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Hand Tools Grinders, Chop Saw's, Sawzall's, etc ... Which brand? Why? Consumables?


Hand Tools Grinders, Chop Saw's, Sawzall's, etc ... Which brand? Why? Consumables?

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  #1  
Old 02-14-2012, 03:15 AM
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Chocflip201 Chocflip201 is offline
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How would you cut...?

How would you guys cut some body panels on a truck that wasn't going to get any body work done afterwards? meaning it can't ruin the neighboring paint...

In all my cuts in the past I have used a "thin" (1/32" i think) cutoff wheel on a 4.5" angle grinder and then came in afterwards with a flap-wheel to clean up any burrs and it has worked pretty well, but I'm just looking for improvements, I know there are a lot of tools out there that I don't exactly know about yet but I know you guys probably do!

Cutoff Wheel on a angle grinder:

Pro's:

No Vibrations (doesn't shake the panel at all)
Pretty easy to handle and to get a straight line

Con's:
-Generates heat from the abrasive cutting and can discolor/bubble the paint if not careful
-If the wheel grabs and gives you kick-back you could end up scratching where you don't want to pretty easily.
- not able to get into all spaces at all angles




Sawzall: (Reciprocating Saw)

Pro's:

It cuts fast

Con's: (so I wouldn't ever use it)

-Shakes the panel like crazy
- always takes two hands to operate, leaving no hand free
- extremely large and cumbersome in comparison
- end of the blade can bounce off of stuff and bend the blade




High Speed Body Saw:

Kinda like a mini reciprocating saw, but more maneuverable and doesn't shake the panel as much.

Blade travel isn't as lengthy as the reciprocating saw so less chance to bounce tip of blade off stuff

Blade works best at full speed (so it doesn't shake the panel) but because the blade is so small height-wise it makes it hard to cut a straight line, so I wouldn't use it either.















I know I have a very limited idea of tools, thats where I need your help, what would you use that I don't know about?
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Old 02-14-2012, 08:29 AM
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Tender Bender Tender Bender is offline
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Just keep doing what your doing. If something works stick with it!! happy wheeling
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Old 02-14-2012, 08:32 AM
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Tender Bender Tender Bender is offline
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p.s. look at all the other work you could get donw with those extra set of hands besides having them hold your body pannel. I was going to mention truck using an adjustable speed jib saw with a very fine blade and you should be good my man!
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Old 02-14-2012, 08:34 AM
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Wow i keep reading your post and then have more comments, im sorry. i read that when you use the cutting wheel, you gotta take your time, 2-5 mins cutting then have a nice cool weet rag to over the cut that way you wont really ruin your paint
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Old 02-14-2012, 08:40 AM
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Electric shears do a really nice job. They won't make real tight curves but straight lines and gentle curve lines are very easy to follow.

And another way to not ruin paint (keep in mind I haven't tried this yet) is an air hammer with a sheet metal cutter bit. My buddy cut his fenders on his Cherokee for some larger tires and it I didn't see any markings or scratches on the paint at all. He also added that it was very easy to keep a straight line and the only remotely hard part was getting the cut started (getting the little strip of metal to curl).

http://buy1.snapon.com/catalog/item....9&group_ID=846
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Old 02-14-2012, 09:49 AM
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if you are just cutting through sheetmetal, and the panels dont have crazy body lines or contours, what I like to do is tape off the area around the cut with blue masking tape to protect the paint. Then I use a jigsaw with a metal blade in it, works really good for cutting sheetmetal. I have one of those mini reciprocating saws like in your post which comes in handy on tight spots or funky contours, but I think the jigsaw usually does a cleaner job and is easier to control on big panels
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Old 02-14-2012, 12:14 PM
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I've never used electric shears before I have always been curious though. And wouldn't the air-hammer/cutting bit shake the crap out of the panel? And yeah I always use blue masking tape as my line to follow.

My experience of why I asked this is because my first project I ever cut was the body of a YJ, and I cut it with a cutoff wheel and hit it with the flap wheel and it worked great didn't ruin the surrounding paint at all.

But my most recent experience was cutting a 2003 tacoma to make extra clearance for a rear offroad bumper, I did it the exact same way but the edge (about 1/16 -1/8") along the cut line started to flake in some places and I was not expecting that, so I covered the edge with some automotive door-edging material.

Oh and also, I worked very slow and tediously and paid attention to how much heat I was putting in the panel and stopped whenever it got too warm.
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Old 02-14-2012, 02:47 PM
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Ever use a nibbler? I have a small one but they make bigger ones.

Google them as thats better than I could explain them.
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Old 02-14-2012, 02:48 PM
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http://www.google.com/#sclient=psy-a...w=1182&bih=836


Theres a google link to metal nibbler

Last edited by Nutz4sand; 02-14-2012 at 02:49 PM. Reason: adding info
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Old 02-14-2012, 04:11 PM
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No I've never used one, but from that YouTube video it looks like it hammers up the edge of the cut a lot
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Old 02-14-2012, 04:14 PM
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The one I have and use is smaller but it leaves the edge a tiny rough but not hammered up. I have only used mine on aluminum though.
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Old 02-14-2012, 04:26 PM
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By tiny rough I do not mean bent out of shape but just little niblets as the cutting head on mine is round. The very edge needs smoothing if thats a concern but the metal is not distorted much if at all on the flat plane.

It just makes it so its like a REALLLLLY dull saw on the edge.
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Old 02-14-2012, 10:28 PM
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I don't want to bust on other peoples techniques but my experience with a nibbler is it is very hard to follow a straight line.

I was curious about the shears on painted metal as I use them mostly on bare sheet metal. These pics are just for you man





It did mar the paint a little so I tried it next with a little tape. The tape definitely was easy to follow and it cut just like the metal where I didn't leave enough width for the cutting blade to get through







The tape worked really well and the paint looked in very good shape. Each cut is very quick, perhaps two seconds and very easy to get a straight line. Also, these are very expensive shears but have heard very good things even about the cheapest of the cheapest ones from harbor freight.
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Old 02-14-2012, 10:39 PM
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Wow that tape looks like it made it night and day! Hope that wasn't a customers panel
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Old 02-14-2012, 11:15 PM
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The tape sure did make a difference!

No, the panel is from a super top secret project I'm workng on
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Old 02-14-2012, 11:51 PM
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The very first fender I cut was with a friends hammer/nibbler. came out clean. Then I used my dremmel with cut off wheels (LOTS of them ) that was tedious, but perfect result. Then I gradiated to the 4.5, and it is still my favorite, after using pretty much every option mentioned. to save the paint, use multiple passes, and tape. I like to get the line etched through the paint on a first pass, just to be sure of the layout, and then deepen it as you go, leaving a slight bridge holding it every 6-8" on big cuts. Keeps the cut out from flopping around causing problems, and easily parted off once the bulk is cut through. Sawzall is fastest, but keep a serious angle on for multiple-tooth engagement to minimize pannel shake. The problem with fast, is that once you notice how far off the line you are, you are seriously phookd.
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Old 02-15-2012, 12:19 AM
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Yah my nibbler is way different than that. I will have to see if I can find it for a pic. Mine uses a round cutter and is VERY direction controllable and very manuverable and the entire head pivots allowing sharp corners.
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Old 02-15-2012, 01:53 AM
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for the amount I do.. I just use a 5" zippy, a smiggent away from mark and finish off with a floppy or air die sizes if needed ... hehe... besides no matter what you use ya screwed the paint edge anyway... .. and that would go to department 'B' next

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  #19  
Old 02-15-2012, 03:52 PM
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Yeah for sure, well if it weren't for needing to do it that way I'd leave an extra 3/4" and fold the extra up and around like ya should and then do the necessary paint work.
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