View Full Version : Cutting lead flashing?

06-03-2013, 12:36 AM
Hey chaps, I've got about a hundred or so small pieces(about 100mm^2) to cut out of 2.25mm thick lead flashing. What I normally do is score around a template with a sharp stanley and then break them out. It works but takes awhile. I figure if I can secure the lead down with double sided tape I can do it with the cnc but before attempting it I'd like some advice on cutters and speeds. Should I treat it like aluminium?

Tricky one for me really as I can't find much information about others doing something similar.

06-03-2013, 01:22 AM
Never cut any but I would be cutting with slot cutter full depth to avoid clogging cutter. Single flute or certainly No more than 2 flutes.

Do a practice run around 800mm/min 10K rpm and adjust either according to how it handles.?

Imagine it will cut like the shity-ist Aluminium you've ever cut crossed with Blu-tack.!!. . . . Good luck mate. . Lol

06-03-2013, 01:41 AM
You can normally cut that thickness with a sharp knife or tough scissors can't you? If mills don't work you could try a drag knife, it might break a stanley blade but you could always grind an edge onto a heftier bit of steel.

06-03-2013, 01:52 AM
I think it would be worth a try to use an engraving tool with a small included angle and run it as a program, but leave the spindle switched off. You can score the leadto whatever depth you want, perhaps in several very light passes. I am assuming that your spindle is un-braked. I have never tried this , but think it would work. G.

06-03-2013, 05:30 AM
Thanks guys.

I'll try cutting with a regular straight flute bit for starters. That should avoid lifting the lead but I have a feeling its gonna clog and break the bit but it might not do. It cuts quite cleanly on the mitre saw so there's some hope.

If that fails a bit of creativity with an engraving bit might be worthwhile. Worse that can happen is it breaks the bit.

DC. You can score with a sharp blade and then break the pieces out with some back and forth bending along the score. Metal shears work too but regularly heavy duty scissors aren't up to it.

06-03-2013, 08:34 AM
The engaving bit idea was basically just because I thought you probably might have one to try with. It was based on a drag knife as used by heavy duty card/vynal cutters wherethe cutting point is off-center and can freely rotate so that it will "follow". If the regular routing/milling approach does not work, you may be able to find a drag knife blade that will fit into your chuck. G.

06-03-2013, 09:56 AM
single flute upcut works great, make sure you stick the back down well over cut or will lift.first one I cut lead shot up cutter ripped out and broke cutter 2nd try after sticking down worked a treat.


06-03-2013, 02:41 PM
Thanks phil, got plenty of single flute cutters here so that sounds like just the ticket.

Can you remember what feed and rpm you had going on there? I'm not too bothered about edge finish(within reason) as these pieces are destined to be stuck down inside of cabinets to provide additional mass to combat resonance.