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Leatherwork
September 27, 2012
9:58 pm
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DebbieM
SC
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Does anyone know an easy way to cut lots of 2 inch circles from leather?  I want them for a craft project and it is too hard to cut with scissors. If there is a tool, what is it and where could I get one reasonably priced?

September 28, 2012
6:36 am
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twiggityNDgoats
Spencer, WV
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I’ve not tried it with leather but a 2-inch hole saw that fits on a cordless drill might work.  Should be available in any hardware store.  Some have finer teeth than others for a smoother cut.  I imagine it would work better on thick leather rather than thin floppy leather though.

September 28, 2012
9:41 am
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BuckeyeGirl
N.E. Ohio
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This is really bugging me!!  I’m trying to figure out what would work best now.  I’m wondering about one of those circle cutters for paper crafts to start a cut on the surface, then using a craft knife on a cutting board to go the rest of the way through.  Probably dull the blade of the circle cutter… still might work depending on how thick the leather is and how many you need. 

The hole saw could work if the teeth are fine enough and the leather is thick enough, but don’t those usually have a regular drill bit through the middle?  not sure… but worth a look  Hmmmmm…. 

Located in N.E. Ohio

September 28, 2012
9:57 am
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Ross
Bel Air Maryland
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There are purpose made punches for cutting circles or disks. http://www.mcmaster.com/#hole-forming-punches/=jhlc1s

September 28, 2012
11:19 am
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bonita
north east IL
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There are several leather craft suppliers listed on the internet. Tandy is one of the country’s largest leatherworking supply companies.

Smaller holes: http://www.tandyleatherfactory.com/en-usd/home/3777-167.aspx

Also you might try http://www.leatherunltd.com/hardware/tools_cutting/tools_cutting.html for designated heavy duty rotary cutters.

If you choose this option, also get yourself a chain mail glove for the hand not holding the cutter. Even lots of quilters use these gloves.

Save the Earth. It's the only planet with chocolate.

September 28, 2012
11:36 am
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BuckeyeGirl
N.E. Ohio
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Hmmm….  that leather unlimited has a 2″ circular mallet die… but it’s $60.oo!  I’m sure it’s worth it if you’re going to need to use it a lot for a long time, but if it’s just for one small project, that’s a lot of dough.  It does give a good example about the sort of thing that is wanted… or some version, similar, variant. 

Located in N.E. Ohio

September 28, 2012
11:52 am
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Ross
Bel Air Maryland
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We should ask what degree of precision is wanted here. And how thick is the leather.

September 28, 2012
2:38 pm
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mamajhk
South Central Kansas
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BuckeyeGirl said 

This is really bugging me!!  I’m trying to figure out what would work best now.  I’m wondering about one of those circle cutters for paper crafts to start a cut on the surface, then using a craft knife on a cutting board to go the rest of the way through.  Probably dull the blade of the circle cutter… still might work depending on how thick the leather is and how many you need. 

The hole saw could work if the teeth are fine enough and the leather is thick enough, but don’t those usually have a regular drill bit through the middle?  not sure… but worth a look  Hmmmmm…. 

 I just looked my hubby’s hole saw kit and it does have a drill bit that goes through the center. I, too, was wondering about the circle cutters when I first saw the post.

September 28, 2012
9:00 pm
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easygoinglady
N.E. Ohio
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Ok, I found two ideas for cutting the circles. 

First a multipurpose circle cutter 

http://www.overstock.com/Crafts-Sewing/Lion-Ev-R-Round-Circle-Cutter/6155242/product.html

 

then also here was a response for someone wanting to cut circles, this person had a doable idea….

Years ago when I needed to make coasters for the 4-H kids, I simply got a piece of pipe that was the right size, and sharpened up one end, and welded a plate on the the other end.   It cut quite a few coasters between sharpenings. 

September 28, 2012
9:53 pm
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Ross
Bel Air Maryland
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DebbieM, Where are you?

October 2, 2012
11:57 am
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DebbieM
SC
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Thanks for all the ideas. I was out of town without computer access from early 9-28 until today. I looked at some of the cutters and really don’t want to invest in the expensive cutters since this may be a one time craft item depending on how it works. I really like the idea of the pipe. I assume you then hit it with a hammer? How would you sharpen the edges of a pipe though? I also am in SC.

October 2, 2012
12:53 pm
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wolfsax
Hatchling
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October 2, 2012
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If you just want a few pieces to ‘try’ before investing in something to cut rounds, you can prepurchase leather rounders (usually used for coasters). Tandy didn’t have anything smaller than a 3″, but Springfield Leather does smaller http://springfieldleather.com/19894/Coat%2CBullfighter%2CCognac%2C2XL/

 

I didn’t see anything specific, but they have great customer service from what I hear, so just call them and ask.

October 2, 2012
3:19 pm
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DebbieM
SC
Banty
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Thanks wolfsax for the link! I didn’t even think of precut. I called-they were super friendly and I ordered some of the precut leather circles to see if my craft idea will work. If so, then maybe I will order the leather punch-they carry those also. One note-their website stated free shipping by USPS and they no longer do that; she changed the website as we were speaking.

October 3, 2012
3:23 pm
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wolfsax
Hatchling
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October 2, 2012
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Glad that worked out. I do leatherwork as a hobby, although I haven’t worked with Springfield leather myself, I heard nothing but praise from them on leatherworker.net forum.

 

Sucks about the shipping, but it’s better than tandy (which always seems to be $10 minimum, which sucks). Economy has forced a lot of shipping prices higher.

October 14, 2012
2:11 pm
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whaledancer
Southern California
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I think what you want is a compass cutter. X-acto makes one and Leathercraft has a couple of kinds, but there are other brands, too. If you Google “compass cutter for leather” you’ll find some.  They cost about $10 – $15.

 

Another approach is to get a piece of pipe the right diameter and file one end to make it sharp. Then you use it as a die cutter by whacking it with a small sledge. For one that large you’ll probably need to put a chunk of wood on the top end and whack that.

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