Category Archives for "DIY Projects"

How To Cut Metal Pipe

The metal pipes that you bought might come in the shapes and sizes that don’t meet your requirements. It is easy to fix this problem, though. All you need is to cut them to the length that you need. There are several methods that you can use to cut these metal pipes. Different methods and different tools are chosen depending on different types of pipes that you want to cut.

In case you need to cut your metal pipes, follow these guides below. I will present you the most common methods on cutting the most common types of metal pipes- including copper pipes and steel pipes.

Before You Start:

Regardless of which method you choose or which type of metal you are cutting, you need to follow these safety precautions to make sure you can stay safe while cutting your metal pipe:

  • When you cut through metal pipes, the chance is high that sparks will be formed. These sparks can get into your skin or become a huge fire hazard. To protect yourself from these sparks, you need to wear your personal protective equipment including your protective gloves and your goggles.
  • Wear suitable clothes. Wear a jacket with the shade of 7 to 9. Avoid wearing clothes which are made from natural fibers. These materials are known to catch fire quickly.
  • In addition, you should work in a room with good air ventilation or outside. Remove anything which is flammable within your working range.
  • Finally, if you decide to use powered tool or torches, make sure that you have prior training and know well on how to operate these machines.
  • Tools you need for the project including the cutting tool, the measuring tape, and the marker pen.

Which Tools You Can Use To Cut Metal Pipe

​In order to cut metal pipe, you would need to use different tools depending on the diameter of the pipe that you want to cut.

  • For cutting a pipe with the diameter from 2 to 12 inches, you can use a standard tubing cutter. This is one of the most basic tools which are suitable if you have limited working station.
  • In case you have metal pipes with the diameter from 0.25 inches to 12 inches, you can use a handsaw or power saw. These tools are suitable for cutting pipes in both home setting and worksite. You can go for the hacksaw or the reciprocating pipe saw. They are both lightweight and easy to use. Just make sure you follow all of the precaution steps.
  • For cutting thick metal pipes with the diameter from 4 inches to 80 inches, you can use torches. These tools are powerful and very effective. However, they are among the most dangerous tools. Contractors and professional workers enjoy using torches to cut metal pipes. Still, if you use these tools at home, make sure you have the proper training and knowledge. Some torches like the plasma torch can be used to cut metal pipes which are 0.25 inch in diameter or even thinner.

How To Cut Copper Pipes

Here are the recommended steps on cutting copper pipes with a copper pipe cutter.

Step 1: Use the measuring tape to measure the length that you need to cut. Then mark the spot you want to cut with the marker.

Step 2: Place the copper pipe on a stable table. Make sure that the point and the part that you want to cut are over the table.

Step 3: Get the copper tubing cutter ready. Turn the bottom wheel in the counterclockwise direction to open the cutter.

Step 4: Then direct the copper pipe cutter on the spot that you want to cut. Afterwards, you need to tighten the cutter. Just rotate the wheel in the clockwise direction until the blade of the cutter scores the pipe.

Step 5: Rotate the cutter around the copper pipe for several times, ideally from 3 to 4 times.

Step 6: Tighten the cutter a little bit more by turning the bottom a half a turn in the clockwise direction.

Step 7: Repeat step 5

Step 8: Continue to tighten the copper pipe cutter and then rotate the cutter on the pipe 3 to 4 times until the copper pipe is finally cut.

How To Cut Steel Pipes

There are several tools you can use to cut steel pipes including the steel pipe cutter tool, the hacksaw or the reciprocating saw.

Here are the recommended steps on cutting copper pipes:

Step 1: Use the measuring tape to measure the length that you need to cut. Then mark the spot you want to cut with the marker.

Step 2: Place the steel pipe on a stable table. Make sure that the point and the part that you want to cut are over the table. Clamp the pipe so that it can stay secure when you cut it.

Step 3:

  • How to cut steel pipes with a steel pipe cutter: The step on cutting steel pipe with a steel pipe cutter is similar to the way you use the copper pipe cutter. You need to open the cutter and point the blade of the cutter on the spot of the pipe that you want to cut. Then tighten the cutter and rotate it for several times. Continue these steps until you finally cut through the steel pipes.
  • How to cut steel pipes with a hacksaw: Place the blade of the hacksaw on top of the pipe. The blade should be on the marked spot as well. Swing the hacksaw back and forth. Press slightly on the hacksaw. Continue to press and swing until the hacksaw can finally cut through the steel pipe.
  • How to cut steel pipes with a jigsaw: This is similar to how you cut steel pipes with a hacksaw. The main difference here is instead of starting cutting on top of the steel pipes, you need to start from the side. Apply the swing motion with a light pressure and steady speed until you can cut through these steel pipes.

How To Use Torches

There are 2 main types of torches which you can use to cut metal pipes including the plasma torches and the oxy-acetylene torches.

  • The plasma torch is more suitable for cutting metal pipes with thin diameters. The reason is that the plasma torch will not wrap these pipes like the oxy-acetylene torch would do.
  • The oxy-acetylene is only used when you need to cut thick steel pipe.
  • Keep in mind that stainless steel pipes, aluminum pipes, and alloy pipes can’t be cut with a torch.

The steps of using the plasma torch and the oxy-acetylene torch are quite the same.

Here is the guide on cutting metal pipes with an oxy-acetylene torch:

Step 1: Choose a place with good air ventilation and free of flammable objects.

Step 2: Measure the metal pipe with the measuring tape and mark where you want to cut with a marker.

Step 3: Open the oxygen bottle and slightly open your acetylene bottle.

Step 4: Choose the 5 to 7 psi setting for your acetylene and about 40 to 50 psi for your oxygen.

Step 5: Turn both of the valves of oxygen and acetylene on.

Step 6: When there is a flame coming out, point that flame on the point of the cutting pipes. Keep the flame on to pre-heat the metal pipes.

Step 7: Then point the flame on the side of the metal pipes, press the lever and guide the torch around the marked spot. It is better if you go slowly instead of quickly. In addition, remember to use the middle of the flame to cut through these metal pipes instead of using the tip.

Step 8: When the metal pipe is finally cut, turn off the valve.

Step 9: Wait for the cut metal pipes to cool down. You can use water to cool them down.

Here are some of the most common and effective ways you can use to cut the most used metal pipes including steel pipes and copper pipes. When you pick up the right tools, you would be able to cut through metal pipes easily. Remember all of these safety precautions and you will finish your task effectively and safely.

How To Cut Steel Of Different Thicknesses

Steel is one of the most common forms of material you often have to deal with. Nevertheless, it is not easy at all to learn how to cut steel. You need to determine the thickness of a piece of steel and decide on which tools you are going to use to cut it. You have a wide range to choose from to cut steel, ranging from compound snips, an angle grinder, a hacksaw and nibbler to power saw and torches.

Different tools will require different techniques and methods. Scroll down to read more about how to cut steel in the easiest and most effectively.

First, let’s get to know more about the thickness of steal

As you may already know, steal comes in different forms and thickness. Different thicknesses of steal will determine different tools that you are going to use to cut steel. Hence, knowing about this factor of the steal you are working with is very important.

The thickness of steal is also known as gauge. Each piece of steal comes with a gauge number. The lower the number is, the thicker the steel.

Some forms of thin steel include sheet metals while thicker steels are in form of pipes, plates as well as tubes.

  • To cut thick steel, you need to use power saw or torches.
  • You can also use power saw and torches to cut thin steel but it will be kind of unnecessary. Unless you have to deal with a huge amount of steel, power saw and torches will be efficient.
  • Alternatively, you can use a pair of compound snips or a nibbler to cut thin steel. Other choices of tools including an angle grinder or a hacksaw.
  • If you want to cut a thin but rough piece of steel, go for an angle grinder which is fitted with a metal cutoff wheel.
  • For cutting curves, you can use a pair of left cut snips, right cut snips and a bench shear.

Before you cut steel

There are a lot of things that you need to do before you proceed to cut steel with your choice of suitable tool.

  • First, make sure you wear all of the personal safety equipment including your goggles, ear protection and your gloves. In case you work with torches, this step is even more important. You need to wear gloves and goggles with the shades ranging from #7 to #9. Avoid wearing clothes which can be inflamed quickly.
  • In addition, choose a clean working station which is free of debris and far away from anything which is inflammable. Also it is ideal to work in a breathable or ventilated room.
  • When you have to work with powered tools such as the grinder and the torches, you need to read the instructions on the manual books carefully. These instructions will guide you on how to use the tools, which blades you should use to cut steel and how to work with them in the safest way.
  • If you use saw to cut steel, make sure that the blades are sharp. Sharp blade assists a more efficient and safer task.
  • Measure the steel and draw the line on the place that you want to cut for your project.

How to cut thin steel

​1. With A Pair of Compound Snips:

​This tool is suitable to cut a piece of steel with the gauge of 24 or more. The tool is also known as aviation snips or tin snips.

It is easy to work with this tool as it functions in the same way as an ordinary pair of scissors. All you need to do is to get hold of the scissors and follow the cut line cutting in a steady pace.

​Here are some benefits of using a pair of compound snips:

  • It is suitable if you want to have a small and short cuts on the piece of steel or sheet metal.
  • This tool is light and compact, which you can bring around easily.
  • It can be used to cut other things such as plastic.
  • Most importantly, there are 3 types of snips for you to choose from. The straight snips are for cutting straight lines. The right cut snips are for cutting clockwise curve while the left cut snips are for cutting counter clockwise curve.

2. With A Nibbler:

​A pair of compound snips might be suitable if you want to cut small cuts on thin steel and sheet metal. If you want to have longer cuts, use nibbler. There are several types of nibbler that you can use on the market including the hand operated one, the drill powered one as well as the electric and pneumatic.

With these types of nibbler, all you need to do is turn the tool on (if necessary) and guide the nibbler along the line you have drawn on the piece of the steel.

Here are some benefits of using a nibbler:

  • A nibbler is easy to handle. It helps to make clean and quick cuts without damaging the sheet metal and causing any noise.
  • There is no spark caused by the nibbler when you cut thin steel with it.
  • A nibbler can be used to cut steel with a wide range of gauge. It can cut medium thick steel of up to 14 of gauge.

​While cutting with a nibbler has so many benefits, it also leaves a very messy working station behind. Every time the nibbler makes a cut onto the steel, it takes out a small piece of steel. Remember to clean these pieces right away. These pieces are really sharp and could cause damages to you as well as other people.

​3. With A Hacksaw

​A hacksaw is also a very effective way if you want to cut shallow and small cuts on steel. It is very easy to handle this tool as well. Just throw in some sawing motions onto the line you want to cut the steel into and your job is done.

​4. With An Angler Grinder

​Another tool you can use to cut thin pieces of steel is an angle grinder. This handheld power tool comes with a wide range of attachments. However, for cutting steel, you should use the metal cutoff wheel with this tool.

Attach the suitable blade on the grinder. Turn the machine on and slowly guide it onto the steel and cut the drawn line in a steady and slow pace.

​Here are some benefits of using an angler grinder:

  • This tool is quick and capable of dealing with touch pieces of steel.
  • It is also very efficient, helping you to cut a huge amount of steel in a short amount of time.

​The downside of using this tool is that it doesn’t cut on steel as accurately as when you use other tools. Not to mention that it is quite noisy as well.

​5. With A Bench Shear

​You can use this tool to cut into steel like when you use an office paper cutter. Place the sheet of steel under the blade of the bench shear and line the blade so that it is on the drawn line. Then slowly pull the handle down and cut through the sheet of metal.

​Here are some benefits of using a bench shear:

  • This tool works well with sheet metal of all thicknesses.
  • There are 2 types of bench shear to choose from including straight shears and throatless shears. The former helps you to cut straight lines while the latter allows you to cut steel into curves.

​How to cut thick steel

​1. With A Chop Saw

​In order to cut thick steel, you would need a tool which is made for heavy duty tasks such as the chop saw.

Turn on the chop saw and move the blade toward the drawn line for it to cut. Follow a steady and smooth pace as well.

After the steel is cut, the cut pieces would be really hot. Therefore, you need to handle the freshly cut pieces with a lot of cautions.

Here are some benefits of using a chop saw:

  • It is one of the circular saws which are easiest for you to use.
  • This tool allows you to have accurate square cuts on steel.
  • In case you are a DIY hobbyist, you will see that using a shop saw is more efficient in term of economic sense in comparison with other types of saw such as horizontal saw and cold saw. Still, it will not be as accurate as these tools.

​2. With A Horizontal Band Saw

​Band saw is used to cut pieces of steel which are thicker than the steel you cut with a chop saw. Before cutting, you need to make sure that the blade you are going to use is the metal cutting blade. There are 3 options of blade tooth patterns for you to choose from including the raker, the wave and the straight. The raker tooth pattern is for cutting thick steel while the wave pattern is for small and light duty project.

When you choose the right blade with the right tooth pattern, turn the band saw on. Then put the piece of steel toward the blade and let it cut.

In the end, if there are some rough edges on the outer sides of the cut pieces of steel, you can grind them for much smoother cuts.

Here are some benefits of using a band saw:

  • You can work with a great amount of steel of different sizes with this tool.
  • It provides accurate cuts and is quite easy to use.

3. With A Cold Saw

​Here are some benefits of using a cold saw:

  • Among chop saw, horizontal band saw and cold saw, this type of saw allows you to have the most accurate cuts. Nevertheless, a cold saw’s capacity is less than of a band saw.

​Two main drawbacks of using a cold saw are that it is quite expensive and it is not really suitable and practical for a home setting.

4. With A Torch

​There are 2 types of torches that you can use to cut really thick pieces of steel. These torches are plasma torch and oxy-acetylene torch.

  • A plasma torch for thinner pieces of steel while the oxy-acetylene torch is for thicker pieces of steel. The former is used to cut a piece of less than 1 inch in width while the latter an even cut to a piece of around 48 inches in length.
  • Both of these torches use thermal power to cut through pieces of metal. They results in very clean and nice cuts in a short amount of time, with little effort that you have to put into the cutting process.
  • The plasma torch will not wrap thin metal but the oxy-acetylene torch will do so.
  • You can use plasma torch for many types of materials. On the other hand, oxy-acetylene torch is for cutting steel only.

​Here are the steps on cutting steel with a torch:

​Step 1: Locate the piece of steel on the working station and secure it.

Step 2: Connect the torch with the power tank using the torch’s line. Secure the vales on the torch so that it is shut tight. On the other hand, the valves on the tank should be loosening so that the torch’s line is pressurizes for the job.

Step 3: Then hold the striker of the torch with one hand and the wire handle with the other hand. If you squeeze on the handle firmly enough, it will ignite fire.

Step 4: Adjust the valves on the torch until you see a yellowish white flame.

Step 5: Then bring the flame to the piece of steel and follow the drawn line to cut the steel into the shape that you want. You need to work with the center part of the flame instead of the tip.

Step 6: After the cut is done, wait for the pieces of cut to cool down before you touch them.

In general, before cutting steal, you need to decide which tool you are going to use to cut it depending on the thickness of the steel. You can use a pair of compound snips or a nibbler as well as power saw and torches to cut thin steel. On the other hand, you can use power saw and torches for cutting thick steel. Measure the piece of steel and mark the line before cutting. And remember to clean your working station after you cut steel to prevent the small pieces of steel from hurting you and other people.

I hope that with all of the tips above, you would be able to pick up the right tools for your project and can cut steel effectively. After all, it is not so hard to deal with steel as long as you can choose the right tools and keep in mind all of the safety precautions.

How To Cut Shingles

Shingles are responsible for keeping your inclined rooftop from the impacts of the snow, hail or rain. They also bring a very interesting and pretty look for the top of your house. You can buy shingles from any supply store that are cut into smaller pieces for you to lay on the rooftop. Alternatively, you can cut shingles by yourself.

It is not hard at all to learn how to cut shingles. Read on and I will show you the steps to cut shingles and the right tools for this job.

1. To Cut Three Tab Asphalt Shingles

Three tab asphalt shingles are among the most common and popular materials for rooftop in America. They are cheap and very durable, requiring less maintenance over the years.

Three tab asphalt shingles are also very easy to handle, cut and install. In order to cut these materials, all you need to have is a utility knife and a customized working station.

The best blade that you should use with the utility knife is the fixed blade. Choose the one that you feel comfortable holding while allowing you to have a convenient angle for cutting as well. Besides that, you need to pay attention to the types of fixed blades- which are hook blade and straight blade. The straight blade is for cutting on the front face of the shingles and the hook blade is for cutting on the back of the shingles.

No matter which type of blade you have in hand, make sure it is as sharp as possible.

Here are a few reasons why you need to make a unique working station for cutting three tab asphalt shingles:

  • When you cut the three tab asphalt shingles with utility knife, the knife might cause damage to the area underneath the layer shingles.
  • In addition, a working station will help to secure the shingles so that you will have a more stable cut. Also keep in mind that you might need to apply several cuts for the knife to cut through shingles completely. Hence, securing the piece of shingles onto the working station will ensure you can apply cuts on the same place over and over again.

How to make a little working station for you to cut three tab asphalt shingles:

  • Prepare two strips of plywood, the ones that you don’t mind to see scratches on. One strip is wider, about twice as wide, than the other.
  • Place the narrow strip of wood on top of the wider one. They should be parallel so that you have a long and straight line in the middle for cutting.
  • Drill various holes on one side of these strips and then form some hinges from plastic cable ties. You now have a small working station for cutting three tab asphalt shingles.

Steps by steps on how to cut three tab asphalt shingles:

Step 1: First, draw on the piece of shingles the line that you want to cut shingles into.

Step 2: Place the layer of shingles upside down if you use a straight blade. On the other hand, if you cut the shingles with the hook blade, place the piece of shingle with its face up. Then place it in between these two pieces of plywood. Make sure that the drawn line aligns with the outer edge of the upper piece of plywood.

Step 3: Hold the utility knife against the edge of the upper piece of wood and use this edge as the guide line for you to cut the shingles.

Step 4: Press on the utility knife so that the blade can cut onto the shingles. Repeat the step so that it can cut through this piece.

2. To Cut Architectural Or Laminate Shingles

Architectural shingles are thicker and hence, hard to deal with in comparison with the three tab asphalt shingles. In order to cut this type of shingles, you can use a pair of snips.

Snips are also known as aviation snips or tint snips, which are useful for cutting tin metal sheets. Since, the blade of this tool will be sharp enough to cut through shingles. In addition, it has a long pair of handles, allowing you to have a great amount of leverage for cutting tough shingles as well.

Not to mention that there are 3 types of tin snips for your consideration. The straight snips are used for cutting straight lines. Moreover, there are left tin snips and right tin snips for cutting curves in both directions.

Here are the steps on cutting shingles with tin snips:

Step 1: Lay the layer of shingles on a flat surface.

Step 2: Draw on the layer of the shingles the line you want to cut them into.

Step 3: Bring the layer under the blade of the tin snips and cut like when you use an ordinary pair of paper scissors.

3. To Cut All Types Of Shears

If you often have to work with a wide range of shingles of different thickness and hardness, go for shears. A pair of shears is also effective if you have to cut a huge amount of shingles in the shortest amount of time. You can also cut straight lines, square cuts and circles in shingles using this tool.

Using this tool is just like using other tools to cut shingles. First, you need to draw the line that you want to cut the shingles onto the surface. Then place this layer under the blade of the shears and proceed to cut in a steady pace.

These are some of the most popular and effective way you can apply to cut shingles. Overall, you can use a utility knife, tin snips and special shears to cut shingles. It doesn’t need a complicated tool in order to work with this piece of material. With practice and effort, you would be able to cut shingles quickly and efficiently.

How To Cut Plexiglass

Plexiglass is also known as acrylic glass. It is a form of hard plastic showing in clear color. Many people prefer using Plexiglass because it is tougher and more durable than ordinary glass. It is also very easy to work with, using simple and readily available woodworking tools. While it is a better choice in comparison with glass in term of durability, it is also prone to being scratched, splintered or chipped. Hence, before working with Plexiglass, there are a lot of things that you need to know in order to handle the material and cut it nicely.

If you want to know how to cut Plexiglass, this article below will show you some of the most common ways along with useful tips for the project.

Continue reading

How To Cut Plastic Lattice

Lattice is a beautiful form of design you can use to decorate your house. Many people also use lattice panels to decorate their garden and use them as fences as well. The most common materials which are used for making lattice are wood, plastic, PVC and polyvinyl chloride.

Among these types, the easiest material that you can work with is the plastic type. In fact, plastic and vinyl lattice are becoming more and more popular to many household DIY hobbyists. Plastic lattice can hold up well and will not fade over time, requiring little or no maintenance. It is also not challenging at all to learn how to cut plastic lattice. With the right tools and techniques, you would be able to cut plastic lattice to whatever shapes and sizes you desire for your decoration purpose.

First, let’s consider what the most suitable tools for cutting plastic lattice are:

The 8 Best Circular Saw in 2020 – How to Pick Right!

As I mention right in the beginning, choosing the right tool is very important if you want to cut plastic lattice smoothly. The best tool for cutting plastic lattice is a circular saw with a plastic cutting blade. A second option of blade you can use is a fine toothed blade- a blade with small and straight teeth.

You should never go for a saw blade with large teeth capable of ripping and tearing. You also shouldn’t use any blade which is designed to cut through rough pieces of materials such as lumber. Always avoid a blade with large teeth.

Besides the circular saw, you can also use a power saw, a handsaw or trim saw for this project. The choice of which saw to use is based on your personal preference. As long as you feel comfortable handling the saw, you should use it.

  • In case you have to do a lot of cutting in straight lines with the plastic lattice, the circular saw or power saw with the plastic cutting blade is your best option.
  • On the other hand, if you need to cut the plastic lattice into angles and curves, you should use a power saber saw.
  • Provided that you only need to cut a small and thin piece of plastic lattice, using a pair of compound snips could be the most practical way.

Tools you need for the project:

  • A plastic lattice
  • A ruler or measuring tape
  • A pencil
  • A ruler or a straight edge
  • A screwdriver
  • A circular saw with a plastic cutting blade/ Or a pair of compound snips

Follow these steps below to learn how to cut plastic lattice:

Step 1: First of all, you need to measure the sizes and measurements of your project. Measure the place where you intend to place the cut plastic lattice. Remember to allow for around 0.25 each size to accommodate any expansion or contraction. Then use a pencil to draw the line on the plastic lattice of where you want to cut it. Use a ruler or a straight edge to help you draw a straight line.

Step 2: Then follow the drawn line and remove any staple or nail that are in the way of this line. Staples and nails are used to help hold the position of the lattice in place. You can use a screwdriver to remove these stapes and nails. Doing so will help you to cut the plastic lattice much more smoothly. It also prevents the risk of these staples flying off to your eyes and face when they are cut.

>>> Now, follow these steps if you use hand saw or circular saw to cut plastic lattice:

Step 3: If you use a hand saw to cut plastic lattice, place the board with the front side up. On the other hand, if you use a circular saw, place the board of plastic lattice with the front side down.

Step 4: In the next step, you need to find a way to secure the lattice. You can ask other people to hold the other side of the piece of plastic lattice for you. You can also use clamps to hold the piece down. Keeping the piece of lattice secure while you cut it will prevent the plastic lattice from chipping or splitting.

Step 5: Start cutting the plastic lattice with the saw. You should cut onto the line with a smooth and steady pace following a straight line in order to prevent the plastic lattice board from chipping. Go as carefully as you can.

Step 6: When you are near the end of the drawn line for cutting, support the piece of plastic lattice even more firmly. This will make sure this plastic lattice board doesn’t chip or snap.

>>> Here are the steps on cutting plastic lattice with a pair of compounds snips:

Step 3: After you draw the line that you want to cut the plastic lattice into, use the snips to make small cuts. Just cut with this tool like when you cut with normal scissors. There are 3 main types of snips for you to choose from. A pair of straight snip allows you to cut straight lines while left cut snips and right cut snips allow you to cut counter clockwise and clockwise curves, respectively. Cut slowly and steadily until you reach the end of the drawn line.

Here are some final tips that you should apply when working with plastic lattice:

  • In case you have to handle a big piece of plastic lattice, make sure you secure both sides of the piece so that you will have a smoother and more stable cut. You can also ask other people to hold the other side for you when you handle the plastic lattice
  • No matter which blade you are going to use, make sure it is sharp. A dull blade will make your project become more difficult to handle and increase the level of risk. Not to mention that it will make the cuts not as clean and smooth.
  • Just like when you work with other woodworking project, remember to wear your personal protective equipment. When you cut plastic lattice, small cuts and sparks could fly off and cause significant damages to your eyes and your face. So always wear your safety goggles to protect your eyes. You should also wear gloves. Ask your helper to wear his or her personal protective equipment as well.

Overall, cutting plastic lattice requires a little bit of time, effort and patience from you. You need to have a steady and slow cut for a smooth and clean result. But the result at the end will be well rewarding and worth all of your effort.

I hope that with all of the information above about choosing the right tools as well as guidance for the proper steps, you would be able to have nice and clean cut pieces of plastic lattice to work well for your decoration purposes.

How To Cut Thick Plexiglass Smoothly

Plexiglas (Poly methyl methacrylate) is also called the acrylic plastic which is made from stiff plastic, and Plexiglas sometimes are used as normal glass. Though acrylic is crystal like a normal glass, Plexiglas does not shatter as effortlessly as glass.

Nonetheless, plexiglas undoubtedly grazes at any time, it is much more difficult to handle and cut. Here are a few tricks to support you to cut the thick plexiglas without much hassle and save the time to do other tasks.

Equipment to prepare beforehand

  • Thick plexiglas sheets;
  • A grease pencil;
  • A rule or a tape measure;
  • A cutter;
  • Safety glasses;
  • Respiratory equipment;
  • The flat working area;
  • A powerful tool (a table saw, a circular saw, a jigsaw, etc.);
  • A yardstick;
  • The polish cut edge (if relevant)

How to cut thick plexiglas smoothly?

​Unlike other materials, the thick plexiglas has different sizes and the thickness level, so we could select appropriate saws to control and cut it.

​​Use the circular blade saw (or a table blade saw) to cut large sheets

​Step 1: Lay the Plexiglas sheet on the surface

​You need to put the plexiglas sheet in the flat working area firstly such as a table, a workbench, etc. Then, you lay a safety paper wrapping on the sheet.

​Step 2: Measure the cutting line

​To make the cutting line, you need a ruler or one tape measure and a grease pencil to make a marked line before starting the process. By doing this, you will know the marked line that you want to trim in the sheet.

​Step 3: Retain the sheet in one place

​To be secure, you should retain the sheet in a fixed place to prevent the sheet might fly in the fence, and the blade could cut in the wrong line if the sheet does not resemble the saw blade.

​Step 4: Choose appropriate blades to cut the sheet

​As thick Plexiglas is sturdy, you should also select a high – quality blade to deal this issue. In fact, you might find the blades which are made for cutting the thick Plexiglas only in the stores.

If you need to cut many pieces of the thick plexiglas at one time, then you could take a carbide – tipped blade to support you in this challenging.

​Step 5: Add more components to have a smooth cutting

​Workers sometimes use a coolant when cutting the thick plexiglas although is not compulsory in this procedure.

Furthermore, you are able to use the detergent and water in one bottle to create a mixture spray in order to put it in the saw blade.

You should not drop many components in the blade saw (just one to three drops only). These elements could help you cut the thick Plexiglas without a hitch if you need to cut several sheets.

​Step 6: Control the saw blade accurately

​Because thick Plexiglas cutting requires a high – level of technique, you should pay attention to the speed during the cutting time.

The best speed is about 3,450 rpm for trimming the thick Plexiglas. On the flip side, the feed rate of the Plexiglas might have around 4 inches per second.

You should retain the blade in a slow speed to reduce and stop the scratch after finishing the cutting process.

​Step 7: Solve the bumpy edges of the thick plexiglas

​Before stopping the procedure, you should not forget to remove the rugged edges around the sheets. You can take a wet sander, a power saw, a drill fitted and a buffer to solve this trouble.

​Use the jigsaw to cut the acrylic

​The step – by – step jigsaw instruction could be identical with a table or a circular saw, but the jigsaw could support you in different cutting.

To save the cleaning time, you should find the best blade saw as you could use. Intensity blades like a cylinder would reduce the resistance and the friction when switching the saw.

Try many speeds of the blade to realize the best speed of the jigsaw because higher level might cause an accident and lower one could make the Plexiglas melt.

Moreover, attempt to trim the plexiglas too much could melt the sheets unless you have the experience to handle this issue.

If the sheet melts, you could lubricate a few drops of an oil in the blade saw. Please keep in mind that you should not try to use an aerosol dispensed oil because it could happen a burn accident from the jigsaw motor.

​Use the conventional method to chip – scoring and breaking

​When workers do not have the blade saw to cut the thick plexiglas, they use the scoring and breaking instead.

However, this solution is available for cutting the thin sheets (less than ¼ inches) like the glass sheets.

To cut the sheet, you get the spots in the scoring in the marked line and the sheet will automatically break.

After that, the edges of the scoring tool like a single tooth of a circular saw (or a table saw).


​To have a smooth chip in the thick Plexiglas, you should choose one powerful tool like a table saw or a circular saw. Whether you take a modern method or the traditional way (scoring and breaking), you should not miss out the rough edges in the sheet after stopping the procedure.

How To Cut Cast Iron Pipe By An Efficient Tool

Cast iron pipes were used in renovation constructions before the 1960s, and if you want to modernize these old buildings, you would cut cast iron pipes. Furthermore, realizing how to cut cast iron pipe is extremely crucial and vital in order to revamp.

Most of the workers possibly want to use a hacksaw to take on the task, but cutting cast iron pie requires the workers to have much endeavor and time. So, how to cut cast iron pipe by an efficient tool becomes a great question in this situation.

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How To Cut Foam Using Knives

Cutting foam is an easy task that everyone can manage to do with simple tools such as a utility knife or an electric knife. For bigger piece of foam, you can use a band saw with the same techniques. When you have the right equipment on hand, all you need to do to cut foam is following some basic steps. There are some efforts and patience you need to pay for this project but it would be all worth it in the end.

If you are interested on learning how to cut foam, scroll down to read on!

Before Cutting Foam, You Need to Prepare these Following Items:

  • Foam
  • Utility knife
  • Electric knife
  • A taping measurer or ruler
  • A pen

Here are the basic steps for cutting foam:

Step 1: Using the taping measurer, the ruler and the pen to measure on the foam and mark the lines which you want to cut the foam into.

Step 2: Put the foam on the floor. Or if it is more convenient for you, put it on a working table with clean and level surface. To prevent yourself from marking the working surface while you cut the foam, place an extra piece of plywood under the foam.

Step 3: Turn on the electric knife or hold the utility knife and move it along the line that you have drawn on the foam. Make sure that you move the knife slowly in order to follow the drawn line easily. Keep in mind that you need to cut thin lines only. Don’t press too hard on the foam.

Step 4: Use the tip of the blade to cut into the foam with the depth of around 0.25 inches. If you have to cut a straight line, you can use a straight ruler and place it along the line you want to cut your foam into. Then slowly move the knife along the ruler.

Step 5: Continue to cut into another 0.25 inches of the foam or deeper using the tip of the blade.

Step 6: When you finally manage to cut though half of the width of the foam board, push on the knife harder so that it would cut through the final depth of the foam.

Step 7: When the blade successfully cut through the foam board, run the knife along the drawn lines iin one stroke to cut the board clearly.

Step 8: Move on to other section of the board and repeat step 4 to step 8.

Extra helpful tips:

1. How To Choose Foam

Foam is available in most of the craft stores. There are different types of foam with different thickness and sizes. Choose the type you prefer for your specific purpose. Soft foam would be needed for decoration while thicker foam can be used for cushioning. If you need to cut foam for your cushions, measure the dimensions of the cushion cover, especially the thickness, to make sure you buy one that fits.

Also keep in mind that since you are going to cut foam with knife by yourself, you should go for a piece of foam which is not too dense. Dense and rigid foam would be way much harder to cut. You can touch the foam with your finger to check how rubbery it.

Most of the foam products on the market come with colored codes. The black code represents the thickest pieces of foam. The light blue coded foam is less thick than the black one and the green coded foam is the thinnest piece of foam.

2. Which Knife To Use?

I have mention about 2 types of knives which you can use to cut foam including utility knife and kitchen knife. You can use both of these knives for cutting the same foam board of the same thickness. However, if you are going to cut a thicker piece of foam board, or in case you have to cut a huge amount of foam, you should go for the electric knife. This tool also provides a nice and smooth cut for you.

In other hand, if you want to cut foam with small and finer details, using a utility knife is the better option. You would be able to control your speed of foam cutting better.

Last but not least, if you have to cut large thick piece of foam, or in case you have to cut multiple pieces, go for a band saw. It is more difficult to set up and use. However, it would be really efficient for the task. Here are the simple steps on cutting foam with band saw.

  • Prepare the ¼ inches saw blade on your band saw.
  • Put the foam into the band saw table and mark the lines that you want to cut.
  • Turn on the band saw and slowly move the foam towards to blade following the lines you have drawn.
  • Finally, saw the cut edges with 100 grit sandpaper to smoothen the edge of it

3. Safety Caution

While cutting foam is an easy task even for a clumsy person, there are some things that you need to know in order to prevent yourself from getting hurt while working on this project:

  • Never move the knife towards yourself or any part of your body.
  • No matter what you are going to use, remember to sharpen the blade of the knives. Sharp blade is capable of cutting nice and clean cut. Not to mention that sharp blade reduce your risk of getting injuries.
  • Dust can be form from the cutting process. So always wear the safety goggles and a dust mask to prevent dust from getting into your eyes and your respiratory system.


As you can see, there are several methods which you can use to cut foam. Still, the most popular method for you to cut foam board at home is with a utility knife or kitchen knife.

I hope that this article below would be able to provide you much information about how to cut foam in the most efficient way. Keep in mind these guides and extra helpful tips and I am sure that you would master this technique in a short amount of time.

How To Cut Firebrick By A Powerful Tool

Firebricks are blocked materials used to withstand the fireplaces, the furnaces, and the fire boxes.

Fire bricks are different from regular bricks due to its temperature ability (firebricks are able to line up to 1,800 degrees Fahrenheit – the temperature of the firebricks are higher than the regular bricks).On the one hand, the chemical components and the platforms of the firebricks are also disparate from the regular bricks.

Thus, cutting the firebricks is also a little dissimilar than the regular bricks. You could cut the firebricks by hand or a powerful tool relying on your choice.

The trick question is “how to cut firebricks by a powerful tool” that you might wonder. In this article, we will break down the question and show you how to cut firebricks.

Things you need to gear up before beginning the cutting process

  • A hammer
  • A carpenter pencil
  • The firebricks
  • A circular saw or a brick table saw
  • A safety and breathing mask
  • The safety goggles
  • A chisel (Mason’s chisel or a fire brick chisel)
  • A hearing protection
  • A measurement tape (if relevant)

Starting your job

Some workers might want to use a saw to cut the firebricks while others could need to trim the fire bricks by conventional equipment – a hammer and a chisel. In this guide, we will introduce both of two tools to help you to select your appropriate tool.

Selecting a chisel and a hammer

Step 1: Make the line in the firebricks

You should take a carpenter pencil to mark the line on all of the sides of the firebricks. Instead of using a carpenter pencil, you could use the chalk line.

With the marked line, you need to create a – 90 degrees angle along a speed square. To have the right marked line, you should get the firebricks on the soft ground, on the soil or on the sand.

When laying the firebricks in these areas, you would reduce the blow of the dust from the chisel and the hammer.

Step 2: Spotting the firebrick

You use the chisel to spot along the marked line (across four lines) slowly, and you need to spot the firebricks about three millimeters only.

This task will create a groove in the firebricks along the marked line. You should repeat the task in all of four sides.

After having the groove on four sides, you could have a heavy blow on these sides of the firebrick. It might split the brick into two pieces.

Step 3: Get out of the rough points

Once you use a hammer and a chisel to cut the firebricks, you need to remove the rough points from the fire bricks.

You could use a hammer, a chisel or a mason’s hammer to do this step depending on your option. With a hammer, you are able to take it in one hand while holding the fire brick with the other hand.

When you want to use a chisel and a hammer, you should put the firebrick in the sand or other soft lands and using both of your hands to do the job.

Repeat the task until you see the rough points disappear in the firebricks.

Choosing a circular saw

Step 1: Create the marked line in the firebricks

In this step, you also use the same technique as selecting a hammer tool to cut the fire bricks. However, you need to wear the protection to prevent the potential damages in the cutting process.

You should wear the goggles to protect your eyes, the mask to prevent the dust, and the hearing protection to evade the noise from the circular saw.

Step 2: Cut the firebricks

You put one fire brick on a strong surface and keep it tightly. Then, you use a circular saw and take it on the side of the firebrick to begin the cutting process.

You might want to use a chisel and a hammer to handle the curved line and take out other surpluses. After that, you complete the cutting process in other fire bricks.

If you could estimate the marked line, you would not need to use a carpenter pencil to score the firebricks as most of the experienced workers usually do it.

On the other hand, you should keep the dust away from your eyes and your nose to finish the task.


The difference between the regular bricks and the firebricks

Though the firebricks and the regular bricks are the same when you look at them in the first time. However, both of them have different factors that you could not recognize.

The temperatures

With the firebricks, they could withstand the temperatures highly than the regular bricks (up to 18000F). They are strong, heavy and low porosity.

Thus, we usually use the firebricks to build in the cooking chambers as a wood oven, fire boxes, small or large industrial furnaces and making the fireplaces.

The chemical composition

The main compositions of a regular brick are silica, alumina, magnesia, lime, iron oxide and alkalies.

The major chemical ingredients of a firebrick are alumina (23 percent), silica (73 percent) and other compositions like the ferric oxide, titanium, and metallic oxides.

The chemical compositions of the regular bricks could connect and bond together while the firebricks might resist high temperatures easily.

The colors

Normally, the colors of the firebricks are white. You sometimes see the fire bricks have many colors like espresso, mossy green, red and jet black.

The various colors allow the firebricks match the applying erection in the same constructions, and regular bricks also have several colors depending on the type of the soil used.

The shape

The firebricks have the rectangular form and the regular bricks have many shapes that you could select them to build the constructions.

The thermal conductivityThough the firebricks could withstand high temperatures, they could not have the thermal conductivity significantly.

The low thermal conductivity provides a huge energy and prevents the passage of electricity to the walls or other platforms.

Therefore, firebricks are used in the extreme mechanical and other stress environments such as a wood-fired kiln or a furnace.


After reading and practicing this article, you will clarify that the cutting firebrick process is not a daunting task to attain. Furthermore, this is not a tricky task to try and handle it properly. You are able to cut it by hands or taking a circular saw as a powerful tool to complete your job.

How To Cut Granite

Granite is one hard tough material! It is among the most natural stones that can be used in your house for various purposes.

Learning how to cut granite is quite easy. Still, it requires you to choose the right equipment and have the right techniques in order to have a pristine cut.

There are several ways in which you can use including circular saw and wet tile saw. Depend on the size and thickness of the piece of granite that you would choose how to cut it accordingly. Read the article below for how to cut granite by hand in the simplest and most effective ways.

1. How To Cut Granite Tiles With Circular Saw

Granite tiles refer to thin piece of granite. Since the granite you are going to work with is not really thick, you can use a normal circular saw for the project.

>>> Choosing the right blade is important if you decide to cut granite with a circular saw. You can go for either diamond tipped blade or carbide blade. These blades would not be heated up or bind by the granite.

Tools that you need for the project:

  • A circular saw with diamond tipped or carbide blade.
  • Ruler and pen
  • A granite tile

Here are all of the steps to follow for cutting granite with a circular saw

Step 1: First, you need to measure the granite tile accurately. Then mark the line you want to cut with a pen.

Step 2: Put the granite tile on a working station’s surface and clamp it down with collars on both sides of the granite tile.

Step 3: Use a duct tape to cover the cut line. It would help the mark you draw on the tile stay and prevent the tile from chipping when you proceed to cut it later on.

Step 4: Then use the circular saw to cut along the line, just like when you use the circular saw to cut anything else.

Tip: This step is the most crucial step. You need to cut along the line slowly. In addition, you should ask other people to wet the blade during the process. This would help to keep the heat down and prevent the blade from going dull.

The main problem that you would encounter when you cut granite tiles cut a circular saw is that granite will chip out and there is more saw dust. The edge of the cut granite tiles would not be as smooth as when you cut with other equipment. Wetting the blade while you cut will help to reduce the amount of dust.

2. How To Cut Granite Slabs

In order to cut thick piece of granite- also known as granite slabs, you can use a tile wet saw. You can also use this tool to cut granite tile for more precise cuts.

Tools that you need for the project:

  • A wet saw
  • Ruler and pen
  • A granite slab

Here are all of the steps that you need to follow in order to cut granite:

Step 1: Fill the tank of the saw with water.

Step 2: Measure the tile and mark the line that you want to cut the granite into.

Step 3: Slightly adjust the guide on the cutting board to fit with the granite tile or slab

Step 4: Put the piece of granite laying flat onto the cutting board with one side leaning against the guide.

Step 5: Turn on the saw.

Step 6: Slightly put the slab towards the blade following the line you want to cut it into

3. Tips On How TO Cut Granite

Finally, here are tips you should know in order to cut granite:

  • Make sure you prepare a solid and stable working station for the task. If the surface where you use to cut granite is not stable, it will cause more vibrations. And more vibrations mean higher for the granite slab to crack. The safest way is to put a slab of granite on a work bench or a piece of plywood on the ground.
  • You can clamp the slab of granite down for better secure.
  • In order to reduce the level of vibrations which occur when you cut granite tile, you can cover the cut edge with duct tape. This would help to hold the tile and prevent it from cracking and breaking.
  • In addition, you should cut the granite outside. When you cut granite tiles and slabs indoors, it would create heavy and thick layers of stone dust. This will then lead to polluted indoor air. It is also not good for your health. Provided that you have no choice but doing this project indoor, remember to open windows and cover the doorways so that dust can’t go to live in areas.
  • Be aware of your surroundings.
  • Last but not least, you should always remember to wear your personal protective equipment. It is more important when you cut granite with a circular saw as dry cutting would release more dust and affect your respiratory system. Hence, always, wear a mask before you start the project. Dust can also damage your eyes so wear your goggles before you work.


​As you can see, there are a lot of methods in which you can follow to cut granite. For cutting thin granite tile, you can use a circular saw. Alternatively, for cutting big slabs of granite, go for tile wet saw. There are several things that you should remember to cut granite effectively and safely as well such as securing the tile to prevent vibrations, wearing your personal protective equipment and working in a well ventilated area.

I hope all of the information above is easy for you to understand and follow. I am sure that with this article, you would enjoy cutting granite and encounter no difficulty with it at all!!!