Cutting through stainless steel


Man, I never dreamed it would be so bad...a thin layer of stainless steel. I bought a new faucet a few days ago and it had a little mobile sprayer. My sink was not outfitted with one so it required an inch-in-diameter hole to be cut through to be able to install it. I'd never had a need to do this before in my life and had never given it a thought. Guys at home improvement places and hardware stores were telling me all kinds of ways to do this right. None of them turned out to be right, IMO. I had envisioned what turned out to exactly exist; a "hole cutter," which fits on the end of a drill. I thought it would be a snap. It wasn't. The first one cut a little, then the teeth apparently failed and I was just rubbing metal against metal and making lots of noise and heat. I bought yet another one (told by old guy working at store that it wouldn't fail, would do the job well with a little patience). It failed just a fast as the first one--20 more bucks down the drain as I had to buy adapter too for that one.
What I ended up doing was what I had in mind to begin with: Drill a succession of holes in a circle with regular bits, then pretty much punch out the hole. The hole cutters actually did help since the circular crease they provided from use allowed the bits to bite and stay in place when making the circle. What makes stainless steel so hard?
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snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com wrote: ....
...snip saga of trying to use holesaw on stainless...

Same thing that makes it stainless--high chromium and nickel content...
The way to get the hole is a Greenlee punch, btw.
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wrote:

That's an amazing tool. Some inventors deserve to be rich.
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dpb wrote:

Nice way to do it, it appears, but my way was a weeee bit cheaper don't ya think? These punch kits are hundreds of dollars, some, *many* hundreds of dollars. And as far as renting one, the guy at my local tool rental place suggested taking the entire sink to a machine shop! So I doubt they rented out these punches.
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How many sizes do you need? They're relatively cheap when you buy just what you need. http://www.irvansmith.com/catalog2/parts/greenlee_hole_punches.shtml
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Not sure if you have an IKEA store near you but they sell a sink knockout kit for $20.00, includes a Greenlee style punch and a mini tubing cutter.
Punched 4 extra knock outs in the sink in 1/2 hour.
PV
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snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com wrote:

Actually, it's _tougher_ than mild steel or cast-iron. Less machinable.
Not a big deal, if you take steps to slow the hole-saw, and keep it cool. Water-soluble cutting oil works great for this. It helps to have decent-quality hole-saw, of course- bi-metal cutters. Slow it, cool it, and put some force behind it.
What you're talking with series of drill bits sounds more like self-torture. If you insist on making this a big-deal, you might try to locate someone with a portable plasma-cutter.
J
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the harder the material the slower the tool
wrote:

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the circle.

Actually, it's _tougher_ than mild steel or cast-iron. Less machinable.
Not a big deal, if you take steps to slow the hole-saw, and keep it cool. Water-soluble cutting oil works great for this. It helps to have decent-quality hole-saw, of course- bi-metal cutters. Slow it, cool it, and put some force behind it.
What you're talking with series of drill bits sounds more li ke self-torture. If you insist on making this a big-deal, you might try to locate someone with a portable plasma-cutter.
J
-
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snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com wrote:

Hi, Ever heard of hole punch?
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Local weld shop could have done it with a plasma cutter.
--
Steve Barker


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I have cut many holes in stainless sinks with a whole saws. I use soapy water for a lube. I just finished a bunch of wholes in some dialysis boxes in a hospital ( close to 50 ) What I found worked best was a Uni bit . Drilled a pilot whole with a steal stud screw first.

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