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cutting a radiator hose to proper length


FrankWest107
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Guest AlCapone

There is a small tool available at Harbor Freight for less than 4 dollars that does an anazing job. It is called a hose cutter. Comes in two sizes, one for heater hose and the other for hose up to three inch diameter, Wayne

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Are you taking the hose off the connection necks or are you putting it on?  If it is an old hose(s) and you are going to put new replacements back on - then use an utility knife and cut past the connection neck and peel it off.  For a new hose, I turned a slightly larger than the I. D. of the hose wooden dowel rod to a snug fit in the hose, put it in my lathe and used a SHARP utility knife blade to cut the hose to the length I wanted.  Be sure and run the lathe in reverse so that the hose material is pulling away from you.  You will end up with a crisp, clean cut that you will be proud to show anyone.  I try to do everything in a very simple and meticulous manner that I do not have to apologize for.

 

Terry Wiegand

South Hutchinson, Kansas

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Are you taking the hose off the connection necks or are you putting it on?  If it is an old hose(s) and you are going to put new replacements back on - then use an utility knife and cut past the connection neck and peel it off.  For a new hose, I turned a slightly larger than the I. D. of the hose wooden dowel rod to a snug fit in the hose, put it in my lathe and used a SHARP utility knife blade to cut the hose to the length I wanted.  Be sure and run the lathe in reverse so that the hose material is pulling away from you.  You will end up with a crisp, clean cut that you will be proud to show anyone.  I try to do everything in a very simple and meticulous manner that I do not have to apologize for.

 

Terry Wiegand

South Hutchinson, Kansas

Puting it on. I have a 3 ft section and need to size to 9 inches long.

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Guest Bob Call

Any good SHARP blade will do the job. Lubricate with water. Trying to cut dry you will have a hard time trying to keep the cut straight.

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Guest Bob Call

You're making this harder than it really is. Like Mark Shaw says use a worm drive hose clamp as a guide and cut with a utility knife with a wet blade.

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You're making this harder than it really is. Like Mark Shaw says use a worm drive hose clamp as a guide and cut with a utility knife with a wet blade.

Thanks. The only reason I am asking was that I told the guy at NAPA that I was going to cut hose with a razor knife and he said well you will get an uneven edge with that. It was like a big secret as to cut a rubber hose the right way.

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Guest Al Brass

There are many ways of cutting hose or pipe but we were told at trade school to run a ring of masking tape around the pipe or hose and cut to that.

 

Regards

Al 

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I haven't tried it that I can recall but I bet a chop saw would cut one pretty nicely as long as it didn't have the wire in it.  

 

 

 A chop saw works very well, even with wire in the hose!  (as long as you don't mind the smell of burning rubber) Use light pressure and you will get a nice square cut. I do it all the time.

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 A chop saw works very well, even with wire in the hose!  (as long as you don't mind the smell of burning rubber) Use light pressure and you will get a nice square cut. I do it all the time.

The wire might not be the best thing for $50 diablo blade though.   It works real slick to cut cork into very thin strips to replace the cork in headlights.  You just roll the cork up put a piece of tape around it to hold it and cut.   I had to use 2 pieces side by side but it was a really clean job when done. 

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I use one similar two this: http://www.ebay.com/itm/Mighty-Cutter-Hose-and-Cable-Cutter-Fuel-Line-Cutter-Vinyl-Air-Hose-Cutting-Tool-/321538801198?hash=item4add34be2e:g:CRsAAOSwVFlUKycN

 

On fuel tank filler hoses or larger diameter stuff I wrap a piece of electrical tape to mark the edge and take a couple of nibbles. I have probably had it for 25 years.

 

The tricky part is removing the old hose. They can bond to copper nipples and the guys who twist them off can break solder joints and the like. I always make a longitudinal slice in the hose along the top of the fitting and then use a screwdriver tip to, gently, peel the hose away. I put all new hoses on my Packard with that technique last year and didn't break anything.

Bernie

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The wire might not be the best thing for $50 diablo blade though.   It works real slick to cut cork into very thin strips to replace the cork in headlights.  You just roll the cork up put a piece of tape around it to hold it and cut.   I had to use 2 pieces side by side but it was a really clean job when done. 

 The chop saw that I use has an 14" abrasive wheel on it and will cut through anything very cleanly.

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  • 4 years later...

Yes, ... use hose clamp as guide.  New box-cutter blade, or fine tooth hacksaw with hose in vice, both lubed soapy water.  The Harbor Freight and Gates cutters do not worl very well on larger radiator hoses.  Always cut off old hose.  Do not pull or twist off, as this action may damage the fitting.

Edited by mcloud53@gmail.com
Additional information. (see edit history)
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On 2/15/2016 at 12:07 PM, JACK M said:

I would wrap some duct tape around either the braided stainless or the radiator hose and cut thru the tape.

I use a die grinder.

 

I never use duct tape, can't stand all the time wasted to remove the residue. I use masking tape. Leaves no residue.

 

People would come into the shop with a broken window and plastic duct taped to the car, even the vinyl roof. The charge to remove the duct tape residue usually eclipsed the cost to replace the glass. 🤬

 

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5 minutes ago, Frank DuVal said:

 

I never use duct tape, can't stand all the time wasted to remove the residue. I use masking tape. Leaves no residue.

 

People would come into the shop with a broken window and plastic duct taped to the car, even the vinyl roof. The charge to remove the duct tape residue usually eclipsed the cost to replace the glass. 🤬

 

 

Well this is true.

But if cutting a braided hose I would suspect that the tape would be taken off before it rotted in place.

Even masking tape will go bad if left on long enough.

I found a basically new roll of masking tape that someone left on a shelf for what must have been a year or so. Couldn't use it.

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Sawzall with a six tooth blade.

That ought to do it.

Kidding of course.

I being in the car biz have cut hundreds and hundreds of hoses using a quality made hose cutter...they come in two sizes.. smaller heater hose size and the larger radiator size.

Wet the cut area on the hose with water/antifreeze ...rotate and cut the hose. Perfect square and smooth looking cut hose.

This if you care about beautiful cut hose work.😄

Edited by c49er
Spelling error (see edit history)
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9 hours ago, JACK M said:

But if cutting a braided hose I would suspect that the tape would be taken off before it rotted in place.

 

I was speaking of just a short time. The duct tape I have used transfers residue right away. Those people who taped plastic over their broken glass usually were in the shop in a day or two.

 

I have some Scotch 233 (collision shop tape from the late 90s, 3/4", 1.5" and 2")  masking tape from 20 years ago that is still fine to use. I am amazed!👍

 

 

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