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What Can You Use to Cut Clay Pipe? (How To)

Using clay pipes today might seem archaic and old-fashioned, especially since their use in the drainage system plummeted in the early 1900s. However, this does not mean that they have been totally abandoned. So, if you find yourself needing one, this article aims to show you the proper tools used to cut that clay pipe and get it to the size you desire.

To cut clay pipes, we recommend you get hold of a snap cutter, Sawzall, hacksaw, or reciprocating saw. Using a snap cutter is considered to be one of the fastest ways to cut through a clay pipe.

Three brown clay pipe

What should you expect to find as you progress through this article, you ask? For one, we not only answer the question of what you can use to cut clay pipe, we also highlight the tools that are perfect for achieving this DIY task.

What Can You Use to Cut Clay Pipe (How To)

The most effective and accessible tools for cutting clay pipe include the angle grinder, a snap cutter, a sawzall, a hacksaw and a reciprocating saw. Ensure that you follow safety protocols by using protective gears when handling these tools.

Can You Use Grinder to Cut Clay Pipe?

tools to cut clay pipe

You can use a grinder to cut clay pipes however, ensure that it is the angle grinder and not the regular grinder. This is because although the standard grinder can do the job, its cutting precision cannot be compared to that of the angle grinder.

How to Use Grinder to Cut Clay Pipe

Here’s how to use a grinder to cut clay pipe

Step 1: Picking the right blade for your grinder sets the tone of the cut you intend to make, so it is compulsory to pick the right fit for the angle grinder

Step 2: Using chalk, make a line mark on the clay pipe you want to cut. This will help to guide you in a fine line as you make the cut

Step 3: Direct the grinder along the chalk lines without applying too much pressure. Too much pressure can cause the blade to slip so you have to be patient during this process

Step 4: After you cut, it is best to file any rough edge using sandpaper. This will help to prevent cuts or scratches as you handle the cut pipes

Can You Use Snap Cutter to Cut Clay Pipe?

confused man standing

You can use the snap cutter, also known as the chain pipe cutter, to cut clay pipe. It is recommended because it is one of the fastest ways of cutting through clay pipes. It is also often used to cut iron soil pipes and concrete pipes.

How To Use Snap Cutter to Cut Clay Pipe

The simple steps described below explain how to use a snap cutter to cut a clay pipe.

Caution: Before proceeding with any of the highlighted steps below, ensure that you wear protective gear and work with caution when cutting the pipes.

Step 1: For your first cut, measure and mark your cut point with a marker.

Step 2: On your cut point, wrap the chain from the snap cutter as tight as possible around the clay pipe and connect the chain back into the hoops on the tool.

Step 3: Ensure that you position it straight, then turn the knob to cut using the long handle to start the ratchet.

Step 4: Use the ratchet to tighten it until it pops off.

Repeat this process until you have successfully cut through as many pipes as possible. Here are some of the best snap cutters out there.

Can You Use Sawzall to Cut Clay Pipe?

tools to cut clay pipe

Using the Sawzall to cut clay pipe is possible. The Sawzall, which is a reciprocating saw, is not only portable but also suitable for cutting a wide variety of materials like the clay pipe. You should know that all Sawzalls are reciprocating saws but not all reciprocating saws are Sawzalls.

How To Use Sawzall to Cut Clay Pipe

To use a Sawzall, you must first understand that it comes in different accessories and blade types, like diamond blades or a carbide grit blade, and each blade carries out distinct functions.

Here are four easy steps on how to use a Sawzall to cut a clay pipe. But first, always ensure that you keep to all safety procedures and wear a protective glove, dust mask, or respirator when cutting.

Step 1: Use tape to measure your cut point, then mark your cut points using a marker.

Step 2: Turn on your Sawzall, place it on your mark points, and begin sawing.

Step 3: Sawing should take about five minutes, but you might need to cool off your Sawzall every 30 seconds or dip the blade in a cup of water to cool it down.

Step 4: Continue sawing until you cut through your clay pipe. Cool it down frequently because you don’t want to wear the blade out prematurely.

Repeat this procedure until you cut through your mark points.

Can You Use Hacksaw to Cut Clay Pipe?

tools to cut clay pipe

Hacksaws have proven to be very effective for cutting clay pipes. This widely used choice for pipe work is a hand-powered fine-toothed saw, commonly in a c-shaped walking frame with a blade under tension.

It finds great use in cutting metal and sports different blade types such as the common blade, raker blade, and wavy blade. Using the proper blade would give you a clean and satisfactory result.

How To Use Hacksaw to Cut Clay Pipe

There are three things you would want to take note of when using a hacksaw:

The Blade: What is the metal made of? A preferable option should be a blade made of bi-metal.

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The Frame: A safer and preferable option would be a steel frame rather than a frame made of aluminium. It should be lightweight with about a ten to twelve-inch frame.

The Technique: How do you apply the strokes on your cutting surface? The blades on a hacksaw only cut in a forward push stroke.

These are the four steps on how to use a hacksaw to cut clay pipe:

Step 1: Measure and mark your cut points to ensure cut consistency.

Step 2: When starting the cut, place your hand on the handle in a pistol grip and use your other hand to grip the top of the frame in a downward position.

Step 3: Place the hacksaw on your pipe, align the blade on your mark, and apply downward pressure on the push. This way, the blades cut through the pipe at a forward stroke.

Step 4: Keep applying downward pressure in push strokes until you cut through your clay pipe. Cuts are duller when you use force on a pull stroke due to the position of the blade teeth.

Can You Use Reciprocating Saw to Cut Clay Pipe?

tools to cut clay pipe

Using a reciprocating saw to cut clay pipe is not only possible but also quick. These saws can cut through iron pipes, so you wouldn’t need to worry about its durability.

How To Use Reciprocating Saw to Cut Clay Pipe

A reciprocating clay pipe might prove easy to use when following the proper steps below and ensuring that you stick to the safety precautions by wearing a protective glove, dust mask, or reciprocator and keeping a reasonable distance from the blade point.

Step 1: Use tape to measure your cut point, then mark your cut points using a marker.

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Step 2: Position your reciprocating saw on your mark points and cut.

Step 3: Cutting through the clay pipe should take about five minutes, but you might need to cool off your reciprocating saw every 30 seconds by dipping the blade in a cup of water.

Step 4: Continue this process until you cut entirely through your clay pipe.

How To Cut Clay Pipe

confused man standing

To cut a clay pipe, you must ensure that:

  1. You’ve read and adhere to the blade manufacturers’ safety instructions and user manual before you start any cutting operation.
  2. The blade is suited for cutting through clay pipes.
  3. You’ve measured your desired length and made an unmistakable mark around the pipe.
  4. The pipe (to be cut) should be placed in a horizontal and stable position.
  5. You’ve adhered to the correct and protective measures in place in order to commence the cut.
  6. You take breaks when the need arises, to cool off cutting tools, especially if you are using a reciprocating saw blade.

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