Many DIY lovers and professional handymen use power tools to cut metal. However, not everyone has access to high-end power tools. What can you do if you want to cut metal and you don’t have power tools? If you have DIY projects that involve cutting metals like steel, there are different ways that you can use to cut the metal without power tools.
To choose the best method for you, you need to ask yourself several questions like:
- What level of accuracy do you want to achieve?
- How fast do you want to cut?
- What type of material are you cutting?
If you answer the above questions, it will be easy for you to find out the most convenient way to cut the metal. There are different types of metal and each requires a different cutting technique.
The cutting method you choose will depend on the type of metal, the precision needed, and well and how you intend to use the metal. Always make sure that you have gloves when you are cutting metal to avoid injuring your hands.
Cutting metal manually with hand tools
If you are dealing with smaller metal cutting projects, there are different hand tools that you can use to cut metal like thin gauge aluminum. Note that hand tools are not ideal if you want to cut the metal into small pieces because they can cause the metal to break. The following are some of the ways you can cut metal without power tools.
Use Chisel To Cut Metal
Chisels are mainly used to remove excess metal and provide more precise shapes. Depending on the task, you can choose a cold chisel that features sharpened edges or a hot chisel that needs to be heated before you hammer through metal.
Apart from providing precise shapes, you can use a chisel and a hammer to cut metal. This can be a messy and slow process and the results might not be pleasing. Additionally, the process can put your chisel under wear and tear.
Use Hand shears
Hand shears are popular tools that are used to cut metal and it is the simplest way of cutting metal sheets. They are also called tin snips and are available in different versions.
You can find scissor-like hand shears designed with thinner blades and shaped well to help you achieve certain cuts. You need to pick the right one for your project depending on whether you are right-handed or left-handed.
Unlike other standard scissors, tin snips are strong and durable. They feature heavy blades that work well in cutting metal sheets. Tin snips are inexpensive and provide accurate cutting.
The only downside is that they can be tough to work with especially if you are cutting a lot of metal. They need more effort to use and it can be tough for larger projects.
By Using Hacksaw
A hacksaw is a common hand tool that you will find in many DIY toolkits. If you don’t have power tools, a hacksaw can help you cut metal effectively. A hacksaw is small and very easy to use.
It does a great job especially if you want to achieve cutting at steep angles to the direction of your material. This tool comes at an affordable price and it is easy to find although they are slow to work with.
When using a hacksaw, choose a blade that matches the material you are cutting. Cutting thick materials like metal requires a blade with small teeth. If you are cutting thinner materials, then look for a blade with more teeth.
Also, you should know that the blades of a hacksaw only cut in one direction. Therefore, it is not advisable to cut in both directions. This is because when you drag the blade, you can make it break with such movements.
The only problem that you will face when using a hacksaw is that you will use a lot of effort and time. Despite all these, you will appreciate having this tool for metal cutting. On top of that, hacksaws tend to provide messy and jagged edges so you will need to smooth them.
Straight cutters A Good Device
These are tools that are specifically made to make straight or gentle sloping curves. You can get some special models that can cut right, left, or circles. As a general tip, the bigger the tool, the more it will be easy to make longer cuts.
Use Bench Shear
This is another great tool that you can use to cut gauges of sheet metal. You can find the tolls in different types which include straight shears and throatless shears. Straight shears are used to make straight lines while throatless shears work well for curved and other tough shapes. The tools work just like paper cutters and they are easy to use.
To use these tools, you just need to mark the line where you want to make your cut on the sheet metal. Keep the metal under the blade and line up the blade with the cut line. Then pull the handle down with your hands to cut through the metal.
By Using Turning
When you apply a sharp point of a cutting tool on a metal surface and then spin it with a supportive tool, this is called turning. It removes metal layers until you get the favorable size that you want.
Power tools are the most common in many workshops for metal cutting. Does it mean you can’t cut metal if you don’t have power tools? If you are dealing with smaller projects, you can use the above-mentioned tools to cut metal.
In as much as they are time-consuming and require you to use more effort, you will still have your metal cut. But if you are dealing with larger and thicker metals, you will get the best performance when you are using power tools.