Sheet metal cuts easily with the right tools, but if you don’t use them correctly, you’ll end up with a mass of scrap and little to show for your efforts. It’s important to know how to cut sheet metal with the right tool so you can cut efficiently and safely. Here, you will know how to cut sheet metals with a circular saw to maintain your safety.
Type of Saw Blade Needed to Cut Sheet Metals with a Circular Saw
There are different types of metals with different metal strengths, and based on the strength of metal and the thickness of metal and the type of circular saw blade you will be using may vary. For soft non-ferrous metal, you should be using the carbide-tipped abrasive cutoff wheel, and for hard ferrous metal, you should be using a cutting blade with C-6 carbide teeth. Some hard ferrous metals are cast iron, high carbon steel, and soft non-ferrous metals are copper, lead, brass, and aluminum. Your saw blade should have more teeth while cutting thin metals, and for thick metals, saw blades should have fewer teeth count. And the thickness of the sheet can be measured in inches.
How to cut sheet metals with a circular saw?
Generally, a Circular Saw is used to cut wood and wood composite, but it can be used to cut many different things. And metal cutting is one of the things that can be easily done if you have the knowledge about which saw blade to use for cutting a specific type of metal.
It is also possible to use a circular saw to cut wood and cut soft metals with the same blade. If you are aware that the blade you are using for wood cutting is strong enough to cut through the metal, the blade’s speed and power are enough for cutting soft and especially non-ferrous metals that are pure and do not contain iron in it. In such cases, you should take safety precautions for cutting metals. But it is suggested to use the proper blade for cutting metals for your safety and cutting effectively, and the following is a basic guide for how to cut metals with the circular saw blade.
The Process to Cut Sheet Metals is described below.
Step One: Choosing the Blade Based on Metal Type
When you are planning to cut metal with a saw, you should be using a circular saw specially made for cutting metals, and you can start within a power saw designed for this job. Another option can be circular saws that are designed for both metal and wood. Although in the case of hybrid saw, there are many factors that affect the effectiveness of cutting the metal with it, such as the power of the saw, speed of the saw and close motor space, etc. So it is suggested to go for a saw that is specially made for the job of metal cutting with blades specially made for a metal cutting job such as Diamond tipped saw blades, and some of the best saw for metal cutting works are
- Makita 7.5 inch metal cutting circular saw: This saw can cut 2.5-inch thick metal sheets at 3500 RPM. The metal dust and chips produced is stored in the saw pocket
- Bosch 18V metal cutting circular saw: It has even more power of 3800 RPM.
- MK Morse 7 inch metal cutting circular saw: This saw has a 3500 RPM, 11-amp motor
Step Two: Insert the blade in the saw
In this step, you have to insert a blade suitable for the metal cutting job; you may be using a hybrid circular saw that can be used for both wood and metal cutting, and changing the attached blade with the proper blade for metal cutting is important. Some people find it difficult because of the way blades are attached to the saw. Some blades have upper and lower guards and require removing those guards before removing the blade, and some blades even come with washers that are hard to remove. But a basic guide for removing and installing a proper metal cutting blade is,
- Disconnect electricity supply from the saw
- Remove the guard
- Use a wrench for removing bolt and washer
- Detached the blade and place a new one
- Add the bolts again
Ensure that the blade is installed properly and all nuts and bolts are also installed so that when you make a cut with your blade, it won’t wobble and won’t reduce the accuracy of cutting.
Step Three: Blade depth adjustment
The blade depth is an important factor determining how deep the cut will be on the metal sheet. The depth of the blade determines how long the blade lasts. The blade depth can be adjusted using an adjustment slide, also called a lever, and it is located on the side of a circular saw blade or on the back near the back handle of the blade. That lever/ slide helps to move the depth of the blade for adjustment purposes. It is suggested to use blade depth slightly ¼ of an inch greater than the metal sheet. It will stabilize the rotation of the blades with minimum wobbling
Step Four: Tightly attach the metal sheet with workbench
Make sure to attach the metal sheet on the bench tightly; you can do it using a clamp. It will ensure that the metal is one the place while you press it with the blasé on the cutting outlines. This step is important for safety; you won’t want a wrong cut of the metal and spoil the metals sheet.
Make sure to use goggles, gloves, and hearing protection for excessive noise while working. Working to cut metal sheets with a circular saw can be more dangerous than cutting woods because, unlike wood, plexiglass, metal creates metal shavings and chips; these are tiny sharped pieces of metal that shoot at the rotational direction of the blade. Breathing or even touching it can cause damage to your skin. To save yourself from hazards risks, you need those gears. To know more on safety you can read our study on circular saw safety measurement.
Woodcutting saw can be used for metal cutting, but the speed of wood cutting blades is far greater than what is required for metal cutting, so make sure to use not more than 5000 RPM while cutting metals. Greater RPM than this can lead to overheating and damage to the metal and blade.
You can easily reduce the cost of cutting metal by using a circular saw and doing it yourself rather than using a professional. But make sure to have the knowledge required for effective cutting and your safety as well. And after reading the process and safety precautions provided here, you should not find the work that difficult.