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How to cut 3/16 steel Diamond Plate

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Old 09-14-2009, 08:43 PM
mason55 mason55 is offline
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How to cut 3/16 steel Diamond Plate

Is at the part of my trailer project where I am going to lay down the "flooring" on my trailer. I got a real good deal off craig's list and got some 3'x8' 3/16ths thick Diamond Plate for $25.00 a sheet. I do not have access to a torch kit or a plasma cutter. So my question is how to cut it? Sawsall? Jig saw? Cut off wheel on my 4.5" grinder? Or........? I was thinking of marking my sheets for the specific cuts and taking them to my local steel shop and have them shear my cuts? Thought that the Diamond Plating would be better then plywood especially after seeing the prices of good quality 4'x8' sheets 3/4" thick @ $50.00 a pop. So this is where I'm at any help would be appreciated. Thanks!
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Old 09-15-2009, 12:52 AM
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The grinder will be faster, but it will leave a lot of sharp shavings that you will have to remove. Jig Saw will leave the cleanest cut (depending on the blade you use).

And it also depends on how much cutting you have to do.
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Old 09-15-2009, 02:48 AM
brownfoot brownfoot is offline
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get it sheared at the fab shop
all the edges will be straight and smooth

it'll probably cost less than the blades/cut-off wheels, not to mention time
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Old 09-15-2009, 09:16 AM
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A skill-saw with a metal cutting blade (a good one) ,I have also used a paneling blade on the saw with the teeth on the blade reversed ..Also , really good hearing & eye protection...
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Old 09-15-2009, 02:02 PM
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X2 on taking to a machine shop, shouldn't cost much, guaranteed to be better job than doing it yourself.
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Old 09-15-2009, 09:33 PM
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Make sure the shop can handle that thick of material, in that size before you make the trip.
I like this:


I use the older version at work, and it's fun. Cuts steel faster than a regular skillsaw in wood.
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Old 09-21-2009, 10:51 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ford_Six View Post
Make sure the shop can handle that thick of material, in that size before you make the trip.
I like this:


I use the older version at work, and it's fun. Cuts steel faster than a regular skillsaw in wood.

I have the HF version of that saw and it cuts 2x3x3/16th C-chanel like a pine 2x4! These carbide blade "cold saws" saws turn slower than a standard circular saw and don't produce sparks. I would use it with a guide bar clamped to the diamond-plate, no problem making clean fast cuts.
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Old 09-21-2009, 02:32 PM
*2fords* *2fords* is offline
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I've got that saw too but made by Clark. I've never used it yet, but I bought it to cut 1/8" diamond plate for my trailer and winch bumper.
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Old 09-22-2009, 01:09 AM
mason55 mason55 is offline
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Ended up taking the steel to a fab shop and them shear cut all my cuts for $20.00 bucks can't beat that at all. But being a tool junkie I am going to have to check in to that saw looks interesting? Trailer coming together pretty good, will have to post some more pics. Thanks everybody.
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Old 09-22-2009, 02:35 PM
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I'm guessing weight isn't an issue for your trailer project. According to my references, 3/16" steel diamond plate is about 8.7 pounds per square foot while 3/4" plywood is abot 2.1 pounds per square foot. Depending on how big your trailer is, that's a lot of capacity being used up to haul around the floor.
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Old 09-22-2009, 10:35 PM
mason55 mason55 is offline
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I'm guessing weight isn't an issue for your trailer project. According to my references, 3/16" steel diamond plate is about 8.7 pounds per square foot while 3/4" plywood is abot 2.1 pounds per square foot. Depending on how big your trailer is, that's a lot of capacity being used up to haul around the floor.
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Well the main purpose for this trailer is to haul my Harley with. The weight ratio wasn't a factor till the purchase of the Diamond Plate was done. However....I am a HUGE procrastinator when it comes to, starting, doing, and finishing projects! So when this plate is down, it's down for ever! The plywood route is not! Plus it's gunna have my back on the back of it maybe 2. I don't want any mis-haps going down the road with about $30 to $50 grand falling over and off due to rotten wood that I flaked off changing out b/4 a trip.....ya know what I mean?
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Old 09-30-2009, 04:05 PM
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I also picked up on the weight issue in the early part of the thread. Your explanation makes the steel sound like a great choice. The trailer is probably not very big and if you have an expensive Harley on the trailer, then shearing the material was a good choice also. You don't want this trailer to look like the pieces were cut with a hand grenade. It needs to look professional.
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Old 09-30-2009, 07:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MBDiagMan View Post
. You don't want this trailer to look like the pieces were cut with a hand grenade
Worthy of saving ...
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Old 09-30-2009, 08:18 PM
mason55 mason55 is offline
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The trailer as it turns out used to be a "dirt bike" hauler, the kind that has the 4 rails attached so that the "dirt bikes" could set in. So that's how big it is if you can picture that. The total floor space that I laid the diamond plate down is only 6'4" x 8' just enough for 2 Harley's to ride on the back. I want to paint the surface of the diamond plate with a "bed liner" kind of paint........does anybody know of a good brand to get for this purpose? And again thanks for all the ideas and support.
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Old 09-30-2009, 09:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mason55 View Post
The trailer as it turns out used to be a "dirt bike" hauler, the kind that has the 4 rails attached so that the "dirt bikes" could set in. So that's how big it is if you can picture that. The total floor space that I laid the diamond plate down is only 6'4" x 8' just enough for 2 Harley's to ride on the back. I want to paint the surface of the diamond plate with a "bed liner" kind of paint........does anybody know of a good brand to get for this purpose? And again thanks for all the ideas and support.
I've had some luck with the SEM Tintable Bed Liner Kit as sold by Eastwood. It gives a fairly good nonslip surface and as its name implies it's tintable.

The trouble with the do it yourself products is that you'll never get the 1/4" thickness that you get with the professionally applied products. If you have any shops that do spray-in bedliners in your area I'd go and get a price. The good, do it yourself products aren't much cheaper and the cheap do it yourself products are pretty much crap. They look nice for a while until they crack and peel. With all of these products, EVERYTHING relies on the surface prep. No rust, no oil or wax and if you can sand blast the surface the stuff will last almost forever.
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