What Are Different Types of Metal Cutting Tools?

In the realm of metalworking, precision and efficiency are paramount. Achieving these objectives requires the utilization of an array of cutting tools, each tailored to specific applications and situations. These tools not only enable the shaping and transformation of metal materials, but also play a crucial role in industrial automation. In this blog, we will explore some of the different types of metal cutting tools available on the market, ranging from hand tools to industrial automation tools, all of which are vital components in the world of metal fabrication.

Hand Tools

Hand tools are manual implements and devices designed to be operated by hand, capable of being used without power sources or machinery. They are an essential part of various trades, professions, and do-it-yourself (DIY) projects. Hand tools are versatile and serve a wide range of functions, including cutting, fastening, gripping, measuring, striking, and more. Some common examples of hand tools include: screw drivers, wrenches, pliers, hammers, chisels, etc.

Hand Snips

Hand snips are versatile cutting tools used for various purposes, especially in the HVAC (Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning) and sheet metal industries. They come in different designs, including straight-cut, left-cut, and right-cut snips, each tailored to specific cutting directions. Hand snips enable workers to accurately cut through sheet metal, ductwork, and other thin materials easily. The ergonomic design of these tools allows precise control, making them indispensable for cutting intricate shapes and patterns.


Hacksaws are another category of hand tools that play a vital role in metal cutting. They consist of a fine-toothed blade stretched tautly between two handles. Hacksaws are particularly useful for cutting metal rods, pipes, and tubing. The fine teeth on the blade ensure clean, controlled cuts, making them suitable for various applications, from plumbing to automotive repairs. These hand tools are readily available, affordable, and easy to use, making them a common choice for DIY enthusiasts and professionals alike.

Hand Files

Hand files are not cutting tools in the traditional sense, but are essential for refining and shaping metal after initial cuts. Typically flat and elongated, hand files come in various shapes, including flat, round, and half-round variations, each serving a different purpose. Hand files are crucial for deburring rough edges, smoothing surfaces, and achieving precision in metalwork. Their versatility and simplicity make them indispensable for fine-tuning metal components, ensuring they meet exact specifications.

Power Tools

Power tools significantly enhance the efficiency and speed of metal cutting processes, making them invaluable assets for both professionals and hobbyists across a spectrum of industries.

Angle Grinders

Angle grinders are versatile power tools equipped with abrasive discs or cut-off wheels which excel at quickly cutting through metal, making them indispensable for tasks like removing rusted sections from steel structures or slicing through rebar. These tools come in various sizes, with adjustable guards, handles, and power levels, offering the flexibility needed for a wide array of applications. Angle grinders provide both speed and precision for heavy-duty metal cutting.


Bandsaws are large, stationary power tools commonly found in metalworking shops, and they feature a continuous loop of toothed metal bands that rotate around two wheels. Bandsaws are particularly well-suited to cutting metal in a straight line, making them ideal for production-level metalwork. These machines are highly efficient, capable of slicing through thick metal sheets and profiles with precision and consistency. As such, they are often used in the manufacturing of metal parts and components on a large scale.

Industrial Automation Tools

In the era of industrial automation, metal cutting has evolved, with sophisticated tools and technologies replacing traditional methods. Automation not only enhances efficiency, but also ensures high levels of precision and consistency. The following are some examples of industrial tools:

Laser Cutters

Laser cutting technology has revolutionized the metal fabrication industry as it involves the use of a high-power laser beam focused on a specific area, melting or vaporizing the metal. The precision and speed offered by laser cutters make them invaluable in industries where accuracy is of paramount importance. From intricate designs to mass production, these machines can handle it all.

Waterjet Cutting Machines

Waterjet cutting is a method that uses a high-pressure stream of water mixed with abrasive particles to cut through various materials, including metal. Waterjet cutting machines are known for their versatility, capable of slicing through metal of varying thicknesses and hardness. This cold-cutting method ensures minimal heat-affected zones and a reduced risk of material distortion, making it a preferred choice in industries where the quality of the cut is critical.

Plasma Cutters

Plasma cutting is another industrial automation tool used in metal fabrication involving the use of a high-temperature ionized gas, or plasma, to cut through metal. Plasma cutters are particularly well-suited to thick metals, and they offer speed and precision. They are commonly used in industries such as shipbuilding and metal sculpture production.


The world of metal cutting is vast and varied, with a tool designed for every purpose and situation. From the simplicity of hand tools, the efficiency of power tools, and the precision of industrial automation tools, each option provides specific benefits and capabilities. With the right tool in hand, professionals and hobbyists alike can achieve their metal cutting goals with ease and precision.

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November 4, 2022
July 1, 2022

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