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Home>Topics>>Cutting Techniques, Part II

Cutting Techniques, Part II

Thu, 2 Sep 2010|

In this vehicle extrication video, Dave Dalrymple examines how cutting hinges and latches is different from cutting sheet metal and roof posts. Sponsored by Holmatro.



Alright, let's talk about. Cutting techniques. Now one of the things as we learn tool operations, primary tools we learned right away is spreader, because in the past we needed a spreader to pop doors, pop hinges, pop latches and force them apart. Today's cutters can facilitate cutting these things, hinges and latches. Very easily. However, let's think about how. How do we cut hardened things like hinges and latches? Is it the same as cutting sheet metal? Is it the same as cutting a roof post? Because that's pretty much what we've practiced on the past. We've cut roof posts to do a roof removal. Well is it the same technique? Now one of the things we're going to show you. We're going to cut some hinges first. The primary thing with cutting hardened objects, hinges, latches, and maybe even some of the reinforcements you'll find in modern cars. You have to make sure, open your, open your cutter up very wide. Make sure your cutter blades go completely around the object you're cutting. Now the important thing is, say they do, each tip goes onto that hardened object. That is called side loading or tip loading. If we tip load, even the most. Fantastic cutter that's out there on the market. That cutter will break. Cutters are not made to be side moded in any way shape or form, those blades will break. So we need to make sure our blades go completely around what we're cutting. That'll also facilitate as the cutter works, it will pull that object into the most. Force that cutter will generate towards the back of the tool itself. Now some of you might have experienced cutting these devices, sometimes the cutter will twist and bend. Especially when we go on to cutting sheet metal. One of the ways to facilitate that and make it a little bit easier for you. If it does start to twist in and unusual fashion, stop, open the cutter back up, flip it completely around, so it's the opposite direction, and try cutting it that way. On of the things that Mike stopped and did, he went back and picked out a hand tool, a cable cutter, for this operation, and actually cut the wiring between the door. And the body of the vehicle. The reason why we need to facilitate that today is because a lot of our body structure in vehicles, doors and roofs, will now have safety systems built into them. One of the things that we need to be concerned about is, we need to make sure that. Wiring and such is severed with a hand tool because our hydraulic tools can produce a static charge. We don't want any kind of back charging from static into the wiring which has a potential to maybe set these places off. However unlikely, it is a possibility that we encountered a few years ago. [SOUND] We've talked about cutting hard objects. Hinges and latches and some of the reinforcements in cars. Let's talk about cutting roof posts today. Now, again, we've done this a lot in the past, however, the same kind of techniques apply. Make sure your cutter is opened real wide. As wide as it can go. Make sure it closed completely around and the blades are past the pot as much as possible. Now, before we even get to that point, we want to make sure, when we're cutting roof posts, that we come in and we pull the interior trim away. What we're looking for, remember side curtain airbags can be in vehicles today in any roof post. We want to make sure that we pull the trim away and take a good look and make sure there's no type of pressurized vessel in that roof post we're trying to cut. Now the other point is we want to make sure we're cutting at a 90 degree angle, so we minimize the side loading force on our tool blade. Now the other part of this is sheet metal itself. One of the things that we're used to with some of the older cutters in the past, the way the blades are made. A lot of blades are made in curve so the tips come in almost like an earwig. The tips will penetrate and hold the cutter in place. So on the newer cutters, though. Almost have a u-shape because it's designed to cut hardened objects. Those type of cutters sometimes are difficult to work with with sheet metal, the cutter will want to twist and turn because the sheet metal gets in between the blades. You have to watch this as we're cutting, and facilitate that make sure we try to keep it as close to 90 degrees as possible. If it does start to move again, one of the techniques that you can do to minimize that is stop, open the cutter back up, flip the tool over and try cutting it from the, from the opposite direction. Now one of the things that you need to remember with all tool operations. Be it cutting or spreading. We need to make sure that we put a barrier in place between our patients and our tool work. Now a piece of hard protection such as I have in my hands here. A nice Lexan tear-drop shape device will facilitate that real well. It's flexible enough to get into tight places. It's the right type of shape to fit into tight places. But the important thing is it's shatter resistant. Cuz one of the things, as we cut things today, especially hardened materials, we're gonna have small pieces of debris that, that are gonna fly. A tarp or a blanket isn't gonna protect our patient all that well. The other part of this is, as we cut things, we also wanna make sure we cover them up with whatever edge protection that you have, be it duct tape. Spit fire hose pieces, edge covers, or such like that.

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