Tools for Glass Cutting

Written by heather lindsay
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There are a number of different types of glass cutters to choose from depending on the task at hand. They can be used to cut clear window glass, coloured glass for stained glass projects, even some types of tile. There are both hand-held cutters with a wheel and band saw and ring saw types that use a rotating strip usually coated with diamond.

Hand-held Glass Cutters

Hand-held glass cutters include both upright or pencil-grip and pistol-grip styles. As oil is usually used to lubricate the cut, some have oil reservoirs in the handle that feed oil directly to the cutting wheel. The cutting wheel can be made of tungsten carbide or hardened steel. There are also diamond-tip glass cutters that do not require oil, making them more suitable for use in medical and chemistry labs. Hand-held glass cutters range in price from about £9 to £65 based on 2009 prices.

Band Saw Glass Cutter

Diamond-bladed band saws designed for cutting glass can help reduce wasted glass from breaking when cutting complicated pieces, as well as reducing time spent on grinding and fitting glass for stained glass projects. They are similar to wood or metal band saws but include a water reservoir and pump for lubricating and cooling the cutting surface. The band saw blades are flat with diamond grit along one edge. As of 2009, they ranged in price from about £195 to £975 and replacement blades cost about £32 to £65.

Glass Ring Saw

The ring saw is similar to the band saw, with a water cooling and lubrication system and rotating blade with diamond grit on the cutting surface. The shape of the blade is a little different, and some have omnidirectional blades, allowing for some different results with the size and shape of cuts. The price range in 2009 ran from £195 to £325, with replacement blades priced at £39 to £58.

Circle Cutters

Glass circle cutters utilise the tungsten carbide or hardened steel cutting wheel. Some have multiple wheels on a circular head that rotates to cut the circle. The cutting wheel head is attached to an arm that can rotate freely around a centre point to score the glass in a circle. These can be attached to the table or cutting surface. These ranged in price from £26 to £780 in 2009, with the price depending on the size and complexity of the system.


There are a variety of other glass cutters such as the Logan Simplex glass cutter, designed for fast and accurate straight cuts on glass used for framing or windows. There are also machine-type glass cutters such as the Score 1 Glass Cutter or the Power Breaker and Tap Wheel Supercutter that can apply power and score the glass that are an alternative to the hand-held glass cutters. They can be used if you have problems with hand-strength. As of 2009, these ranged in price from about £32 to £130.

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