Cutting Brass, Tin and Aluminium sheet

Hosted by Dave Parker from AFV Modeller magazine and Adam Wilder, this discussion group is geared towards modelling technique questions ranging from construction to final weathering. This forum was created so that "newbies" can post without being intimidated by the sometimes highly technical nature of the other discussion groups.

Cutting Brass, Tin and Aluminium sheet

Andre Sousa
Andre Sousa

May 27th, 2003, 4:02 pm #1

Hi
I was planning to start to use aluminium/tin/brass sheets to do some scratchbuilding in my models (fenders, schurzens, metallic boxes, etc…), but I have 2 quick questions:

Are there any tools anyone can recommend to make clean straight cuts on the metal sheets (no more than 0.020 inch/0.030 inch thick). Can you recommend me were can I find such tolls on the web?

what are the advantages/ disadvantages of the diferent types of metal over each other for modelling purposes (aluminium Vs brass Vs Tin)?


Thanks

Regards

Andre
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Jakko Westerbeke
Jakko Westerbeke

May 28th, 2003, 10:05 am #2

I (nearly) always use a standard modelling knife to cut thin metal sheet: put a steel ruler along the line you want to cut, and use an old(ish) blade* to score the metal repeatedly until you either get through, or until you can flex the metal so that it breaks along the line. You can also use scissors, but these will bend the metal as they cut, which won't happen (or at least, not nearly as much) if you use a knife and a ruler.

* You could use a new blade, but it will get dull very quickly, so IMHO you might as well use one that's already dull.
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John Kapinski
John Kapinski

June 3rd, 2003, 12:04 am #3

Hi
I was planning to start to use aluminium/tin/brass sheets to do some scratchbuilding in my models (fenders, schurzens, metallic boxes, etc…), but I have 2 quick questions:

Are there any tools anyone can recommend to make clean straight cuts on the metal sheets (no more than 0.020 inch/0.030 inch thick). Can you recommend me were can I find such tolls on the web?

what are the advantages/ disadvantages of the diferent types of metal over each other for modelling purposes (aluminium Vs brass Vs Tin)?


Thanks

Regards

Andre
Hi,
Dremel will cut anything. Just make sure to get appropriate cutting wheels for it. For metal, brass... I think wheels #409. Set it to around 25,000 to 30,000 RPM. It will do a nice job.

John
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Randy Riley
Randy Riley

June 11th, 2003, 4:42 pm #4

Hi
I was planning to start to use aluminium/tin/brass sheets to do some scratchbuilding in my models (fenders, schurzens, metallic boxes, etc…), but I have 2 quick questions:

Are there any tools anyone can recommend to make clean straight cuts on the metal sheets (no more than 0.020 inch/0.030 inch thick). Can you recommend me were can I find such tolls on the web?

what are the advantages/ disadvantages of the diferent types of metal over each other for modelling purposes (aluminium Vs brass Vs Tin)?


Thanks

Regards

Andre
I have a pair of metal shears which cut relatively thick sheets quickly. The only difficulty is that the metal tends to curl as it is cut. This can be reversed, but may not be as smooth and even as you might like.

I agree with previous post - a Dremel with a cutting bit works good as well. You'll probably need a fine straight file to smooth the ends after cutting (in my experience anyway).

Randy Riley
itauditor(remove this)@earthlink.net
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