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Author Topic: Miniature Chop Saw  (Read 608 times)

Bob La Londe

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Miniature Chop Saw
« on: June 23, 2017, 04:49:58 PM »
As part of my mold making business I often have to make insert pins for various custom projects.  Sometimes those pins are odd sizes making them either hard to find or expensive to buy as pins.  Frequently I can buy wire of some form or another that is exactly the perfect diameter, but then I have to cut it to length and clean up the ends.  One of my common sizes is 3/32.  10lbs of 3/32 stainless tig wire makes a lot of cheap pins for the price.  I just finished a mold that requires an insert pin thats a little over 1/16.  I found some straight lengths of .064 stainless wire at McMaster that will do the trick. 

If I use a clipper of some kind the end requires a lot of dressing on the grinder and/or bench sander.  If I use a cut off wheel in a rotary hand piece the cut is straighter with just a burr that needs to be polished off, but its awkward and a little hazardous with sparks going everywhere.  Also, its hard to get lengths just right when length is important.  The answer is to make them a little long and grind them to length.  YUCK!  Huge time suck ensues. 

I debated making a little chop saw using a rotary hand piece, and setting it up with a chute (for cut pieces to slide down into a catch box, and a length stop of some kind so I could dial in once for a particular project and cut a bunch of insert pins at once.  I may go that way.  When I was first learning about CNC machining I built a couple setups to use rotary hand pieces as spindles.  One was an adjust dual head setup to cut two molds plates at the same time. 

ANYWAY, after spending some time thinking about I did a search for miniature chop saws to see if there was anything out there.   It looks like there might be a few.  Even if I have to modify one or make a tool to go with one for a length stop its got to be faster than making one from scratch.  I could, but then instead of using my tools... well if you actually do your craft to make a few dollars you see where I am coming from.  I'm looking for a solution.  Not a project. 

So, here are the questions:

Do you have a miniature chopsaw or know somebody who has one?

If you do (or know somebody who does) how well does it work? 

If you do (or know somebody who does) how well does it hold up?

Is it home made or factory manufactured? 

If it is factory made what make and model is it? 

Does it use an abrasive blade or some other type?

How easy is it to change blades? 

Do you (or the person you know who has one) cut metal with it? 

I also make a few teflon pins.  It would be nice to be able to cut them quickly and easily to specific lengths as well.  If such a saw had a toothed metal cutting blade or could be quickly changed to a toothed blade it might serve a dual purpose.