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Old 11-17-2015, 04:01 PM   #1
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Cut hole in metal by hand?


I need to drill a hole about 2" in a metal distribution panel to attach a conduit nipple to a sub panel...
but the hole saws are SO expensive!
I don't want to pay $15 just to drill one hole.

so rather than using a hole saw... can I use a hack saw or something like that to cut a round hole? If so, how could that be done?
Perhaps I could trace a circle with a compass and then drill a hole in the center with the largest bit I have, then cut slots from the center hole to the trace and work my way horizontally to cut the pieces off until I have a hole. Then clean with a file.

Any ideas?
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Old 11-17-2015, 04:12 PM   #2
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jigsaw
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Old 11-17-2015, 04:15 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mako1 View Post
jigsaw
electric jigsaw?

We don't have an electric jigsaw

We have a reciprocating saw
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Old 11-17-2015, 04:20 PM   #4
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Proper way would be a punch . But they cost more than the hole saw.
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Old 11-17-2015, 04:32 PM   #5
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Stop being stupid, spend the $15.
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Old 11-17-2015, 04:43 PM   #6
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I agree that you are going to spend more time to reinvent the wheel.

Do you have a harbor freight around? They are better than just throw away.

$16 and you get a whole set.

http://www.harborfreight.com/34-in-5-in-carbon-steel-hole-saw-set-18-pc-68115.html
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Old 11-17-2015, 05:13 PM   #7
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I have a step drill for the electrical box holes--works well--but cost a lot more than $15.00
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Old 11-17-2015, 05:14 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Windows on Wash View Post
I agree that you are going to spend more time to reinvent the wheel.

Do you have a harbor freight around? They are better than just throw away.

$16 and you get a whole set.

http://www.harborfreight.com/34-in-5-in-carbon-steel-hole-saw-set-18-pc-68115.html
There is a harbor frieght nearby and that looks like a good deal, thanks!
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Old 11-17-2015, 05:16 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by oh'mike View Post
I have a step drill for the electrical box holes--works well--but cost a lot more than $15.00
I wanted a step drill bit but they are ridiculously expensive at HD and the biggest one is too small.

Ebay has good prices on bits but most of them are also too small.
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Old 11-17-2015, 05:21 PM   #10
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If you want to spend ten times more time and end up with jagged odd ball shaped hole with burrs that may or may not even fit the connector then do it by hand.
Step drill or hole saw is what I use.
Might take a whole 5 min. for perfectly round hole.
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Old 11-17-2015, 05:51 PM   #11
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A hole saw of that diameter will come in handy more than once.
Need to bore a hole in the back of a cabinet to pass cables through?
Or drill a hole in the top of a desk to pass cables through.
Or... always handy to have on hand.
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Old 11-17-2015, 07:12 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by poiihy View Post
I wanted a step drill bit but they are ridiculously expensive at HD and the biggest one is too small.

Ebay has good prices on bits but most of them are also too small.
The step drills vary a lot in quality---I've tried the cheap ones and they do not last long--so I broke down and spent over $40.00 for a Milwaukee one
That was a couple years back---it is still as good as new.
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Old 11-17-2015, 08:14 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Windows on Wash View Post

Do you have a harbor freight around? They are better than just throw away.

$16 and you get a whole set.

http://www.harborfreight.com/34-in-5-in-carbon-steel-hole-saw-set-18-pc-68115.html
i have that set. pretty much garbage. but its 10+years old. so perhaps they are better now.

Quote:
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A hole saw of that diameter will come in handy more than once.
Need to bore a hole in the back of a cabinet to pass cables through?
Or drill a hole in the top of a desk to pass cables through.
Or... always handy to have on hand.
^this.
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Old 11-19-2015, 07:44 AM   #14
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with a 2" hole saw you drill must turn very slow (frist gear and not full throttle) or you will burn hole saw in few seconds
and for the kits at 16$ you will probably burn the hole saw after one hole, those are only good for wood most of the time
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