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  1. #1
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    Default Nibbler attachment

    Nibblers seem to be quite expensive. I've never actually used one before. It's not the sort of thing I'd use often. So, I'm reluctant to pay a lot for something that only gets a few weeks' work. I don't use sheet steel much at all. I wonder if anyone has experience with the nibbler attachment that can be used with an electric drill. A cheaper option. How have you found them? This sort of thing:

    Just a moment...

    P&N were a good make, I thought, but the reviewers on that site give it the thumbs down.

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  3. #2
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    Default

    What do you actually want it for? Nibblers are generally used for cutting out curved surfaces; they are pretty ordinary at keeping long straight lines. Those Bunnings reviews were predominantly around cutting sheets of Colorbond; I used a circular saw with an Austsaw sheet steel cutting blade for rebuilding the front of my shed; highly recommended.
    Nothing succeeds like a budgie without a beak.

  4. #3
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    Default

    Again depending on what you want too cut with it,
    Have you considered Aviation snips or a good pair of Tin snips.

    SCA Left Blade Aviation Snip - 10inch | Supercheap Auto

    Record G245/8 General Purpose Tin Snips 8"

    There not too difficult too get use too.

    Cheers Matt.

  5. #4
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    Default

    Or this

    Just a moment...

    the nibbler leaves a gazillion little bits of metal to pick whereas the shear cuts

    cheers

  6. #5
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Chief Tiff View Post
    What do you actually want it for?
    VerminGuard.JPG

    You can buy 'vermin guards' but they are not cheap. I figured all I'd need would be a nibbler and some sort of template to guide it to the correct profile. And bending a piece of sheet metal shouldn't be too difficult.

  7. #6
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    Default

    Tin snips would be fine (I have a pair) but given the shape I want the metal cut I think the nibbler would be best, but I have to admit to wanting the cheap option (ie. the elec drill accessory).

  8. #7
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    Default

    I used this nibbler to cut a round hole in a corrugated iron roof for an air vent in my shed:

    DETROIT 500W Nibbler DEN5001 | Total Tools

    It cut like a hot knife through butter and I was very impressed with how easy it was to follow a curve and how little time it took.

    However it was very loud and created a shower of fine, sharp metal offcuts to clean up after (still finding the odd piece 1 year later...)

  9. #8
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    Years ago I used one ext5ensively for quite a few roof penetrations on colourbond.

    It worked wonderfully for the first few but the edges of the anvil/punch quickly rounded over so it soon became almost as much of a chore as using snips. I don't think it was a P&N, it looked pretty much the same but was bright yellow and the anvil was... more substantial.

    To me the main fault was that in operation one needed a hand on the drill and a hand on the attachment, making things awkward when one needed a third hand for anything else. (Like, holding the sheet or stopping yourself from sliding off the roof. )

    If I was doing that job again, I'd look at a dedicated unit even if only to free up a hand.
    I may be weird, but I'm saving up to become eccentric.

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  10. #9
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    Default

    It's a good price compared with the others on the market. It was the price that was forcing me to consider a drill attachment. But for this one, the online reviews support your experience too. Thanks for that Letaage.

  11. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Skew ChiDAMN!! View Post
    awkward when one needed a third hand for anything else. (Like, holding the sheet or stopping yourself from sliding off the roof. )
    Good point. Never thought of that.

  12. #11
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    I can't vouch for the longevity of the tool, I have only had it for about a year and used it for one job, but I was impressed with how fast it cut and it seems decently made for the price.

    I had also considered the drill attachment style nibblers and using snips for the job but the dedicated nibbler saved a lot of time and grief.

  13. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by letaage View Post
    I can't vouch for the longevity of the tool, I have only had it for about a year and used it for one job, but I was impressed with how fast it cut and it seems decently made for the price.

    I had also considered the drill attachment style nibblers and using snips for the job but the dedicated nibbler saved a lot of time and grief.
    I have the same one and have used multiple times for various projects over the last 5 years or so and is still going strong, for $159.00 was a no brainer for me, does what it is designed to do and was not prepared to spend money on an attachment that might not do the job as well,.

  14. #13
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    Default

    Thanks for that. Good to know.

  15. #14
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    EF

    You may have completed the job by now but this shear is another alternative.

    Malco TurboShear Heavy Duty Sheet Metal Cutting Attachment Power Shear USA TSHD 686046533209 | eBay

    or this one:

    Malco Metal Turbo Shears Cuts Up To 20ga / 1.02mm Galv TS1 686046530208 | eBay

    I have the first one and used it extensively. I used it for cutting a Trimdeck profile. I found it worked better with a corded drill than a cordless drill, but much depends on the physical shape of the drill. My memory is that I used it so much it wore out an old Bosch drill that I had had for many years.

    Having said that, I always thought a powered tool would be ideal for cutting the ridge capping to suit corrugated iron roofing.......until I saw my son do the same thing with tin snips.....much faster! You need curved cutting snips. Left cutting if you are right-handed and right cutting if you are left-handed. He did it entirely by sight, but if you are like me, measure the depth of the corru and draw a line along the flashing and mark off the peaks. Cutting such a short distance is much easier than long straight lines. My son did that fairly easily too.....using two straight cutting tin snips about 10/15mm apart and both hands! He is a reasonably accomplished carpenter/builder and it would seem ambidextrous.



    These are the type of aviation style snips. Not a recommendation one way or the other. Literally the first one that came up in a search. I was actually looking for the Weiss brand, but failed.

    HORUSDY 3Pc Aviation Tin Snips Cut Set Left Right Straight Metal Sheet Cutters | eBay

    Regards
    Paul
    Bushmiller;

    "Power tends to corrupt. Absolute power corrupts, absolutely!"

  16. #15
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    Default

    Thanks, Paul. It's useful to hear of practical experiences. I won't be starting my actual job for a while yet. I'm just gathering information.

    Though, I have to say that as I will be cutting a lot of curves I suspect the nibbler will be best. I was planning/hoping to be able to design a jig with the profile I need. Presumably by running the nibbler against the template, the cut will be as near as perfect as I'm going to get. I doubt straight-edge snips or curved snips would manage that as well as the nibbler.

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