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Thread: best cheapest way to cut steel tube/rhs/etc

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    Unregistered User Permit Roadsailing's Avatar
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    best cheapest way to cut steel tube/rhs/etc

    Good afternoon gentlemen and lady.

    I've been cutting up exhaust tube and other kinds of other shape hollowed out metal with my abrasive dropsaw, which is great if you like cutting things somewhat accurately, making lots of sparks, covering everything with metal dust and then having to dress every end before welding it to the other end.

    I don't like doing any of that stuff, so I want a coldsaw, but they are too expensive ($1300 plus $230 for a stand from hare and forbes) so now I'm looking at bandsaws which start at $380 from the same place.

    I need to cut up to 4 inch tube at various angles (but not far off 90 degrees for lobster bends etc) with fairly good accuracy.

    Do bandsaws chew through... bands at a rapid rate? the coldsaws i've used at previous work places always seemed to have broken blades from people using them wrong. this thing is probably going to be fairly idiot resistant for when people who aren;t me use it.

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    Registered User Potsy's Avatar
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    Cheap Chinese bandsaw with a bi-metal blade will do exactly what you want.
    Don't put too much pressure on the blade and lubricate it whilst it cuts.
    Hare and Forbes are having a sale in 2 weeks time so should get a new one under $400.
    HTH.

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    I've got a cold saw , is a heap better than a friction saw all round , cuts RHS much better than round though...
    I would like to get a band saw as they cut a far greater size of tube for the same physical size of machine , my cold saw cuts 100 x 100 at 90 degrees and a horizontal band saw that fits in the same hole in my workshop will cut 200 x 100 on 45 degrees.
    cold saw blades are expensive and have to be sharpened a lot , especially if you do stainless tube. I think I paid $160 for my last cold saw blade and they cost me $25 to get resharpened. A bandsaw blade , to fit the machine I am looking at is about $60 but I reckon I would get more than twice the use from one, also if your doing something on the weekend , you just bang a new one on rather than having to wait for a blade to be sharpened...I do have spare blades for my cold saw though.
    I used a band saw at work for a number of years and found it to be very reliable and easy to use as long as it gets a small amount of maintenance and the blades are bedded in properly. Good quality blades are a must though.
    All cuts have to be deburred on any saw , cold saw and bandsaw cuts are much better than friction saws and the burr stays on the end you cut off, rather than the end you want to cut next.

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    Unregistered User Permit Roadsailing's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Potsy View Post
    Hare and Forbes are having a sale in 2 weeks time so should get a new one under $400.
    which model? the cheapest one they had was 380, would like to get a better one for the same price.

    Quote Originally Posted by gerry View Post
    I've got a cold saw , is a heap better than a friction saw all round , cuts RHS much better than round though...
    I would like to get a band saw as they cut a far greater size of tube for the same physical size of machine , my cold saw cuts 100 x 100 at 90 degrees and a horizontal band saw that fits in the same hole in my workshop will cut 200 x 100 on 45 degrees.
    cold saw blades are expensive and have to be sharpened a lot , especially if you do stainless tube. I think I paid $160 for my last cold saw blade and they cost me $25 to get resharpened. A bandsaw blade , to fit the machine I am looking at is about $60 but I reckon I would get more than twice the use from one, also if your doing something on the weekend , you just bang a new one on rather than having to wait for a blade to be sharpened...I do have spare blades for my cold saw though.
    I used a band saw at work for a number of years and found it to be very reliable and easy to use as long as it gets a small amount of maintenance and the blades are bedded in properly. Good quality blades are a must though.
    All cuts have to be deburred on any saw , cold saw and bandsaw cuts are much better than friction saws and the burr stays on the end you cut off, rather than the end you want to cut next.
    cheers gerry, I don't mind deburring, but it will be much easier running a deburring tool (or even a die grinder if necessary) around it than trying to grind off hard blue metal with a shit linisher like I am currently.
    Last edited by Roadsailing; 06-03-15 at 08:23 PM.

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    Band saws are great but found them hard to hold/clamp bends. I've been contemplating a dry cut saw.looks like an abrasive saw but uses a carbide tipped blade. Around 600 or so.

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    Unregistered User Permit Roadsailing's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by garvice View Post
    Band saws are great but found them hard to hold/clamp bends. I've been contemplating a dry cut saw.looks like an abrasive saw but uses a carbide tipped blade. Around 600 or so.
    I can't hold bends in my dropsaw anyway so no loss there. a flat work surface with appropriate clamps would help out i would imagine.

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    Do yourself a favour and buy a multi tool linisher....I don't know how I lived without one now.

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    Registered User Potsy's Avatar
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    Looks like the BS-4A is $365 on sale.

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    Try and get one with the lubricating pump system if you can. Very handy.

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    Unregistered User Permit Roadsailing's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gerry View Post
    Do yourself a favour and buy a multi tool linisher....I don't know how I lived without one now.
    one of these?

    http://www.multitoolaustralia.com/about.html

    I have one of these



    which is pretty much the same thing and it's giving me the balls. loves ripping things out of your hands and throwing it across the room, even a big 3 phase linisher (or using the sanding disc like I think you mean) isn't as good as not having to dress the tube you have just cut.
    Last edited by Roadsailing; 06-03-15 at 08:39 PM.

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    If you can stretch to $60,000 you can get a tube laser from China.

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    Unregistered User Permit Roadsailing's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Don Mega View Post
    If you can stretch to $60,000 you can get a tube laser from China.
    yeah nah not really.

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    yeah , that one is the multi tool i've got , don't have a problem with it launching stuff around the workshop though... can you piss the guard off yours and rotate the arm around so its the same as the multi tool? might help you a bit, also get good quality belts , they make a huge difference....zirconia are the ones I use and they remove material really well and last for ages

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    Unregistered User Permit Roadsailing's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gerry View Post
    yeah , that one is the multi tool i've got , don't have a problem with it launching stuff around the workshop though... can you piss the guard off yours and rotate the arm around so its the same as the multi tool? might help you a bit, also get good quality belts , they make a huge difference....zirconia are the ones I use and they remove material really well and last for ages
    can't rotate the arm, will look at one though as I like the wheel being accessible like it isn't on the ryobi so may look at one later. a good belt in this thing would make it better, or at least a new mediocre one.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Roadsailing View Post
    I can't hold bends in my dropsaw anyway so no loss there. a flat work surface with appropriate clamps would help out i would imagine.
    Need something like this, inserts for the clamps to hold the round tube

    Jaguar XJR, Freelander 2 HSE, Jaguar XKR

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    how do those tube clamps hold a bent tube ?

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    Unregistered User Permit Roadsailing's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Don Mega View Post
    how do those tube clamps hold a bent tube ?
    yeah i'm not seeing it either, reckon the way to cut bends is on a vertical bandsaw with some kind of slider on it one clamps the bend to. half the reason I want to cut better is to allow me to do lobster bends, which doesn't require any bends. although bends don;t cost much more than straight tube anyway...

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    Those bandsaws are fucking useless for cutting bent tube and if the distance between the two clamps is wide it doesn't cut them straight.
    I had big plans for mine but it just sits there rusting away now.
    I did cut my patio tube with it which it did that well.

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    Best, most painless way I've found, is to make something like this, avoids cheated bends from not cutting square and stuff-ups chasing your tail on the linisher -

    http://www.icengineworks.com/#!onlin...egory=11578472

    I've got a few different types of "mandrel" to suit various centreline radius bends plus a couple, like the one shown, for donuts, usually made out of nylon or scrap alloy bar.

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    Unregistered User Permit Roadsailing's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gxxr View Post
    Best, most painless way I've found, is to make something like this, avoids cheated bends from not cutting square and stuff-ups chasing your tail on the linisher -

    http://www.icengineworks.com/#!onlin...egory=11578472

    I've got a few different types of "mandrel" to suit various centreline radius bends plus a couple, like the one shown, for donuts, usually made out of nylon or scrap alloy bar.
    359 real dollars? wow. think ima order a bandsaw, might go back to hare and forbes to have a look. tempted to buy the cheapest one but it;s probably a better idea to buy the second cheapest one.

  21. #21
    Gas Turbine enthusiast da9jeff's Avatar
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    Fuck those ryobi linishers look rubbish, spend the cash on a proper multi tool, safer and they actually work.

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    Unregistered User Permit Roadsailing's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by da9jeff View Post
    Fuck those ryobi linishers look rubbish, spend the cash on a proper multi tool, safer and they actually work.
    Yeah i figured they would be OK as the work section of the belt was on the pull side of the drive wheel but they are pretty shit. I like the bottom side of the multi tool style too, will try to obtain one.
    Last edited by Roadsailing; 07-03-15 at 06:14 PM.

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    Bunnings sell them....

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    Flogger of dead horses kneelo's Avatar
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    I've got the hare and forbes BS-7L bandsaw... its fair bit more expensive than what your looking at (got mine for just under a grand on sale) but has been great so far. Not sure if its because of the coolant pump but blades last ages. I'm on my 3rd blade in more than 2 years and at least one of those was just a low spec carbon blade. I use it to cut a lot of tube as well as solids up to about 100mm. Easily one of the best tools you by if you do a reasonable amount of cutting.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Roadsailing View Post
    359 real dollars? wow. think ima order a bandsaw, might go back to hare and forbes to have a look. tempted to buy the cheapest one but it;s probably a better idea to buy the second cheapest one.
    Bit rich eh! This was made from bits of scrap, suits one of the h&f hafco bandsaws, can't remember the model, when used in vertical mode, the lower edge locates on the little tin table they come with. Tube just needs a de-burr and degrease and no other fart arseing around prior to weld. I use the bigger saw when doing tubing bends (rip fence needed) up to 2.5" diameter and 4" radius, but suppose could make up another larger U form for larger stuff, normally use the 9" cutter freehand on larger tube and use the disc linisher to rectify the cut after.

    I'd probably remove half the guards on the cheap hafcos, if you go that way, as they'll vibrate off anyhow and check the switch adjustment too. Rule of thumb with a bandsaw, 3 teeth in the cut. Somebody mentioned the chows have copied a radius master a little while back, ripping off yet another local manufacturer, if you're looking at a linisher.


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    So I bought a tungsten carbide toothed metal cut off saw today.

    some taiwan made thing but it's fair awesome quality deck, really nice casting and hinge stability, big fuckoff motor etc. cuts through 3 and 5mm wall rhs like butter, no burrs, no slanting cuts like abrasive wheels.

    whats the general Do's and Donts with it?
    can I cut stainless? (Say 2-3mm thick)
    can I cut the odd bit of aluminium?

    AGP brand from tradetools. Was $150 cheaper than the China made makita which is only a 12in saw and after using on last week they're maxed out on 75mm rhs and I want to cut 100mm. Feels sturdier than the makita and they said they've had none back at all.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bosshoggett View Post
    If your planing to drive this on the road and enjoy it, id suggest a second opinion, someone with a history in Australian Rally or Fink River . If your just playing dyno comps. Then ok

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    Registered User dnegative's Avatar
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    Local metal shop has one and only cuts aluminum with it;
    Guessing you probably trash the blade when it bites, grabs and bucks?
    Quote Originally Posted by cracka View Post
    Fuck I'm retarded

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    Registered User neil_se's Avatar
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    That looks pretty good Cracka, have you tried it with 100mm SHS yet? That's about the max we use in my business and I had considered getting a bandsaw but the cutting speed just looks so slow. We just use a Makita sliding compound for aluminium.
    Last edited by neil_se; 14-06-16 at 08:53 PM.

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    I'll be doing some decently thick 100/101.6mm mild steel in a week or three once I start on the new welding bench. See how it goes, can definitely fit it though as I put a bit in there to see depth

    finished up some little shit today and the cuts are nothing short of brilliant. You spend longer sharpie and scribe to mark cuts, but the way they slot together is beautiful and no time fucking about deburring (which is why I cracked the shits and went hunting for a new saw). Will see if I fuck up and junk a blade before I get too chuffed with it.
    Quote Originally Posted by Bosshoggett View Post
    If your planing to drive this on the road and enjoy it, id suggest a second opinion, someone with a history in Australian Rally or Fink River . If your just playing dyno comps. Then ok

  30. #30
    Unregistered User Permit Roadsailing's Avatar
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    forgot about this thread, ended up not buying anything and don't do it often enough to need a proper thing anymore, was using a cheap bandsaw for a while but it was shit, the blade would wander and then jump off the wheels when I tightened it enough to not wander. when the cut worked it was good.

    Cracka's thing looks the business, wasn't sure how they would go compared to a (slow) cold saw, but after seeing one not get immediately broken in finnegan's garage I want one too https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uthZq9fDCOU

    doesn't look like a solution for cutting bends on the bend but that is easy enough with a hose clamp, a texta and a thin blade on a 100 - 125mm angle grinder.

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