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Tools to Use for Cutting Metal at Home

Whether you work on your car or like to handle your own home improvement projects, you'll typically need to do some metal cutting and fabricating to get the job done. When working at home, you may not be comfortable with welding equipment and may not have the expertise to use it or have the room for larger cutting tools. You can actually invest in smaller tools that work just as well as large, commercial grade tools and that can help with these household jobs. Note a few of those tools and their pros and cons.

1. Plasma cutter

A plasma cutter is something like a welding torch, but it has one dial, no gas tanks, and is easy enough for anyone to use. A plasma cutter works by heating plasma, which is a type of ionized gas, and which is then blown through the tip of the cutter with compressed air. The cutter will produce sparks and some slag, but it's easy for anyone to use it without being trained in actual welding. It's also good for thinner sheets of metal, such as an exhaust pipe on a car. It may take some practice to get accustomed to how you need to move the torch to make a clean cut and adjust the dial for the right heat according to the thickness of the metal, but once you try a few practice cuts, it may be just what you need for household jobs.

2. Nibblers

For precise, small cuts, nibblers can be the right choice. These work like snips, only they make small cuts, like nibbles, into the metal, one at a time. Nibblers may be operated manually, or they may be electric. You might invest in the electric variety to cut through thicker steel and to reduce fatigue on your hand. Since they make very small cuts similar to a punching tool, you can make small holes and snips in metal very easily or easily track your progress as you cut so you don't go past a cutting line.

3. Angle grinder

This is one of the most common tools homeowners use to cut metal, and it works by actually grinding or sawing away the material. An angle grinder is typically handheld and can cut through thicker sheets of metal very quickly and easily. It's also easy to use; if you can operate a saw, note that an angle grinder works in much the same way. It also leaves a clean and neat edge behind, so it's good for metal that will be visible, such as when cutting metal for custom car parts and finishes.

These tools can help you with small metal projects around your home. If you need help with larger projects, you should contact a local steel fabrication company.