How to Make Large Holes in Stainless Steel Plate

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Stainless steel is a very hard metal and you need specialized tools for cutting large holes into it. Bi-metal hole saws work excellently for cutting small amounts of stainless steel. For the average homeowner, an investment in one of these saws will yield positive results, especially when used with cutting oil. However, you must take certain precautions to ensure you do not scratch the surface of the stainless while you cut it.

Things You'll Need

  • Low-tack painter's tape
  • Marker
  • Clamps
  • Hole saw
  • Hand drill
  • Cutting oil
  • Rag
  • Cover the area over and around where you need to cut with low-tack painter's tape to prevent any chips from scratching the surface of the stainless as they wrap around the saw blade.

  • Place a dot with a marker to note the center of the hole.

  • Secure your stainless steel to a work surface with clamps. The type of clamp you must use will vary depending on the product you are drilling. In many cases, a bar clamp will work nicely.

  • Secure the shank of the hole saw into the chuck of your hand drill. If the drill has variable speed settings, select a medium setting.

  • Place the tip of the pilot drill bit extending from the center of the hole saw directly on top of the tip and hold the drill bit at a 90-degree angle to your cutting surface. Pull the trigger on the hand drill and begin to drill slowly and smoothly.

  • Add a small amount of cutting oil to the edge of the hole saw as it starts to cut through the stainless steel. Apply a small amount of pressure to the back of the hand drill to keep the saw blade cutting evenly through the material until it breaks through the metal. Add additional cutting oil if the blade dries out while you are still cutting. When the bit breaks through the stainless steel, the hole saw will plunge into the cutting surface.

  • Remove the tape from the stainless steel and wipe the cutting oil from the metal with a dry rag.

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References

  • Photo Credit Hemera Technologies/PhotoObjects.net/Getty Images
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