How to cut aluminum with a bandsaw

Written by c.l. rease
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How to cut aluminum with a bandsaw
(Stockbyte/Stockbyte/Getty Images)

Cutting aluminium with a bandsaw leads to frustration unless you use the proper cutting techniques. The major source of frustration is blade clogging. As you cut through the aluminium, heat generates in the bandsaw blade. The soft aluminium fuses to the blade, filling in the voids between the blades cutting teeth. To avoid clogging the bandsaw blade with aluminium, you need to lubricate the bandsaw blade or use a material to pull the aluminium pieces from the blade after it passes through the aluminium.

Skill level:
Moderate

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Things you need

  • 1/4 inch plywood
  • Aluminium cutting fluid
  • Diagonal grooved file

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Instructions

  1. 1

    Set the aluminium on top of a piece of 1/4 inch plywood if you are using a vertical bandsaw or fill the coolant tank of the bandsaw with aluminium cutting fluid and clamp the aluminium onto the bed when using a horizontal bandsaw.

  2. 2

    Turn the bandsaw blade speed to its lowest setting. Turn on the bandsaw and allow the bandsaw to reach the proper speed. If you are using a horizontal bandsaw, wait until the cutting fluid flows onto the bandsaw blade.

  3. 3

    Push the aluminium and the plywood against the blade of a vertical bandsaw or lower a horizontal bandsaw.

  4. 4

    Turn off the bandsaw and remove the aluminium from the bandsaw bed.

  5. 5

    Slide a diagonal grooved file along the cut edge of the aluminium to remove the burr from the cut aluminium edge.

Tips and warnings

  • Wear safety glasses when cutting aluminium with a bandsaw.

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