DiyMobileAudio.com Car Stereo Forum banner

1 - 17 of 17 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,952 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I am about to cut out a good section of metal in the rear of my HHR and am curious as to what tools others prefer to use for larger projects. Lets just say my 7.2v Dremel battery would not last long enough to make the full cut in one pass.

Does anyone use those multi tool oscillating tools to cut metal?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,291 Posts
The "multi-tool" would not be my choice of tools, to cut out sheet metal. A jig-saw with a very fine tooth metal blade or an air saw or a grinder with a cut-off wheel.

and safety glasses ;)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,952 Posts
Discussion Starter #4 (Edited)
The "multi-tool" would not be my choice of tools, to cut out sheet metal. A jig-saw with a very fine tooth metal blade or an air saw or a grinder with a cut-off wheel.

and safety glasses ;)
Ya I was thinking the same with the multi tool. It is said to cut soft stuff fast and easy but this is thick sheet metal. I have both the jigsaw and angle grinder. I am currently leaning towards my grinder but I am not looking forward to the mess it makes. My interior is light grey so I will have a bit of prep work with this tool. Although once cutting I should be in and out in 5 mins lol.

Chicago Pneumatic CP881 Heavy Duty Air Reciprocating Saw

Chicago Pneumatic CP881 Heavy Duty Air Reciprocating Saw
I do not have a compressor anymore but an electric recip could work. I am considering this. I also am thinking of electric shears. Harbor Freight has one for $49 right now. This would be fast and clean debris wise and I would then just need to reflatten out the metal at the cut.


HHMMMM do I get a new toy or do I just buy a new blade/wheel? :D
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
274 Posts
I personally use an air saw. I would not recommend a grinder with a cut-off wheel, or any method that causes sparks to fly. The reason being sparks flying and hitting glass will cause small pits in the glass not noticable until you go to tint the windows. Flying sparks can kill a headliner resulting in very small splatter looking burns.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
730 Posts
I prefer the use of a air nibler or air saw...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,376 Posts
Nibbler, power shears, and jigsaw are usually what I use, and hand snips...sometimes air hammer or sawzall.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,952 Posts
Discussion Starter #8
I would not recommend a grinder with a cut-off wheel, or any method that causes sparks to fly. The reason being sparks flying and hitting glass will cause small pits in the glass not noticable until you go to tint the windows. Flying sparks can kill a headliner resulting in very small splatter looking burns.
That is why I said prep work will be a lot. I wish I had a compressor still but I do not so air is out of the question but thanks.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,791 Posts
call around to some local shops and see if anyone has a plasma cutter. draw the area you want gone and they can have it out in a minute or two for a few bucks.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
30 Posts
With the limitations at hand, I'd use the jigsaw with a metal cutting blade....assuming there is clearance on the back side of the cut. A grinder with a cut off wheel is my go-to choice for most jobs but not on something with the interior installed. The small reciprocating saw that was posted above would also be a great choice, but not without air.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,952 Posts
Discussion Starter #11
With the limitations at hand, I'd use the jigsaw with a metal cutting blade....assuming there is clearance on the back side of the cut. A grinder with a cut off wheel is my go-to choice for most jobs but not on something with the interior installed. The small reciprocating saw that was posted above would also be a great choice, but not without air.
I am starting to lean towards the jig saw myself just because I don't want to have to tape off/drape the interior if it is just going to make the job take even longer. I am going to go to Harbor Freight in the morning and look at the elec nibbler/shears what ever it is called and also will be picking up a blade for the jigsaw and a new cutoff wheel just incase I need to use it. I have 4" behind the area at minimum so a jig saw blade should be fine.


This is the area that I want to cut out. Only the single sheet area as outlined. This is the area that the factory sub box bolted onto.

 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,952 Posts
Discussion Starter #12
call around to some local shops and see if anyone has a plasma cutter. draw the area you want gone and they can have it out in a minute or two for a few bucks.

Would a plasma cutter be safe to use with a 4" depth behind the panel before it is the outside panel?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
81 Posts
I personally haven't had any issues with any type of sawzaw with a 4inch blade. My Rigid sawzaw has an adjustable backstop so that I can use only a 2 inch length of the blade. Ill finish off with a jigsaw with a sharp bi metal blade.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
104 Posts
I like my plasma cutter. It would make quick work of that....
Lay a welding blanket down, turn the amperage down, and cut away. 4" depth is plenty of leeway, it won't affect the outside panel.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,952 Posts
Discussion Starter #15
I ended up picking up the 14g shears from Harbor freight. It cut the metal like butter. Well until it caught a double panel and snapped the blade in half. Luckily I was done when that happened. It only took a few minutes and there was no shavings or mess to clean up. I did not need a mat or any kind of protection. It simply cuts the metal like if you were peeling an orange in one shot. Then the cut out piece and this strip can be thrown away. Harbor Freight gave me my money back too so I did the job with zero costs involved lol. There is a verticle support piece that I somehow missed (DOH) on the left side so I was not able to get as much opening size as I had wanted but I am still looking into that part. But with the opening that I did get I am starting to think I want to run a single Morel Ultimo sc 10 instead of the Polk 8's. I have modeled the subs in Winsisd and the Morel when ran ported kicks the crap out of the 3 8's but in sealed they are virtually the same with only +1 db below 45hz down for the Morel and above 45hz the Polks jump to a +1db. In the end they pretty much hit the same db after 80hz.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,952 Posts
Discussion Starter #16
I like my plasma cutter. It would make quick work of that....
Lay a welding blanket down, turn the amperage down, and cut away. 4" depth is plenty of leeway, it won't affect the outside panel.
Well that would definately help with the double sheet sections.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
47 Posts
Hey, I am a fellow HHR owner looking at creative ways of building a custom box in the hatch area like you are. What is the depth back there with the area you want to remove gone? What are u attempting to fit back there as well, is that 3-8's?
 
1 - 17 of 17 Posts
Top