Kribman

Cutting sheet aluminum for lips

17 posts in this topic

I have a local hobby shop that sells aluminum in 24'' by 30'' or so sheets that are right around lip thickness. How easy is it to cut this stuff with a band saw, and how would you get it to the perfect shape afterwards? Also, are they harder to secure? Do they throw off action? Info. please! Thanks

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a good bandsaw blade. use a bi-metal blade. the more tpi the better. set up a jig if your doing coffin lips or called trapezoid lips.

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Or you could do the cheap route and use a pair of tin snips, and then clean up with a file and sandpaper.

Andrew

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I use the tin snips for decoy fins and then smooth it out with a grinder, file, or sandpaper. Home depot had a 5 pair set of snips for $15. they actually worked better for me that teh Wiss brand of snip.

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Get a decent pair and you should do fine with them. I use a pair like the ones posted to cut .024 stainless steel.

Andrew

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Kribman,

Why wouldn't you want stainless steel lips???? Aluminum oxidizes so fast and looks bad??

Rod

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Tin snips come in several cut patterns. Ones with the yellow handles are the straight cut models, which are what I use on Lexan and circuit board. I prefer the Wiss brand, about $12 at Home Depot. Cut 1/16" outside your lip outline and then sand down to the exact line with a Dremel fine sanding drum. I don't make metal lips so can't comment on the best tools for shaping them.

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Is steel harder than aluminum? I know it sounds dumb, but I need to know if I have the equipment capable of cutting the metal

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you bring up something very good Kribman.

steel is easier to cut than alum with shears. Alum is gummy speaking in sheetmetal sizes

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I can't wait to get some. I know it probably makes the bait pretty front heavy. I am just wondering it it will affect the ballast or the action, having such a heavy lip...

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I can't wait to get some. I know it probably makes the bait pretty front heavy. I am just wondering it it will affect the ballast or the action, having such a heavy lip...

I see your from IL, and in my back yard, so I'll give you some info, along with all the other guys here. Use it if you want, if not do what you will with it. I am a sheet metal programmer and designer. I don't make crank baits, but this is what I can tell you. My first choice for lips would be stainless steel (SS) #304. If I were making baits for salt water, I would use SS #316L. #316L is stainless steel with low carbon. It is made for highly corrosive situations. Cold rolled steel is out of the question, as it will start to rust. Aluminum, also oxidixes fast if it is not anodized. Once it's anodized, it will withstand water. Only problem is aluminum is soft and will wear fast, and start to pit once the anodizing wears off. In the thin gage material that you will be buying, all the material can be cut with tin snips. Cold rolled steel being the easiest, folowed by stainless steel, followed by alum. You can use 6061T6 alum., and it will be very hard to cut, but it still wears faster than stainless steel. Cut outside the line, like someone mentioned here, and smooth the edges for final finish. If you are looking for some special profiles, PM me and we can discuss laser cutting.........Hope this info helps some of you guys out.

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Thanks a lot cadman. I was really confused as to what to use and that summed it up. I know I'll be able to get my hands on it and can't wait to start using it

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