Motorised piercing

G’day: Using a motorised saw does need a good deal of practice.
I have a commercial one which takes only the coarse blades with
pins, but the other is home-made and works well with any blades
except the pin ones! As Ruth said, the correct tension on the
saw blade is essential.

One tip to avoid drilling myriad small holes in the sheet silver
(don’t like using “plate” in this context; plate to me means
’plated’) is to use a fine blade. No fewer than two teeth should
be in contact with the metal at any time and great care must be
taken to hold the work down really well. For 0.5mm sheet
sterling I never use a blade larger (fewer teeth per mm) than 6/0
grade blades. When turning a tight corner let the blade ‘mark
time’ by holding the metal against the back of the blade as it
continues to go up and down whilst VERY SLOWLY turning the metal
until you reach the position where you can start it off forward
again. That way you only need to drill one hole just slightly
bigger than the blade in order to begin the piercing. Accept
that the best of workers breaks blades - quite frequently - and
that although blade changing is a damn nuisance, they are very
reasonably cheap. I very recently cut 8x 3/4inch dolphins from
0.5 sterling sheet. I sandwiched four bits of metal using
double-sided sellotape and cut two lots, being quite proud of the
fact I only broke 3 4/0 blades on one and 2 on the other set.
For marking out the cut-line I used the method mentioned very
recently in Orchid. (Sorry; can’t remember the name to give due
credit, but he/she will know!) I made a pencil drawing on a piece
of drafting ‘vellum’ - obtainable from any good stationer’s -
pressing on it a bit of sellotape then pressing the tape onto the
blank sheet sandwiches, thus transferring an excellent line for
the cutting. Thanks, unknown hero! The sellotape was easily
removed from the dolphins afterwards. Finally, what I have said
above goes for hand-sawing too.

I was a bit slow in getting this off; some “friend” sent me a
3meg Something-or-other which used all my spare memory, taking
around 30 minutes to do it, then the machine stalled leaving the
mail on the server undeleted - so when I crashed, re-booting sent
my mailer system out again which then tried to send my "friend"s
3megs once more…and so on. It took a while to clear
everything up! I still don’t know what was sent - and I don’t
want to!!!
So by now I am sure there has been a perfectly good
and similar posting on the subject. Never mind, eh? And the
very best of everything to you all (except my no-longer “friend”;
nothing but nasty rude words and gestures for him/her.) Moral? ask
permission before outposting a large heap of fertilizer: the
recipient might just outpost the Britannica to you! Cheers