How to Use Nibbler

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A nibbler is a metal cutting device that is specifically made for intricate and art-related cutting of sheet metal. There are electrically powered nibblers, air-powered types and even add-on attachments for electric drills. Although they can be used to cut straight and even lines, they are best suited for making curved or angled cuts.

Things You'll Need

  • Nibbler
  • Marking pen
  • Work bench, table or saw horses
  • Drill and metal drill bit
  • Draw or trace a design on a piece of sheet metal with your marking pen.

  • Drill a hole with your drill and metal bit through the sheet metal at a point that you wish to begin cutting with your nibbler. Make sure the drill bit turns in a clockwise direction and drills through the sheet metal. The size of the hole must be large enough to accommodate the cutting end of your nibbler.

  • Grasp the sheet metal in one hand and hold it off the edge of your work bench or table. If it is a large sheet and needs to be supported, rest it between two saw horses.

  • Place the nibbler cutting end into the placement hole, turn on the power and move the nibbler in the direction of the pattern that you are cutting out. By moving either the sheet metal or the nibbler itself, you can easily follow any pattern.

  • Cut along the pattern design, and if you must stop and reposition, turn the nibbler off first and re-trace the cut back to the original placement hole.

Tips & Warnings

  • Always wear leather palm gloves when handling sheet metal. The edges are very sharp, and gloves will protect your hands from cuts.

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