How to Cut Galvanized Steel Pipe

Introduction

Galvanized Steel Pipe has been renowned for running water in homes since 1870. The first question that comes to your mind would be, “What is a Galvanized Steel Pipe?” Galvanized steel is a type of steel coated with zinc. This coating of zinc helps minimize the effect of rust and corrosion inside the pipe. Usually, installing or removing a galvanized pipe involves the process of cutting. You must be wondering about how you cut the galvanized steel pipe. Don’t worry. The process of cutting galvanized steel pipe can be a challenging task. But with the right tools and techniques, it would become easier. There are certain things you must know before cutting a galvanized steel pipe.

In this article, we will provide you with information about the requirements you require and a few steps to cut galvanized steel pipe accurately.

Things You Need Before Cutting Galvanized Pipe

Before cutting galvanized steel pipe, spend time searching and gathering all the tools and things necessary to start the process of cutting. The main items mentioned below are that you need to cut a galvanized steel pipe.

1. Have Your Supplies Ready

There are a number of things that you need before starting the process of cutting galvanized steel pipe. Once you have all the required things and tools in your command, you can start the process without any delay. Some of the necessary items include a Cutting Tool, Clamp or Vise Grip, Safety gear, pipe, Tape Measure, and Pencil or Marker.

2. Hold Tight or Secure Your Pipe

For smooth cutting of the pipe, it is necessary that the galvanized pipe must be in stable condition. The galvanized steel pipe can be made stable by using a vise grip or by a Clamp

3. Safety Measures

Your Safety must always be your first priority in any process. For safety purposes, always use high-quality masks and safety glasses. This will protect your eyes and lungs from tiny metal particles that fly in the air. It is also recommended that you wear gloves and proper footwear to protect your hands and feet. A lack of safety measures may lead to great damage of a body organ.

4.  An Appropriate Tool for Cutting Galvanized Steel Pipe

Selection of the right tool for cutting galvanized steel pipe is a daunting task and requires great consideration. Always choose an appropriate tool according to your requirements. Different methods require different tools, each with its advantages and disadvantages.

Three Ways to Cut Galvanized Steel Pipe

There are various ways to cut galvanized steel pipe. Three main ways through which you can cut galvanized pipe are discussed below:

1.  Using a Tube Cutting Tool

Cutting of galvanized pipe using a tube cutting tool can be done by applying below steps:

· Measure and Mark

Precise cut plays a vital role if you are going to install a new galvanized pipe. You need to measure the length required to add a thread to the ends of the pipe. This marking has less importance if you are removing old galvanized pipe.

· Select the right Tube Cutting Tool

Tube cutting tool comes in different sizes, which are used for specific lengths and thick pipes. So, if you want to cut a small and long galvanized steel pipe, you need different types and sizes of cutting tools.

· Secure the Pipe

In order to cut properly, always place the galvanized steel pipe securely in the tube-cutting tool. For accurate results, always ensure that the tube-cutting tool is aligned with the marked cutting point.

· Rotate the Tool

A tube cutter contains two rolls and a cutting wheel. To cut galvanized steel pipe, the tube cutter is rotated around the pipe. This process of rotation is done by turning the handle on the tool. After a few rotations, the cutting wheel dips deeper into the pipe and cuts it.

· Smooth the Edges

After the cutting, a number of steel burrs are created inside the pipe. A file or sandpaper is usually used to smooth any rough edges or remove the burrs for a polished finish.

2.  Using an Angle Grinder

A reciprocating saw, or angle grinder can also be used to cut the galvanized steel pipe. This instrument helps in a more accurate cut.

· For Tight Spaces Pipe

If you are going to cut a galvanized pipe located in a tight space, you can use either a reciprocating saw or an angle grinder to cut that pipe. This is because tight spaces of pipes can be cut easily using power tools.

· Put on Safety Gear

While cutting with a power tool like a reciprocating saw or angle grinder, it is recommended to wear safety gear. These safety gear include gloves, safety glasses, footwear, and earplugs. These protect your eyes, hands, feet, and ears from sparks, debris, and loud noise.

· Mark the Cutting Line

When using an angle grinder or reciprocating saw to cut galvanized steel pipe, always mark the length along the circumference accurately. This helps in cutting straight as you go.

· Secure the Pipe

It is recommended to hold tight the pipe by fastening it. This ensures that the pipe won’t move during the cutting process.

· Always Use a Metal Cutting Blade or Wheel

Always make sure that the angle grinder or reciprocating saw contains a metal cutting blade or wheel. This is because a wood-cutting blade will not work on a galvanized steel pipe.

· Start the Power before Placing the Blade on the Galvanized Steel Pipe

Always turn on the power of the angle grinder or reciprocating saw before making contact with the pipe. This helps the tool achieve the desired speed required to cut the pipe and make the cut along the marked line. The smooth and steady movement of the grinder gives a clean cut.

3.  Using a Hacksaw

For a more traditional approach, a hacksaw is a reliable option. This method required manual effort, but it provided more control over the cutting speed. This method can be performed using the following steps.

· Measure and Mark

Likewise, the other methods always measure and mark the cutting line on the galvanized steel pipe using a tape measure and a marker.

· Secure the Pipe

It is of vital importance to secure the pipe before cutting it with a hacksaw. In this method, the pipe can be secured by holding it, placing it in a vise, or clamping the pipe on the workbench. If you are cutting an installed galvanized pipe, make sure that it is strapped down or held tightly. Because a loosened pipe may lead to undesirable results and consequences.

· Support Long Pieces of Pipe

If you are cutting a small portion from a long piece of galvanized steel pipe, you need to tighten the remaining using an overhead joist or beam. This held the remaining pipe from falling once the pipe was cut.

· Cut with the Hacksaw

Begin cutting along the marked line with the hacksaw. This process takes some time as well as pressure. Always use a hacksaw with small teeth because long-teeth hacksaws are designed for wood materials.

· Use Steady Pressure

You must apply steady or gentle pressure while cutting with a hacksaw. This protects your hands and energy. Applying too much pressure leads to many dangerous situations like slipping off the blade, which cuts the pipe into something else.

· Smooth Edges

It is possible that burrs may be created after cutting the pipe. In order to remove them use a file or coarse sand paper to smooth any jagged edges for a professional finish.

Conclusion

In a nutshell, galvanized steel pipes are very well known for their usage as water-running pipes in homes. This is because of their resistance to corrosion and rust. Installing or removing old galvanized pipe involves the process of cutting. However, its cutting process is a crucial task, but with comprehensive knowledge, careful preparation, and the selection of the right tools, this could be made easier.

There are various ways through which we can cut galvanized steel pipe. In this article, we have discussed three such methods. These are tube-cutting tools, an angle grinder or reciprocating saw, or a hacksaw.

These methods come with different advantages and different methods. It is highly recommended that one should follow the safety measures in order to avoid any damage. By following the required guidelines, a successful and secure cutting of the pipe can be ensured.

FAQs

Q1: What is a Galvanized Steel Pipe?

A: It is a type of steel pipe which are coated with zinc. Galvanized steel pipe is also famous for its resistance to rust and corrosion.

Q2: Can I use a regular saw to cut galvanized steel pipe? 

A: Yes, you can cut galvanized pipe using a regular saw. However, for better results, we recommend you use a hacksaw or tube-cutting tool.

Q3: Is it necessary to follow safety instructions?

A: Yes, Safety always comes first. By following the safety instructions, you can protect yourself and others from great damage and injuries.

Q4: Is it possible to cut galvanized steel pipe without damaging the zinc coating?

A: It’s impossible to cut galvanized pipe without affecting its zinc coating. However, specific types of cutting tools can minimize the loss.