Dremel vs. Hand Saw

Ok this is more a debate, but if you were in a competition or at your home base what would you use to cut your pieces first.

We usually use a hacksaw for everything unless its already on the robot (mostly because nobody on our team had used a dremel before). But better than both (at least in terms of cutting speed) is to use a bandsaw to cut metal.

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Definitely a dremel. it tends to cut things smoother, straighter, more accurately, and faster. it also has more uses than just cutting. it is very useful in smoothing the sharp edges when it’s done cutting. it basically a 1 Million in 1 tool. that’s just my two cents…

if you are looking at getting a dremel, I would recommend the Dremel 4300. I have it and it works amazing. one of the best models i have ever seen and used.

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we use a hacksaw for cutting c channel and aluminium but the dremel is useful for hard to reach pieces such as trimming the end off of a shaft that is too long.

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Hacksaw for steel, bandsaw for aluminum.

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bandsaw? your school has a bandsaw that robotics is allowed to use?

Yeah. Robotics is also 99.9% of its use.

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huh. our school has a woodshop, but its like, on the other side of school. and it’s a WOODSHOP, so yeah.

If you’re on a budget, just go hacksaw +tin snips. Its cheap, and works on pretty much everything.

IMO a Dremel isn’t really a necessity if you want parts cut well. Having a hacksaw and some patience can give you some really clean results with some practice. However if you plan on utilizing Lexan or ABS, investing in a good pair of tin snips will go a long way.

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I prefer a hand-saw honestly

We use our school’s metal shop

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I actually use tinsnips for cutting 1x1 angles and for 1x2 c channels. but not for anything else, it will bend the other prices too much. At that point I use a hacksaw, but for final rebuilds I like to use a chop saw on all cuts.

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Hacksaws and rotary tools both have their specific uses. I wouldn’t say that one is always better than the other. Hacksaws are generally faster for straight cuts through c-channel before you mount pieces, or when you have a reasonable amount of clearance on the robot. Rotary tools are better for cutting in tighter spaces, cutting axles (so that you can place a light chamfer on the edges). Obviously rotary tools are capable of plunge cuts while hacksaws are not. Both rotary tools and hacksaws work decently for cutting screws (both the aluminum ones and the steel ones), and neither one will ruin the threads to a point where they cannot be restored by backing a nut off of the screw. I usually go with rotary tools for cutting lexan or acrylic, but this releases a lot of dust so make sure you wear a mask or respirator if you choose that method.

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Our team actually has members specialized in specific tools so it depends on who’s present. I handle any rotary tool cutting, my sister uses the band saw, and the captain (and a couple of the other guys) uses a hand saw (for some reason, the males on our team are too afraid to use automatic tools…). :thinking:

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When using a Dremel, saw or file; be aware or metal particles getting into electrial or bearings.
Chips in a port will kill a brain.

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I personally use a dremel but any powered tool works very well. Depending on your patience and skill level almost every cut can be achieved with a dremel smoothly and without bending the metal. Although I would love to use a band saw but our coach is deathly afraid of all saws.

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we use a chop saw at out school, but a grinder wheel at comps.

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Angle grinder 20char

the Dremel 4300 actually comes with that attachment.