Cut lead with a pair of scissors, a saw or a drill

Lead is a very soft metal and therefore very difficult to machine with a saw. If the material thickness permits, cutting tools such as metal shears or particularly hard cutters are recommended. When lead has to be sawed, it is worthwhile to freeze to avoid the "muddling" effect.

Lead gauges and metal shears

The nature of lead leads to "smearing" behavior during machining. Similar to sinking in mud, the exposed or displaced material "closes" around the cutting tool. The mechanically most unimpressed by this dicing technique is performing a cutting blade. When cutting, the lead is forced apart and remains "locked" in the further execution of vorrängernden cutting movements.

Lead sheets can be cut well with a nail scissors and larger material thicknesses up to about two centimeters can be cut with "poultry shears". The cutting movements must be carried out with a strong lever and a lot of force evenly and slowly. In addition to metal shears, stone scissors or bolt cutters can be used effectively as tools.

Sawing and Drilling

When using thicker materials and sawing or drilling lead, it is important to avoid "clogging" the cut or borehole. For this purpose saw blades or drills are required, which transport the maximum amount of chips from the valuable material opening due to their nature. From the construction principle, wood drills are the most suitable.

Sawing can be assisted by drilling several holes in one line and then sawing with a wood saw such as a foxtail. To limit greasing, regular cleaning of the saw blade or drill helps with a wire brush. Cutting oil can increase the lubrication factor, but can be helpful in cutting through.


If the lead component fits into the freezer, it is worth freezing. The temperature should be set to at least minus 18 degrees Celsius. When the lead is frozen, it can be sawn, drilled and cut much smoother. Also, external cooling of a large workpiece with ice bags is helpful.

Tips & Tricks When cutting lead, remember that the material is poisonous. Work with gloves and thoroughly clean all cutting, sawing and drilling tools after use.
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