What tool do you use to cut large square hole on aluminum plate

#1
I am just wondering what is a easier way to cut larger square holes on aluminum plate. I use the old way that dill lots of holes along the line and cut it off using a cutter. Than start filling until my hand fall off.
 

pustelniakr

Silver Miner at Large
Staff member
#5
Your holes are a bit large for these, but maybe someone may make them. Here is what I am talking about. Back in my day as a prototyper, I used these and round ones as well:

Din Square and Rectangular Punches and Dies

You might also try a nibbler:

Makita XNJ01Z 18V LXT Cordless Lithium-Ion 16 Gauge Nibbler (Bare Tool)

I used to have a hand powered nibbler for my work. With a nibbler, you can nibble away, which is quicker than filing.

You can also use a Dremel tool with cutting discs.

Enjoy,
Rich P
 
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#7
Drill, nibbler and Dremel for the garage version/den amps, FPE for anything I can put in the actual living space. Most PS are covered so a nibbler should be enough.
 
#12
There are bi-metal (usually cobalt) blades designed for cutting aluminum. Deep teeth, about 8 TPI.

Keep the saw speed down to about 1/3 of max, more or less. Do not use a lot of feed pressure. The feed rate will take care of itself, with a bit of cutting fluid on the blade, before you start each side of the hole. If the saw starts to bog down, ease off on the feed pressure. You'll get a feel for it, fairly quickly. If the shavings start to fill in the valleys between the teeth, a small wire brush, used cross-wise, will clean them out.

Two holes, in diagonally-opposite corners will let you start each of the four sides, without having to try to turn a corner with the blade. Just cut outward from the hole, along the two adjacent sides, to the blind corners.

It's pretty easy. Just let your hands guide the saw, and let the saw do the work at its own pace. You'll quickly feel the best cutting feed/speed/pressure.

Eye/Ear/Breathing protection.
 
#16
Happy to help. If you cut just, JUST, inside the line marking your opening, there won't be much filework to do, except in the corners. If you don't NEED square corners for the transformers, I'd leave them with the quarter-circle, but I'm a bit lazy that way, if it goes unseen.

Be sure to get a good filecard, for when you do clean up the holes.
 
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GuyK

Junior Member
#17
Happy to help. If you cut just, JUST, inside the line marking your opening, there won't be much filework to do, except in the corners. If you don't NEED square corners for the transformers, I'd leave them with the quarter-circle, but I'm a bit lazy that way, if it goes unseen.

Be sure to get a good filecard, for when you do clean up the holes.
Loading the file with a piece of chalk before using filing aluminum or brass helps keep it from clogging as quickly.
 
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