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Motorsport Fabrication Fundamentals: Step 3: Cutting

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Step 3: Cutting


00:00 - Now that we have our raw materials, we can cut them to suit based off the cut list that we've developed.
00:05 To do this, we'll be using our band saw which makes it super easy to produce sharp, accurate cuts as well as making it easy to accurately cut the required 45° angles that we're incorporating into some of the parts.
00:18 This simply requires the locking handle on the base of the machine to be loosened off, then the bandsaw can be swivelled to the required angle before being locked in position again.
00:28 When cutting any angles, it's critical to make sure that the tube is clocked in the right direction so that the angles are opposing and therefore correct for your application.
00:38 This is one of those situations where measuring twice and cutting once is the motto to live by.
00:43 Double checking your measurements can avoid costly waste, or the frustration of running out of material before you've got the project finished off.
00:52 The other important part of producing an accurate cut is to ensure that the end of the length of tube is supported at the correct height to match the height of the bandsaw bed.
01:01 Getting this wrong will guarantee that your cuts aren't square and in turn, you'll be left with a very poor fitup.
01:08 We use a single adjustable roller to support the free end of our raw material and this is easy to adjust up or down to suit the required height.
01:17 By using a tape measure, we can mark the required cut length from our cut list onto the steel with a sharpie marker.
01:23 Once we have the length marked out, we can use a square to mark across the tube as well as marking our 45° line too.
01:30 This gives us one more opportunity to sanity check the direction of the cut to ensure it's correct before committing to cutting the material.
01:38 We can now position the tube in the bandsaw and bring the bandsaw into contact with the steel to ensure the cut position is just right.
01:45 Once we're happy with this, we can lock the vice on the bandsaw up to hold our material in place.
01:51 Now it's simply a case of turning the band saw on and allowing it to complete the cut.
01:56 A nice aspect with our band saw is that it takes the human element out of the cutting process and removes the temptation to try and force the band saw in order to speed up the cut.
02:06 When our cut's complete, it's a good idea to deburr the cuts which we've completed here using an angle grinder fitted with a flap disc.
02:14 There's a couple of things to note when cutting lengths for a larger project like this.
02:18 Firstly it can be an advantage to mark each length on the cutting list to avoid confusion.
02:24 By marking the steel lengths after they're cut, you'll easily know the length's dimension without having to measure it as well as where it's going to fit into place when we get to the assembly and welding step.
02:35 This can save time, avoid mistakes as well as making the assembly process a lot more streamlined.
02:41 Secondly, for efficiency, it's best to cut all of your straight cuts first, then complete all of your angled cuts or vice versa.
02:49 This just means that you're not constantly adjusting the angle of your band saw for every second cut which can save time over the course of the project as well as reducing the chance of making mistakes.
03:00 If you don't have a band saw, then the cutting process can easily be done in a number of other ways.
03:06 You can use an angle grinder or a drop saw but either method will require just a little more care and patience in order to get accurate cut angles and lengths for all of your finished materials.
03:17 With our steel tube cut, we can now go ahead and chamfer these in preparation for welding.
03:22 This requires us to produce a 45° chamfer on the horizontal surfaces of our steel tube which we can achieve using the linisher or alternatively you could also use the angle grinder.
03:33 The reason we want to produce this chamfer is that when the two mating parts are brought together, the chamfer produces a deep valley which we can then fill with weld.
03:43 This means that when we linish the surface flat after welding, we won't be removing all of the weld and the strength of the weld will still be retained.
03:52 If your raw material has any surface corrosion treatment such as paint or any scale present then it's also advisable to lightly linish this off in the immediate area of the weld too.
04:03 With the main components for our frame now cut, we still have a few more parts to prepare.
04:09 We're going to need to make some plates to bolt our caster wheels to which can be welded to the table as well as some plates to blank off the base of each leg.
04:17 These will be drilled out to accept the threaded feet that we're using.
04:20 We simply cut these plates out of 3 mm plate using an angle grinder with a 1 mm cut off wheel.
04:27 For the base of the legs, we need to drill a hole through the centre so that the 20 mm threaded feet can go through.
04:33 To find the centre, we're using an adjustable set square which we've adjusted to half of the width of our plate.
04:39 We can then draw a mark in two planes and the intersection will be the centre of the plate.
04:44 Before drilling, we use a centre punch to mark the centre and give our drill something to locate in.
04:49 To drill the holes in these plates, we're just using our drill press with a step drill fitted.
04:54 We need to consider the size of the hole we'll be drilling which in this case is just a touch over 20 mm and we also need to adjust the drill speed to suit.
05:03 Finally, we can apply lubricant to the step drill and drill our hole.
05:07 The mounts for the caster wheels will need holes drilled in each corner so that the caster wheels can be bolted on.
05:13 We can use the caster wheel itself here to help us locate and mark these holes before centre punching them.
05:19 Now it's a case of using our drill press to drill the holes, which we're going to do in stages before deburring each side with a counter sink drill bit.
05:27 With all of our material cut and prepared, we can now move on to the assembly and welding.

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