Metal is a popular material to use in schools within Design and Technology lessons as it is generally not too expensive in comparison with other materials that are available.
There are many different tools for marking out on metal:
A hacksaw is normally used to cut metal by hand. If a smaller piece of metal is being cut, then a junior hacksaw can be used. Once the metal is cut close to a marked line, a file can be used to remove material up to the desired line. Files can be bought in different shapes, sizes and cutting grades - a rough-cut file can remove metal faster than a smooth-cut file and should always be used first.
Once filing has been done and the profile of the metal is at the desired shape, the file marks can be removed with abrasive papers such as emery cloth and silicon carbide paper (often called ‘wet and dry’ paper as it can be used both wet and dry). A buffing machine can be used to polish the metal to achieve a mirror-like finish.
Metal can also be drilled by using a variety of different drill bits, which work by twisting into a piece of metal:
A tap is used to cut or form a thread