How to cut sheet metal with a grinder

How to cut sheet metal with a grinder How to properly cut metal with a grinder: instruction + video

There is an opinion that the angle grinder itself the machine is named "Bulgarian" because it was brought from Bulgaria. To some extent, this is true, but the development and release of the first tools began in Germany.

The Bulgarian first came to us from Bulgaria, where the tool began to be made around the 1970s. The angle grinder is the real and correct name for such a versatile tool. By the way, when working with a grinder, you should definitely adhere to safety precautions, namely, wear gloves, goggles, a helmet and a special apron.

We invite you to learn how to properly cut metal with a grinder.

General information

Please note that at the moment it is even impossible to imagine the work of repairmen, builders, locksmiths and mechanics without a grinder. With its help, you can cut various materials, including metal - rods, fittings, water pipes, profiles and corners.

The cut obtained from the angle grinder can be ground, sharpened or polished. An incredibly large selection of interchangeable attachments helped make such a tool versatile and indispensable.

At the same time, it would be unfair to mention that this is the most traumatic electrical tool. To cut metal, you will definitely need the material itself, a face shield, an angle grinder, glasses and replaceable discs.

Purchase

How to choose the right angle grinder

The correct choice of grinder, as well as the quality of its assembly will determine quality of work and operator safety. When choosing a machine, you should focus on the main parameters - the diameter and power of the cutting abrasive wheel. Equally important will be how much the tool weighs, because often you have to carry out work "on the weight", and the size of the tool will affect whether you can do the work even in hard-to-reach and inconvenient places or not.

Many buyers, when they see a very powerful tool, start to get a little intimidated that it will be much more difficult to handle it than a tool that has low power. In fact, this opinion is wrong. For grinders with low power, disk jamming occurs most often, because they are physically unable to "pull out" the disk under heavy load.

How to cut sheet metal with a grinder The situation of how the disk and the machine will behave after reducing the load is completely unpredictable. Most likely, the grinder will start to break free from the hands.

The consequence of this will be a break in the disc, damage to the tool and even injury to the cutter. For this reason, beginners should choose a grinder for a disc with a diameter of 12.5 cm and a power of at least 0.8-1 kW, and the number of spindle revolutions should be at least 10,000 revolutions per minute. This power will be enough to cut iron.

By the way, specially for cutting metal there are machines for a disc with a diameter of 11.5 cm with battery power, but as practice has shown, with their incredibly high cost in solving household problems, the devices hardly justify themselves.

The handles of the grinder must be rubberized or at least made of material that will damp the vibration from the machine. But please note that no technical data is a way to reflect the convenience and safety of work. The grinder should lie securely and comfortably in your hand so that while working with metal you can focus all your attention on it, and not on how to hold the tool in your hands.

It will be optimal if the handles are rubber or made of a material that is able to damp vibrations and has recesses for the fingers.

Angle grinders usually do not have an additional handle. If you find inconveniences when choosing a tool, then you should choose a different model.

How to choose the right blades for cutting

Is it possible to cut wood with a grinder? Yes, of course, but with special circles. They have symbols that help you choose the right circles.

When choosing a disc, it is worth knowing what you will use them for, so pay attention to the thickness and diameter, since these are the main parameters.

The smallest diameter can be 12.5 cm, and the largest of the generally available 25 cm. For professional angle grinders, the discs can be even larger. The diameter of the disc may affect the thickness of the cut part and the maximum depth of cut.

If you plan to cut only metal, then it is worth spending money and buying a special cutting disc. Its small thickness ranges from 0.1 to 0. 12 cm, and for industrial grinders the value is 0.25 cm.

This helps to lighten the physical load on the device, as well as for the operator. The cut is beautiful and neat.

If you want to be engaged in curly carving on thin metal, then it should be done using a disc of the smallest diameter, or an old, practically worn out disc. Most people believe that a diamond blade should be used to cut metal, but in fact this opinion is fundamentally wrong. The diamond blade for metal will bind and become unusable for further work.

Experts say that even beginners in this business do not have big difficulties when cutting metal with a grinder.

Operation

Basic rules for safe work while cutting metal angle grinder

The most important condition when cutting, there will be strict observance of the rules for safe work. Manufacturers of such devices will constantly try to minimize the risks of injury and injury, and come up with new ones and also try to improve old protective systems.

But no one thinks about the worker the way he does. The main dangers when cutting a disc are the flight of fragments from a broken disc, as well as a stream of small abrasive particles and sparks, and the inability to hold the tool in hands.

If the disc breaks, or if it gets stuck, then the grinder is a way to get out of the hands at the most unnecessary moment and with great force, for this reason, even before you start work, you should foresee its possible trajectory of movement. Please note that you cannot neglect the safety rules even when performing small jobs.

Before starting work it is worth:

  1. Cover your eyes, hands, face, and, if possible, all other parts of the body.
  2. Move away all combustible materials and objects that stand in the direction of the sparks.
  3. Fasten the part that is processed by the grinder, if possible in a vice.

    In no case should you hold the product that you are processing with your free hand or even press it with your feet.

  4. If you are planning to install a new disc, you should "rotate" it on an angle grinder at maximum speed, and place it further away - the disc may be defective, and in this case it will fly into many pieces.
  5. Adjust, fit and fix the special protective cover.

Safety precautions

Please note that when working with a grinder, it is worth protecting your face with a special shield.

When working, you need:

  1. When replacing a disk during rest, disconnect the device from the mains.

  2. Wear goggles or even a face shield to protect your face and eyes - professionals use both protective equipment for extended periods of time.
  3. Hold the device firmly while working.
  4. To replace a disc, wait until it comes to a complete stop.
  5. Special protective gloves should be worn. It is better not to use cotton gloves, because they do not provide adequate protection, and can also ignite; in addition, there were cases when threads were wound on a disc or a spindle of a grinder, and believe me, this does not end well.

  6. When carrying out work, position yourself so that your face, and, if possible, other parts of the body are not in the plane of rotation of the disc.

At the end of the work it is worth:

  • Wait until the disc comes to a complete stop and only then can the tool be placed with the disc up on the floor so that was not damaged.
  • Disconnect the grinder from the network.
  • Make sure there is no smoke or other signs of fire.

A common mistake that is made when cutting metal is that if the diameter of the new circle is larger than the size of the guard, then it is removed.

The cover is a protection in case, when cutting metal, the blade breaks and shatters into pieces. most people use cutters, saws or other materials instead of a disc, but in fact, this should never be done.

How to properly cut metal with a grinder - recommendations and advice

It would seem that it could be easier - we take and cut the metal with a grinder. But it’s not that simple.If long pipes rest on supports, cut the overhanging edge.

If you cut them in the middle, then due to its weight, the metal begins to bend and clamps the disc.

If you do not have the skills to handle an angle grinder, then before starting work, you should learn how to cut on unnecessary metal parts. By the way, the cutting wheel will perceive only radical efforts, and an attempt to change the cutting plane when the disc is located inside a metal part will lead to its breakage. It will effectively cut metal through the heel of the disc (we are talking about the near bottom of the circle).

How to cut sheet metal with a grinder In order for the disc and angle grinder to serve as long as possible, take a break of 1 every 5-7 minutes of operation / 3 or 1/2 hours.

This is especially important for low-power grinders who are afraid of overheating. To extend the life of the discs, especially those that are very expensive, and then cool the metal, the place of the cut should be watered. The work should be done together with a partner.

By the way, aluminum is a very viscous metal, and when cutting a part and a large thickness, kerosene should be dripped into the seam in compliance with all safety rules. For molding, curly cutting and sawing of sheet metal, use worn-out discs, "stubs", and therefore do not throw away what has already been almost worked out.

The corner should be cut not in one go, but both shelves separately. If pipes, fittings, corners are long enough and lie on supports, then the hanging edge will be cut correctly. If you cut between the supports, then the part, due to its weight, will begin to bend and the disc will jam.

Thick parts should only be cut straight. If you want to cut out a curly part, then first you should make straight cuts, and then delete the rest - everything that is not needed.

You should not put pressure on the tool, because this can lead to jamming or even breakage and overheating.

If the cutting process is slow, it is worth replacing the blade. Process the resulting cut with another disc. Melted particles of abrasive and metal, when they hit a plastic product, headlights and car glass begin to get stuck in them, and then it is almost impossible to remove them, and for this reason everything should be removed or protected before starting the execution.

Is it possible to use a grinder for cutting corrugated board and metal roofing?

At the time when they just started using metal tiles and corrugated board, the instructions said that that it is forbidden to use an angle grinder for cutting roofing material.

This was explained by the fact that on both sides they are protected with a polymer and zinc coating, and everything is also painted.

The abrasive disc melts the material and heats the disc. In this case, the cuts turn out to be torn, and flying sparks can also disrupt the paint. All this can corrode the material and reduce the service life.

And yet, recently builders began to use a grinder for such work, and at the same time its work is noticeably easier, it can be done even on the roof.

After cutting, the edges should be treated with anti-corrosion agents, primed and painted. Correctly cutting metal with a grinder will not be difficult, especially since you can learn how to do it all. The main thing is that you follow the safety rules and do not forget about useful tips.

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