If you are planning to work with any type of pipe, there are really only two tools recommended: a pipe cutter and a hacksaw. Each of these tools has advantages and disadvantages that you should be aware of before you head out to your local home improvement store to make a purchase. Read on to get the low down on pipe cutters and hacksaws.
A Hacksaw is a General Purpose Tool
People continue to use hacksaws on pipes because it is a multi-purpose tool that they may already have on hand. Even if you have to buy a new hacksaw, you can use a hacksaw to do all sorts of projects. You can really only use pipe cutters to cut pipe. Therefore, if you aren’t going to be cutting lots of pipes, it may not be cost-effective to purchase a new tool.
A Hacksaw Doesn’t Do the Best Job of Cutting Through Pipe
The truth of the matter is that a pipe cutter does do a better job of cutting through pipe. You can get an even cut that isn’t jagged if you use the pipe cutter properly. Even with a steady hand, you will probably have to modify the pipe once you have made a cut with a hacksaw. In fact, some do-it-yourselfers have actually ruined pipes by cutting them with a hacksaw. Pipe cutting can be done with a hacksaw but a pipe cutter just does a better job.
Pipe Cutters Cut Pipe Perfectly
When used correctly, a pipe cutter is going to give you the results you are looking for every time. The difference is that a hacksaw comes in contact with the pipe from one side only. A pipe cutter, on the other hand, rotates around the pipe to score it and remove the desired portion. You will need to know how to use the pipe cutter correctly to get optimum results. For example, you will need to work at a slow and steady pace with the pipe cutter. Make sure that you read all of the manufacturer’s instructions before you begin your pipe cutting.
Pipe Cutters Need Care
All tools need care; however, you will have to make sure that the blades on your pipe cutter are sharp in order to get a good cut. If you have found a pipe cutter in your dad’s workshop, you should take the blades to be sharpened or simply replace them.
One Pipe Cutter Isn’t Going to Be Sufficient
The one big disadvantage for the do-it-yourselfer regarding a pipe cutter is the fact that you can’t use one pipe cutter for all of your needs. If you take a trip to your local home improvement store, you will find that there are at least four different types of pipe cutters; PVC, copper, steel, and soil. This means that depending on what type of pipe you are cutting, you will have to buy a new tool.
There you have it. Pipe cutters and hacksaws both have their strengths. Depending on the type of project you are working on, you will need to select one of the two tools. Use the information above to make the best choice.