Can a Jigsaw Cut Metal? Explained!

Have you ever wondered whether a jigsaw can cut through metal, or whether you need a different tool for this? It’s important to understand so you know what tools to purchase if you’ve got metal that needs to be cut through.

All jigsaws are capable of cutting through thin sheet metal, but if you want to cut through thick metal, you will need to purchase a heavy-duty jigsaw. The thickness that different jigsaws can cut through will vary depending on the quality, so you’ll need to make sure you buy one that’s suitable for your needs.

In this article, we will check whether jigsaws can cut through metal effectively, and what thickness of metal they can handle. We’ll look more at what kinds of metal you can cut if you have a high-end jigsaw.

Cutting metal sheets with a jigsaw
Cutting through metal sheets with a jigsaw

Table of Contents

*Safety is your responsibility. Make sure you know what you’re doing and take all necessary safety precautions while working with power tools. Safety comes first!

Always be cautious and careful when using any power tool.

Can Jigsaws Cut Metal?

Jigsaws can cut through metal, yes. They are designed to cut wood, sheets of metal, and pipes, so they are an ideal tool if you need to slice through thin metal quickly and effectively.

However, when cutting, you need both a suitable blade and a powerful jigsaw. If you use the wrong blade or the jigsaw is too weak, you will likely end up with a jagged cut, or you may find that the blade won’t go through the metal. You are also at risk of breaking the blade, which could be dangerous.

A jigsaw can cut through different types of material, including ferrous and non-ferrous metals, mild steel, or aluminum.

How to cut metal with a jigsaw
Can jigsaw cut through metal?

What Metal Thickness Can a Jigsaw Cut Through?

The thickness of the metal that you can tackle will depend on the jigsaw. Some are heavy-duty and will be capable of going through thicker sheets, while others will only manage thin pieces of metal.

It also depends on the kind of metal; steel is far harder to cut through than non-ferrous metals. You should therefore carefully follow the instructions that come with your jigsaw to make sure you’re not attempting to cut metal that is too thick for it.

You want a jigsaw with a powerful motor if you plan to cut any thick sheets of metal with it. A 670-watt motor or possibly something higher will be necessary.

It’s best to have a jigsaw that is more powerful than you need, rather than one that is only just powerful enough. If you’re constantly testing the power of your motor, there’s a risk that it will burn out more quickly.

Depending on the jigsaw blade, most jigsaws can cut through sheet metal 17-26 gauge thick (0,4- 1,4mm) and very thin metals 1/64 (0,4mm) in. to 3/64 (1,19 mm) in. thick (ferrous and non-ferrous). With the right blade and a jigsaw powerful enough, possibly up to 10 gauge thick (3,2mm). Bi-metal blades can cut depths of 19/32 inches (15mm) in steel and 1 inch (25mm) in aluminum.

Can a Jigsaw Cut Metal Tubing?

In general, metal tubing is thin enough to be cut by a jigsaw. That means you can slice through a metal tube using your jigsaw.

Check the thickness of the pipe before you start, so you know that your jigsaw is powerful enough to go through it. Remember that your tool may need to be given time to cool down if you are going to cut through multiple pipes.

What Jigsaw Blade Do You Need to Cut Through Metal?

To cut through metal with a jigsaw you need a special blade, specially designed for cutting metal. Both the blade’s material and its number of teeth make a big difference. The number of teeth is measured in TPI (teeth per inch).

In general, you will need a blade that is between 18 and 24 TPI if you want to cut through metal (possibly a finer blade with 21-24 TPI). If you want to cut the metal quickly, you should opt for a blade with fewer teeth. If you want a smooth edge, however, a high TPI is preferable.

Different types of jigsaw blades for cutting metal:

  1. High-Speed Steel (HSS) – a high-speed steel blade is made of a type of steel that is designed to withstand high high-speed cutting. They are more durable than standard blades and can cut through harder material with ease.
  2. High Carbon Steel (HCS) – a high carbon steel blade is made of a type of steel that contains a higher percentage of carbon. They are suitable for cutting softer materials, however, they are not durable as HSS blades.
  3. Bi-Metal – a bi-metal blade is made from a combination of high-speed steel and high carbon. The combination of these two metals allows the blade to maintain its sharpness and durability while also being able to bend and flex without breaking.
  4. Tungsten Carbide – a tungsten carbide blade is made from tungsten carbide, which is a hard and durable material. They are designed to cut through the toughest materials such as stone or ceramic. The high quality of the blades goes hand in hand with the price

When cutting metal with a jigsaw you should make sure you purchase a bi-metal blade. These are usually made from a combination of high-speed steel and high carbon, and they are strong and flexible enough to cut metal with. They offer the best durability and will last significantly longer than other blades.

TIP: To get a clean cut, place the metal sheet between two layers of thin plywood. The plywood layers will sandwich the metal piece, which will help to make a cleaner cut without burrs. Also, set your jigsaw on low speed.

Bi-metal Jigsaw blades for cutting metal
Bi-metal jigsaw blades for cutting metal

What Are the Advantages of Using a Jigsaw to Cut Metal?

There are several benefits associated with using a jigsaw to cut through metal.

  • Jigsaws are portable and tend to be easy to handle and operate. You don’t need to spend a lot of time learning how to use one, although you should focus on understanding safety precautions.
  • Jigsaws don’t require you to put pressure on the metal you’re cutting, which means you can cut a lot without getting tired. All in all, they’re a quick and easy option that many people will already have access to, so they are a suitable tool for the job.

Generally, using a jigsaw is a pretty efficient method that can speed up your projects. In addition to corded jigsaws, you can also use battery-powered jigsaws that will make it easy to work in areas with no easy access to power outlets.

What Are the Disadvantages of Using a Jigsaw to Cut Metal?

One of the major drawbacks of using a jigsaw to cut metal is that if you want a fast cut, you will most likely end up with a ragged edge that will need smoothing off. If you use a fine-toothed blade, it will take a lot longer to get through the metal, especially if you’re working with thick sheets of metal.

If you’re cutting a lot of metal, a jigsaw isn’t the most efficient option. You might instead want to consider a power tool like an angle grinder or a circular saw.

Also, using a jigsaw can lead to crooked and beveled cuts. To prevent this from happening it is good to use a jigsaw guide or a jigsaw table that will help with keeping the cuts straight.

Conclusion

A jigsaw can cut through metal, so if you already have one of these tools, you should certainly consider it as an option.

A jigsaw will easily cut through thin sheet metal and pipework, including thicker pieces of metal, provided you use a powerful enough jigsaw with the right blades. The more powerful your jigsaw is, the more capable it will be of cutting through thicker metal.

However, it should be kept in mind that a jigsaw is not designed to cut through thick pieces of metal, in that case, and a different tool should be used instead. Make sure you are using the appropriate blades for the task. Different materials require a different blades and their correct use will determine the quality of the result.

📌 Found this post useful and inspiring?
Ready to build it? Save THIS PIN to your Board on Pinterest!

Can a Jigsaw Cut Metal, A jigsaw cutting through metal sheets
Share this post with your friends