting torch lol good luck. buy the b&d for 25 and don't tell your wife.

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