Ok guys. I have cut baits for a long time so I am posting a DIY tube cutter for you guys. This is a non rotary type that will cut perfect everytime and takes about 1-2 sec per tube. Total cost is aroud $80 if you have some of the tools required. If not the cost will be a tad more.
Step 1 Buy an arbor press at harbor freight or use one you already have. The press will no longer be able to be used as an arbor press! Here is a link to the press.
- Harbor Freight Tools - Quality Tools at the Lowest Prices
Step 2 Buy the tube splitter from Lurecraft-or make your own. Here is a link to the splitter.
Deluxe Plastic Splitter - LureCraft
Step3 mount the tube splitter to the press. All I did was use angle iron, cut 2 small pcs and weld them to the press. (Drill a hole in them first-see pic) . The press is cast but you can still get weld to stick to it or use cast rod.
Step4 Drill and tap the alum on the tube cutter, align the holes that you drilled in the angle iron, This is just to hold the stuff in place when removing the tube.
Step5 Take a flat piece of steel 1/8 to 3/16 thick and make a rectangle the same size as your cutter blades. (Looking down on the blades). This is what will press against the blades. Align this piece and the tube cutter block on the base. Now weld this flat rectangle to the square part of the arbor press. (See pic)
Step 6 Last but not least. This is the smallest but most important part!!! Get a piece of 1/8 rubber and cut it to the same rectangle size that you cut the flat piece of steel. This will be placed onto the flat piece of steel using double sided tape or velcro. I use 3m velcro. This rubber piece will wear out but it takes a while. Your blades will last longer than the rubber.
This press will cut tubes perfect everytime unless they are wider than the blades. I can cut 500/hr easy!!
See the pics attached.. I never got along with a rotary cutter since I tried to cut off fingers but there are many people that use them and have great looking tubes but I have found this to be the easiest and fastest process for me.
You can cut the tubes instantly or wait, this cutter doesn't care. When not in use the best way to keep the blades healthy is to soak them in transmission fluid. You do not have to lube the blades when cutting but they will rust if you don't soak them when finished. I leave my blades in a quart that I cut the top out of. Notice I forgot to put them in that is why these blades rusted.