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Cutting AEB-L with hacksaw???

Discussion in 'Shop Talk - BladeSmith Questions and Answers' started by Cushing H., Aug 9, 2019.

  1. Cushing H.

    Cushing H. Gold Member Gold Member

    465
    Jun 3, 2019
    I guess the title says it all. On previous stock (O1) I was able to reasonably cut the stock with a hacksaw and the stock in a bench vise. Am now trying to rough out a skinner out of AEBL - my first quick look-see at cutting the steel with a hacksaw made me go ... "hmm... maybe not". Next attempt was the cutoff wheel on a dremel (dont yell at me - I dont have anything better right now) ... would work, but will take forever - and many wheels.

    I have been trying to not get a portasaw, in part because of the $$$$ associated with both the saw and a SWAG table. I guess I could try just the portasaw (the one from HF) with the stock held in a vise ... but that seems awkward. Is there ANY hope for a hacksaw with AEBL, or do I just need to resign myself to going to HF and picking up that portasaw???? (yes, the steel is annealed....)
     
  2. navman

    navman Gold Member Gold Member

    651
    Mar 4, 2013
    I used a hacksaw with bimetal blades for years...worked but was slow. A Portaband, I have the Bauer from HF, works much better.
     
    DeadboxHero, kmf600 and DevinT like this.
  3. seanj

    seanj

    231
    Mar 1, 2010
    Before I got my Milwaukee Portaband I used to drill holes with my drill press around the outline of the blade shape I wanted, and then finished the cuts with a bi-metal hacksaw. It's time consuming and then you have a very rough edge to clean up but it's certainly doable. I made several knives that way. You could even do this with a portable drill though that would certainly add to the time.

    Also when I first got my Milwaukee I didn't have any kind of swag table and I was able to use it in my vise, albeit a bit awkward, but not dangerous awkward. Though if you go that route I'd proceed with caution.

    Where there's a will there's a way.
     
  4. ChristoDart

    ChristoDart

    609
    Jun 29, 2011
    I’ve cut plenty of AEBL (even thicker stock) with a tension hacksaw with bimetal blades and cutting oil without any issue. Just make sure the it’s held down right and I normally put drops of 3 and 1 oil on the blade while I go. I think I normally use the 18 TPI
     
    kmf600 likes this.
  5. Cushing H.

    Cushing H. Gold Member Gold Member

    465
    Jun 3, 2019
    With the saw in the vise and using just the small brace that comes with it? Or with the stock in the vise and freehanding the cut? If the former, how do you clamp the saw vertical???
     
  6. JTknives

    JTknives Blade Heat Treating www.jarodtodd.com Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Jun 11, 2006
    You just send the designs to me and I cut it for you ;)
     
  7. Storm W

    Storm W

    273
    Feb 19, 2019
    You could get a cheap right angle grinder without off wheels. There seems to be a bias about that but I started welding 20 years ago and never had problems.
     
  8. Cushing H.

    Cushing H. Gold Member Gold Member

    465
    Jun 3, 2019
    I KNEW. You were going to say that . :) Believe me, i would, but time is an issue here (hunting season is roaring down on us...)... and i am already thinking about how i could approach you about expediting the HT (no worries, one way or another you will see these blades ). This is for a friend who deserves a break ... so if i can get this thing cut out for him in the next few days, that is what i am after....
     
  9. seanj

    seanj

    231
    Mar 1, 2010
    I put the piece I'm going to cut in the vise and then cut with the hacksaw.
     
  10. Spalted

    Spalted My name is Britt Askew I like making knives Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    899
    Dec 9, 2010
    The way I mounted mine was to remove the handle and use those 2 holes to mount a piece of angle iron and screw the other end of the angle iron to the wall, and at the bottom I used a scrap piece of metal coil stock wrapped around the saw and screwed to plywood base. The saw is actually very solid this way. I would only use the portaband to cut the piece to length, I profile it on the grinder using a 60 grit belt. It would only take a couple minutes to cut and profile a blade this way.
    20190810_103941.jpg
    20190810_104020.jpg

    edit; because I only use the saw to cut the barstock to length I dont like a table.
     
  11. seanj

    seanj

    231
    Mar 1, 2010
    I misunderstood your question yesterday. My response then was for when you are using a hacksaw. If you are talking about the bandsaw I was just using the small brace that comes with the saw.
     
  12. Storm W

    Storm W

    273
    Feb 19, 2019
    If you are not using a swag table there are things that you can do to cut straight and they would probably work with a hacksaw as well. Cutting a angle greater than 90 degrees will give you more teeth in the cut and improve the smoothness of the cut. Doing it this way also allows the cut to guide the blade. To do this just use the leading edge of the blade to track your line and the rest if the blade will follow.
     
  13. Stacy E. Apelt - Bladesmith

    Stacy E. Apelt - Bladesmith ilmarinen - MODERATOR Moderator Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Aug 20, 2004
    There are hacksaws … and there are hacksaws.

    A High Tension hacksaw costs about $25. Good quality Lenox Bi-Metal blades are about $15 a 10-pack. You can cut steel bars and sheet easily with a high tension hacksaw. Compared to the standard hacksaw it is like comparing a HF 1X30 to a good 2X72 … no comparison.
     
  14. Cushing H.

    Cushing H. Gold Member Gold Member

    465
    Jun 3, 2019
    Funny - i have never heard of a high tension hacksaw. Lack of shop experience on my part..,

    In the meantime, just went to HF, and got the sale price on their portasaw. Will try it in the vise and see just how long i will be able to hold off on getting a swag table :)
     
  15. Cushing H.

    Cushing H. Gold Member Gold Member

    465
    Jun 3, 2019
    Ok - I get it now ... both the previous comments about wood band saws and metal band saws being totally different beasts. Metal bandsaw = much finer teeth,& MUCH slower blade speed. Funny - the portasaw does seem to basically cut the same way as a hacksaw - just no reciprocation (one direction only) and MUCH less effort. I was surprised at how easily the handle was held in my bench vise (I was kind of worried about that). Great tool (unless I want to upgrade to Stacy's non-portable band saw with motorcycle seat to sit on :) ). Thanks all for all the guidance!
     
  16. Stacy E. Apelt - Bladesmith

    Stacy E. Apelt - Bladesmith ilmarinen - MODERATOR Moderator Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Aug 20, 2004
    Mine had a saddle.
     

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