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Old 07-30-2007, 01:51 AM   #1
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Default Simple method for cutting round stock

Well I'm not sure if someone has posted a similar method of cutting round stock parts or not. So if they did I apologize. Anyway, here is my method of cutting small parts out of round stock (aluminum, steel, titanium, brass, graphite, etc.). It's simple and makes cutting small pieces accurately a breeze. Especially if you don't have a lathe.

What you'll need.
• Variable speed drill motor
• Dremel or similar tool
• Fiber cut-off wheel (highly suggested over the standard brittle cut-off wheel)
• Of course safety glasses






STEP 1: Mark your piece using either a ruler or better yet digital callipers.
(Sorry for the black anodized piece.)



STEP 2: Chuck up the part in your drill motor with the portion of the stock that will become your part.
(The waste side will fall off. You'll know why in a later step.)



STEP 3: With your cutting wheel installed place the drill motor on your left (make sure it's set to forward) on it's side (this is for stability) and your Dremel tool on the right. (Make sure they are both resting on the work surface for stability). First turn on your Dremel to a medium speed and slowly cut into your piece on the right side of your mark. You want to gently touch the part at first just to graze it. As soon as your cutting wheel makes contact, pull the trigger on the drill motor. Slowly pick up speed with the drill motor while maintaining moderate pressure with the Dremel.



With a little practice you'll get the feel for it and know exactly how much pressure to apply with different materials. When you try it for the first time don't use too much pressure. You want to keep both tools steady and firmly placed on the table.

STEP 4: Once you make it all the way through the material keep the part you want in the drill chuck. With the drill motor still running, gently run the side of the cut-off wheel (or a file) on the piece end. This will smooth out your cut. You can also slowly grind your part to the finished length using this method. You can remove the part, measure it with your calipers or ruler, and re-insert the part to get the length you need.



The spacers I was making was out of thick walled 3/16-inch aluminum tube and were 3/8-inch long. This method will work with solid stock as well (ie titanium, steel or aluminum).



Using this method I was able to get four pieces the exact length I needed.



Well that's it. I hope this comes in handy for your next build. And remember, BE CAREFUL. Hold the Dremel and drill motor firmly and go slow.

Last edited by OGmicromonster; 08-28-2007 at 12:42 PM.
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Old 07-30-2007, 09:00 AM   #2
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Thanks, had not thought of doing it like that, next time will maybe my parts will come out the same length.
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Old 07-30-2007, 10:18 AM   #3
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very good idea for the smaller pieces. well done.
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Old 08-22-2007, 01:03 AM   #4
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great idea!
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Old 08-22-2007, 08:03 AM   #5
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Thanks for the tip. Looks clean
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Old 08-22-2007, 11:34 AM   #6
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Anyone know of a "mini" chop saw that would work?
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Old 08-28-2007, 09:46 AM   #7
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I just picked up a mini chopsaw at harbor freight for $25. Haven't got around to setting it up and testing yet though. It uses a 2" steel blade as opposed to a cutoff wheel so I'm a little sceptical.
http://www.harborfreight.com/cpi/cta...emnumber=42307
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Old 08-28-2007, 12:31 PM   #8
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ive got a little pipe-cutter thats always worked for me.
its a k&s tool.
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Old 08-28-2007, 12:38 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by j0e View Post
ive got a little pipe-cutter thats always worked for me.
its a k&s tool.
Yeah, I have one too, but it doesn't work when cutting tie-rods, solid steel or aluminum stock. I does work great for cutting light weight tube though.
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Old 08-28-2007, 02:32 PM   #10
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never tried solid steel, but it works for aluminum.
(doesnt it? i cant remember.)

either way, your tip is a good one!
thanks.
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Old 08-29-2007, 02:15 PM   #11
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NIce. beats possibly sending the little pieces that you cut with the chop saw.
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Old 08-29-2007, 02:56 PM   #12
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beats a hack saw and table.
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Old 08-29-2007, 03:12 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by scrooloose View Post
beats a hack saw and table.
beats chewing them off with my teeth.


I tried this method on a past build- works great. Takes some dexterity though.;)
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