How To Cut Safety Glass At Home: Tips And Tricks
Are you one of the DIY enthusiast who would like to know how to cut safety glass at home? A lot of people these days are becoming bold enough to perform mechanical activities even without prior experience. Thanks to a plethora of DIY guides on the internet. Projects like cutting safety glass can be done at the comfort of your home and without having to hire for a professional. Save on bucks! But before you go and start cutting safety glass, be sure to understand the following safety tips.
When doing any technical jobs that use materials that could injure, always keep safety in your mind. As the saying goes, ‘safety should always come first’ and for that, one needs to prepare safety materials before starting any DIY task.
Personal Protective Equipment
For cutting safety glasses, you will need the following:
- Cut-resistant gloves: It is important to use one as you will be dealing with sharps. Most injuries from cutting glasses result from not wearing gloves.
- Goggles: This PPE prevents glass shrapnel from entering your eyes.
- Protective clothing: Wear thick clothing to prevent body puncture injuries.
- Focused mindset: Nothing protects better than a keen mind. So aside from wearing the proper PPE, it is paramount to stay sharp on the task. Glass, once cut, can be very sharp, and working carelessly can lead to an ER visit. It pays following all the safety tips on how to cut safety glass at home.
Essential for Cutting Safety Glasses
If you're doing a simple glass cutting task involving straight cuts in a glass with a thickness of 6 mm, you will only be needing a minimum set of tools. They are as follows:
- Glass cutter: This is the primary tool you need to accomplish your ‘how to cut safety glass at home’ DIY project. You can easily find a decent glass cutter in most local hardware stores. Choose the basic type of glass cutter for a simple cutting project.
- Wheel cutter: We use this material to score the glass before the actual cutting is done. There are two types of wheel cutters: carbide and steel. Carbide wheel cutters are durable and self-oiling, which is an advantage. An added feature is that you can replace the wheel when it’s worn out without having to replace the entire tool. Such a money-saver! The downside is it’s a bit pricey. The steel wheel cutter, on the other hand, is cheaper than carbide, but it dulls faster. Cutting wise, it cuts the same when in good quality.
- 3-in-1 oil/ lubricant: For best results in cutting glass, you will need a 3-in-1 oil. You will have to dip the cutter in a standard oil if you want to produce fine marks with less effort. However, if the cut will be longer than 20 inches, brush oil along the cutting path instead of dipping the cutter in oil. Doing so will make sure there is enough oil while cutting the entire length of the glass.
- Solid Working Surface: Be sure that you are working on a solid surface to retain balance while doing the cut. Never work on unstable surfaces such as carpet, fabrics, and cushions, as it will result in an uneven cut. No one wants an ugly cut glass.
- Tape: You will need to tape the edge of the glass to prevent a chip from forming at the ends of the glass. You’ll thank yourself for not skipping this part.
- Metal straight edge: Cutting safety glass often produce curves. Curving is a common mistake in glass cutting, and to avoid such, always use a straight metal edge. Aside from being used as a straightening guide, this material can also be placed under the marked glass. By doing so, the glass will break smoothly down the line without exerting much of an effort.
Making the Cut
Now that you’ve donned all your personal protective equipment, and have prepared all the materials needed, you’re all set to start your glass cutting task. Just follow carefully the following tips on how to cut safety glass at home to ensure success.
- Start by measuring the glass and the cut you’d like to make. Some people forget to do the basic, and they end up frustrated with the result. They either cut way beyond the intended length, which means a waste of materials. You'll have to get a new glass again, and that will hurt your pocket!
- Score the glass using the wheel cutter. By doing so, the safety glass is weakened along the part where it should cut. This should make cutting the glass a lot easier.
- Now that you’ve scored the glass, apply the lubricant to your glass cutter. But as mentioned above, it would be best to brush lubricant over the glass surface when you have to cut longer. Some people forego oiling, which could result in tiny cracks on the glass. However, apply only over the area to be cut and not over the entire glass!
- Start cutting the glass on an even surface. You may cut towards or away from you, whichever you find more comfortable. Maintain an even pressure and speed while you're cutting the entire length. It pays to be patient.
- Now that you’ve cut the glass, place the metal straight edge under the cutline of the glass. Start applying pressure down the raised part of the glass using your gloved hand. This will cause the glass to snap along the cutline, and you'll see a smooth cut edge. If you are working on shorter cuts, you can use pliers to initiate the break instead of using your hand. Be sure to use a plier with a curved and wide mouth. You have now completed the steps on how to cut safety glasses at home.
Now that you have finally learned the tricks on how to cut safety glass at home, you can now start amazing glass projects on your own. Whether it be décor glasses or for furniture at home or elsewhere, having know-how on performing simple tasks can be truly fun and rewarding. Remember always to keep safe and apply necessary precautions when doing your DIY projects.