Cutting aluminum diamond plate? - JeepForum.com

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post #1 of 28 Old 02-20-2011, 04:08 PM Thread Starter
JFD140
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Cutting aluminum diamond plate?

What is the best way to cut this stuff...

I am building a lid for the trunk of my JK when the top is off.

Obviously i am using a jigsaw with a 36 tooth blade for the curved cuts but the straight lines...

Should i just use a circular saw with a new blade? How many teeth? I only have a pretty new 24 tooth framing blade at the moment, they had a 40 tooth for $10.00 at hope demot...

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post #2 of 28 Old 02-20-2011, 04:16 PM
Unlimitedlou
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I often use a 4 1/2 grinder with a cutting wheel. The other option would be to find a shop with a metal brake.

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post #3 of 28 Old 02-20-2011, 04:25 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Unlimitedlou View Post
I often use a 4 1/2 grinder with a cutting wheel. The other option would be to find a shop with a metal brake.
that wont make a dead straight cut... (the grinder)

A circular saw should cut through it no problem if i move slowly... i just don't know how many toothed blade i need... i assume more is better.

I mean i also have a grinder cutting blade for the circular saw... but i dont think it will make that nice of a cut...
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post #4 of 28 Old 02-20-2011, 04:34 PM
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I've never cut aluminum with a circular saw before.. but it sounds like fun.

If I were going to try it, I'd probably use a pretty fine carbide tooth blade (to avoid tearing the edge) and run the blade shallow.. only coming thru as far as needed to severe the sheet. I'd clamp the plate to a solid work bench to keep both hands on the saw in case of kickback. I'd probably also clamp a 2x4 in place as a straightedge to run the saw against for a nice straight cut.

Should be able to clean the edge up with a flap disk after cutting..

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post #5 of 28 Old 02-20-2011, 04:38 PM
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get a couple of 7 1/2" carbon blades and use on a circular saw, blades are cheap, you will have an extremely sharp edge! hit it with a grinder
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post #6 of 28 Old 02-20-2011, 04:38 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BESRK View Post
I've never cut aluminum with a circular saw before.. but it sounds like fun.

If I were going to try it, I'd probably use a pretty fine carbide tooth blade (to avoid tearing the edge) and run the blade shallow.. only coming thru as far as needed to severe the sheet. I'd clamp the plate to a solid work bench to keep both hands on the saw in case of kickback. I'd probably also clamp a 2x4 in place as a straightedge to run the saw against for a nice straight cut.

Should be able to clean the edge up with a flap disk after cutting..
exactly what i was gonna do... but maybe i would be better off with the abrasive blade than a carbide... il try cutting a scrap first i guess.
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post #7 of 28 Old 02-20-2011, 04:39 PM
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and tools always make straight cuts! people dont!
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post #8 of 28 Old 02-20-2011, 07:08 PM
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Install the skill saw blade backwards. Ive done this alot and it works great. Not sure the tooth count but its the one I used on wood and it got dull for that.

Went threw 1/4" ALU like butter.

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post #9 of 28 Old 02-20-2011, 07:12 PM
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Flip the sheet face-down so you're working with a flat surface. Clamp a straightedge and use it as a guide with a jigsaw. DO NOT use an abrasive blade, it will clog and be an annoyance.
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post #10 of 28 Old 02-20-2011, 07:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jason m View Post
Install the skill saw blade backwards. Ive done this alot and it works great. Not sure the tooth count but its the one I used on wood and it got dull for that.

Went threw 1/4" ALU like butter.

Jason.
x2 onthe backwards blade.
Aluminum cutting blades are available, mostly at specialized shops, special order at lowes, home depot...
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post #11 of 28 Old 02-20-2011, 08:42 PM
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You can buy Alumimun cutting Carbide tipped blades for a circular saw at most home stores now..i have a gotten a few from my local Lowes in Statesboro,Ga...maybe they don't all carry it in stock?..dunno

Jason is right..just turn a regular carbide tipped circular saw blade backwards and it cuts it no problem,but make sure you'r wearing a face gaurd and safety glasses and long sleeves..the aluminum chips fly everywhere.

Regular carbon abrasive blades in a chop saw will last maybe a few seconds before it clogs and won't cut worth a darn at all....grinder wheel/cutting blades are the same way.

Oh yea..one more thing..EARPLUGS..you are about to make more noise than a 747 flying through the shop..lol

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post #12 of 28 Old 02-20-2011, 09:54 PM
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If you use a circular saw and a fence you will go off course if you go too fast. The blade will ever so slightly go off course and eventually you'll be off your line. Trust me on this one - go slow and pay attention!

Personally I would use a 4.5" angle grinder. I can cut a much straighter line with this than I can with a circular saw.


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post #13 of 28 Old 02-20-2011, 10:47 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChiliPalmer View Post
If you use a circular saw and a fence you will go off course if you go too fast. The blade will ever so slightly go off course and eventually you'll be off your line. Trust me on this one - go slow and pay attention!

Personally I would use a 4.5" angle grinder. I can cut a much straighter line with this than I can with a circular saw.
dont have one... not really looking to buy new tools to use them once


Out of curiousity, why does flipping the blade backwards work?


I cut aluminum channel with my chopsaw all the time, but obviously this is not that same.
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post #14 of 28 Old 02-21-2011, 05:51 AM
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i cut this stuff everyday almost...best thing is find a shop to shear it cause whenever you cut this stuff it likes to melt kinda and you'll end up with knarl marks verywhere when your trying to clean up the edges...jmo
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post #15 of 28 Old 02-21-2011, 06:44 AM
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Ever tried one of these? I bought one, cost $35.00, and it really works great.
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