How do extension-style gasket cutters work?
Extension-style gasket cutters feature a cutter block with an adjustable cutting blade and modular extension bars. To use, first pierce a small hole in the center of the gasket material to be cut. Lay out the material flat on the cutting board. Poke the center pin thru the hole and insert into a ferrule in the board. Set the blade to the required depth of cut. Loosen the knurled nut and adjust to the desired outside diameter (OD). Add (or remove) extensions if necessary. Place the tail of the extension onto the pin. With one hand holding the pin, grip the block with the other hand. Apply downward pressure and at the same time sweep a circular pattern around the circumference of the material. Remove excess material. Adjust the cutter to the desired inner diameter (ID) and cut another circular pattern around that circumference. Remove finished flange gasket.
How do rotary-style gasket cutters work?
Rotary-style gasket cutters feature a stationary frame with a crank-powered, set of rotating cutting discs. To operate, first set the scale bar to the desired outer diameter (OD). Pierce a small hole in the center of the gasket material to be cut. Open the cutter, insert the material onto scale bar spindle, and secure with the knurled nut. With one hand, lower the cutting disc and apply pressure, while simultaneously turning the crank with the other hand. Remove excess material. Adjust the scale bar to the desired inner diameter (ID) and cut another circular pattern around that circumference. Remove finished flange gasket.
What style gasket cutter would work best for my application?
In general, extension-style gasket cutters are often used where portability is key. Their lightweight, modular nature makes them ideal for gasket fabrication “in the field”. However, some end-users have the luxury of a dedicated gasket fabrication table where large sheets of gasket material can be laid out flat. This is particularly useful where very large diameter gaskets (larger than the standard 18” x 18” cutting board) are routinely fabricated. Extension-style cutters are often preferred for cutting non-rigid or non-metallic gasket materials.
Rotary-style gasket cutters are heavy tools. Since they need to be mounted in a vise or clamped in an upright position (Model M3), or bolted to a workbench (Model SM4), they are ideal for a fixed location such as a shop. Rotary-style cutters are often preferred for cutting more rigid or metallic gasket materials and also irregular shaped gaskets.