Cutting angle iron at 45
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  1. #1
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    Apr 2018
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    Cutting angle iron at 45

    So I am building a angle iron frame in the shape of a square. What are some tips and tricks for this. Like I learned the hardway to not reuse the miter cut for the next piece as the angle is somehow on the wrong side. And since the saw only does left 90, I am not sure to rotate the angle left or right to get the complimentary 45 or it doesn’t matter. It usually takes a min to think it through. And when I scribe the line I usually scribe the wrong side when flipped so I scribe the whole the angle all sides etc and it takes forever. What’s a fast full proof way to cut and mark the miters on the metal 4x6. I am thinking of setting the saw to 90 and then putting a 45 square in it and just flipping the direction of the square for the right and left 45s. Therefore I wouldn’t have to rotate the angle and mark on multiple sides....
    Last edited by n00b; 03-14-2019 at 10:11 AM.

  2. #2
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    Re: Cutting angle iron at 45

    after making many many mistakes with mitre-ing angle and channel, I think i have FINALLY learned...

    it just takes time. Cut one end on one side of your saw, cut the other end at the other side of your saw, WITHOUT turning the angle/channel etc. Think twice before cutting so you don't snooker yourself with too short an end to hold in the vise, etc.

  3. #3
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    Re: Cutting angle iron at 45

    Quote Originally Posted by Munkul View Post
    after making many many mistakes with mitre-ing angle and channel, I think i have FINALLY learned...

    it just takes time. Cut one end on one side of your saw, cut the other end at the other side of your saw, WITHOUT turning the angle/channel etc. Think twice before cutting so you don't snooker yourself with too short an end to hold in the vise, etc.
    Yeah but sometimes i am working with 2ft angle and am cutting a 15" sections with miters. I simply dont have the length to run the angle on the other side and clamp it down so i have to resort to alternative means. First time i cut angle on the bandsaw was a few days ago and it wasnt until the next day i figured out the thing about throwing out the miter and recutting it. Plus... my band saw is in the corner between a wall and garage door and if i ran it on the other side, it would hit the wall

    ALSO QUESTION: Can i use aluminum brazing rods in my stick welding holder to weld aluminum. Like i dont know where to buy aluminum stick welding rods like what are they called and where can i find them.... OR can i weld aluminum with 7018 or something
    Will this work? https://www.harborfreight.com/8-piec...ods-44810.html
    Last edited by n00b; 03-14-2019 at 11:21 AM.
    "It's always SPOOOOOOKY Season."

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  4. #4
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    Re: Cutting angle iron at 45

    Quote Originally Posted by n00b View Post
    ALSO QUESTION: Can i use aluminum brazing rods in my stick welding holder to weld aluminum. .... OR can i weld aluminum with 7018 or something
    Interesting ideas, but nope and nope.

    Dunno about the HFT stuff, but a lot of the "Majick Weld Aluminum with a Bic Lighter" rods are actually zinc, so you're not really welding but more like soldering...

  5. #5
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    Re: Cutting angle iron at 45

    To cut the opposite angle flip the angle iron upside down and use a piece of square tube as a spacer in the vise.
    Lincolin Power Wave 450, Lincoln Powermig 255, Lincoln Pro Mig 140, Lincoln Squarewave Tig 275, Miller Big 40 G(with Hobart Hefty suitcase), Thermal Arc 95S and Esab PCM875 in an already full machine shop.

  6. #6
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    Re: Cutting angle iron at 45

    On angle I usually cut it straight at a length which just touches on the inside of the joint, leaving a open outside corner. The miter is then cut extending past the cut edge. By cutting that way just 1 outside corner weld is needed eliminating in most cases a need to grind out an inside corner weld. I often cut the miter with a 6" cut disc as it's often faster than the saw
    Miller xmt304, Miller S22 p12, Miier Maxstar SD, Miller 252 w 30A, Miller super32p12, Lincoln Ranger 9, Thermal Arc 181I with spoolgun, Hypertherm 10000 ,Smith torches. Esab 161lts miniarc.

  7. #7
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    Re: Cutting angle iron at 45

    Don't cut anything at an angle. Two legs (sides) cut square and the other two notched to receive them, compensated so they form an outside corner-to-corner weld. All square cuts, easier to get exact.

  8. #8
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    Re: Cutting angle iron at 45

    Quote Originally Posted by Yofish View Post
    Don't cut anything at an angle. Two legs (sides) cut square and the other two notched to receive them, compensated so they form an outside corner-to-corner weld. All square cuts, easier to get exact.
    Not at my shop you wont

  9. #9
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    Re: Cutting angle iron at 45

    I'd rather scribe them and cut with an angle grinder than trust the vice and angle on my chop saw. Just easier for me if I only have to do a couple of them and I can always adjust the fit with the grinder till it's right.

  10. #10
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    Re: Cutting angle iron at 45

    Trust me it gets easier at 46 and even more at 47. Practice makes you better.
    Lincoln, ESAB, Thermal Dynamics, Victor, L-tec, Miller, Dewalt, Makita, Kalamzoo. Hand tools, power tools, welding and cutting tools.

  11. #11
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    Re: Cutting angle iron at 45

    Quote Originally Posted by Bonzoo View Post
    Not at my shop you wont
    It aint your shop and that don't answer the mans question.

  12. #12
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    Re: Cutting angle iron at 45

    Quote Originally Posted by Bonzoo View Post
    Not at my shop you wont
    Every reply you ever make to any thread always says essentially the same thing:

    "Anybody who does anything different than me is a butcher and an idiot and shouldn't be allowed to weld."

    Which means that we're all pretty much butchers and idiots and shouldn't be allowed to weld, since almost nobody does it the way you do it.

    We get it already.

    So why not save yourself some time and trouble, and simply copy/paste the same reply to every thread?

    "Anybody who does anything different than me is a butcher and an idiot and shouldn't be allowed to weld."

  13. #13
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    Re: Cutting angle iron at 45

    Mark the cuts with a square and soapstone, then torch cut and touch up the fit with a grinder.
    Tweco Fabricator 211i
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  14. #14
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    Re: Cutting angle iron at 45

    When I was younger I use to help a buddy in the winter months do replacement windows, bays, bows, etc... after I botched a few miters on clear pine, i learned real quick how to cut miters...lol
    Tweco Fabricator 211i
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  15. #15
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    Re: Cutting angle iron at 45

    There is more than one way to do the same job so who can say it is right or wrong as long as you get the job done.
    JOHN

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  16. #16
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    Re: Cutting angle iron at 45

    Quote Originally Posted by Yofish View Post
    Don't cut anything at an angle. Two legs (sides) cut square and the other two notched to receive them, compensated so they form an outside corner-to-corner weld. All square cuts, easier to get exact.
    over the year's i've made hundreds of air conditioner security cages from 2x2x1/4" angle iron and have found keeping two sides with square ends and coping two sides makes a square or rectangle frame that i believe allows for superior strength over 45 degree cuts.
    i.u.o.e. # 15
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  17. #17
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    Re: Cutting angle iron at 45

    Quote Originally Posted by docwelder View Post
    over the year's i've made hundreds of air conditioner security cages from 2x2x1/4" angle iron and have found keeping two sides with square ends and coping two sides makes a square or rectangle frame that i believe allows for superior strength over 45 degree cuts.
    Im not a good fabricator and don't ever claim to be one, but looking at what you are talkin about verses 45 degree miters I think I would have to agree with you on the strength factor, it seems to me it might take a bit longer though, I don't do enough of that type of work to know the difference

  18. #18
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    Re: Cutting angle iron at 45

    Presuming the stress is down the middle, I think properly welded 45s is stronger. I think 45s would be expose poor welds more readily than coped.

    However coping is the way I fit angle,mostly. If done properly, always the same notch/cut inside and at the ends of a frame.

  19. #19
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    Re: Cutting angle iron at 45

    It really doesn't matter, either way is stronger than it needs to be as long as some amount of competence is involved
    Miller xmt304, Miller S22 p12, Miier Maxstar SD, Miller 252 w 30A, Miller super32p12, Lincoln Ranger 9, Thermal Arc 181I with spoolgun, Hypertherm 10000 ,Smith torches. Esab 161lts miniarc.

  20. #20
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    Re: Cutting angle iron at 45

    Cutting and prepping efficiently is usually the major time difference IMO, and when using tig for something like this I try to plan cuts to minimize total weld length, even if it means more prep time. If the corner fitup(cope vs miter), or leg welded to side vs.placed under is a structural concern and in ANY danger of failure you are totally and completely underdesigned! I understand the argument of which you prefer for distortion, ease of cut, etc. but the argument as to which is stronger? IF it's that close to failure to make a difference (unless you're at the edge working for nasa) you undoubtedly need to upscale your design in more than a few places. If this job came to me I'd cut most of it in a bandsaw with some stick lube, always stack material and make multiple cuts at once when possible, slower feed for stainless, use a square tube spacer to clamp the angle in different positions for speed/ease of positioning when cutting. No need to get fancy with a cutting station, short aluminum ladder, piece of 2x6, saw horses, 2x4 scraps nailed together, etc, and a cheap, but well set up bandsaw will do. I always add something (again long 2x4, piece of steel strap tube angle etc) to use as an adjustable stop attaching point (which again can be made from anything clamped, screwed, etc) to make ACCURATE repeated cuts (the key to fast, good fitup, which is key to stainless).

  21. #21
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    Re: Cutting angle iron at 45

    The setup time for a chop saw or bandsaw just isn't worth the time. If you' over angle then grinding is needed to close the corner, is under then you have a gap that shrinks thus pulling. If appearance is an issue only then are mitres worth it, IMO, but far be it from me to say there's only one way....

  22. #22
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    Re: Cutting angle iron at 45

    I was looking at it from a smaller shop perspective, which the OP seems to be operating from. Fully robotic multi axis waterjet would likely be best and fastest, but i'm sure to the op that machine is as available to him as an ironworker. So for a real world small shop setting up a bandsaw or cold cut twice (once to 90, cut everything, once to 45 cut the rest) wouldn't take long nor be difficult. The temporary cutting station i suggested was more for the use of stops for repeated accuracy, as that is the trick to having a fast, perfect fit up (all matching pieces are of equal length) on a piece like the OP's. As for setup time on temp. cutting stations I do is usually around 15 mins. What other cutting process would you use in place, YoFish? also, be sure to check out the bandsaw set up guides if your getting lots of blade drift, as even with a cheap model as long as nothing is bent you should be able to get a near dead accurate cut - as for the abrasive chop saw, inaccuracy is the nature of that beast. Having one cut be off, then grinding, and having to then adjust every other cut in chain reaction will waste most of your time if you're careful lol Ahh i hate that dance in particular

  23. #23
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    Re: Cutting angle iron at 45

    I generally have some cut offs of rectangular tubing I can use as spacers for just flipping angle over for cutting the other end. Works as long as the angle is small enough for the vice to hang on to flipped over with a spacer..
    "The things that will destroy America are prosperity at any price, peace at any price, safety first instead of duty first, the love of soft living and the get rich quick theory of life." -Theodore Roosevelt

  24. #24
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    Cutting angle iron at 45

    Quote Originally Posted by Popeye an old miner View Post
    it seems to me it might take a bit longer though
    Done by hand, yes, probably. But a good iron worker machine has an angle iron notching tool on it - punch punch punch punch - done
    gotta be faster than setting up, cutting and verifying 45* miters imho



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  25. #25
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    Re: Cutting angle iron at 45

    We always cope instead of miter in my shop. We are often making frames to mount electrical control boxes on and need to drill mounting holes in those corners. Always easier to drill where there isnt a weld bead.
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