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Best Cutters for Stainless Steel?

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Mostly I use my cutting system to cut my Stainless Steel rings for more intricate/delicate projects but on occasion I make armor and hear that cutters/snips are better to use for 16-14ga Stainless, so I was wondering which are the best overall regardless of price and which were the best value.

 

Thanks in advance for the help.

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I realy like my knipex cutters with the blue grip and the return spring. They are basicly high end professional grade 8" bolt cutters.

Its not as fast as a saw cutting system but holds up to a lot of 1/8" 410 stainless.

Some saw cutting systems will work on stainless expecialy if you can get the higher quality cobalt blades and keep the speed and blade temp with in tolerance. Cobalt is brittle so reduce any wiggle or vibration.

The bolt cutters can chip a little on the end, you can grind back a little to reshap the jaws as a design feature.

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I'll second the Knipex Cobalt mini bolt cutters.  They leave a relatively flush // looking cut, not a >< type cut of normal pinch style cutters.  I've cut about 50 lbs of spring temper, 16 g stainless with them and there's barely a mark on the blades.  

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I use my Ringinator EZ and I use the gallon jug of kids bubbles as lubricant.  The only issue I have with this process is that sometimes it seems that the cut shifts off center and cuts  like // instead of ||.

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Any cutter with carbide cutting edges and a 3/4 HP motor.

3/4 HP huh? So a low speed high torque hand drill would be anywhere near that? ... Mine's 1050W.. that seems to be 1.35HP... okay. So I could just use a TRL arbor? I have an old plastic Koil Kutter guide but I think only fits a dremel.

 

I really like the kids bubbles idea as a lubricant... water soluble.

 

What about saw-cutting titanium?!

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I don't think that Knuut is talking about saw cutting. His machines are shear cutters to the best of my knowledge and operate with fairly massive gears and shafts that store energy like a flywheel. Those types of systems are usually high speed, high impact, industrial setups.

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Actualy, I was thinking more along the lines of 'save your money and buy them from Jon who has several such machines'. Stainless is so hard to cut and so hard on your hands and tooling that there is simply no way to justify doing it by hand.

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Actualy, I was thinking more along the lines of 'save your money and buy them from Jon who has several such machines'. Stainless is so hard to cut and so hard on your hands and tooling that there is simply no way to justify doing it by hand.

That's nice but I live in Australia. I'm also occasionally particular about AR.

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Google says there are a number of coil spring manufacturers in Australia and even more in Indonesia. They will have the right machines, good sources for wire and the know-how to work to the exact dimmensions you specify. The problem with them is getting them to work in small quantities.

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That's a really amusing answer. Really.

I assume carbide would be good for titanium too. I don't want much but I do want to make the occasional anodised ring or 100 myself for a bracelet. Especially for getting in the "handmade-everything" market here. And there's all this 20ga ATi wire from TRL I naiively bought a few years ago just sitting there! Sorry to the OP for us derailing your topic.

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Similarly to my last answer, carbide cutters are used in massive industrial setups that are very rigid cutters with precise controlled power feeds. If you're just doing some saw cutting at home you need to use high speed steel cutters since carbide will likely chip or shatter. Even a lot of manufacturers still use M2 HSS for the extra toughness.

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Depending on the volume a harmony cutting setup is fairly straigh forward, I lucked into a large drill press to hold the arbor and provice speed control.

blades and arbors are common for small metal shops. it should be posible to source all the materials localy.

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Carbide no good for home setups as they're brittle? Okay, thankyou that makes sense :) I found this old topic on ring cutting I find helpful. http://www.theringlord.org/forum/index.php?/topic/3039-ring-cutting-setup/

 

(I buy lots from TRL especially in the last few years when the Aussie dollar's been strong, couldn't afford it when everything was twice as much... but as shipping is a significant chunk of the order cost & takes a while - and with heavy low cost items - I prefer to DIY with some stuff, especially when I need a small amount straight away. I didn't realise arbors were that common, but I may as well chuck one into the next TRL order. I was knocked back from the handmade market here for the rings being "commercial" so being able to demonstrate at least some DIY across metals would help my chances - and then sneak AA in later! I got RSI from DIY'ing rings a decade ago which stopped my mailling for a long time so I'm pretty keen to do a motorised small-scale coiling & saw cutting setup.)

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What Lostie said about getting Knipex cutters.  If you're going to go around hand cutting stainless wire you need quality tools, full stop.  That stuff is demanding.   Knipex cutters are extremely durable, and powerful for their size; just what you need.

 

Armor projects of any but the very artfullest sort want swift cutting methods so you aren't taking half of forever for 5K rings.  Some home-shop guys have gone in for electrically driven small circular saws, the coils gravity fed into the saw, and the blade lubricated with a cutting fluid, which is recovered and reused.  Though the process is still a bit spattery.  Use the shed.

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