How To Cut Metal With A Dremel (From Hobbyist to Pro)

If you have a Dremel, you must have used it for a variety of tasks. But have you tried it on any metal project?

Can Dremel really cut metals? If so, what’s the correct way to do so, or which Dremel tool is best for cutting metal? 

With the right Dremel tool and technique, you can cut small metal pieces such as metal sheets, screws, pipes, and bars. You can cut 1-inch thick metal with EZ Lock Metal Cutting Wheel, Dremel Angle Grinders Cutting Wheel, and Dremel Cutting Wheels #420 and #409. The 38mm Dremel Diamond Cutting Disc with EZ Lock Metal system is the best for cutting hardened metals.

In this article, I have given a quick guide with some expert tips and techniques to help you.

How To Cut Metal With Dremel

Cut Metal With Dremel

Dremel is one of the best tools for all kinds of DIY projects. But it is not the best option for cutting thick metal or hardened steel. It’s better to use a chop saw or a metal cutting saw for such work. 

But Dremel is really good when it comes to thin metals sheet, screws, bolts, rods, and other kinds of stuff like this. 

Cutting metal with a Dremel requires proper knowledge and techniques:

Step 1: Take Necessary Safety Precautions

The first step is to take necessary safety precautions.

When you start to cut metal, it will create lots of sparks and debris. To prevent these flying metal particles from going on your eyes, wear safety glasses and a mask to prevent inhaling the metal debris. 

Okay, you have covered your face but what about the bare hand and other body parts? The sparks won’t just target your face, right? So to protect your skin, you can wear full-sleeved wears. 

See, sparks that are created during metal cutting don’t last long, and they won’t even burn or hurt you seriously. It can just cause a little irritation. 

However, if you have used Dremel before, you must have heard the drill-like annoying sound every time you turn it on.

You can use your earbuds here. I think it’s much better to listen to your favorite music than to a drilling sound. 

Step 2: Prepare Your Metal

prepare the metal surface

Before going to the cutting step, you will have to prepare the metal surface. Clean all the rust or dirt on the metal thoroughly.

This is important because if there is any rust, it will break off as soon as you start cutting. So, you won’t get the desired precise cut. 

Then, you will have to measure and mark the area you want to cut. You can use a marker or tape. This will help you to stay on track while cutting and ensure accurate cuts.

Finally, secure the metal piece so that it doesn’t shake while cutting. 

Step 3: Learn Which Dremel Tools Are Used For Metal Cutting

Dremel has manufactured a wide range of accessories considering different industries and needs. They have more than 10 wheels made from fiberglass-reinforced abrasive material for metal cutting. 

Here I’ve discussed the 5 most used tools for metal cutting:

Wheel 1: Dremel EZ Lock Metal Cutting Wheel #SC456

These wheels are perfect for cutting bolt heads, slotting damaged screws, cutting sheet metal, or trimming metal rods. You can make quick and precise cuts in metal with these. 


Easily Fits into tight spaces and produces less dust. You will get a thin and perfect line cut with these wheels. 


Doesn’t last long. If you press too hard, the fiber disc will separate from the central Dremel. 

Wheel 2: Dremel EZ406- Lock Starter Kit

These cut-off wheels are generally reinforced with fiberglass. So you can easily cut, trim, or grove metals, including Hardened steel.

It has 0.45” thick blades. These kits come with a storage case to keep all the accessories organized. 


Last 2X longer than other cut-off dices. Easy to use.


Weak for grinding. Needs to be careful while inserting the disc, or it can break initially. 

Wheel 3: Dremel Angle Grinder Metal Cutting Wheel

Dremel Angle Grinders are designed for high-performance metal cutting. With these wheels, you can cut carbon steel, stainless steel, mild steel, metal pipes, tubes, or flat sheets exceptionally fast.


Delivers fast and consistent cuts.


Produces highly annoying noise and vibration. 

Wheel 4: Dremel #409 Cut-Off Wheel

These wheels are best for tough applications such as hardened steel and wood. With its 0.6 mm thick blade, you can cut all kinds of metals smoothly.


Gives straight and precise cuts. These are cheaper and produce fewer sparks.


Doesn’t last long. If you give an extra sideway pressure, these will break.

Wheel 5: Dremel #420 Cutting Wheel

Dremel #420 Cutting Wheels are ideal for cutting, grooving, and trimming all kinds of metal. You can easily cut or slice any hard but not-so-thick steel with these wheels, such as bolts or screws. 


Cheaper and more durable than other Dremel cutting wheels.


Though these wheels last long if you are not careful, these discs will break, and pieces of shrapnel will fly.

Step 4: Choose The Best Dremel Tool For Metal Cutting

Now that you know all mostly used Dremel tools for metal cutting, you have to choose the best Dremel tool for your project.

Check out all the tools I mentioned above and choose one that meets your need and fits your budget.

Step 5: Set Up the Cutting Wheel

Once you have chosen a metal cutting wheel, insert it into the Dremel. Now adjust the speed of the Dremel according to the thickness of the metal. 

If you are working with any thick metal, you will have to set the Dremel at 30000 to 35000 RPM (Revolutions per minute).

On the contrary, if the metal is thin, 25000-28000 RPM will do the work. A slower speed provides better precision. 

Step 6: Turn On the Dremel

Now hold the Dremel properly and turn on the power.

Step 7: Start Cutting

Now you are ready to start cutting. Gently move it along with the cutting line. Make sure to keep the tool level and maintain a steady hand. 

Do not apply too much pressure, or else the wheel may separate from the central Dremel and break. Apply little pressure through the cutting.

Step 8: Turn Off the Dremel

Once you have finished the cut, turn off the Dremel and disconnect it from the power socket.

Step 9: Finishing and Polishing

There can be burrs or rough edges after the cut. You can use sandpaper or a grinding stone to smooth out the edges.

After this, polish the metal surface. This will give your metalwork a professional finish.

Step 10: Store the Dremel

After finishing the cut, sometimes we don’t pay attention to organizing the equipment and its accessories. This kind of careless act can reduce the durability of your favorite Dremel.

So always make sure you are storing your Dremel in the instructed way every time you use it.   

Expert Tips for Better Results

Here are a few tips to make your metal-cutting experience smooth:

  • When we work with any rotary tools, the right speed is the most important factor. To get the desired cut, set the speed of the Dremel according to the instruction given above. 
  • For curved cuts or intricate designs use a diamond cutting wheel. 
  • Avoid overheating the metal by keeping the Dremel moving at a consistent speed around the metal. Instead, take a break. It will also prevent hand fatigue. 
  • At 25000-28000 RPM, it’s obvious that a lot of heat has been produced. So do not touch the cutting wheel or the metal immediately after cutting

Cutting Steel With Dremel

As I said before Dremel is not the best pick for cutting hardened steels. There are specified tools to deal with hardened steels.

But when it’s about small steel tasks, Dremel will do the work. There are specific Dremel cutting discs to cut steel. 

You can cut steel with a 38mm cutting disc. But the 38mm Diamond Cutting Disc will be the best option for cutting all types of steel, even the hardened ones. 

I’ve cut a padlock with my 38mm Diamond Cutting Disc. It cut through that hardened shackle smoothly. 

I don’t recommend using Dremel on extremely hardened steels because it shortens the durability of the Dremel and the cutting disc.

But if you have a 38mm Diamond Cutting Disc and the strongest Dremel 4300, you can cut anything, even hardened steels, smoothly like butter. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I Cut Thick Steel With Dremel?

You can cut thin steel with Dremel high-performance cutting wheels. For steel cutting, 35000 RPM is the recommended speed. Do not exceed the RPM limit. 

You can cut thick steels with a 38mm Diamond Cutting Disc. 

If you have a normal disc, it’s best not to use Dremel for cutting steels. Instead, use a tool specifically designed for the job, such as a chop saw or a metal cutting saw.

Which Dremel Is the Best For Cutting Metal?

Dremel 4300 is the best for cutting metal. With its high-performance motor and 5000-35000 RPM, you can cut all kinds of metal with ease. 


See, metal cutting it’s not as complex as it seems. With the right Dremel tool for cutting metal and technique, it’s a simple process.

Before cutting metal with Dremel, make sure you have taken the necessary safety precautions, choosing the right Dremel tool, and prepared the metal surface. 

By following the above process, tips, and techniques, you will be able to cut metal with your Dremel like a pro. So, go ahead and try it out!

Kevin Smith

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