Tag Archives: steel cutting tool

Cool New Steel Cutting Tool

Cool New Tool?

In the world of tools, there is rarely a better mousetrap. However this steel cutting tool may or may not be an actual Cool New Tool:
(Author’s disclaimer: I have never used this product and this is not an endorsement. I do not receive a kick back in the event you happen to invest in one or more)

*Cool New Tools steel cutter

Accurately cutting steel roofing and siding (more often siding, as few buildings have door and window openings in their roofs) can be a daunting proposition. I’ve written about it in the past: https://www.hansenpolebuildings.com/2012/07/cutting-steel/

This product is obviously being shipped to the purchaser from overseas (due to long ship times and all measurements being given in millimeters):
“Items shipped from our global warehouse may take up to 2 – 4 weeks for delivery due to customs check. If your tracking doesn’t show the most up to date status, please do not panic, it’s on its way!
On very rare occasions, shipping might take up to 6 weeks due to customs check.
We have a large assortment of products stocked in different warehouses when you order multiple items at a time, they may be shipped separately so they get to you faster. You may receive one item before the next.”

Here are the alleged features:
“Attaches to any standard drill transforming it into a safe, easy to use, sheet metal cutting tool.
It fits onto a standard drill (keyed or keyless chuck).
It cuts sheet metal and many other thin materials.
Ergonomic design handle for comfort.
Straight cutting and curve cutting capable.
Double cutting head and 360 degree adjustable.
Compact size, easy to operate and labor-saving.
Excellent cutting effect without any burrs and edges.
It should used with an 8mm electric drill or an air drill.
Suitable for car repair and maintenance and metal sheet productions.”

This product can be yours for $39.95, but wait…..there’s more!!
If you try to leave the page without ordering they offer a 10% discount!

In the event one or more of my loyal readers happens to try this steel cutting tool out, I’d appreciate feedback.

Swenson Shear to Cut Steel

More Ways to Cut Steel

When I owned M & W Building Supply in the 1980’s, for a plethora of reasons we would end up with extra sheets of steel roofing and siding. Sometimes it would just be a quantity error on a takeoff, other times clients would just plain change their minds.

As people expected their steel panels to be cut to length – we looked for a method to be able to effectively do so.

Swenson ShearAnd the answer was – a Swenson Shear.

I was writing about Michael Yamamoto’s solution to cutting steel panels last Friday, when into my email box leapt a newsletter from, Swenson Shear. Obviously, I was thinking too hard about the entire subject.

Our Swenson Shear of the 80s was effective enough to efficiently square cut roll formed steel siding and roofing panels. It was the perfect solution to what we needed at the time.

Swenson has come a long way in three decades.

While the investment required for one of their shears is prohibitive for the average do-it-yourselfer, for a builder it could very well be a “must have” tool.

Swenson now offers what they title as a “Heavy Duty Pivot Shear”. This tool is ideal for shearing heavy gauge (up to 24 gauge) exposed fastener panels with the ability to shear straight at 90 degrees and up to a 9/12 gable angle. The shear has custom blades to match any panel profile, providing a clean cut, eliminating burred edges as well as flying metal. At 130 pounds, it is light weight enough to be transportable to any jobsite.

Check it out here: https://www.swensonshear.com/

If I was building pole buildings as a regular event, I’d be looking into a Swenson Shear as a must have investment – especially for being able to accurately and easily cut angles across gable ends.

Sheet Metal Cutting Tools

There is absolutely nothing finer than a recommendation from one of our clients on a tool, process or procedure which they have used to make construction of their new Hansen Pole Building kit package easier.

A challenge, for many, is having to cut steel panels and trims with various sheet metal cutting tools often being inadequate or not available.  After reading my article https://www.hansenpolebuildings.com/blog/2014/07/star-wars/ Michael Yamamoto (yes, I dole out credit where credit is due) passed along these words:

“Hi, here’s some feedback on your sheet metal cutting tool inquiry. I ended up using a “double cut” circular saw with two blades spinning in opposite directions. https://www.harborfreight.com/5-in-double-cut-saw-68316.html

It worked great. If I laid the panel upside-down (ribs downward) flat over some 2x4s while weighing down the panel next to the cut line, cutting across ribs was a breeze.”

 Now this is not a tool I happen to own….at least not yet! But at $60, I’d be willing to give it a try.

Just like picking hotel rooms (sadly I live in them more than under my own roof – which is a story for another day), I read the product reviews and take them with a block of salt.

Given Michael’s feedback after use, I was surprised to see this product garner only a 2.7 out of 5 rating from reviewers. I did remind myself, most folks who are satisfied with a product, never take the time to leave a positive review – they are too busy happily using the product!

Easy to use got three votes to every one difficult to use, while fast cutting speed rocked for the reviewers (considering cutting steel with snips is very slow – this is a huge plus in my book).

The most liked negative reviewer stated:

The basic concept of the saw is good, but the execution is flawed. When holding the saw with the right hand and the support handle with the left, the positioning is just awkward. The saw is too off balance with the handle placed too far from the main body. The on-off switch while similar to other brands, just feels cheap and prone to failure. Time will tell.

My BIGGEST gripe is the guarding seems poorly designed and dangerous. Normally with a circular saw, the saw is slid forward into the material, which pushes the guard open, allowing the material to be cut. This saws mounting clamp for the guarding is positioned below the opening or the guard. This means that when you press the saw into the material, it only goes a very short distance before it hangs up on the screw clamp for the guard. To continue further, either the saw must be rotated back over the clamp or the saw must be lifted partially out of the material being cut. The only way to really use this saw is to manually open the guard all the way, then start the saw and plunge into the material. This is EXTREMELY dangerous. Examining the guard, the solution would be to rotate the clamp out of the way and re-tighten. The clamp is part of the housing and can’t be rotated.

While I have the ability to make a new handle mount and rework the guard mount to make this saw safe to use, I wouldn’t recommend this saw to the casual user. There is too much potential for injury due to the guarding design. For those users, I would recommend getting a name brand saw. For experienced users who are aware of proper safety procedures, this is a handy tool when used with caution.”

As with any power tool – use it safely and sanely.

I will look forward to feedback from others who have used sheet metal cutting tools, or similar, on their pole buildings. And yes, next time I am in my favorite Home Depot, I will be heading to the tool department to check them out!