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Shopping advice requested for a saw that can cut wood, metal sheets, and acrylic sheets

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New Contributor

Shopping advice requested for a saw that can cut wood, metal sheets, and acrylic sheets

Hi all, I'm pretty excited to start DIYing but I'm clueless about the tools. I'd honestly like for someone to just load up a shopping cart for me and pass me the bill please!

 

My partner is after a circular saw for his timber, but I want to do other projects and none of them involve wood. My immediate project-to-do involves cutting acrylic sheets, but in the future I want to work on metal sheets too. I'd like to minimise single-use tools as well. I suggested a band saw, but my partner has no use for that, plus it'll take up more space than a saw, so we decided against it.

 

Is there a circular saw with changeable blades that we can both use for our projects? Between us we already have Ozito and DeWalt tools, so being able to share batteries and minimise chargers would be optimal, but a new brand is not a dealbreaker.

 

However though, I've read that typically, an off-the-shelf circular saw is by default for cutting timber, and that even if you had an interchangeable blade for metal-cutting, the saw itself may not be made for metal cutting due to different parts required for different purposes. For example saws for metal-cutting need a compartment for collecting metal chips, while a circular saw for timber has a dust collection bin. And on top of that there are many different types of blades, with different tips, some specify that they don't melt, etc etc. All rather overwhelming for an absolute beginner!

 

I've tried reading up on articles that teach you and tell you what you should be looking out for, but the subject is just not intuitive enough to me for me to apply to my shopping - particularly when I'm reading USA-oriented stuff but I'm in Australia, and I only have Bunnings' catalogue to look at (I don't know where else to go for these stuff). Knowing what I need and knowing where to look for them and being confident that I've picked the best tool are honestly 3 issues that are the worse hits to my excitement to start DIYing.

 

If someone would be so kind to just tell me "get product X for purpose A and product Y for purpose B and you're sorted", I would be so grateful please!

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Bunnings Team Member
Bunnings Team Member

Re: Shopping advice requested for a saw that can cut wood, metal sheets, and acrylic sheets

Welcome to the Bunnings Workshop community @Lexicon. It's fantastic to have you join us and many thanks for your questions.

 

You can rest assured you've come to the right place. I'd love to put a shopping cart together for you, but inevitably my choices for D.I.Y. tools might not suit your purposes. The issue with tools that can do multiple jobs is that although they do them well there will always be a tool exclusively for that job that does it better. This is the rabbit hole of D.I.Y. tools. 

 

Working off the details you have provided we can take a look at the Dewalt 18v Li-ion XR 184mm Brushless Circular Saw Skin Only. I've made contact with Dewalt technical assistance and they have advised that this saw is suitable for cutting metal with the correct blade installed. You'll need a carbide-tipped blade similar to Dewalt 184mm 36t XR Circular Saw Blade. To cut acrylic you would need a Dewalt 184mm 60t XR Circular Saw Blade, as the higher number of teeth will assist in preventing cracking of the sheet.

 

Although this machine can cut these different materials I would advise cleaning out the machine if switching from timber to steel. You'll need to clean any remaining timber residue out of the guards and collection area and remove the collector whilst cutting metal.

 

Depending on what work you will be doing on the acrylic and metal sheet you might wish to consider a jigsaw. Although not as fast at cutting as a circular saw, they are comparably more versatile allowing you to cut fine details and shapes. A multitude of different blades can be purchased to suit just about all your cutting needs.

 

Let me mention @JDE, @ProjectPete, @Stuardo, @Brad and @redracer01 to see if they would like to join the discussion about cutting metal and acrylic with a circular saw.

 

Since you are starting on you D.I.Y.ing adventure you might be interested in reading- 

 

 

 

 

 

Please let me know if you need further assistance or had any questions.

 

Mitchell

 

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Junior Contributor

Re: Shopping advice requested for a saw that can cut wood, metal sheets, and acrylic sheets

Hi Lexicon,

 

It isnt very easy to just get 1 tool to do the 3 different jobs but within saying that, a jigsaw can do all 3 jobs, just with different blades. But it is very slow cutting compared to a circular saw and can only cut thin steel. A circular saw will do the wood and acrylic, you will be better off getting different blades for each task, and also put masking tape where you are going to cut on the acrylic, makes a better cut. With cutting steel, an angle grinder will do that job, better go a 125mm (5") instead on the cheap 100mm (4").  Brand isnt really a big thing with most tools, it all comes down to YOUR budget. Bunnings do have a good selecting of tools, so do Total tools and Sydney tools. Its weather you want corded or cordless. They both have there advantages and disadvantages. 

 

The USA does seem to get the better tools then Australia sadly. 

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Experienced Contributor

Re: Shopping advice requested for a saw that can cut wood, metal sheets, and acrylic sheets

It was probably twenty years ago now, but I remember putting an abrasive disc blade on an old Stanley 7 1/4" circular saw and cutting sheet metal including corrugated iron. I'm not sure if bore diameters now prevent this but it worked well as you could incorporate a straight edge for the cut.

Afterwards I replaced the wood blade. This was a corded saw and cutting corrugated iron took a lot off the abrasive disc diameter quickly.

So I dunno if a cordless saw has the grunt for this?

 

 

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Experienced Contributor

Re: Shopping advice requested for a saw that can cut wood, metal sheets, and acrylic sheets

As Masters crashed, these saws (OX Dual Saw) dropped from $200 to $60 and what intrigued with this one was it had a shoe where you can use a straight edge. You can cut metal (I haven't tried it) and wood. However the maximum cut (wood) is only around 50mm.

 

The TV was flooded with ads for dual saws a while back but they seem to have all disappeared now?

 

Blog-11_What-Makes-Diamond-Blades-a-Better-Choice-than-Abrasive-Blades.jpg

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