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Friday, November 20, 2009

The Boat Canopy - Yet Again, Part 2

Well, I've hesitated cutting the PVC pipe. I've never used a reciprocating saw, and I've never cut PVC where accuracy was important.

Today, I took saw in hand and went at it! Of course, as I mentioned previously, I set up clamps and a sort of jig. I clamped 2 portable workbenchs so that there was a spot exactky the 5" distance I needed to cut. Then I moved the pipe so I could cut it straight (really easily with the reciprocating saw's guides).

I cut the 1st pipe and checked the measurement... Perfect 5'. I did the other 12 pipes the same way. I got some off by 1/8th", but generally, worked quite well. The slight difference won't make any difference (I'll match side by side pieces to match).

So now I have all my 1.25" pipes cut to the 5' and 7' lengths I need. I'll construct the bottom part 1st. Then I can try out a few roof arch lengths to see how to cut the tops pieces.

The reciprocating saw worked GREAT!  I found one sawblade at the Home Depot marked for PVC (marked as "8/12").  But they were sold in packs of 10, and I sure didn't need that many.   Individual blades were not marked for PVC.  But the 10 pack was 8/12 so I bought a single 8/12 Rigid blade.  That's the one to use.  Cuts through like a hot knife in soft butter, no casting of PVC dust at low speeds, and a nice clean cut!  The DeWalt saw gave a good square cut with almost no vibration.  I was utterly pleased!  No hint of melt, and the burrs rubbed off by hand (I"ll run a file inside and out anyway).


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