How to cut brass discs with woodworking tools

UKworkshop.co.uk

Help Support UKworkshop.co.uk:

Droogs

Is that chisel shar ... Ow
Joined
14 Mar 2013
Messages
5,587
Reaction score
2,543
Location
Edinburgh
Yes it is but is more than capable of turning non ferrous metals. I have used one for years to make finials and knobs etc for boxes and even used it to make a Victorian style set of 84 balusters 15mm high for holding a external water cooling pipe set up for a PC case in the shape of a guys Neo-gothic mansion. Similar to the pic below
1637411363985.png
 

Sachakins

The most wasted of days is one without woodwork
Joined
4 Apr 2020
Messages
1,038
Reaction score
700
Location
Liverpool
Wood lathe totally capable of turning non ferrous metals.
Here's a guy turning brass.

 

Old.bodger

Established Member
Joined
11 Aug 2018
Messages
136
Reaction score
47
Location
Guildford
I think you missed / misunderstood the mention of a hole saw in an earlier post. They are like drills with a saw blade around them. Ideal for the purpose you describe.
 

Cabinetman

Established Member
Joined
5 Jan 2017
Messages
2,704
Reaction score
1,525
Location
lincolnshire Wolds
I certainly would not use a tablesaw for this operation.
If it’s all you have – maybe, but I was always taught never to cut across a circular section on a table saw. If the blade catches the work will spin! You will need to find some sort of method to hold it using G cramps or similar, not just as it is, the cramp won’t hold on the circular section. Ian
Edit I am assuming you have a crosscut slide on your saw.
 

Ttrees

Iroko loco!
Joined
18 Nov 2012
Messages
3,843
Reaction score
560
Location
In me workshop
I had the same thought. They aren’t thick enough, but I bought some anyway and they turned out to not be completely flat either, somewhat cone shaped. Shame because washers would be the perfect solution if they could be obtained in the right sizes ☹
Can you not hammer them flat, drill and pien them with even a soft nail to get the thickness you desire, the contrast might be nice, but you could get thin rod for an invisible result.
Once you pien something you will be looking to use it everywhere.

A good method with a short soft nail, say a roofing nail, is to grind the tip off and pien the end,
using the head against a sledge hammer or anvil and a wee warington style hammer, cut it off and repeat.
Great for machine badges or whathaveyou.
Grip-Rite #11 x 1/2 in. Electro-Galvanized Steel Roofing Nails (1  lb.-Pack)-12EGRFG1 - The Home Depot
 

Attachments

  • 1637440280944.jpeg
    1637440280944.jpeg
    2 KB · Views: 1

Mike57

Member
Joined
6 Sep 2021
Messages
8
Reaction score
6
Location
Wiltshire
I think any search needs to know the thickness of the disc as it affects the process likely to be used to make it. Apologies if I missed the size in the thread above. But increasing the thickness limits the choice of process (as well as cost and batch size obviously).
Thinner items like washers can also be flattened more easily if needed. And much easier to make oneself from sheet with a holesaw, say.
So might a stack of thin discs work better economically?
And it gives the option of a 'value added' visual feature of multiple materials such as brass, steel, brass or brass, wood, brass for example.
 

Fergie 307

Established Member
UKW Supporter
Joined
28 Dec 2019
Messages
1,311
Reaction score
689
Location
Sandy Bedfordshire
Try a search on e bay for round brass, or whatever, discs. There are people doing laser cut round discs in steel and stainless, I dare say there will be others offering this service in other metals. 25 mm should be no problem for a decent bandsaw in aluminium, just make sure you lubricate it and use at least an 18 tpi blade. You won't be able to do brass on a wood bandsaw unless you can slow the blade right down. Copper is a pain however you do it as it heats up so quickly. Parting 25mm copper round bar on a metal lathe you would really need full flow cooling.
 

Snettymakes

Established Member
UKW Supporter
Joined
15 Mar 2020
Messages
244
Reaction score
158
Location
Chorley
I should have stated that for thickness, I need a variety, but mostly using around 5mm.

For those asking the use.. I’m making walking sticks and use these as transitions between the handle and cane
 

Adam W.

Established Member
UKW Supporter
Joined
18 Apr 2021
Messages
2,565
Reaction score
2,756
Location
London, Jutland.
It sounds like you need to experiment with what you have (a variable speed wood lathe and find something to part them off with) rather than ask for the perfect solution on a forum, because you're doing something which is unusual.
 

Fergie 307

Established Member
UKW Supporter
Joined
28 Dec 2019
Messages
1,311
Reaction score
689
Location
Sandy Bedfordshire
yes some context would have been helpful. I’m making walking sticks for sale on Etsy, and the metal discs act as a transition between cane and handle. So I need the process to be repeatable and quick . Using hand tools is out of the question unfortunately.

I started out using brass sheet but it results in to much cleanup. Though now I think about it, a circle cutting jig would obviously improve that and as each disc ends up with a hole in the middle (for a pin/tenon that joins the handle and cane) then I could start with the hole and use that for the jig pivot 🤔.

I should have posted here weeks ago 🙄.
If these are just essentially a trim, for appearance then why not cut them from tube, much cheaper and easier to do. Just turn down the end of one of your two components to the ID of the tube and viola.
 

Fergie 307

Established Member
UKW Supporter
Joined
28 Dec 2019
Messages
1,311
Reaction score
689
Location
Sandy Bedfordshire
For aluminium, brass or copper tube you can use an adjustable wheel cutter. Not expensive and will make a nice clean cut. Just go gently, if you put too much pressure on the wheel it will push an indentation in the pipe and reduce the diameter at the cut which you don't want. Doing it this way you will have no waste and I should think each cut will take about 30 seconds in copper, a bit longer in brass but still quick and simple. I would be wary of fitting copper in contact with wood as it will stain the wood over time.
 

Woodbee2

Member
Joined
1 May 2021
Messages
17
Reaction score
8
Location
Crowborough, E Sussex
My Startrite Bandsaw happily cuts metal BUT... I can slow the speed right down, and use a metal cutting blade, 14+ TPI.
The biggest danger is the bar tries to roll in towards the blade to start with, resulting in a powerful SNATCH, and again when you have nearly cut through. The solution is to make cradle which can be clamped to stop this rolling force... very light pressure at the start of the cut...and at the end....with moderate pressure in the middle to cut through the thickest part. And listen to the machine....if it struggles a bit ease off the feed pressure.
Also make sure ALL the thrust bearings and guides are as close as possible to the blade, which gives the blade support, and stops most of any wobble in the cut. Don’t even try using a blunt blade....and wear EAR DEFENDERS.
The noise can be deafening!
Be interested to hear which method you use.
The obvious solution is a Metal Lathe and simply part them off, having drilled the centre hole first...I don’t think my model engineer Lathe is big enough but I might try a few.
 
Top