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Metal Cutting Power Saw

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Ron Laden06/03/2019 08:34:03
1874 forum posts
345 photos

I am thinking of getting myself a power saw but unless anyone knows otherwise what I,m looking for maybe doesnt exist.

My workshop is a tiny 6 ft x 4 ft so I dont have the space to have a saw permanently in situ, it will have to live under a bench and be brought out when needed. So it needs to be quite compact plus ideally I would like something that can cope with a decent depth of cut i.e. not just a couple of inches.

I have been searching but havnt found anything as yet, there are chop saws but I dont fancy one of those. A band saw or small power hacksaw (if they are still available) would be more what I,m looking for.

Aldi do a fairly compact bandsaw which gets very good reviews apart from the built in vice which is said to be rubbish though it can be improved.

If anyone knows of a saw that may fit the bill it would be appreciated if you can let me know.



Buffer06/03/2019 08:41:43
147 forum posts
42 photos

Ron what about a kennedy power hacksaw. Its small enough to put under a bench and get out when needed

donkey06/03/2019 08:58:28
72 forum posts
5 photos

machine mart item cpmcs1 it is a cold saw slow revving will deep cut through solid steel. box section etc. it has stops for repeatability angle cuts are easy. and I use one all the time.

I also have a few other power saws but that one is very portable, quiet and accurate.

no links to machine mart via this crazy site are possible. but go to machine mart site search for saw and they are on the second page.

I have seen and used other cold saws but they seem no longer available or way too expensive for hobbyists.

i have no connection with machine mart but find with minor improvements their stuff is ok and I usually wait until vat free day for major puchases.


John Haine06/03/2019 09:24:15
3012 forum posts
160 photos


I have one of these. It's a lot more usable now I have junked the stand and bolted castors straight to the baseplate - you have to crouch down to use it but the vertical height is not too high and floor area is minimised. It was somewhat cheaper when I bought mine.

Mike Poole06/03/2019 10:04:19
2544 forum posts
60 photos

**LINK** these seem to deliver very good performance but not the cheapest machine.


IanT06/03/2019 10:06:20
1503 forum posts
142 photos

A commercial powered hacksaw will probably be too large for you Ron - although my McMaster is on casters and pushes under a bench OK. This was an investment made after having to use an 'Armstrong' to cut up several 2.5" diameter long bars. It turned out my arm wasn't as strong as it used to be...

I've never used a metal bandsaw so cannot comment on them but without the McMaster I'd have looked at the small Myfordboy hacksaw or perhaps the Blackgate one. Blackgates still sell the castings for their design I believe and Myfordboy sells plans to build one from "stock" material (search on YouTube for details).Both will cost money and time to build but they are compact and seem to work well (videos of both also on YT).



Howard Lewis06/03/2019 10:20:54
3148 forum posts
2 photos

In a 6 x 4 foot shop, the usual 4 1/2 inch Bandsaw is likely to take up too much space. Mine had problems after a while (since rectified) Its predecessor was a small Bandsaw, intended to fit under the bench when not required, but after two faulty ones (and a lot of money spent replacing broken blades) went for this one.

Being almost too heavy (50 Kg ) to lift in and out of the narrow aisle in the shop, (Mine is not much larger than Ron's ) so lives outside, under a cover made from the material used for curtainsider trailers. The cover reaches almost to the ground, and a spray of oil keeps rust at bay

With little space available, it seems that reciprocating machine is needed.

These have the advantage of using the blades from "normal" hacksaws. But probably means that one will to be manufactured, either from drawings, a kit, or from scratch. When I looked at this, the most expensive component, by far, was the electric motor and integral gearbox.



IanT06/03/2019 10:42:54
1503 forum posts
142 photos

Both the MB and Blackgates designs use standard motors Howard - with no gearbox required. But they do need time and effort to build them - not so much a problem if you enjoy doing that kind of thing (which I generally do) - but some folk are a lot more focused (then I tend to be) and will not want to get diverted from their main project...

However sometimes the best solutions for specific needs aren't available commercially and then it can be time well invested...



JohnF06/03/2019 10:46:57
966 forum posts
142 photos
Posted by Mike Poole on 06/03/2019 10:04:19:

**LINK** these seem to deliver very good performance but not the cheapest machine.


Plus one for the Femi, had mine for many years and would not be without it, you can also purchase or make -easily - a horizontal table which is very useful.


Pat Bravery06/03/2019 10:48:32
95 forum posts
24 photos

I have just bought an Aldi bandsaw and can't fault it, I saw the video on youtube regarding the poor quality vice, maybe I was lucky as my one is working perfectly, the wear in the vice is adjustable. There is a 3 year warranty as well. Regards Pat

Plasma06/03/2019 10:55:36
391 forum posts
45 photos

I've sent you a private message Ron.

Iain Downs06/03/2019 10:56:18
622 forum posts
539 photos

I've found the Aldi chop saw (an angle grinder on a frame) very good. I suspect it would be easy to overheat it with big cuts, but I've got through 2 inch square steel with it, albeit with a bit of turning round.

It was about 50 quid. Moreover it's fast.

I suspect these aren't in stock now, but there are a bunch on eBay which might do.


JasonB06/03/2019 10:59:16
17850 forum posts
1954 photos
1 articles

I can pick my Femi up with one hand and put it under the bench if needed and happy with it's performance, some of the cheaper versions also get reasonable comments

larry phelan 106/03/2019 12:10:58
667 forum posts
24 photos

How the Hell do you manage to work in a shop that small ?????? I salute you ! My place is 40X20 feet and I still fall over stuff !

Windy06/03/2019 12:19:08
779 forum posts
152 photos
As many of us have limited access to the recommended machines for certain jobs we have to do things the hard way or improvise.
I purchased years ago from an auto jumble a block 3” x 4.25” x 12” of 6082 Ally and decided could use it for my full size flash steam water and fuel pump bodies two are required.
Thinking it’s going to be a hand hacksaw job I remembered a cheap Aldi electric hand reciprocating saw bought from my local store.
With a metal blade have cut up a 1/4” angle trailer in the past so dug it out and put a coarse long wood blade in it (no carbide teeth on it) with a bit of lube done the Ally cutting.
Have found many of the budget tools from Aldi are OK for occasional use and a lot cheaper than professional ones.
I did this today in about 15 to 20 minutes.
Ally block cuttingAlly block cut.Ally block.

Edited By Windy on 06/03/2019 12:24:56

Russ B06/03/2019 13:22:14
567 forum posts
21 photos

I have Kennedy Hexacut and have just sold my Blackgates Power Hacksaw.

I'm now using this and absolutely love it, £150 delivered from Aldi of all places, 5" capacity off the top of my head. It is primarily a free hand saw but it comes with a stand and produces very accurate cuts and also rotates to cut mitres, the blade is variable speed so you can adjust it to suit but i think is mostly a gimmik, I just run it on minimum all the time.


A few caveats,

  • the cam mechanism on the vice jaw isn't amazing but it's sufficient.
  • because this is primarily a free hand saw, when mounted in the stand the blade cuts towards you rather than away
  • also, the flex also points towards you - it's not really a problem, just something you wouldn't encounter on a purpose built bandsaw.
  • There is no hydraulic mechanism to drop the blade
  • you have to keep your finger on the trigger.

Still, prefer it to the Kennedy and the Blackgates as it's quicker, quieter, smoother and more accurate - plus it comes in a nice blow mould case with blade storage that takes standard 1140mm bandsaw blades- Milwaukee manufacture 10, 14, 18 and 25 TPI bimetal blades (£19 for 3) as well as 10/14 and 14/18 variable pitch bimetal blades (£22 for 3) - the saw comes with a very nice M42 bi-metal blade as standard.

Edited By Russ B on 06/03/2019 13:24:13

Ron Laden06/03/2019 14:21:17
1874 forum posts
345 photos

Thanks guys for all the advice and suggestions, quite a bit to think about so will give it some thought.


Jon06/03/2019 14:57:21
997 forum posts
49 photos
Posted by donkey on 06/03/2019 08:58:28:

machine mart item cpmcs1 it is a cold saw slow revving will deep cut through solid steel. box section etc. it has stops for repeatability angle cuts are easy. and I use one all the time.

no links to machine mart via this crazy site are possible. but go to machine mart site

This one very expensive though for diy.


Ron Laden06/03/2019 19:09:57
1874 forum posts
345 photos
Posted by larry phelan 1 on 06/03/2019 12:10:58:

How the Hell do you manage to work in a shop that small ?????? I salute you ! My place is 40X20 feet and I still fall over stuff !

A few people have asked me that Larry and I suppose the answer is that it is the only space I have so I just have to manage. I have the mini-lathe one end and the mill at the other and a shallow 6 feet of bench space along the back wall. I guess when you think about it standing in front of and operating the lathe or mill only needs a couple of square feet and that doesnt change much in any size of workshop.

It certainly is cosy and without doubt a one person space, two people would never be able to work in there without clashing elbows. Despite its tiny size which does get frustrating at times its my space. I have a small fold up chair and first thing in a morning I,m out there with my mug of coffee, I love it.



Edited By Ron Laden on 06/03/2019 19:28:21

Samsaranda06/03/2019 19:35:49
908 forum posts
5 photos

After much deliberation I chose the Aldi Chop Saw, because I could stow it away under the bench thereby saving space but I only use it outside the workshop because of the sparks that it generates, wouldn’t be without it though and certainly saves a lot of arm ache.

Dave W

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