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Cutting Brass Tubing


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#1 Thom

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Posted 10 January 2008 - 02:13 PM

I'm having a lot of trouble cutting brass tubing with tubing cutters. The first thing I tried was tightening the cutters gradually, but this resulted in scratching a helix pattern on the tubing rather than any actual cutting. I got slightly better results with tightening the tubing cutters until the tubing visibly deformed, but I don't have the tools necessary to fix the crushed end. Does such thin brass require special cutters? Failing that, would a good bandsaw make a clean cut?
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#2 jwasko

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Posted 10 January 2008 - 03:23 PM

I use a Dremel cut-off disk, while wearing a face mask, safety glasses, and leather gloves.

Afterwards, I use another Dremel bit to sand the inner and outer edges of the cut end. The cuts won't be perfect, but your brass won't be bent in either.

I suppose that you could use the tubing cutter and then try grinding off the bent-in portion. I've never tried it, but it could work. Just be sure to cut your brass slightly longer (like 1/8" or so) so that the tubing doesn't come out too short.

Edited by jwasko, 10 January 2008 - 03:24 PM.

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#3 Maeric

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Posted 10 January 2008 - 04:22 PM

I have some trouble with this too. All you have to do is push on it in the opposite direction that it wants to. If it is going to be at the end of a barrel, and you don't mind crimping it, then just tighten it a lot before you turn it and it wont slide at all.

And yeah, a Dremel works great too.
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#4 DeceitfulSteve

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Posted 10 January 2008 - 06:51 PM

I've never used tubing cutters. Would sharpening help?

I get my best cuts with a hack saw and a miter box.
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#5 LastManAlive

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Posted 10 January 2008 - 06:59 PM

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Works great. I tried a larger one, but it dented the brass HORRIBLY. This one is tiny and cuts brass good and CPVC desently. I think I got mine for liek 3 bucks at a hobby store back in Maryland.
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#6 lionhead333

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Posted 10 January 2008 - 07:36 PM

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I use one of these on anything smaller than 1" PVC. On brass (17/32), The ends are pinched in ever so slightly. Hardly makes a difference compared to my old dremel cuts, and it cuts much cleaner.

EDIT: I forgot to say: the reamer (triangular piece of metal used to deburr) takes care of the indents. I can actually get the pipe to flare outward; useful if I'm too busy to watch a reload.

Edited by lionhead333, 10 January 2008 - 07:44 PM.

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#7 Thom

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Posted 10 January 2008 - 07:43 PM

Just bought the one LMA pictured on eBay. Thanks everyone!
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#8 AirApache

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Posted 14 January 2008 - 03:44 AM

Just bought the one LMA pictured on eBay. Thanks everyone!


The round cutters (like LMA posted) will often leave a "lip" that curves inward...make sure you don't make it too tight when using it. Personally, my best cuts with brass were using a handsaw. Never left a lip...though sometimes the cuts were pretty ugly.
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