How do i cut an axle to my custom length without powertools

Please let me know if you have any ideas



Bolt cutters, hacksaw, the slightest bit of effort. I’m pretty sure you can cut a 1/4” shaft with an intense glare.


Have you always used power tools to cut 1/4” shafts?

don’t use bolt cutters, it makes for a very sloppy cut, which can cause issues when trying to put gears or stuff on the shaft.


We cut them like that and then file them down. We like to file them down anyways for less friction so the bolt cutters are convenient.


If you want an incredibly sloppy cut, you can a low strength shaft by bending it back and forth repeatedly. No tools, power or otherwise, required.


That’s also how you get a bent shaft lol.

If you were super desperate to have a cut perhaps you could simply file it in half with the sharp edge of a file and just grind through it.

when I don’t have access to power tools, I prefer the “rub two shafts together” method. Over time, the shafts will erode each other to the point of breaking. takes a little longer than traditional methods, but you end up cutting 2 shafts at once so you end up saving time.


Back to some “real answers” to the OP:

You need a hacksaw with a fine-tooth blade, a file, and preferably a vise. Our robotics teams rarely use power tools for cutting. Sometimes a Dremel tool is used, but usually only when the axle is installed on a robot and must be cut “in place”.

Besides your local hardware store, here’s a good source for a hacksaw, fine tooth blades, and a file:

If you don’t have many tools at all, you might consider their team tool kit, which has most everything except a file:

Next, go to your nearest Harbor Freight and get a little vise, maybe this one: Be sure to use a 20% off coupon (you can get a HF coupon app on your phone)


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