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Old 04-14-2016, 12:31 PM   #11
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I like the nibbler idea only because of its ease of control. Only problem is its cost. You can try a harbor freight one for about 25 bucks, make sure to order extra bits for it if you do go that route. Otherwise the heavy duty ones online can get into the hundreds quick.
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Old 04-14-2016, 01:16 PM   #12
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Depending on what you're cutting out, and what's underneath I'd vote circular saw with the carbide tips, nibbler, 4 1/2" abrasive cut off wheel, or a scroll saw with a metal blade.

Sawzall isn't great for unsupported flat metal, but it'll work in a pinch.

I'd say with all of those except for the abrasive wheel, use cutting wax on the bits often.
the nibbler interests me as it seems like the least "intrusive" manner... meaning I can go slow with it...

although my latest iteration is to use an under-mount condenser instead of a skirt mount.. yesterday a friend that is partner in a limo service was out and about.. he had one of their "limo busses" out which looks like an extra Long shuttle bus.. its actually built on a freightliner chassis.. I crawled underneath and it had some really nice A/C condensers that mounted up under the body and we more accessible to clean and service than a skirt mount condenser.. so I may go that route now.. of course I got the numbers off of those parts.. Im loving this Learning process!!

-Christopher
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Old 04-14-2016, 02:58 PM   #13
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Nibblers are actually quite messy in that they chomp out little crescent moon shaped bits of metal and leave an edge that requires a lot of dressing. I have all of the tools mentioned so far, including a Bosch nibbler, and that would be my very last choice for such a task.
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Old 04-14-2016, 04:36 PM   #14
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the nibbler interests me as it seems like the least "intrusive" manner... meaning I can go slow with it...

although my latest iteration is to use an under-mount condenser instead of a skirt mount.. yesterday a friend that is partner in a limo service was out and about.. he had one of their "limo busses" out which looks like an extra Long shuttle bus.. its actually built on a freightliner chassis.. I crawled underneath and it had some really nice A/C condensers that mounted up under the body and we more accessible to clean and service than a skirt mount condenser.. so I may go that route now.. of course I got the numbers off of those parts.. Im loving this Learning process!!

-Christopher
You'll have to share the make/model. I too am looking into adding a system to my bus!
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Old 04-14-2016, 04:40 PM   #15
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Nibblers are actually quite messy in that they chomp out little crescent moon shaped bits of metal and leave an edge that requires a lot of dressing. I have all of the tools mentioned so far, including a Bosch nibbler, and that would be my very last choice for such a task.
This is true, but you would still add a decorative trim to a flat cut saw edge wouldn't you? I would. But I am not a master fabricator like you are. My padawan skills are meager in comparison!
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Old 04-14-2016, 04:47 PM   #16
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This is true, but you would still add a decorative trim to a flat cut saw edge wouldn't you? I would. But I am not a master fabricator like you are. My padawan skills are meager in comparison!

correct, the condenser mounted to the skirt has a flange, so the main thing would be treating the ragged edge so rust doesnt form there.. the flange gets screwed to the skirting but doesnt support the weight.. the weight is supprted by drilling down from the floor and using carriage bolts on top.. preferrably where you can go through 2 of the floor support ribs..

I'll definitely share the A/C build as I get into it... im still about 2 weeks out before I actually have the bus in my possesion.. there were about 4 busses ahead of me to be painted, plus i went ahead and had the dealer order and install all new lights all the way around and paint / restore the mirror brackets and supports...

I can do a lot of stuff but body work is not one of them so I have it professionally done, and it takes time, esp since im going with a 2 tone paint scheme on my bus..

-Christopher
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Old 04-14-2016, 05:17 PM   #17
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So I cut in my water heater opening last night with my circular saw, took 30x longer marking and measuring and re-measuring and re-measuring again than it did to actually cut the hole. The cutting literally took about 45 seconds. Nice clean square opening. I still say the circ with a metal blade is the best quickest way to go...
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Old 04-14-2016, 06:46 PM   #18
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Use a gas powered Quickie saw? (Just kidding) Why?
The bigger the blade you're using the straighter the cut.
Therefore the skil-saw with a good blade will make the straightest cuts and stop just short of the corners (to prevent over cut) and use a jig saw to finish.
Nibblers are not the best option and if you haven't ever used them you will never get a straight cut.
With a guide set properly for what you are using
A sawzall will do the job to manageable and break every blade you have unless you get the real good metal demo blades that are 3/16 thick
A jig saw will hurt you less break more blades because they dont make the heavy duty blades and the on thin metal the blade is going to wiggle and wander unless you put a strait line jig on the front and back of every cut (time consuming pain)
Circular saw with a good abrasives blade or an old wood blade turned backwards on the saw (also works). In my world commercial roofers use a circular saw with the wood blade backwards (cheaper and more durable) to cut there 12guage tin/decking no matter the angle.
The bigger the blade the straighter the cut.
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Old 04-14-2016, 07:58 PM   #19
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In my world commercial roofers use a circular saw with the wood blade backwards (cheaper and more durable) to cut there 12guage tin/decking no matter the angle.
The bigger the blade the straighter the cut.
Noted and retained. Thanks for the tip!
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Old 04-14-2016, 08:56 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jolly Roger View Post
Use a gas powered Quickie saw? (Just kidding) Why?
The bigger the blade you're using the straighter the cut.
Therefore the skil-saw with a good blade will make the straightest cuts and stop just short of the corners (to prevent over cut) and use a jig saw to finish.
Nibblers are not the best option and if you haven't ever used them you will never get a straight cut.
With a guide set properly for what you are using
A sawzall will do the job to manageable and break every blade you have unless you get the real good metal demo blades that are 3/16 thick
A jig saw will hurt you less break more blades because they dont make the heavy duty blades and the on thin metal the blade is going to wiggle and wander unless you put a strait line jig on the front and back of every cut (time consuming pain)
Circular saw with a good abrasives blade or an old wood blade turned backwards on the saw (also works). In my world commercial roofers use a circular saw with the wood blade backwards (cheaper and more durable) to cut there 12guage tin/decking no matter the angle.
The bigger the blade the straighter the cut.
interesting on the wood blade backwards.. and the bigger blade - straighter the cut totally makes sense! great info
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