How to cut aluminum profile! Overview of the aluminum profile cutting tool
Aluminum is one of the most sought-after metals, which is used in many industries. Such popularity is due to the excellent physical characteristics of the material.
- low weight;
- High degree of ductility, good heat capacity and electrical conductivity;
- resistance to adverse effects of atmospheric phenomena, including high humidity. metal does not corrode.
Aluminum alloys with magnesium, nickel, iron, manganese, copper are the main materials used in industrial production. They are used to make:
During production, it is necessary to cut and cut the above mentioned products to certain dimensions. The most successful method of cutting aluminum is laser technology. It consists in exposure to a highly concentrated beam of heat. It raises the temperature only in a small area of the workpiece (billet). Laser cutting produces no waste and good-quality cut edges.
Features of plasma cutting of aluminum
Plasma cutting of aluminum is ideal for producing high quality cuts in base metals. In this process, only inert gases such as hydrogen, argon, or nitrogen are used to generate the plasma required to cut aluminum and its alloy sheets.
Active gases, such as air and oxygen, are designed to form plasma to cut ferrous metal.
It is not recommended to use a gas mixture combining nitrogen and argon for plasma cutting of aluminum because it is designed for cutting 50 mm high-alloy steel.
The use of pure nitrogen gas is possible to cut aluminum with a workpiece thickness up to 20 mm.
But nitrogen in combination with hydrogen allows to cut aluminum and its various alloys, with a thickness of 100 mm.
Features of cutting with an electric jigsaw and electric shears
With a modern jigsaw, you can easily make a variety of cuts in metal sheets. But this tool is used when cutting a small thickness of aluminum.
Every craftsman can cut corners and make curved cuts in metal using an electric jigsaw. For cutting aluminum sheets, jigsaws with high power should be used.
For small volumes, electric scissors can be used. They have high cutting accuracy and can make curved cuts without distorting the aluminum profile.
The disadvantage of this tool is that it can only cut from the edge of the sheet metal. If the work must begin from a point inside the sheet, it is better to use a metal cutter.
Cutting aluminum profiles. methods from hacksaw to machine
The most handy tool for cutting any profile
It is easy to cut thin aluminum sheets, because almost any tool is suitable for this purpose. But what to do, for example, with an oversized angle or inconvenient channel? about hand tools and equipment that are used for cutting aluminum profile, described in this material. Carrying out the work is complicated by a number of factors, but it is still possible to evenly cut the workpiece. How to saw with a hacksaw on metal. it’s the 21st century
Ways to cut aluminum profiles
Conventionally, all techniques are divided into two groups:
Cutting with compact manual or electric equipment; cutting with special devices (portable or stationary).
The first group includes the following tools:
plasma, laser, milling machines; various saws.
Now it is worth examining the features of each method, the advantages and disadvantages, and then draw a conclusion about the best way to cut aluminum profile.
Hacksaw for metal
It is not always possible to use electrical equipment such as mitre saws, so we have to be content with the simplest tools. The first of them. hacksaws for metal. They can be used to cut sheet metal and thin sections. Cutting begins with the rib, continues to the back and ends at the sides.
The hacksaw has low weight, so your hands do not get tired; easy operation; the tool is cheap; the work efficiency is like an electric jigsaw.
time-consuming; possible deformation of the profile; the need to hold the profile does not guarantee the accuracy of the work.
An even simpler tool that is easier to use. The principle is elementary. the profile is marked, then cut along the line.
cutting is faster than with a hacksaw; the scissors are cheap; good results are possible if you have a good quality tool and experience.
at the transition through the ribs of the profile is possible departure from the line marking, damage or bending of the workpiece; you will have to practice and spoil a few “rough” workpieces before you can work perfectly accurately.
Before you work, it is important to make sure that the tool is mounted saw for metal. Of course, a wood blade will also cut aluminum, but the quality of the cut will leave much to be desired. Start cutting the profile from the back and then saw the lateral edges in turn.
electric equipment facilitates the work of the user; the quality is close to perfect (the product will not have burrs, bevels, other defects); quick work; multiple use (with the right choice of saw); jigsaws are cheaper than similar devices for cutting aluminum profiles.
The workpiece must be securely clamped so that it does not “bend” when the jigsaw works.
angle grinder. a universal helper that works well on aluminum. It is only important not to confuse the cutting wheel with a grinding wheel, choose a small thickness tooling to minimize material loss and protect your hands and face from sparks.
Speed of operation; decent quality of cut; relative cheapness of the equipment; minimum user’s movements; durability of equipment, which allows repeated sawing of metal profiles.
the possibility of burning of metal in the area of the cut; without work skills it is unlikely to be possible to cut evenly; to improve the accuracy of the angle grinder should be clamped in the stand, which is not supplied with the tool and is rarely available in stores (the problem is solved if there are vices).
Now it is worth examining special devices to work on aluminum.
Plasma and laser machines
The best way in terms of quality and speed, but not suitable for home conditions. Plasma cutter and laser machine are considered to be professional equipment and are found in metallurgical enterprises. If there is a plant nearby and cutting aluminum profile on it is possible, it is worth taking advantage of.
profile cutting takes a couple of minutes; the user only sets up the equipment, the machine does the rest; the quality of the cut is the best of all methods.
Not suitable for home or garage use; the noise of the saw.
It is important that this equipment is set up by the operator specifically for work on aluminum. This is due to the softness and ductility of metal. It is also important to choose a small rotational speed of the cutter (from 5000 to 9000 per minute) and pre-drop kerosene on the cutting area. Feed. smooth, careful not to damage the cutter. Advantages and disadvantages are similar to the plasma cutter and laser, but the quality of workpiece processing is slightly worse.
Analogue of a hand saw, but more powerful. It has the following capabilities:
performs longitudinal, transverse, oblique cuts; can saw from any part of the workpiece (not just the end); modern devices prevent overheating by shutting off in time or signaling the operator; the user can choose the speed of operation based on the thickness of the workpiece.
durability of tooling. disk for work on metal (better. on aluminum); quickness of work; maneuverability; possibility of cutting at an angle of up to 45 degrees; cost, comparable with more suitable counterparts (end saws for aluminum).
For example, we consider a table saw Yilmaz KY 305. This is a special device for cutting small sections of metal with small wall thickness. Mechanical clamping fixes the workpiece, the angle of cutting is up to 45 degrees (in any side), it is possible to choose the fixed angle (0, 15 deg., 30°, etc.д.).
allows you to cut larger workpieces (up to 130×65 mm); compactness; possibility of angle cutting; high speed and accuracy of work; availability of equipment (saw blade 300 mm).
High cost (an average setup costs 40-50 thou. ); is not compact and lightweight.
Features of waterjet cutting of aluminum
When cutting aluminum with a plasma cutter with waterjet technology you can get the right blanks with excellent cut quality, with average edge roughness parameters.
Waterjet cutting of aluminum occurs with minimal losses, despite the thermal conductivity of aluminum, is fire and explosion safe.
Waterjet cutting of aluminum is based on the use in the technological process of specially purified water and abrasive grains, the category of which is selected according to the characteristics of the processed metal and the type of work (in what conditions are carried out).
Under the influence of waterjet technology it is possible to cut metal materials with thickness up to 300 mm, which allows you to connect thin-sheet products in a single package and process them in one step.
In addition, water-jet cutting of aluminum and its alloys makes it possible to perform high-precision cutting of products with complex shapes.
And that means that quality results can be achieved even with internal radii, bevels and sharp angles.
angle grinder. a universal helper that works well on aluminum. It is only important not to confuse the cutting wheel with a grinding wheel, choose a low thickness tooling to minimize material loss and protect your hands and face from sparks.Advantages:
- quickness of work;
- a decent quality of cut;
- the relative cheapness of the equipment;
- minimum movement of the user;
- durability of equipment, which allows repeatedly sawing metal profiles.
Angle grinder Sparky
- the possibility of burning of metal in the area of the cut;
- without skills it is unlikely to be able to cut evenly;
- To improve the accuracy of the angle grinder is to clamp it into the rack, which is not supplied with the tool, and in stores is rare (the problem is solved if there is a vice).
Now it is worth examining special devices to work on aluminum.
Before working, it is important to make sure that the tool has a saw blade specifically for metal. Of course, a wood blade will also cut aluminum, but the quality of the cut will leave a lot to be desired. Profile cutting begins from the back, and then in turn saws the side edges.Advantages:
- The electrical equipment facilitates the work of the user;
- quality that is close to perfect (no burrs, bevels or other defects on the product);
- quickness of work;
- reusability (with the right saw blade);
- the jigsaw is less expensive than similar devices for cutting aluminum profiles.
When aluminum is processed on a production scale, it is bent in two ways.
- Free. At the moment of metal bending, there is an air layer between the sheet and the press. This method allows to work with thicker materials and to produce difficult-shaped products, but when working with thin sheets gives a low accuracy of bending.
- Calibration. In this case, there is no air layer between the machine and the aluminum. This allows you to accurately bend thin sheets, but requires a lot of effort and expensive hardware.
You can bend a sheet of aluminum at home without using expensive tools.