Can it cut through solid steel?
|Iain Downs||30/05/2019 20:39:14|
|537 forum posts|
Regular readers may be aware that my aldi chop saw has burned out and I've been looking for an alternative.
A couple of posters have recommended the Rage Evolution Range such as this impressive beast .
However, what I want to cut through is solid steel. Inches of it. the specs and reviews I've seen talk about cutting through 4mm tube of 6mm plate, not 60mm solid bar!
Will it actually cut through proper solid metal or will it burn out being overloaded?
I don't want to buy something quite pricey (well I certainly don't have an approved budget), if it's not going to do the job.
Looking forward to hearing your experience.
|Bear G 1||30/05/2019 21:08:48|
|15 forum posts|
For metal cutting you want slow with coolant along with lots of teeth. Because this is intended for woodwork it runs far too fast.
My choice would be a horizontal bandsaw, have a look through the ad's in the magazine or click on some of their adverts on this forum.
P.S. A general note; be careful buying some of these mitre saws, some have non-standard blades which are not available as spares.
|Brian Oldford||30/05/2019 21:23:12|
596 forum posts
Try 1:35 onwards at **LINK**
Then onto an ML7 at 2:15
Edited By Brian Oldford on 30/05/2019 21:25:06
|Bill Phinn||30/05/2019 21:45:58|
|229 forum posts|
Iain, I've got the non-sliding version of this, which I bought a few years ago now. I've used it mostly for timber and only very occasionally for cutting metals (aluminium, brass and thin steel).
It is not designed to cut through 60mm steel bar routinely, but will cope with the sort of thinner calipers you mention, though even here you must expect the teeth to wear faster than they would if only softer materials are cut with it.
If I were wanting to cut 60mm steel bar on a regular basis I would probably invest in a good quality powered hacksaw or a dedicated metal-cutting chop saw.
Edited By Bill Phinn on 30/05/2019 21:50:30
|Jeff Dayman||30/05/2019 21:56:17|
|1700 forum posts|
Or a portable handheld bandsaw like the one in the link below.
Harbour Freight carry these in the US and Princess Auto carry a similar one here in Canada. As mentioned in another thread they work great and are surprisingly good quality for a relatively low price.
Edited By Jeff Dayman on 30/05/2019 22:06:57
|Alan Waddington 2||30/05/2019 22:25:31|
|457 forum posts|
Bought one when they first came out, god awful things, it’s sat on a shelf somewhere, buy a bandsaw.
|Henry Brown||30/05/2019 22:28:05|
93 forum posts
Just curious! Would this type of saw work with a diamond blade?
No experience of using this type of saw for this but I have just been given an old DeWalt chop saw and was thinking of trying anything that might cut steel upto about 25mm.
I have used my Makita angle grinder with a thin metal cutting blade for cutting 10mm steel but to date I haven't needed to got thicker but as I now have the DeWalt it might be pushed into service...
|Neil Wyatt||30/05/2019 22:32:04|
16944 forum posts
Their website is clear 'Cuts mild steel, max 6mm thickness'.
807 forum posts
I bought the Lidl metal cop saw, very reasonable price and cuts steel like butter, no regrets and you can experiment with different specs of disc to fine tune for what you want you want to cut.
|Old Crock||30/05/2019 23:20:46|
|24 forum posts|
A couple of weeks back I did a favour for a local garage. Asked to clean up the very abused end of a 60mm solid steel bar I cut it off on my band saw. It took all of two or three minutes and of course it has auto stop when the cut is complete so doesn't need your attention all the time. Also no grit or sparks!
It also cuts square and clean so almost no need for facing the ends unless it's critical but I did anyway.
My band saw is one of the very common 350watt type sold by Warco, Chester, Clarke and many others. Mine happens to be badged Draper. It will cut up to 114mm round and 100x150 rectangular bar.
These saws are so common that they regularly come up second hand. There is an Axminster one on eBay now at £150 with two days to go.
It is also my parting off tool of choice.
|larry phelan 1||31/05/2019 11:43:06|
|556 forum posts|
For cutting 60mm round you need a proper bandsaw, full stop !
Chop saws, miter saws ect are intended to cut wood and such like NOT STEEL.
Bought a cheap Chinese saw years ago ,have cut everything with it, including 6x4 RSJ AND 4" Round with no problems.
As they say "Horses for courses"
|5005 forum posts|
Beware of tools that do miracles for tiny money! Although a chop saw can cut metal, they're not ideal. If you need to cut thick metal all day, every day then you need to spend serious dosh on an industrial machine. My local metal emporia's band-saw is a beast. It must weigh well over a ton and, judging from the size, I guess the motor is 3 or 4 HP continuous.
Chop saws are powerful, your example 2000W, which means they can cut quickly. But, you can't expect much of a saw costing only £150. The motor has brushes that may not last more than a few hours run time, and it will get hot quickly. Used continually to cut steel, the saw wouldn't last long. Either the brushes would wear out or - more likely - the windings would overheat and melt the insulation. I suspect the blades might wear quickly too, using them on metal is a bit of a bodge.
Might still be a good choice for a workshop though. They cut quickly, don't take up much space, and are cheap to replace. Might do a good job for a long time in a hobby workshop where it wasn't pushed too hard. I can also imagine a professional usefully thrashing them as disposable saws; depending on the job it might be cheaper or more convenient than buying a saw built to last.
How much metal are you planning to cut? As a light hobbyist I might cut 60mm bar about once a month, usually smaller diameters, and brass and Ali more than steel. It's not unusual to have a week where I don't power saw metal at all. Meanwhile, a professional operation might be producing steel swarf by the ton per day. A chop saw is a reasonable bet if you're like me, but not if you're into a lot of heavy cutting.
|345 forum posts|
Horizontal bandsaw first and foremost, followed by a good old donkey saw, thence onto chop or evolution saws.
I only use my evolution for non ferrous as steel can harden and destroy a blade in the blink of an eye.
As mentioned think about what your going to be cutting regularly , dont buy big for one off jobs.
807 forum posts
My Aldi chop saw was bought with two purposes, I don’t cut metal on an industrial scale so for occasional use perfectly adequate and also space in my workshop is always at a premium so the chop saw easy to stow away. I was tempted to buy a Fermi bandsaw, size wise I could have accommodated it but price was a problem, would have serious problem with scrutiny by other half. My chop saw uses proper metal cutting discs as against the carbide toothed versions that look as though they should only cut wood. With the correct discs the cut finish is very good and quick, only downside is sparks, best used outside otherwise the workshop is at risk of catching fire, cutting outside is not a problem, even in winter there are dry days that you can use. Wouldn’t be without it now, one of the best buys that I made. Dave W
807 forum posts
Correction to my previous post, my chop saw is Lidl not Aldi, always get mixed up with those two.
|Speedy Builder5||31/05/2019 14:51:22|
|1865 forum posts|
Ian, like others have said, that Mitre saw will cut metal, but don't expect it to cut through many 1" bars. It is a wood machine with "Limited" applications for steel. I have had one for building a wooden garage and it was excellent, cut through a few bits of studding etc, but sold it once the garage was finished as it was superfluous to my requirements.
You really need a bandsaw if you are going to do some serious metal cutting. Also, I have a RAGE "fixed" chop saw which doesn't like aluminium as it tends to clog up a bit (Haven't tried a drop of coolant though.) That is seriously challenged on stuff like 1" round steel.
|448 forum posts|
I'm also for a bandsaw. I have a Nebes, similar to a Femi...true it's a bit expensive, but, at the time I bought it I needed three benches, two for the lathe and mill and another as a workbench. The cost of the benches if had to buy them or ask a company to make them for more would have been much more than the cost of the bandsaw, combi tig plasma welder and the material form making them.
|Neil Wyatt||31/05/2019 15:00:36|
16944 forum posts
Rage saws are (1) not cheap and (2) specifically have TCT tipped blades designed for cutting metal - they do specific mild steel and stainless steel baldes.
Llike a chainsaw blade they have a depth control contour to stop the blade biting off more than it can chew.
The 6mm thickness limitation is, I assume, because the blade could start to clog with chips.
|2384 forum posts|
One of the metal suppliers I used some years ago had one of those slow speed chop saws (not abrasive) and used it for all the smaller stuff. Worked really well and a tiny footprint compared to a horizontal bandsaw. I just wish they were cheaper.
|Iain Downs||31/05/2019 16:20:41|
|537 forum posts|
Thanks for all your comments. A wide range of views!
I am a somewhat infrequent hobbiest, getting out to the shed no more than 4 or 5 hours a week, normally. So I might cut steel once a week and I would cut big steel once a month or less.
I've discovered (as samsaranda has) that the broken chop saw came from Lidl and not Aldi - an easy mistake to make!
I've found the service department for lidl and an email address, so first I will try and get the item repaired or replaced before investing in a replacement.
Having said that...
Firstly, my shed is small and full. The cut off saws work well because they are small. I'm not sure that I could fit a bandsaw on a stand in. In fact even the rage 255SMS (which started this) is probably a bit on the big side.
Secondly, I just don't have the budget. the cost of a Bandsaw would require negotiation with SWMBO and I don't think that would go well. Of the options I've found I would probably most like the Femi SN105XL, which is the priciest of my options (of course). The AMA1140 from Amadeal is also attractive (having nearly twice the power).
The cheapest I've found is the H80 from Chester at £187.
In terms of my original question, I think I would summarise it as follows:-
The Rage saws will cut solid metal (not stainless I gather). They are known to cut significantly larger sizes than are specified and to do it reasonably well. The blade will wear quicker of course and it's unlikely to be a happy bunny if you cut 4 inch solid section day in day out.
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